Netbook...

GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
So I won a netbook recently - a Acer Aspire One D270! It's pretty sweet, though Windows 7 starter.... sigh.

Anybody out there have a similar type of netbook, and what do you use them for / did you do anything cool with them?

Me, I'm thinking about bumping it up to 2 GB of RAM, but I'm not sure if I will upgrade the OS from Starter, or keep Win 7 Starter as the OS.

Plus I need to wipe it. I won it at a security conference, and they gave me a SD card with BackTrack 5r3 on it, plus instructions, plus virtual software already installed, but I'm paranoid.

Comments

  • QordQord Senior Member Posts: 629Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    Throw linux mint on it!!
  • PCSPrestonPCSPreston Posts: 127Users Awaiting Email Confirmation
    Backtrack 5r3!
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    As much as I hate to say it, I'm a Windows guy. Linux is like that crazy in bed girl you go out with, while Windows is the girl you take home to meet the family cause she's a keeper. :)
  • ptilsenptilsen Posts: 2,835Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Can it take 4GB or more? I, for one, am unwilling to use Windows 7 on less than 4GB of RAM, even for web browsing and word processing on a small screen. I would actually go as far to get comfy with a Linux distro if limited to less, even to use it as a glorified RDP client.
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  • SteveLordSteveLord Posts: 1,717Member
    A netbook? Windows 7 starter? Did you enter the contest 3 years ago? :P
    WGU B.S.IT - 9/1/2015 >>> ???
  • ptilsenptilsen Posts: 2,835Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    The next two prizes were definitely gift cards to Borders Books and Blockbuster Video.
    Working B.S., Computer Science
    Complete: 55/120 credits SPAN 201, LIT 100, ETHS 200, AP Lang, MATH 120, WRIT 231, ICS 140, MATH 215, ECON 202, ECON 201, ICS 141, MATH 210, LING 111, ICS 240
    In progress: CLEP US GOV,
    Next up: MATH 211, ECON 352, ICS 340
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    Unfortunately, it can take only up to 2 GB.

    Heh, and yeah, this netbook is so 2012. :)
  • demonfurbiedemonfurbie Posts: 1,819Member
    kali linux or mint linux is what i run on my netbooks now ... windows 7 starter isnt "bad" just not my cup of tea
    wgu undergrad: done ... woot!!
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  • tprice5tprice5 Posts: 770Member
    I am really enjoying the comments on this thread. :D
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  • tpatt100tpatt100 Posts: 2,989Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Put Windows 98 on it!
  • ally_ukally_uk Posts: 1,146Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    Windoze pffffffffffft that hardware was made for some Linux love :) agree get Mint on there or Debian and get to work
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  • Cpl.KlingerCpl.Klinger Posts: 159Member
    I had one of those once, and I managed to shoehorn Windows XP Pro onto it. Drivers was the worst part. Once I got it running it was pretty darn fast. It was a great machine for surfing and stuff like that, nothing too hard core.
    "If you can't fix it, you don't own it"
    "Great things have small beginnings."

  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    Geez, how did you get XP on there. That's crazy!

    I think now though, with no security updates, I'll skip XP. For now.
  • N2ITN2IT Posts: 7,483Inactive Imported Users
    Replaced Win 7 starter on my netbook with Win 7 pro and added a SSD and a 4 gb stick to replace the 2 gb stick. It has a tiny processor but it runs a lot better. Reimaging the machine with a clean version of Win 7 pro made all the difference in the world. Bloatware is terrible and can halt the operations of any device especially a netbook. I use the netbook for research and leisure. Any heavy computing I use my work desktop or dev laptop or home desktop.
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    Nice! How about a anti-virus? Which one did you use (I'm assuming one with a low memory footprint)?
  • N2ITN2IT Posts: 7,483Inactive Imported Users
    Shhhhhh........ I don't use one on my netbook I haven't found one that doesn't effect the performance of the netbook. I'm a cigar smoker and have to do it in my outdoors man cave and the netbook makes it a lot more fun. I would say 30% of my post on here are while I am indulging in a Ashton or Padron.
  • J_86J_86 Posts: 262Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Get an SSD for it, makes a world of difference in performance for netbooks!
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    I was considering the upgrade to a SSD - Acer One Aspire D270 - SSD 2GB DDR3 vs HDD 1GB DDR3 Stock - YouTube and FireSword blog: Upgrade HDD to SSD on Acer Aspire One D270 (AOD270)

    While the 2GB of RAM is 20 bucks, and not a big deal (plus I bought a case for 10 bucks and a external DVD burner for 35), buying a 256 GB SSD for this is about $180, and I can't justify paying that much for a increase in 17 seconds for speed.

