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Windaga

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Just a couple questions for Linux users (or anyone that can answer, I suppose.)

-What's the best version of Linux to use on Netbooks? I have an Aspire One Acer Notebook. (D225)

- I used to run openSuse on my laptop, but I couldn't get the hang of it (the terminal, mainly.) Despite this, I want to run Linux on my netbook. Do you think I should dual boot it, or install it over Windows 7 Starter? (130 Gb Hard Drive, 1 Gb RAM.)

-As a follow up to the previous question: My netbook didn't come with a CD/SD with Windows 7 Starter on it. If I install Linux over Windows 7 Starter via wiping the hard drive, but I end up, for whatever reason, wanting to go back to Windows 7 Starter, would I have to download Windows 7 Starter from somewhere, or is there a way of backing up Windows 7 Starter to a hard drive or something? My netbook doesn't have a CD drive, and it didn't come with any kind of OS card.

-My netbook has a built in Mic and Camera, as well as a few other features. (Mainly multiswipe and touchpad motions.) Will I still be able to use these with Linux? I know that you'd need the drivers, but would the drivers have to be in a format Linux could read? I have an Aspire One Asus Notebook.

And that's really it. Any comments are welcome and thanked.
 

OmegaVesko

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Windaga said:
Just a couple questions for Linux users (or anyone that can answer, I suppose.)

-What's the best version of Linux to use on Netbooks? I have an Aspire One Acer Notebook. (D225)
-Ubuntu is good for netbooks, especially since the recent switch to Unity (which basically gives you a 7-like taskbar on the side of your screen). It's similar how the netbook edition looked like in 10.X. If you find Ubuntu is too sluggish (possibly because your setup is too low-powered), Xubuntu ran on just about everything I tried.

- I used to run openSuse on my laptop, but I couldn't get the hang of it (the terminal, mainly.) Despite this, I want to run Linux on my netbook. Do you think I should dual boot it, or install it over Windows 7 Starter? (130 Gb Hard Drive, 1 Gb RAM.)
- Dual-boot it at first (incredibly easy to do with Wubi, the official Windows-based installer), if you feel comfortable then feel free to get rid of Windows. You'll rarely find yourself in a position where you have to use the terminal, however if you want to totally geek out you can do pretty much everything you can do using a GUI in the terminal (think of it as CMD in Windows).

-As a follow up to the previous question: My netbook didn't come with a CD/SD with Windows 7 Starter on it. If I install Linux over Windows 7 Starter via wiping the hard drive, but I end up, for whatever reason, wanting to go back to Windows 7 Starter, would I have to download Windows 7 Starter from somewhere, or is there a way of backing up Windows 7 Starter to a hard drive or something? My netbook doesn't have a CD drive, and it didn't come with any kind of OS card.
- I imagine it has a hidden backup partition on the internal HDD (the one used for the "restore to factory settings" function a lot of laptops have these days). If it didn't come with any kind of disc whatsoever, I'm sure it has one of these.

-My netbook has a built in Mic and Camera, as well as a few other features. (Mainly multiswipe and touchpad motions.) Will I still be able to use these with Linux? I know that you'd need the drivers, but would the drivers have to be in a format Linux could read? I have an Aspire One Asus Notebook.
- There's a good chance Ubuntu will recognize them right away, but if you find yourself searching for drivers, you sure as Hell won't be able to use Windows drivers.

And that's really it. Any comments are welcome and thanked.
 

FAST6191

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Generally windows will come on another partition (130 gigs is more like 150)- you might be given the option to burn off discs and some of the better vendors will allow you to download the install media (although if they were good they would have bundled it). If you need a drive buy a USB caddy (if you have a dead external hard drive pull it apart as it is probably a caddy) and get a drive to go on it (sata or IDE- it makes no difference).

