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What a cracking little machine. The way things are going with the sub laptop market.
Although it runs on Linux, it is simple to boot up (in under 20 secs) and use from the moment you open the box, and you can run it on Windows if you need to. Although I wouldn't, as this version of Linux does all that you need and more, and saves you from all the security headaches that Windows can cause. Linux comes with built-in antivirus and firewall - you don't need separate programs.
Linux is an Open Source software with a huge community of developers behind it, so there are now thousands of programs to run on Linux, and a support community which puts the large corporations to shame. There are several forums for help if you need it for the EEE, and you will get answers to your problems or queries very quickly.
If you run it straight from the box, after setting up your personal details, the screen will show several tabs - Internet, Work, Learn, Play and Settings. It really is simplicity itself. Click on the appropriate tab and you will see the programs associated with that tab.
The EEE comes pre-loaded with a huge variety (especially for its memory size) of applications ready to roll, from Firefox for browsing, Skype for phone calls, a wireless network utility for wi-fi connections, games, Messenger, Open office for spreadsheets, word documents etc, a PDF Reader - the list goes on!
There are 3 USB ports, which come in handy for plugging in printers, memory sticks, etc, a card reader, as well as an ethernet (RJ45) connector, and you can also plug in an external monitor. The size of the screen has only bothered me when playing one of the many solitaire games, but I'm sure there may be times when a larger monitor would be handy.
There is a small amount of onboard Flash memory. For this reason, it is worth investing in a memory dongle or SD card to increase it. However, this use of Flash memory means that the machine is more rugged - you really can drop it and know that there is very little inside to break. This puts it above certain laptops which seem ridiculously fragile for the money spent on them.
It has a built-in webcam, which offers excellent quality for videoconferencing etc, and you can record conversations or take photos too. The sound quality of the speakers is fine, and volume etc not so loud that you deafen all around you, nor too quiet to hear ina busy environment. You can plug in headphones and an external microphone.
There are various modifications available now, including a touchscreen mod - do not attempt this unless you are experienced at dismantling computers! Hopefully, Asus will add this mod into the next gen of EEE PCs as it really would make it the ultimate machine.
The keyboard is a little difficult to get used to at first, as it is smaller than your average tablet, but it doesn't take long to accustom yourself to the proximity of the keys, and the action is smooth.
The machine does tend to get a little warm on the front left hand side, but as my machine hasn't even frozen up yet once in the two months I have had it, I don't think this is an issue. And in winter, it keeps your hands warm!
I have to mention the wifi connectivity. There are 3 in-built antennas for wireless, and this makes it one of the most impressive machines for finding wi-fi hotspots/connectivity that I have tried. It beats two smartphones - Nokia N95 and HTC Hermes, the Mac Mini and a laptop with external wifi antenna at finding signals round us. This is a major plus in the world of wireless we now live in. It is also very easy to connect to networks.
There is no CD drive, so you will need an external CD drive to add programs off CD, or use a memory stick or just network with a computer with a CD drive. Although this could be a negative, it actually means that the portability of the machine is not compromised. It really does almost fit in your pocket, without losing any of the functionality that a reduction in size usually brings.
Once in full desktop mode, there are yet more programs revealed, and you have a fully functioning Linux distro to play with. Anyone who hasn't started to move from Windows to either Mac or Linux yet, this machine will help you with the latter.
All round, a great buy. Whether for your kids, a travelling machine when you go away, or to replace a bloated Windows laptop, this is the business!
Vikuiti privacy filters for laptops protect the data on your screen while you are working ... more
on private documents in public places. A Vikuiti privacy filter is a complex piece of plastic based on microlouver technology from 3M. The finest black, non-reflecting louvers are positioned to 1-degree precision, with over a dozen louvers per millimetre, and then evenly distributed over the dimensions of a screen.Outfitting a laptop for mobile display security takes only a few minutes and is possible for almost all types of screens. The filter is fastened to the laptop with small mounting clips, can remain on the laptop during transport and can be removed or reinstalled at any time. It also protects the display against damage from the keyboard.
Share photos of your travels without waiting till you get home with the netbook ASUS Eee PC notebook. Shop the Worl...
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