It is a bit of a problem. Vendors will hand out free samples for reviewers who have good website traffic, because they want the exposure for their product. Without traffic, it's going to be difficult for you to convince many vendors to give you free samples. But without something to review, it's difficult to attract the traffic you need to "earn" the free samples.
I don't know what kind of software and hardware you're planning to review. Would it be possible for you to start off by reviewing items that are already owned by you (and possibly your friends)? If you don't already own it, for hardware possibly a refurbished item might be a less expensive way of getting a test subject. Or find somewhere that you can try out the item before you buy it (a store showroom, perhaps) and write your review based on that? Or possibly a vendor who isn't willing to give
you a free sample might be willing to let you borrow
something for the purpose of reviewing.
If there are any industry trade shows or conventions in your area, you might consider attending. You could chat up product sales persons at the various booths, see products in action, possibly get some information you could use to write some interesting blog posts (even if they aren't full-blown reviews) that would help kick start the process of attracting more traffic. Plus it would help you begin to build personal relationships with product sales people, which may eventually result in some of those free samples you're looking for.
The point is, you're asking vendors to do something for you (send you free samples). You have to be able to prove you can do something for them in return (send them customers). Until you have visitor stats for your blog that can reasonably demonstrate this, you may need to need to get creative when it comes to obtaining review items.