Linked by Jordan Spencer Cunningham on Wed 4th Mar 2009 23:34 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems To add to the amounting anecdotes of late, another Acer Aspire One review appears. Not to be confused with Thom's or Eugenia's, which were different models, this review concentrates on the ZG5 version of the Acer Aspire One and how well Windows XP, Windows 7, Ubuntu 8.10, and Moblin 2 run on it, particularly in the everyday-netbooker's sense of functionality with word processing and Internet applications. Read on to get the full scoop on the One and these selected systems.
Order by: Score:
Hmm
by d0od on Wed 4th Mar 2009 16:57 UTC
d0od
Member since:
2009-02-25

You should remember than Moblin is also more-or-less geared towards touchscreen devices more than netbooks - hence why you think it looks more like a glorified calculator.

Interesting you give Ubuntu less marks than Windows 7 even though Windows 7 runs slower. Surely in a netbook start-up speed and access to programmes are preferable, and maybe you're a bit biased as your 'must have apps' are Windows only?

Also quite unfortunate you didn't choose to use Jaunty Jackalope alpha instead of 8.10 for a bit of differentiation between this and every other Acer Aspire review on the net-o-sphere. Jaunty includes most of the well known netbook's hardware drivers out of the box. It is also better optimized for netbooks and would have likely been your winner.

Out of all the Acer Aspire reviews on the net i'd give this one a very generous 6. Everyone and their dog has written reviews on XP, 7 and Ibex on netbooks. Maybe (for OSnews, after all) you could've tried a BSD, OpenSolaris?

Edited 2009-03-04 16:59 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Hmm
by BluenoseJake on Wed 4th Mar 2009 21:44 UTC in reply to "Hmm"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Interesting you give Ubuntu less marks than Windows 7 even though Windows 7 runs slower. Surely in a netbook start-up speed and access to programmes are preferable, and maybe you're a bit biased as your 'must have apps' are Windows only?


Ubuntu left too much not functioning after install. Windows 7, which is still beta, had a better experience out of the box then Ubuntu 8.10, that's why it scored better.

At least that's what I took away from the article.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Hmm
by weildish on Wed 4th Mar 2009 22:43 UTC in reply to "Hmm"
weildish Member since:
2008-12-06

You should remember than Moblin is also more-or-less geared towards touchscreen devices more than netbooks - hence why you think it looks more like a glorified calculator.

Exactly, but even still-- the particular version was made for netbooks (even though it'll be ported to handheld devices later on). Netbook-wise, the system gets a 4 and for good reason-- it just doesn't work so snazzily on a netbook. I reviewed these with a netbook in mind, not an MID. However, Moblin definitely has potential and I hope to see it go far.

Interesting you give Ubuntu less marks than Windows 7 even though Windows 7 runs slower

I didn't run any benchmarks-- I merely measured the user experience. For all intensive purposes, Ubuntu 8.10 and Windows 7 seemed to run about at the same pace. Both were a bit slower with opening programs than other systems-- that was the biggie. The reason it got less of a score than 7? Well, perhaps wireless not working out of the box isn't much of a problem for others, but it's personally rather annoying. If you missed the part that said, "If the wireless was included naturally in the distribution without having to do any serious tweaking, Ubuntu would be as ready and as able (if not more) than Windows 7 to be a netbook system."

As for my 'must have apps,' the only one for me really is Microsoft Access 2007 to manage the finances I previously mentioned. Otherwise, many of the programs available for Ubuntu and many other open source OSs I think work very well, especially for a netbook. You don't need as much for a netbook. For my desktop, I still prefer using Adobe Photoshop and Premiere on Windows, but I still can get along just as well on Linux.

You have good points on that I should have reviewed other systems. I would have liked to. In all honesty, I had tried several other distributions including (but not limited to) a BSD, Arch, and RiscOS, but either they didn't work with Unetbootin (I wasn't very willing to try making it bootable from the USB drive another way-- I had tried other ways that failed as well and were much more time consuming) or they weren't live installers and instead needed to boot up and download the data to install; these didn't work with a wireless or a wired connection on my One. In the end, I just didn't have the time to keep on trying distribution after failing distribution. Otherwise, I would have loved to try out Arch on this as I have heard a lot of good things about it and haven't used it of yet.

