General Question

DandyDear711's avatar

"I am thinking about getting a mini laptop like an EEE PC. Should I get it with Windows XP or Linux?"?

Asked by DandyDear711 (1512points) April 19th, 2009

I plan to mostly surf the net with it – listening to CNN Live, listening to hulu and listening to music on pandora – and check my email. I have read that XP can be very slow on the EEE PC. Should I consider Linux?

Can I also plug headphones or a speaker into an EEE PC?

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21 Answers

knitfroggy's avatar

I have a mini laptop and I use it for basically the same things you are wanting it for. I love it. It’s not an EEE I guess tho. I have windows xp home on mine and it works fine, it’s acutally faster than my desktop which I haven’t touched much since I got the laptop.

J0E's avatar

LINUX! I use it on my laptop and it is great! Every computer I get from now on will use Linux, it is far superior than any other OS I have used.

Ivan's avatar

I have an EEEPC and I run Linux on it. However, I do not run the Xandros Linux OS that comes pre-installed on a lot of EEEPC’s. That OS is very bare-bones. It boots and shuts down really fast, and you aren’t going to have any driver issues with it, but other than that, there isn’t much good about it. I put EeeBuntu on mine. It is just Ubuntu Linux with a modified kernel with all of the appropriate drivers, so wireless, etc, will work right out of the box. The Windows models tend to have HDD’s, and the Linux models tend to have SSD’s. The HDD’s are larger, but they are slower and have a higher potential to fail. I bought a Windows model and just put Linux on it.

bodyhead's avatar

I bought a linux one and ended up putting windows on it because I needed some specialty networking applications that were only for windows. If you’re mostly getting it for just mucking around the internet, linux should be fine for you.

Before I switched to windows, I was using eeebuntu and it did far more then the default xandros. The operating system did need to be tweaked quite a bit to work properly and minimize writes to the ssd hard drive.

DandyDear711's avatar

Our wireless networking software at home is Network Magic…. Will Linux and Network Magic work together?

Oh yes – thanks everyone so far – keep giving me info please o please!

J0E's avatar

The thing that will matter is the security of the router. I was not able to connect to my home router until I turned the security settings down a little. If you’re using a public wireless connection it will be fine, if it’s a home network it will take a little configuring but it will work.

DandyDear711's avatar

The router is a D-Link.

J0E's avatar

Ok, it should just take a few simple tweaks and you’ll be good to go.

phoenyx's avatar

I would recommend linux too. If you are unfamiliar with linux, I’d recommend you try it out first before you commit. Wubi is pretty nice, or you can boot off of a ubuntu CD and try it for a while.

westy81585's avatar

XP isn’t bad, but Linux (Pending which version, and there are a LOT of them) is better overall. The only issue with linux (other than finding a good version) would be the learning curve. Once you get past that it’s no biggie.

anoop66's avatar

Definitely Linux. Your laptop’ll be low on configuration. I suggest you to install Ubuntu which’s a free Linux. They’ll ship the cd free to you or you can also download it. Plus, VIRUSES? Linux has no viruses at all and you’ll end up saving a lot. You should go with linux without thinking. Just google “reasons to use linux” or something like that. Sure you’ll get many.

DandyDear711's avatar

Thanks everyone. I am sold on Linux but I am afraid I won’t be able to connect to my home wireless network. We have D-Link router with Network Magic software. I don’t think Network Magic has a Linux version.

phoenyx's avatar

To answer your second question, yes, you can plug in headphones or speakers (see the “Other” section of the specifications). You can connect wirelessly via the built-in wireless card (“Communication” section).

(I’ve been looking at sites that offer Network Magic and I can’t figure out what does beyond what an operating system already does, or why you’d need a Linux version.)

One of the awesome features of Linux is that you don’t have to wonder about whether or not it will work. You can boot and run linux off of a CD without installing it and without changing or adversely affecting the computer you’re using. Do you have a computer in your house that already uses the wireless network or a friend with a wireless laptop? Boot up linux on that computer. Don’t have a linux CD? You can burn your own, have one mailed to you for free, or get one from your local user group.

Ivan's avatar

The router doesn’t require the software to run. So even if “Network Magic” doesn’t work with Linux, you will still be able to use the router. You might need to tinker with it a bit, but it will work.

DandyDear711's avatar

Well I did buy an EEE PC 900A 1 GB RAM and 16 GB SSD Hard Drive with Linux.

Expect more questions from me after it arrives!

Ivan's avatar

Cool. Don’t expect the OS that comes with it to impress you though.

DandyDear711's avatar

Do I have to take the “old” Linux off before installing Eeebuntu (http://www.eeebuntu.org/index.php?page=nbr).

Can I download software, like Eeebuntu, via my Windows XP desk top to a thumb drive? Then install the software from the thumbdrive on the netbook?

Ivan's avatar

You don’t need to remove the original OS, installing Eeebuntu will just format the hard drive and install cleanly. You can install it via a thumb drive, yes. Here’s a tutorial. The last few steps don’t really apply. When you boot from the USB stick, you need to press Esc. a bunch when the computer boots up.

DandyDear711's avatar

@Ivan – I am gonna cheat and buy a stick that was mentioned in the tutorial you posted. $20 is so worth it to me!

http://www.linuxbootsticks.com/

Ivan's avatar

@DandyDear711

Heh, alright, whatever floats your boat. Good luck.

DandyDear711's avatar

I am beginning to feel how I look in my avatar. I look at a discussion about Linux and my eyes completely roll around in my head. I suppose once I get my hands on the computer it will make more sense. I’m like a little kid – I want to be able to use the netbook as soon as I get it.

@Ivan – you have been very patient with me without looking down on me. I appreciate it very much!

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