Using Dell’s D/Dock docking station with Linux
My new laptop has docking station support, and since these docking stations can be bought second hand at very reasonable prices I got myself a D/Dock.
It worked out of the box: the laptop, plugged to the docking station, just works. External devices connected via USB or the external monitor also work as they would be plugged directly to the laptop. I didn’t test the media bay, the DVI connector or the additional PCI slot, so I’m not sure if they would work. However, since there were no other problems I would at least be confident in trying these.
Hotplugging is also not an issue: the laptop can be plugged on or off the docking station while it is running. Of course, mounted USB devices connected to the docking stations should be unmounted before plugging off! But besides that there are no real problems.
The only real disadvantages of the docking station itself I was so far able to recognize are that it has too few USB ports and that it is a bit noisier than I would have expected.