Edited 2009-03-04 22:45 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Hmm
by kaiwai on Thu 5th Mar 2009 01:54 UTC in reply to "Hmm"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

You should remember than Moblin is also more-or-less geared towards touchscreen devices more than netbooks - hence why you think it looks more like a glorified calculator.


Also, from what I understand, Moblin is still under very heavy development at the moment - it is hardly fair to compare final and near to final products to something that I'd consider alpha quality at the moment.

Reply Score: 2

The problems with fans
by ozonehole on Wed 4th Mar 2009 18:29 UTC
ozonehole
Member since:
2006-01-07

The author mentioned his concern with a noisy fan. I personally hate fans - not only because of noise, but they suck in dust. On a desktop computer, it's less of an issue since you can easily open up the machine and blow out the dust. On a laptop, opening up the machine is a delicate matter that most people shouldn't attempt.

I really would love to have a netbook/notebook with no fan. This doesn't seem to be possible with the Atom processor, but I have hopes for the new ARM processor-based netbooks that are in the works.

Edited 2009-03-04 18:31 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: The problems with fans
by navaraf on Wed 4th Mar 2009 18:37 UTC in reply to "The problems with fans"
navaraf Member since:
2005-07-08

Actually it is possible with the Atom processor. The Z5xx versions are designed for fanless operation and N270 (present in most netbooks these days) can be used without fan too (as in the Dell Inspiron Mini 9).

Edited 2009-03-04 18:40 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Aspire One and Ubuntu 8.10
by Eugenia on Wed 4th Mar 2009 19:07 UTC
Eugenia
Member since:
2005-06-28

Two things, after months of using that system with Ubuntu 8.10:

1. My wireless hardware does NOT work if I was coming back from "sleep". I had to literally delve into some new kind of configuration that it is NOT mentioned in that AspireOne Ubuntu help pages. For some people wifi seems to work fine, for some it doesn't. I am willing to bet that there are different iterations of the hardware chip used. Yes, I have tried both wifi drivers for that chipset, same problem with both (trust me, I've done my research).

2. The flash-based Aspire One is one slow son of a bitch. Ubuntu is simply not optimized to run on flash. In fact, no Linux distro is (not even when in cellphones). The kernel drivers/code that deal with flash still need a lot of work. I have applied any tip imaginable to make the system faster, but all I get is slowness, slowness and more slowness -- followed by small periods of time where not even the mouse moves, and then it comes back to life.

Other than these two problems, and the much smaller problem (comparatively) of some apps not fitting on 1024x600, everything else works fine.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Aspire One and Ubuntu 8.10
by Eugenia on Wed 4th Mar 2009 19:16 UTC in reply to "Aspire One and Ubuntu 8.10"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

Here's the actual thread about the wifi problem and the solution found DAYS after I had the problem (I was vacating in Europe at the time, this situation left me without internet for days):
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1028518

Basically, this is a situation where the ubuntu guys changed how things worked, and not only did not document that, but they left in the scripts that everyone thinks that they need tweaking (even if they never run anymore), adding to the confusion. In other words: an undocumented mess.

This is why my next netbook will run Vista instead.

Reply Score: 1

supercompman Member since:
2008-09-14

And Vista is less of an undocumented mess?

Reply Score: 2

Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

99% of the times, Vista works as expected when it comes pre-installed in a major brand. So I don't NEED to tweak anything. But with Linux, more often than not (also evidently from the linked by the article Ubuntu-AspireOne help page), you HAVE to tweak it to make it work as expected.

So yes, Vista for my next netbook (or just XP). Sorry.

Edited 2009-03-04 20:00 UTC

Reply Score: 1

ReeBop Member since:
2009-03-01

That is a very valid comment, Eugenia. I think though that you should place "I" in bold instead of "NEED" as I would certainly expect a preinstalled Vista to be properly tweaked by Microsoft and/or the netbook manufacturer. I would also expect the same from whatever Linux distribution was chosen to be preinstalled as well. I'm not an Ubuntu user so I can't comment on anyone's trouble with using it on the Aspire One. Mandriva worked fine for me but that distribution is not everyone's cup of tea. I can say that it is still very much an uneven playfield with Linux or BSD distributions against the steamroller from Redmond as many manufacturers of popular hardware still will not play fair, but I digress. I do know about your frustration with Linux documentation and until this problem is dealt with, there will be many that will go your same route. I choose to use a Linux distribution in the hope that I and what others observe will make it a better experience for all and the hope that there will be a fair choice of operating environments for computer users.

