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Best OS for Asus Eee PC Netbook?

unclelobsterman 2,434 December 19, 2011 at 05:44 PM More TigerDirect Deals
I just got a "Asus Eee PC 10.1in Netbook 1.6GHz 1GB 160GB WiFi - Blue" used Netbook from the recent Cowplop sale. It appears to be the 1005HAB-RBLU001X [tigerdirect.com] with an Atom N270. The machine seems to be in surprisingly good shape (once I cleaned the grime off the cover). No OS is installed and the Windows sticker on the bottom is beat up to the point where I can't read the license key (it looks like it must have been XP).

I'm wondering what the best thing would be to put on it (or if it's worth installing another gig of RAM first). I'm assuming W7 is out given the 1GB of RAM and that XP would run nicely. I appreciate any advice.

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#2
Ubuntu or XP should both run extremely well...or if you can get ahold of a copy of Tiny7 it should run pretty good also.
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#3
bump up the RAM to 2GB, replace the HDD with a SSD, install Win7
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#4
Quote from unclelobsterman View Post :
I just got a "Asus Eee PC 10.1in Netbook 1.6GHz 1GB 160GB WiFi - Blue" used Netbook from the recent Cowplop sale. It appears to be the 1005HAB-RBLU001X [tigerdirect.com] with an Atom N270. The machine seems to be in surprisingly good shape (once I cleaned the grime off the cover). No OS is installed and the Windows sticker on the bottom is beat up to the point where I can't read the license key (it looks like it must have been XP).

I'm wondering what the best thing would be to put on it (or if it's worth installing another gig of RAM first). I'm assuming W7 is out given the 1GB of RAM and that XP would run nicely. I appreciate any advice.
It will run Win 7 just fine, but bear in mind these are slow machines by way of the processor and even adding in a 2nd gig of ram doesn't do much if anything.
I've read countless user reviews from people who state that their machines were slow until they installed a 2 gig stick of ram, yet I have handled around 20 of them and never felt the difference, including running 2 identical models next to each other, one with 1 gig and the other with 2 and still couldn't see any advantage, however it would be fairly safe to say that it might mutitask better with 2.
The N270 was originally for XP and the N450 was for Win 7, however the power difference between the two is negligible and the unit you have will handle Win 7 quite well.
Remember to tweak it often as they aren't fast devices in the first place and if you let it get all bogged down with junk, you won't enjoy the experience.

Upon installing Win 7, most drivers will be installed, but not all.
The ideal way to proceed is to turn on Windows Updates, selecting the option for you to choose which you want to install, then select only hardware updates which will mostly be in the optional section, then shut updates off (this device can ill afford getting a ton of udates that could slow it down to a crawl) and then go to the Aus website to get what is missing.
Even though there will be generic drivers installed by Windows, there will be some better ones on the website, like Audio, Touchpad, maybe the SD card slot reader, etc, and naturally, you will be wanting the chipset too.
That's about it, IMO. You can look through their utilities to see if any interest you and download those that do.
Do not use a heavy anti virus on your machine or you will hate it.
Avira is pretty good and a light installation of AVG free will work well too.
If you go the AVG route, choose the custom installation and uncheck EVERY option along the way.
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#5
Quote from RockySosua View Post :
It will run Win 7 just fine, but bear in mind these are slow machines by way of the processor and even adding in a 2nd gig of ram doesn't do much if anything.
I've read countless user reviews from people who state that their machines were slow until they installed a 2 gig stick of ram, yet I have handled around 20 of them and never felt the difference, including running 2 identical models next to each other, one with 1 gig and the other with 2 and still couldn't see any advantage, however it would be fairly safe to say that it might mutitask better with 2.
The N270 was originally for XP and the N450 was for Win 7, however the power difference between the two is negligible and the unit you have will handle Win 7 quite well.
Remember to tweak it often as they aren't fast devices in the first place and if you let it get all bogged down with junk, you won't enjoy the experience.