    Granted, if this had a better screen/processor, I'd be all over that.
  • SteveLordSteveLord Posts: 1,717Member
    I would sell it on CL for a quick buck. Not worth my time and money to put any kind of upgrades or work into it.
    WGU B.S.IT - 9/1/2015 >>> ???
  • coty24coty24 Posts: 263Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Install Elementary Linux; very clean interface low on resources :) That's what I have on mine.

    elementaryos.org/

    Or if you want a OSX clone, Pear OS -- Pear OS site is down but you can go to sourceforge to grab one.


    Backtrack is no-go for daily driver. Do a nessus scan and see what I mean :)
    Passed LOT2 :) Working on FMV2(CHFI v8 ) Done!
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    Blast! After research, it turns out the max RAM the processor can take is 2 GB, so it's not a OS limit, it's a processor limit. Darn it.

    Looks like I will stick with the same drive then.
  • Kinet1cKinet1c Posts: 604Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    I would put Lubuntu on to it, very lightweight so will give you a good return on the spec. I use Lubuntu on my old eeepc1000 and it works great.
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  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    One of my friends had a great idea. Wait until Black Friday (or Cyber Monday), and pick up a SSD on the cheap then.
  • 403Forbidden403Forbidden Posts: 88Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I think netbooks are great for letting kids learn how to use a computer, especially if you got it for free and don't want them to mess around with your precious desktop. Throw something thin on it like a Linux distro and let them play around with it.
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    I broke down.... got a SSD the other day. The netbook is so slow... needs more RAM and a SSD. But I'm cool with that.

    I feel like I lost the war though.
  • PlantwizPlantwiz Posts: 5,057Mod Mod
    I don't think you lost the war, I think your expectations are not aligned with the purpose of the tool. I see folks expecting far more out of their stripped-down devices than the device is designed to function.

    YMMV

    I doesn't hurt to try to 'boost' things a little, but expecting a lightweight, portable, device to act like an enterprise class workstation is a bit of a stretch IMO.
    Plantwiz
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    'i' before 'e' except after 'c'.... weird?
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    May all of you never have to suffer the way I did with your netbook upgrades.

    Took me over a hour for a simple SSD and RAM fix. Talk about a pain. The keyboards... wow. Either my fingers have become super chunky or the strip under the keyboard has gotten much smaller.
  • N2ITN2IT Posts: 7,483Inactive Imported Users
    It's a skill that is easily lost. I feel your pain, but hopefully now you netbook performs like a small laptop and not like a 386.
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    The performance is great. I'm pleased. However, the recovery disks keep failing at the end as part of the cleanup. I've tried the normal wipe three times now. So I'm now burning a copy of the Ultimate Boot CD, to wipe the drive, and start over, using the full factory restore instead of just the normal restore.

    I blame Acer for my pain. :)
  • GoodBishopGoodBishop Posts: 359Member
    Woo hoo! After much struggle and toil, and letting the setup run overnight... it finally completed! I've got it up and running, and although it only has 2 GB of RAM, I decided to keep it at Starter.

    Other amusing items - uninstalling the bloatware that comes standard on every Acer machine, no recovery partition (apparently Acer requires 100 GB free for Windows on their recovery DVDs, and with a 111 GB SSD, that recovery partition didn't make it), updating all drivers, I'm keeping Norton (the free one you get with Comcast - it's good enough), got Skype, Adobe Reader, a few other standard programs. Also, apparently if you install Office 2010 Starter, it creates a virtual Q: drive that you can't access, so I had to hide that drive. I anonymized my machine, optimized it (turned off Remote Assistance access, gave it a set 5120 MB of RAM in paging file - I'm old school - 2.5 times the RAM in the system should be the set paging file, etc etc). Took forever for Windows updates, of course. That's par for the course.

    Even got Backtrack 5r3 working on it with Oracle Virtualbox. w00t! And it is reasonable too on speed, unlike before.

    Speed is reasonable, browsing is normal, video is normal with the slightest hint of lag on hd movies. I figure that's the best you can expect for the processor.

    Cost was about $171, giving me 2 GB of RAM, 128 GB SSD, free 16 GB USB 2.0 flash drive (hey, you can never have enough flash drives), a external slim Samsung DVD burner (which I highly highly recommend), and a swanky black neoprene case. It would have been $35 cheaper had I found my external burner, but it must have been thrown out or given away.

    One final note though. I'm thinking OK - now I can put TrueCrypt on it and lock it down (I checked, the BIOS password is easily broken). However, I'm running into a snag. SSD. TrueCrypt doesn't like SSDs. TrueCrypt - Wear-Leveling . And when I search for truecrypt and aspire one, there are a lot of threads about how you shouldn't use TrueCrypt with a SSD.

    Any suggestions on encrypting the hard drive? I figure since the device is small, it might have legs, and should have some rudimentary protections on it, beyond a normal Windows password, since that's barely any security.
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