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

99% of the times, Vista works as expected when it comes pre-installed in a major brand. So I don't NEED to tweak anything. But with Linux, more often than not (also evidently from the linked by the article Ubuntu-AspireOne help page), you HAVE to tweak it to make it work as expected. So yes, Vista for my next netbook (or just XP). Sorry.


No need to apologise.

It is IMHO a pity that you have decided this. Vista will gobble up many SSDs completely just to be able to run Notepad and Calc.

The next version of Ubuntu (9.04) is due for release at the end of April. That version will have wireless drivers for the AA1 included as native.

I am running Kubuntu 9.04 myself right now. For some reason, I can't say exactly what it is ... but it is a speed freak. Seriously. It is the fastest desktop (on the same machine) that I have ever tried, and I have run quite a few on that particular hardware.

Maybe it is a combination of factors. Maybe they fixed the I/O Wait bug in the kernel. Maybe it is KDE 4.2. Maybe it is Qt4.5 (but I don't think so). Maybe it is the sum of all these ... but seriously, if your machine can run it (and a netbook should easily be able to), Kubuntu 9.04 is going to be super quick by the looks of it.

http://www.itnewstoday.com/?p=198

"I think the first thing I noticed about this release is how stable and fast it is. EXT4 is not the only upgrade that I can credit for its speed, there is something else to blame too. I’m not sure what it is (maybe something in the kernel) but Kubuntu 9.04 is definitely a speed demon on the two machines I put it on. In fact, it’s actually extremely stable too."

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Aspire One and Ubuntu 8.10
by ichi on Wed 4th Mar 2009 23:30 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Aspire One and Ubuntu 8.10"
ichi Member since:
2007-03-06

99% of the times, Vista works as expected when it comes pre-installed in a major brand. So I don't NEED to tweak anything. But with Linux, more often than not (also evidently from the linked by the article Ubuntu-AspireOne help page), you HAVE to tweak it to make it work as expected.


The thing is Ubuntu didn't came pre-installed on the Aspire One (I'd bet you wouldn't have that kind of issues if you had bought an Ubuntu laptop from Dell).

While Linpus is certainly lacking in some areas (namely software updates), it supports all the hardware out of the box and is quite snappy.

Reply Score: 2

Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

Yeah, but I needed a real distro that would let me install the apps I needed, not a toy like Linpus was.

Reply Score: 0

Ringheims Auto Member since:
2005-07-23

99% of the times, Vista works as expected when it comes pre-installed in a major brand. So I don't NEED to tweak anything. But with Linux, more often than not (also evidently from the linked by the article Ubuntu-AspireOne help page), you HAVE to tweak it to make it work as expected.

So yes, Vista for my next netbook (or just XP). Sorry.


If you wanted to run Ubuntu, why did you not buy hardware which is fully compatible with it? Running on a flash drive is also suboptimal in any situation. This is like bying a standard laptop to run OS X and expecting the works.

Good luck with XP or Vista. 6 months thereafter it will be full of malware and bloat, unless you tweak and configure it to keep those things out, in addition to evaluate anything you'll install closely for malicious features. And even then you cannot be sure.

Reply Score: 1

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

You know what? I'm sick of seeing that old malware line run rampant. Yes, there's malware for windows. Yes, you can get it if you lack common sense, but that applies to any platform. Common sense, and knowing enough to not open something like FamousMovieStarNudePics.exe is a better defense than any virus protector. In the end, it doesn't matter what os they're running, malware spreads more by social engineering than any other method these days. It'll be the same in OS X if it ever becomes more dominant than Windows, no amount of operating system security is going to save idiot users from themselves if they insist on running something unsafe. It'd be the same for Linux too, malware writers don't target Windows because of its security flaws--though it does make it easier--but rather because it is the os used by the most people, the prime target if you will.
I don't like Windows either, I prefer OS X and *NIX. But FUD doesn't help, and the malware line is getting very old at this point. What next, you going to point out the blue screen of death as if it still happens every day like it did in 9x? There's plenty wrong with Windows without having to dredge up the old stereotypical issues that are less of a problem.

