Re: lenovo and market pressure
I'll offer a vendor that may or may not be lily white, but did almost* everything right when I bought a laptop from them in the middle of last year - PC Specialist.
No crapware installed? Check. I had options of having antivirus and Office trials installed, but the important thing is they were options - I chose "No antivirus" and "No office software", and sure enough there wasn't any. And there was nothing else, either.
Choice of OS? Check. Win 8 or 7, or no OS at all if that's your preference. They could get a bonus point by offering a Linux, but then which one?
Proper, old fashioned, install media? Check. Vanilla Win7 DVD in the box.
Extra little touches - how would you like your HDD partitioned for example. Just saved me a little job, cool.
Basically they delivered the machine I wanted, ready to go, complete with reinstall media should I need it. And no crapware. Price? Reasonable for the spec I wanted. I would recommend them to anyone who's not in a huge rush (see *note...)
*My only real problem was with the build/delivery time - what was "estimated" at the time I ordered it was 7-10 working days, and it was nearer 14. Doing my research before ordering, this was a fairly common theme, but also the only major complaint I found and I wasn't in that much of a hurry. That said when I rang them to see what was going on I spoke to a bloke in Leeds, who went to the production area, found my order, and told me what to expect. That works for me.
Reading this back it sounds like an ad. It's not, I'm just a satisfied customer. Whether the model of basically making decent machines for a sensible price, without installing crap, is sustainable we'll see I guess...