Upon installing Win 7, most drivers will be installed, but not all.
The ideal way to proceed is to turn on Windows Updates, selecting the option for you to choose which you want to install, then select only hardware updates which will mostly be in the optional section, then shut updates off (this device can ill afford getting a ton of udates that could slow it down to a crawl) and then go to the Aus website to get what is missing.
Even though there will be generic drivers installed by Windows, there will be some better ones on the website, like Audio, Touchpad, maybe the SD card slot reader, etc, and naturally, you will be wanting the chipset too.
That's about it, IMO. You can look through their utilities to see if any interest you and download those that do.
Do not use a heavy anti virus on your machine or you will hate it.
Avira is pretty good and a light installation of AVG free will work well too.
If you go the AVG route, choose the custom installation and uncheck EVERY option along the way.
Thanks, RockySosua, more than I could have asked for. Do you know of a way to minimize a W7 installation, sort of the way nLite does with XP? I'd prefer to throw 7 on their, of course, but I'd like it to be as lite of an installation as possible. Also, you mention shutting updates off after the initial updating. Won't that shut me out of future security updates that might be important? Thanks again.
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#6
Quote from prozac4312 View Post :
Ubuntu or XP should both run extremely well...or if you can get ahold of a copy of Tiny7 it should run pretty good also.
Thanks, prozac4312. I just threw Ubuntu onto and old Dell Inspiron 5100 with 512MB RAM that I got back from my friend (I had given it to her three years ago). It was my first experience with Linux and I'm enjoying farting around with it. Crazy thing is I have a dual boot with XP and the damn computer seems peppier than it was 8 years ago when I bought it!
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#7
Quote from davepry View Post :
bump up the RAM to 2GB, replace the HDD with a SSD, install Win7
Thanks, davepry. Will an SSD make that much of a difference on this?
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#8
Quote from unclelobsterman View Post :
Thanks, RockySosua, more than I could have asked for. Do you know of a way to minimize a W7 installation, sort of the way nLite does with XP? I'd prefer to throw 7 on their, of course, but I'd like it to be as lite of an installation as possible. Also, you mention shutting updates off after the initial updating. Won't that shut me out of future security updates that might be important? Thanks again.
There is nothing heavy that will run in the background in the various versions of Win 7 that can't be turned off, so any one you have will do.
The only lighter version would be Starter as it doesn't run Aero graphics and it could be 3% faster for the lighter load, but not worth doing IMO, considering how butt ugly it is without the Aero graphics, besides, you can put any higher version in and turn Aero off.
I always install Ultimate as I live in a multi lingual country and Ultimate allows for language packs.
Again, I've read user reviews saying that Premium would be lighter than Pro, and Pro lighter than Ult, etc, but I have never felt any difference, nor have I ever seen it on benchmarks.

I could write for pages on end as to why I and everyone I know runs Windows with the updates turned off, then someone will come on with a CIA type fear who will claim that he won't be secure without them.
How about this................
The updates steal power and internet from running in the background, and the netbooks can't deal with a bunch of background processes, so seeing as how I have never actually experienced any advantages from updates, except for driver and service pack updates, I choose to turn them off.
On top of that, I have had operating systems destroyed by a bunch of updates and even removing them after couldn't bring the machine back to normal performance, like it causes permanent damage, leaving it so slow that I would have to do a clean install to get it back to normal.
I can't tell you how that happens and why some machines take the updates well and others not, but I can tell you that when I investigated it on the internet, I discovered a bunch of people complaining about the same thing.

There's 3 ways you could proceed.
1) No updates at all.
2) Check updates once a month,, choose what you want, then turn them back off.
3) Leave them on all the time.

