I just picked up an Asus Eee PC 900A from Best Buy. I wanted to pick up a netbook for a couple of months now but ended up getting an HP dv9999us last month. Office Depot it for a very good deal so I could not pass it up. Now Best Buy has a deal with this Asus netbook that I cannot pass up. After a week of use, here’s my initial impression and experience.
The netbook comes with Xandros OS. The desktop is grouped by tabs with applications in each group. After the software updates though, the system became unstable. There were times after boot up, the mouse and/or keyboard didn’t respond. I had to restore the system to factory defaults. That was easy to do. I just had to press and hold F9 as soon as the netbook started.
I then decided to install Easy Peasy via USB flash drive. The manual says to press and hold the ESC button to access the boot device selection. It didn’t work. What I found to work is pressing both ESC and F2 keys during POST. It only recognized my bootable USB flash drive when connected to the USB port closes to the right, Shift key.
I used Unetbootin to create the bootable USB. Once I booted off it, I got 3 options: Default, Help, and OEM. I selected Default and it run the Live CD version. Once Easy Peasy loaded, I installed it. There were some bugs after installation but this post http://www.ubuntu-eee.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=543 answered all my problems.
After installing a few more softwares, I still have about 800MB. I’m planning on getting a 16GB SDHC card and maybe a 16GB SSD drive to replace the 4GB. This netbook has an Intel Atom N270 processor, 1GB DDR2 ram, 8.9” WSVGA widescreen monitor (1024×600), Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 950, SD and MMC card reader, 3 USB 2.0 ports, and wireless connection (supports WEP and WPA/WPA2 security). This thing only weighs 2.2lbs and 1.3” thick. It’s very nice and portable. Another cool feature is the 2 finger scroll just like my MacBook Pro. You can scroll up and down using 2 fingers on the trackpad. I also was able to connect to my HP 2600N color laserjet.
If you will not upgrade the 4GB SSD drive, I highly recommend installing Easy Peasy (Ubuntu EEE). If not, do not update the software unless you are experiencing problems and even then be careful not to run out of drive space.
Only 2 things I wish it had, a webcam and an ExpressCard slot. I can live without the webcam but my Verizon V70 is an ExpressCard. Now I can only access the internet if I’m within a wireless connection. Many coffee shops now have free wi-fi access anyway so again no big deal.
So after a day of use, it’s a great machine with lots of potential uses and upgrades. If you can get your hands on one for around $200, jump on it.