Edited 2009-03-05 20:37 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Ringheims Auto Member since:
2005-07-23

Well, where I work at user support we still get plenty of Vista, XP machines full of malware and crap, and that's on machines owned by people who probably do not surf pr0n.

Yes, in a constructed situation you could do the same on linux, but then again you could tell people to only use some apt-frontend or similar to install programs, which should keep them safe. In addition any malware run by the user will generally not be able to damage anything outside their home directory, which will make matters better in some situations.

AFAIK it is possible, at least with XP, for a website to install and run a program as administrator without notifying the user when using IE. This is because MS uses IE for windows update. I don't know if this hole has been secured by now, but it certainly used to be a problem.

Windows is a kind of worst case scenario; The OS is full of holes, it is typically set up with an password-less admin accout, and it is by far the most used.

I partly agree with you, but at the same time I see my windows-using friends put lots of effort to make the system more secure, in addition to reinstalling about once a year. The problems are evidently still at hand.

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

You know what? I'm sick of seeing that old malware line run rampant. Yes, there's malware for windows. Yes, you can get it if you lack common sense, but that applies to any platform. Common sense, and knowing enough to not open something like FamousMovieStarNudePics.exe is a better defense than any virus protector. In the end, it doesn't matter what os they're running, malware spreads more by social engineering than any other method these days. It'll be the same in OS X if it ever becomes more dominant than Windows, no amount of operating system security is going to save idiot users from themselves if they insist on running something unsafe. It'd be the same for Linux too, malware writers don't target Windows because of its security flaws--though it does make it easier--but rather because it is the os used by the most people, the prime target if you will. I don't like Windows either, I prefer OS X and *NIX. But FUD doesn't help, and the malware line is getting very old at this point. What next, you going to point out the blue screen of death as if it still happens every day like it did in 9x? There's plenty wrong with Windows without having to dredge up the old stereotypical issues that are less of a problem.


With a decent well-supported Linux distribution, with a large application repository available to it, one can easily adopt a viable (self-imposed) policy along the lines of "I will only ever install software from the repositories using the package manager". Adopting such a policy, and sticking to it, will guarantee that one's system will remain uncompromised and malware-free. This is hard to explain exactly why this is so, but it is much more than an idle boast ... AFAIK there has NEVER been a case of someone's system being compromised or getting malware through using a Linux repository. The repository system has an immaculate track record.

Now note that not all software that one can run on Linux is available through repositories. Having said that, nevertheless it is possible these days to for one to adopt an "install from repositories only" policy, stick to it, and not really miss out on anything.

There is no equivalent approach one can take in the Windows world. AFAIK there is no equivalent approach one can take using Mac OSX.

PS: On a Linux system, one cannot "open FamousMovieStarNudePics.exe". It won't open.

Edited 2009-03-06 00:03 UTC

Reply Score: 2

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Ouch, needed to take this comment out, thought I was in the other article. *bonk*, brain on vacation today or something.

Edited 2009-03-06 02:26 UTC

Reply Score: 2

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

The exe file was an example, I wouldn't run, say, "Download TotallyAwesomeMusic.sh" in Linux either. That's where common sense comes into play.
Obviously you're not going to get malware from official software repositories, or at the very least it's unlikely to happen. That's like saying you'd get a piece of malware from the iPhone app store or similar distribution scheme. Although, I must say, if there ever was a bit of malware for Linux that did infect the software repositories... well, the results would make some of the individual malware on Windows look like nothing at all by comparison.
Of course the other problem with most of the major distributions is their release cycle schemes. Ubuntu 8.10, I'm looking at you here, released just a few weeks before OO 3.0. I've since moved to the Jaunty alpha, so not sure if 8.10 has OO 3.0 in backports yet, but the point is I had to go outside the repositories to get OO 3.0. Yes, I did need 3.0. That's where the software repository concept breaks down when used on a traditional release cycle, inevitably you will have to look elseware for up-to-date packages until the next official version of that distro comes out. If you need OO 3.0, for example, right now, waiting six months is not an acceptable solution. Now, a rolling revision repository, such as Arch, is a different matter. In general, rolling release is, imho, better for the desktop, while a strict release cycle is better for the server world.