Considering that your netbook will work just fine after your upcoming installation, why is it that 1 month down the road, it's at great risk if you don't install some security update?
Of the 1,000's of machines that I have fixed and tweaked that all run with updates off, why is it that they all run fine but MSC would have me believe they won't?
You can draw your own conclusions as I have and make the decision that best suits you.
Also, you can make a system image after getting your netbook all set up with drivers and programs and settings that you like, and if anything went wrong with the system, it takes a measly 20 minutes to reinstall from the image.
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#9
Quote from RockySosua View Post :
There is nothing heavy that will run in the background in the various versions of Win 7 that can't be turned off, so any one you have will do.
The only lighter version would be Starter as it doesn't run Aero graphics and it could be 3% faster for the lighter load, but not worth doing IMO, considering how butt ugly it is without the Aero graphics, besides, you can put any higher version in and turn Aero off.
I always install Ultimate as I live in a multi lingual country and Ultimate allows for language packs.
Again, I've read user reviews saying that Premium would be lighter than Pro, and Pro lighter than Ult, etc, but I have never felt any difference, nor have I ever seen it on benchmarks.

I could write for pages on end as to why I and everyone I know runs Windows with the updates turned off, then someone will come on with a CIA type fear who will claim that he won't be secure without them.
How about this................
The updates steal power and internet from running in the background, and the netbooks can't deal with a bunch of background processes, so seeing as how I have never actually experienced any advantages from updates, except for driver and service pack updates, I choose to turn them off.
On top of that, I have had operating systems destroyed by a bunch of updates and even removing them after couldn't bring the machine back to normal performance, like it causes permanent damage, leaving it so slow that I would have to do a clean install to get it back to normal.
I can't tell you how that happens and why some machines take the updates well and others not, but I can tell you that when I investigated it on the internet, I discovered a bunch of people complaining about the same thing.

There's 3 ways you could proceed.
1) No updates at all.
2) Check updates once a month,, choose what you want, then turn them back off.
3) Leave them on all the time.

Considering that your netbook will work just fine after your upcoming installation, why is it that 1 month down the road, it's at great risk if you don't install some security update?
Of the 1,000's of machines that I have fixed and tweaked that all run with updates off, why is it that they all run fine but MSC would have me believe they won't?
You can draw your own conclusions as I have and make the decision that best suits you.
Also, you can make a system image after getting your netbook all set up with drivers and programs and settings that you like, and if anything went wrong with the system, it takes a measly 20 minutes to reinstall from the image.
Once again, thanks. I think the only issue now is if I throw on W7 or maybe play around with with XP and see how Linux works as well. In your opinion would the machine run faster with XP (I honestly don't have any need for W7 on such a tiny box, though if it's just as fast I would prefer it)?
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#10
Quote from unclelobsterman View Post :
Thanks, davepry. Will an SSD make that much of a difference on this?
Although your question is addressed to Davepry, I can tell you the following.
I always use SSD's in all my devices, including the netbooks that I have owned.
Yes it will be faster but the CPU is still so bloody slow that it simply cannot turn it into a fast machine, like it would for an average powered dual core laptop.
There are bottelnecks in netbooks that slow the SSD down below its normal capacities.
So it won't blow you away, but it will definitely be faster in hard drive related tasks.
I do it because I'm a speed nut and I can't stand slow machines, but is it worth investing 200 bux into a $200 machine?
I think that most people would say no.
If you ask me the same question about a normal laptop, the answer would be different as a good SSD makes recent laptops unbelievably faster. (PC's too, naturally)
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#11
Quote from unclelobsterman View Post :
Once again, thanks. I think the only issue now is if I throw on W7 or maybe play around with with XP and see how Linux works as well. In your opinion would the machine run faster with XP (I honestly don't have any need for W7 on such a tiny box, though if it's just as fast I would prefer it)?
XP would be a tiny bit faster with some things, and slower with others, but LINUX would definitely be faster.
Personally I can't stand the inconveniences associated with the less sophisticated operating systems so I won't bother with either anymore.
Unless it's for a tablet, I want Win 7, end of story.
Only you can decide what best suits you. I actually do work on computers, including when I used netbooks, so my needs could be quite different from yours.