Best- I have not really messed about with netbook linux (certainly not with your model of computer) but in general the main issue with any netbooks is the low vertical screen resolution (drivers are usually OK if it is a fairly mainstream model). A lot of experimentation is going on right now as to what is the better windowing method and especially for netbooks- the startbar and desktop model is, according to some, an artefact of a bygone era but like many would be bad habits they are hard to shake.
I should also mention many of the popular distros have at least a third party netbook version or options in the setup for them- I would not stray far outside the top 10 and their sister distros though.

You can dual boot if you want and if it does not work out go back or shrink it and leave it in case windows decides to break (10 gigs of almost always useless system restore points or 10 gigs of fully functional OS you can use to grab any important data there and then- your call).
Personally I would make three partitions (4 if you want to leave the recovery partition) and leave windows on one, the other linux main section, the other something both can easily read (although ext drivers do exist for windows) and maybe another for swap.

Basically if dual booting you can always pull it back.


"Mainly multiswipe and touchpad motions."
Tough call- the touchpad scroll bars are often "motions" and this in the case of linux would probably fall to the window manager or more likely something on top of that like compiz (I saw many interesting options for that program when I was last). Moreover the experimentation I was on about earlier includes a lot of this (swipes of the pad to call "alt and tab" style functionality or something). Windows though is not so flexible so it tends to kick it to driver or service level (which is a bit of security risk in my opinion).

The mic and camera- they are probably both wired though USB in all but the forever incorrectly positioned ports and should work accordingly. If trying out a liveCD there is a simple program called cheese that most distros have compiled somewhere and does well for cameras.

Finally although much can still be done at the command line/terminal and in the right hands it is extremely powerful it is by and large becoming a thing of the past much like it is on windows.
 

Windaga

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Yeah - thanks to both of you. I'll seriously look into what you both said. I'll probably dual boot it, leaving the partition that's already there and a Windows partition (probably about 25 gigs), and the rest to Linux. I don't have anything on the netbook anyway - it's really there so that I have something to bring to school and take notes on.

Again, thanks. I'll look into both ubunutu and Xubuntu. My cousin's computer is running Kubuntu, and my netbook has better specs than the PC, so I'm not too worried about the OS not running at full speed. I was also looking into that Google OS, but it's not out yet, right?
 
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Yeah chrome's not out yet. Depending on how you like the desktop environment for Ubuntu (and it's variations) Ubuntu Classic has gnome (Which I find much more manageable). Then again, Unity is supposed to be for netbooks anyway.
 

Sausage Head

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Use acer eRecovery crap to make a system settings disk or something, I have an acer laptop, that didn't come with a cd either
Also, ubuntu automatically configures built-in crap like webcams and such (you can disable them any time)
 

Nimbus

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I'd say Mint or Ubuntu for right now, those are pretty user friendly, expecially towards new users.


Mint 11 RC came out just recently, although If you've never used an RC, Beta, Alpha release I advice against using it right now. Rather use Mint 10, it's like Ubuntu but more polished.

I suggest Xfce, since Gnome 3 IMHO is nowhere near the final product that it supposedly is (Believe me, if you say how much costomizability and whatnot they took away from us between Gnome 2 and Gnome 3, you would scream with absolute rage)

Once you've gotten the hang of Linux and have mastered it, Arch will be your best friend. It's my favorite distro personally.
 

giantpune

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this whole unity/gnome 3 fiasco got me to switch to KDE. and im loving it. my suggestion would be either to go with something that will let you use gnome2 for a few years ( ubuntu 10.04 is LTS ) or to use a different desktop environment like KDE or Xfce ( kubuntu, xubuntu ).

all the different ubuntu variants share the same repos and offer the same security fixes, libs, and programs. i would go with k/zubuntu so you can use the most recent version and still not have to deal with the the unity or gnome3 desktop environment.
 

Nollog

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1. ubuntu netbook version is kuu.
2. Probably a good idea for starters if only to read a tutorial is you have problems installing your network devices or whatevers.
3. You could download an image and install it with a USB drive.
4. Yes, the drivers need to be for the OS you'll be using. Everything should function on the basic level without doing much with ubuntu.
 

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