Feeds

The best netbook-friendly Linux distros

Android on your Eee, anyone?

High performance access to file storage

Fedora 10

Fedora has a strong following thanks to its Red Hat roots, and many desktop users will want to run this on their netbooks too. Unfortunately, nothing about the distribution has been optimised for netbook use and you certainly won't get out-of-the-box support for wireless on any of the machines we tried out of the box. Fonts appeared too large, and the UI generally felt cramped on the machines' 1024 x 600 screens.

Fedora

Fedora's not as netbook-savvy as some other distros

However, with a little work you can get help - here's a fix for the wireless on the MSI Wind, for example - and there are even kernel packages specifically for the Eee PC, which you can get here.

However, brand loyalty aside, we wonder if this is making work for yourself for no reason.

Unlike Ubuntu, there wasn't a wizard for getting the 3G dongle working so we where left to our own devices. OpenOffice was an obvious exclusion too, but Abiword was installed as standard. It doesn't take too long to install extra apps, though.

Overall, we feel you would be better off using a netbook specific distribution.

Download Here

CrunchEee

CrunchBang Linux is a lightweight Ubuntu-based distribution using the OpenBox window manager. CrunchEee is the same operating system, but optimised for the Eee PC, using a stripped down “lean” kernel designed for speed. Fonts have been optimised for the smaller screen, too, making for an excellent companion to the Eee PC.

Based on Ubuntu 8.10, Crunch Eee's boot time is half that of a standard Ubuntu Intrepid install – so we can't wait to see what the team can do with Ubuntu Jaunty – which is already considerably faster at booting up.

CrunchEee

Refreshing in its geeky simplicity

Once booted, it's a very simple affair, with just a grey and black colour scheme. Its simplicity is refreshing. The launch menu has no icons, but most of the applications you'll want are installed for you. Naturally, being Ubuntu based – installing more easy.

The same Eee PC tray utility that Eeebuntu provides is included here to allow you to turn off netbook hardware such as the webcam – something you'd usually need to go into the Bios to do. You can also over and underclock the CPU, allowing you to squeeze a little more battery power out of the machine, or speed up game play.

Wireless works out of the box, as do 3G dongles. Despite the name, CrunchEee also worked flawlessly on our other netbooks.

Download Here

High performance access to file storage

Next page: Google Android

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
Windows 8.1, which you probably haven't upgraded to yet, ALREADY OBSOLETE
Pre-Update versions of new Windows version will no longer support patches
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Windows XP still has 27 per cent market share on its deathbed
Windows 7 making some gains on XP Death Day
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
US taxman blows Win XP deadline, must now spend millions on custom support
Gov't IT likened to 'a Model T with a lot of things on top of it'
Batten down the hatches, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS due in TWO DAYS
Admins dab straining server brows in advance of Trusty Tahr's long-term support landing
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.