Reply Score: 2

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

99% of the times, Vista works as expected when it comes pre-installed in a major brand


You can't seriously be comparing pre-installed Vista with user-installed Ubuntu?

Reply Score: 4

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Why not buy Linux pre-installed ?

Reply Score: 1

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Because Linpus is a toy?

Reply Score: 1

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

So what? That's what it comes with and is designed for. If you install anything else you can't complain if it doesn't work.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Aspire One and Ubuntu 8.10
by Rugxulo on Thu 5th Mar 2009 03:13 UTC in reply to "RE: Aspire One and Ubuntu 8.10"
Rugxulo Member since:
2007-10-09

Here's the actual thread about the wifi problem and the solution found DAYS after I had the problem (I was vacating in Europe at the time, this situation left me without internet for days):
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1028518

Basically, this is a situation where the ubuntu guys changed how things worked, and not only did not document that, but they left in the scripts that everyone thinks that they need tweaking (even if they never run anymore), adding to the confusion. In other words: an undocumented mess.

This is why my next netbook will run Vista instead.


I didn't think Vista was even offered or able to run on any netbooks, only XP or Win7.

Anyways, speaking as a Vista / Broadcom user who has no clue about networking, my wireless has not worked so well at all (much much longer than a few days). I'm now on a long extension cord from the router in the other room. I don't know what's to blame: misconfigured settings, bad driver, wonky wifi card, router issues, OS, external interference (cell phones? microwaves?), or just the devil himself. :-P

The main problem is that GNU Linux distros are way way too network oriented, so everything is centered around that instead of providing a decent suite of software out of the box. Oh, and lacking some wireless drivers (licenses?). Or only working with hacks via wired connection first. Ugh, I wish there were better wireless standards. I wonder what Bill Gates and Linus themselves use (I want one of those, probably works well).

Reply Score: 1

NobodyImportant Member since:
2009-03-08

[Problem they've randomly had in the last two years and didn't bother to research or bugfix] is the biggest issue in desktop Linux. The developers have lost touch because, for example, [anecdote that offers no valuable bug-ridding information, or even enough to replicate it], showing that [Problem] is still a big of a problem as it was four years ago. I've seen [however instances they've seen it, plus four] instances of this issue in my computer but also in other's, and it refuses to be fixed because Linux is simply put, not user-friendly or stable in the least bit. It's things like these that make me draw the conclusion that Linux is simply not ready for the desktop.

Reply Score: 1

I also tried various distributions
by reez on Wed 4th Mar 2009 20:21 UTC
reez
Member since:
2006-06-28

Since the Aspire ONE is for my mom and since she has virtually no experience with computers - I mean really none. I had to teach her things like the WIMP-concept, etc. I looked for a solid OS for her. While I'm a fan of the command line and like distributions and OSs like Arch Linux, Gentoo Linux, Slackware and NetBSD I tried various big distributions like Ubuntu, Fedora, Mandriva and OpenSUSE. I have to say, OpenSUSE really impressed me. The last time I used SuSE was when I started with Linux. IIRC it was a 6.something and I don't really liked it, after I tried some other Distributions, but on the Aspire it did very well. The only thing, which didn't work was the (cable) network card. I had to install the right driver and everything worked. WLAN, Cam, etc. Everything worked fine, even KDE4 :-)

But I won't change any other systems, I like BSD, but if you want to get a very cheap desktop system try an Aspire ONE 150L (for a bit more than 100 EUR) and replace the (very bad) default Linux distribution to OpenSUSE. I even tried warzone 2100 which REALLY worked on 8mb VRAM!

