Thursday Sep 24, 2009

2010.next: a better netbook for meetings

I recently borrowed one of the 10" netbooks that came out this year, and tested Build 123 on it. Here's a shot of Toshiba's sleek black NB205 displaying a clean Device Driver Utility run.

nb205

The NB205 has a keyboard on par with the r500 I use regularly—large for a netbook—and has a superior trackpad. Suspend-resume is reliable; compiz runs well; the extra vertical inch means fewer application compromises over last year's netbook crop. (For instance, rather than rearranging panel to the sides, use of gnome-panel's auto-hide feature is enough to let applications run well when maximized.)

If I don't have to give it back, it'll be my new "netbook for meetings".

Netbook styling credit to Dave Powell.

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Tuesday Apr 21, 2009

2009.06: A netbook for meetings

It's been a busy few months, but things are clearing up now.

The past few weeks, I've been using an Acer Aspire One for coverage when my trusty Toshiba r500 is recharging. It's my computer for meetings, I suppose. The Aspire One is a great little netbook, and 2009.06 should recognize every device on the system. Here's an action shot of this Atom-based system on my file cabinet:

Acer Aspire One action shot

The window shown in the display is the Device Detection Utility—the absence of red bars in that list indicates that every hardware component on the system is known to OpenSolaris. The main limitations of a standard single core, dual thread (but dual-core) Atom netbook like this are vertical screen real estate and memory usage. In the screen shot, I've moved the GNOME panels to the left and right sides of the display; I've also disabled unneeded services by using svcadm(1M).

If you've an Aspire One, or a similar netbook, you might want to give 2009.06 a spin. The usbcopy utility, from the SUNWdistro-const package, can be used to prepare a bootable USB stick to use for the installation.

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