There is one thing I think we need to look out for when purchasing star C3. That is I prefer Star C3 with internal hard drive to external hard drive, my reason are followed in the following parts.
To minimize setup difficulties I recommend purchasing a Star kit which includes an internal hard drive with all software pre-installed. It will look like the attached photo. Someone on the forums recommended sticking with the older C3 multiplexer, and this seems reasonable to me.
I would purchase the necessary laptop from MBStarTool.com. If you select one that does not include the hard drive, they are cheap. It's probably worth paying a bit extra and getting a Dell 6XX (I.E Dell D630 from http://www.MBStarTool.com/wholesale/dell-d630-core2-duo-18ghz-wifi-dvdrw-second-hand-laptop.html ), as it's my experience that the software is a bit slow on an old IBM. If you end up with an IBM-compatible hard drive, consider purchasing a T23 ThinkPad, because the T30 models are notorious for memory failures.
In my experience I installed the MBStarTool.com hard drive into a T30 laptop and everything worked precisely as advertised with nothing to configure or setup at all. The T30 soon developed the memory problem, and I switched to a T23.