Reply Score: 1

Inflated Ubuntu score
by Tom K on Wed 4th Mar 2009 20:47 UTC
Tom K
Member since:
2005-07-06

Okay, to summarize the Ubuntu portion:

- Wireless doesn't work without hacking
- Camera doesn't work without hacking
- Microphone doesn't work without hacking
- Wired Ethernet doesn't work (not mentioned whether this is fixable)
- Power management issues during power state changes; black rectangle on screen for minutes

Then the author makes comments like:

"Aside from some *very minor bugs*, it is a *very netbooker-friendly* system"
- Clearly not friendly in the least

"If the wireless was included naturally in the distribution without having to do any serious tweaking, Ubuntu would be as ready and as able (if not more) than Windows 7 to be a netbook system"

And then he gives it a 7/10. What's that about? I would personally give this user experience a 3/10, at most.

Clearly, there is a tendency on the part of the reviewer to be a bit more "lenient" with Linux. This is unacceptable. No one in their right mind would want to go through that ordeal and at the end think "Yeah, this is pretty good, I'd give this a 7/10".

Reply Score: 6

RE: Inflated Ubuntu score
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 4th Mar 2009 20:57 UTC in reply to "Inflated Ubuntu score"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

That depends on how you look at it. This is a site for OS enthusiasts, so we don't mind a little tweaking. Getting it to work might suck, but doesn't affect our enjoyment of the system too much.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Inflated Ubuntu score
by Eugenia on Wed 4th Mar 2009 21:35 UTC in reply to "RE: Inflated Ubuntu score"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

Getting it to work might suck, but doesn't affect our enjoyment of the system too much.


Speak for yourself Thom. This thing left me without internet while in Europe. It wasn't an enjoyment at all. Since I came back from Europe, I have not turned on that laptop again. I am back using my 6 year old powerbook.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Inflated Ubuntu score
by dvhh on Thu 5th Mar 2009 00:57 UTC in reply to "RE: Inflated Ubuntu score"
dvhh Member since:
2006-03-20

That depends on how you look at it. This is a site for OS enthusiasts, so we don't mind a little tweaking. Getting it to work might suck, but doesn't affect our enjoyment of the system too much.

by we do you also mean OS X fans, that basically use apple product because "it just work" (tm) ? or Was I reading another website concerning apple news ?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Inflated Ubuntu score
by cmost on Thu 5th Mar 2009 02:45 UTC in reply to "Inflated Ubuntu score"
cmost Member since:
2006-07-16

And then he gives it a 7/10. What's that about? I would personally give this user experience a 3/10, at most.

Clearly, there is a tendency on the part of the reviewer to be a bit more "lenient" with Linux. This is unacceptable. No one in their right mind would want to go through that ordeal and at the end think "Yeah, this is pretty good, I'd give this a 7/10".


Come on now, you should know by now that to criticize Ubuntu in any way shape or form on any public forum (even when deserved) is to incur the wrath of the *buntu fanboys full force. I should know.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Inflated Ubuntu score
by Tom K on Thu 5th Mar 2009 23:44 UTC in reply to "RE: Inflated Ubuntu score"
Tom K Member since:
2005-07-06

You're absolutely correct.

Will the Ubuntu gods accept a sacrificial OS X disc as an apology for my insolence? :-(

Reply Score: 2

RE: Inflated Ubuntu score
by 3rdalbum on Thu 5th Mar 2009 12:27 UTC in reply to "Inflated Ubuntu score"
3rdalbum Member since:
2008-05-26

>> - Wireless doesn't work without hacking

No hacking required, you just install a new driver from Synaptic Package Manager and disable the old one.

>> - Camera doesn't work without hacking

Camera works out-of-the-box.

>> - Wired Ethernet doesn't work (not mentioned whether this is fixable)

Wired Ethernet works out-of-the-box, otherwise you'd never be able to download the wireless driver, would you?

>> - Power management issues during power state changes; black rectangle on screen for minutes

I've never seen that on mine.

I think 7/10 is a reasonable score for stock Ubuntu on the Aspire One. That machine really needs something more lightweight. Ubuntu 9.04 will have wireless OOTB and possibly boot up and shut down faster so it'll probably do better, and hopefully it'll fix the weird little bug that probably nobody but me notices*.

