I'm using a 1 year old Toshiba Satellite L755 and love it. Both Toshiba and Dell make hard to beat laptops. I usually buy from Micro Center because I live near one of their stores. Here's a link to where they have a Toshiba laptop for $429 which has 4 GB RAM, a 500 GB HD, and Windows 7.
If you want one with Windows 7, you'd better get it as soon as you can because it won't be long before they all will have Windows 8.
I am looking for an inexpensive laptop. I currently have a Dell Inspiron 6000 which is 6 years old and it either needs to be upgraded or I need to buy a replacement for it. My minimum requirements are a screen of 15", a hard drive with at least 120GB, with a capacity for at least 2GB of RAM, a good WiFi setup, and have Windows 7 Home Premium or Pro installed (I might be able to get by with Windows 7 Starter). Weight is not a factor nor is battery life because it will almost always be plugged in. It is something that rarely will be used. Essentially I have used my current one on only two occasions but then it was used daily for several months on each occasion. I probably won't have need for one for the better part of this coming year. How is it to be used? To access the internet for email, banking, getting information online. The major software will consist of Windows Office Suite, Quicken Deluxe 2013, Microsoft's Streets and Trips, Avast, Malwarebytes, SuperAntiSpyware, ACDSee, Several different browsers, SnagIt 7, and a half a dozen other software programs. I have been looking at the ones listed on CNET and there are quite a few listed. Are there any manufactures and/or models that I should definitely avoid? Any thoughts or suggestions will be appreciated.