Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 1st Mar 2009 17:26 UTC, submitted by kaiwai
Hardware, Embedded Systems Long-time OSNews reader Kaiwai has written down his experiences with his Acer Aspire One, Linux, and Windows. He concludes: "After a hectic few weeks trying to get Linux to work, I am back to square one again - a netbook running Windows XP SP3 as it was provided by Acer when I purchased it. I gave three different distributions a chance to prove themselves. I expected all three distributions to wipe the floor with Windows XP - after all, these are the latest and greatest distributions the Linux world have to offer. There has been at least 7 years since the release of Windows XP for Linux to catch up to Windows XP and from my experience with Linux on this said device - it has failed to step up to the plate when it was needed."
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" ... is fixed by using an Ubuntu re-master designed for your netbook. The kernel and drivers are "pegged" at the specific re-master version that works, and everything else is stock Ubuntu. There is no direct equivalent to this in Windows world ... it is not quite like an OEM repair disk image of Windows, nor is it like a stock Windows + downloaded drivers. It is actually better than both.
Apologies in advance for removing the quotation - the whole quoting system on this website is f--king horrible given that it doesn't allow embedded quoting (quoting inside quoting). You are right, however, how long is this 'custom kernel' going to be maintained? I've been in situations where I've embraced a distribution that appeared to be great only to find that within 6 months the community dies off and I'm stuck with an unsupported installation of Linux on my computer. My concern isn't just about whether it is supported now but whether it will be supported 6-12-18-24 months from now - that is the test as to whether an operating system is suitable for an end user. "

The kernel version and drivers in the re-masters is fixed. It won't be updated at all. But it is the kernel and drivers of Ubuntu Hardy 8.04 LTS that are the ONLY components that you are complaining about in the first place.

So you do have a small risk that some time down the track you might encounter some weird circumstance where you find that the kernel version or drivers that you have don't work.

OK, at that (hypothetical) point, you will have two options:
(1) Don't do that circumstance that caused the problem, or
(2) Upgrade your Ubuntu to Jaunty or Karmic or whatever it will be then.

The (1) option is like: Patient: Doctor, it hurts when I bang my head against the wall. Doctor: Then don't bang your head against the wall.

The (2) option is like: The mainstream Ubuntu releases will support your hardware in the next release and thereafter. You are only being directed to the re-mastered versions of Ubuntu Hardy because you SAID you wanted to install something (that works out of the box) right now.

OK, so the final recommendation would be to make two separate partitions for root (/) and home (/home), then install a re-mastered version of Hardy right away, then re-install Jaunty over the top of your root partition (without touching your /home partition) later on. Say in three months time.

That way you can have the best of both: (a) you can install an (admittedly obscure) version of Ubuntu that supports your hardware right now, and (b) later you can enjoy a mainstream distribution that fully supports your hardware out of the box.

Edited 2009-03-03 02:04 UTC

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