*If you have the machine plugged into an external monitor and you close the lid, it stops sending a picture to the monitor. Open it again and press space bar and the picture comes back. Close it again and everything works as it should. It's just that first time, it stops sending a picture to the external monitor.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Inflated Ubuntu score
by Tom K on Thu 5th Mar 2009 23:45 UTC in reply to "RE: Inflated Ubuntu score"
Tom K Member since:
2005-07-06

That's not what the review said.

Just out of curiosity, would you describe yourself as a Linux fanboy?

Reply Score: 2

Satisfied with Ubuntu
by Aubrey on Wed 4th Mar 2009 23:19 UTC
Aubrey
Member since:
2009-03-04

I have been running Xubuntu 8.04.1 on my Acer One since I got it. I'd have to say it was pretty easy to get everything working. The idea that following a command-line recipe on a single web page is in some way "hacking" is a bit rich IMO. 15 minutes after a (very quick) install, I had wireless, web cam, etc working fine.

On the downside, I agree with the poster who noted the slowness of the One's SSD. There were actually two SSD versions produced - one twice the speed of the other, but undocumented. I got a slow one and it was a dog. I replaced mine with a fast photo card and, while performance was boosted significantly, it is nowhere near as stable as it should be (disk errors are reported about once a month, generally recoverable). The One is also the worst machine I have ever had in terms of ease of opening for routine hardware upgrades.

Upgrading from Xubtuntu 8.04.1 to 8.10 reduced functionality for me - using an external monitor was "plug and play" in 8.04.1 but requires endless fiddling with 8.10 (I have found 8.10 to have general problems with screen resolution and rendering on other non-netbook machines too).

My early experience with the Ubuntu 9.04 alpha is that boot times are significantly reduced.

I think it is quite unfair to review Moblin as a distro - the alpha2 image is simply a demo of certain Moblin features operating on a cut down Fedora base - The boot times and responsiveness of moblin are incredible IMO (15 seconds from a USB stick) and I'm looking forward to seeing those features ported to Ubuntu and other distros later this year as promised.

Finally, I'd really recommend that Linux netbook users steer clear of Gnome and KDE. Lighter weight DEs are far more suited to these machines and give a very different impression of their speed and stability. I'm using e17 but even Xfce is a marked improvement over Gnome.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Satisfied with Ubuntu
by sakeniwefu on Wed 4th Mar 2009 23:55 UTC in reply to "Satisfied with Ubuntu"
sakeniwefu Member since:
2008-02-26


Finally, I'd really recommend that Linux netbook users steer clear of Gnome and KDE. Lighter weight DEs are far more suited to these machines and give a very different impression of their speed and stability. I'm using e17 but even Xfce is a marked improvement over Gnome.


This is very sound advice. I cannot understand the popularity of Gnome when there is a clearly better-looking, faster and more stable alternative(XFCE) that is also GTK+ based, especially when speed is required like in netbooks.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Satisfied with Ubuntu
by lemur2 on Thu 5th Mar 2009 02:00 UTC in reply to "Satisfied with Ubuntu"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Finally, I'd really recommend that Linux netbook users steer clear of Gnome and KDE. Lighter weight DEs are far more suited to these machines and give a very different impression of their speed and stability. I'm using e17 but even Xfce is a marked improvement over Gnome.


KDE 4.2 on Kubuntu Jaunty is quite fast enough to run on a netbook. It has acquired quite a speed boost since Hardy and Interpid. I know this because I run it. Wait for Jaunty to come out though before trying KDE on a netbook, because versions earlier than Jaunty may disappoint.

My own policy for running KDE on a netbook involves sticking strictly to GTK applications plus KDE4 applications. I think perhaps this is the real trick. Avoid KDE3 applications and GNOME applications and especially Mono applications in the mix, as installing and running these will all add extra libraries, eat up RAM, and generally slow things down.

I can't accurately speak for the default GNOME desktop in Ubuntu Jaunty 9.04, because I ahven't tried it, but I do believe that it ships by default with Mono libraries, which I would speculate might be a bit heavy going.