Quote from RockySosua View Post :
XP would be a tiny bit faster with some things, and slower with others, but LINUX would definitely be faster.
Personally I can't stand the inconveniences associated with the less sophisticated operating systems so I won't bother with either anymore.
Unless it's for a tablet, I want Win 7, end of story.
Only you can decide what best suits you. I actually do work on computers, including when I used netbooks, so my needs could be quite different from yours.
PS: If you go to youtube and watch videos of netbooks running Win 7, that will give you an idea of what performance you can expect from yours.
If it seems good enough, then Win 7 would be your best choice.
If it seems to slow for you, then perhaps you should consider Ubuntu.
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Last edited by RockySosua December 20, 2011 at 01:15 AM
#12
Quote from RockySosua View Post :
Although your question is addressed to Davepry, I can tell you the following.
I always use SSD's in all my devices, including the netbooks that I have owned.
Yes it will be faster but the CPU is still so bloody slow that it simply cannot turn it into a fast machine, like it would for an average powered dual core laptop.
There are bottelnecks in netbooks that slow the SSD down below its normal capacities.
So it won't blow you away, but it will definitely be faster in hard drive related tasks.
I do it because I'm a speed nut and I can't stand slow machines, but is it worth investing 200 bux into a $200 machine?
I think that most people would say no.
If you ask me the same question about a normal laptop, the answer would be different as a good SSD makes recent laptops unbelievably faster. (PC's too, naturally)
Quote from RockySosua View Post :
XP would be a tiny bit faster with some things, and slower with others, but LINUX would definitely be faster.
Personally I can't stand the inconveniences associated with the less sophisticated operating systems so I won't bother with either anymore.
Unless it's for a tablet, I want Win 7, end of story.
Only you can decide what best suits you. I actually do work on computers, including when I used netbooks, so my needs could be quite different from yours.
I figured that I wouldn't fully realize the advantages of an SSD on this, so it's good to hear some confirmation. As for XP vs 7, let's just say that it's easier, at the moment, to install XP. I have a copy of 7 that I bought from Microsoft during one of their student promos that I have yet to install, but I'm saving that for another machine. If you have any other advice with regards to this please feel free to PM me. Thank again for your help.
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#13
Quote from unclelobsterman View Post :
Once again, thanks. I think the only issue now is if I throw on W7 or maybe play around with with XP and see how Linux works as well. In your opinion would the machine run faster with XP (I honestly don't have any need for W7 on such a tiny box, though if it's just as fast I would prefer it)?
I have the 1005HAV. When I bought it, it came with XP, which I have used for about a year. I put Windows 7 on it a few months ago. I truly like Win7 on it better. The great thing about Win7 is readyboost. It made a difference when I added a 8gb class 10 SD card (actually close to 20mbps) It only uses 4gb of the card but it's just as cheap to buy an 8GB as a 4gb class 10. It uses Fat32 on mine.

I'd suggest going Win7, use readyboost and upgrade the RAM to 2GB since it is so cheap to do so now.
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Last edited by skydivingcows December 20, 2011 at 01:19 PM
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#14
Quote from unclelobsterman View Post :
I just threw Ubuntu onto and old Dell Inspiron 5100 with 512MB RAM that I got back from my friend (I had given it to her three years ago). It was my first experience with Linux and I'm enjoying farting around with it. Crazy thing is I have a dual boot with XP and the damn computer seems peppier than it was 8 years ago when I bought it!
You'd be thrilled at the speed boost you'd get with a distro like Archbang... Openbox is not the most friendly window manager (you just have to remember to right-click in open space on the desktop) but it *flies*
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#15
I believe that the eee netbooks ran Leopard and SNow Leopard as Hackintoshes decently.
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Speed does not kill. In fact speed never killed anyone. Suddenly becoming stationary that's what gets you. - Jeremy Clarkson, Top Gear S06E10

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