Book: "Pentaho Kettle Solutions", Matt Casters, Roland Bouman, & Jos van Dongen, Wiley 2010 Book: "Pentaho Solutions", Roland Bouman & Jos van Dongen, Wiley 2009

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Less is More - Happy Eee PC-ing

Ok - I admit - it was impulse more than utility that made me buy this Asus Eee PC 900. People that know me can confirm that I am not a gadgety type of guy, so I realize it may seem a bit strange that I would sucker into buying trendy hardware.

Well, the secret is: there is no secret. The Eee PC is not a gadget - it is a completely functional laptop that is extremely suitable for traveling. It's got 1G of RAM, and 16G of flash storage onboard. An 900MHz Intel may sound slow, but I haven't really noticed that it is, in fact performance feels pretty peppy. The machine boots *fast* and shuts down even faster. It's light, and small, but still has a keyboard and display that are large enough to work on. The battery lasts me about 2.5 to 3 hours - I will try and find another battery. It cost 300 euros - this price was exactly right for me. If it had been more expensive I probably would not've bought it - even if it'd be a beefier machine.

The Eee PC 900 I bought comes with Xandros linux. I feel they really did a remarkable job of creating a desktop linux that is attractive, clear, easy to use and unwreckable by the non-technical user. The same model is available with windows XP too, but in order to keep the same price they took out Ram and Disk. Please dudes and dudettes - do yourself a favor and don't buy that one. Really, the pre-installed linux is pretty darn good, and considering the clipped hardware specs, I frankly can't see how the same machine with Windows XP could still pass as anything else but a joke. Yeah, I'm biased - trust me, I'm right ;)

If you have some experience with linux, its still easy to set it up so you can use a full KDE desktop.

I used to work on my notebook in packed trains and in cramped planes, but I think I will use the Eee PC instead - it really makes my life easier.


Bart Maertens said...

I didn't like the non-technical approach of the Xandros distribution.
After some messing around, i found Gives you a painless install of a full-blown Gnome Ubuntu on the EEE pc...

Roland Bouman said...

Hi Bart!

Actually when I bought it my intention was to wipe it and install Kubuntu. But I gave it a shot, and I was impressed by the look and feel.

I found hacking the simpleui.rc a bit to clunky, but now that I have the full desktop, I'm pretty happy.

That said - it's certainly a nice feeling to know you're free to install whatever you like.