Edited 2009-03-05 02:02 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Ubuntu is anything but good on the AcerOne
by anduril on Thu 5th Mar 2009 01:13 UTC
anduril
Member since:
2005-11-11

I can't speak for Jaunty which isn't out yet but frankly, each new release of Ubuntu has left me more and more disappointed in terms of stability and proper QA. 8.10 was a crap shoot on my acer one. It worked, ok, well...except for the wireless randomly dropping out, battery life that averaged about 35mins less than XP (or vista) on the same machine and a resume from sleep that either worked or...well...borked miserably. The biggest icing on the cake was an update that completely terminated all networking functional of the machine; wired and wireless. After that I installed the Linpus distro that Acer ships on some models but it was too outdated.

If Windows 7 was out and about now and shipping, I'd install it in a heart beat. It was stable, relatively quick (really...how often do you boot your laptop? Sleep and hibernation are the way to play) Just about everything in its beta form worked great, no issues really.

Arch Linux however has come relatively close. Yes, the overall install took quite a few hours of tweaking and configuring but sleep works, wireless works, decent battery life, very speedy and it only takes about 3Gb of my 8Gb SSD drive with my most common programs. Guess it'll do till Win7 comes out

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I can't speak for Jaunty which isn't out yet but frankly, each new release of Ubuntu has left me more and more disappointed in terms of stability and proper QA. 8.10 was a crap shoot on my acer one.


Jaunty is only Alpha 5 at this point, so not everything works yet (eg Nepomuk still has trouble), but nevertheless it is showing very good promise in terms of speed and stability.

http://www.itnewstoday.com/?p=198

Drivers for netbook components should all work now as well. Kubuntu Jaunty boots in less than 20 seconds on my ASUS EEEPC 1000H, and it runs quite responsively as long as you turn off the compiz-like desktop effects bling. This is necessary on a netbook because the Intel graphics chip is quite pedestrian. Without that burden of the desktop effects though ... it really is quite fast ... and pretty stable considering it is still an alpha pre-release.

Should be good when it makes final release in April.

Reply Score: 2

So whats your point?
by TechGeek on Thu 5th Mar 2009 02:46 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

Tom K: So whats your point? Last time I installed Windows I had to install chipset drivers, sound card drivers, video drivers, network drivers, camera drivers.... Thats the SAME as having to do a little hacking. Probably less problematic. In any case, until someone starts shipping a distro built for netbooks, there are going to be problems. I cant wait to see what Moblin turns into. Hopefully it will be a distro that works across most netbooks.

Reply Score: 4

RE: So whats your point?
by lemur2 on Thu 5th Mar 2009 08:48 UTC in reply to "So whats your point?"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Tom K: So whats your point? Last time I installed Windows I had to install chipset drivers, sound card drivers, video drivers, network drivers, camera drivers.... Thats the SAME as having to do a little hacking. Probably less problematic. In any case, until someone starts shipping a distro built for netbooks, there are going to be problems. I cant wait to see what Moblin turns into. Hopefully it will be a distro that works across most netbooks.


http://www.liliputing.com/2008/12/linux4one-ubuntu-for-the-acer-asp...

http://www.linux4one.it/ (Scroll down for English text).

I would have thought that OSNews editors might have known about this.

http://www.osnews.com/story/20721/Linux4one_Ubuntu_for_the_Acer_Asp...

Reply Score: 2

Incompatible hardware
by Ringheims Auto on Thu 5th Mar 2009 08:10 UTC
Ringheims Auto
Member since:
2005-07-23

However, after hours of searching for "Acer Aspire One wireless drivers," I found a treasure trove of information on the first hit for the One's camera drivers. This page on the Ubuntu website helps One users immensely. However, my wired connection suddenly doesn't work on Ubuntu and I don't want to spend any more valuable time trying to work it.

This makes me know that this is not the optimal hardware on which to run gnu/linux on. Sure, it can be supported by so and so distro, but having something that already is supported in the kernel is way better.

Reply Score: 1

600-700MB RAM ?
by obvio.capitao on Sun 8th Mar 2009 14:51 UTC
obvio.capitao
Member since:
2009-03-08

"On a side-note, Windows 7 generally used around 600-700 MB of my RAM on the Aspire One whereas it used around 800-900 MB on my desktop."

Considering that many netbooks start at 512MB these days, perhaps XUbuntu would be a better choice:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z39n5Tleo0A

(This video shows XUbuntu running in a 256MB virtual machine)

Reply Score: 1