Open Source Insider

Mar 21 2011   7:52AM GMT

Killing Linpus Linux, reaching for Ubuntu on netbooks

Adrian Bridgwater Adrian Bridgwater Profile: Adrian Bridgwater

Tags:
Drivers
Linux
Netbook
Ubuntu

If you, like me, bought an Acer Aspire One and have been suffering with the ultra stripped down Linpus Linux Lite for your sins; then you’ve probably (also like me) only dreamed lazily of the heavenly possibility of having a “proper” operating system on your machine.

After all, Ubuntu 11.04 is due to drop (in both server and desktop edition) on 28th of April – so you’ll be looking forward to that right?

The trouble is that most of the instructions on the web simply tell you to do this:

  •  install an .ISO file (basically a disk image) onto a USB stick
  •  restart your machine
  •  hit F2 upon start up
  •  go to your boot screen menu
  •  change the boot order to direct the system to the USB first
  •  go and make a cuppa and put your feet up

The trouble is, it’s not “always” that easy and my home office set up can pay testimony to that fact.

Ubuntu desktop.jpg

Firstly there’s the potential need to use a Win 32 installer as well. This in itself is not a major issue – although it just doesn’t seem to work if you use a Mac to download it. Now I know that might sound obvious, but not everyone has five PCs at home all running different OSs.

You might also need to edit the BIOS on your netbook to change the boot order. You might also need to work with FAT (file allocation table) technologies too.

Once you do get your install of Ubuntu (or any of flavour Linux distro) running, it should just be plain sailing from there right?

Well, not quite.

Getting your network centre tool to log in to the web is not a two-minute job. Go and find your Ethernet cable and hard wire yourself to the router and make another cup of tea.

OK, this was just my experience. It could well be easier depending on machine and OS and your other set up parameters. I say my experience; my wife (Mrs B) actually took charge, as she’s a highly competent Java developer in her own right.

So just some leveling words of information and advice for you here I hope.

One final note, Ubuntu on an Acer netbook is sweet, but it is slower than Linpus, so balance that factor too before you go diving in.

12  Comments on this Post

 
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  • IndianArt
    Great article,As they say knowledge is power.When I bought my Acer laptop in India, it was shipped with LinPUS Linux. LinPUS was so awful, Acer did not even test if it worked.Anyway I (accidentally) found Ubuntu & am so glad I did.Acer has no idea how many customers it is loosing by pre-installing LinPUS instaed of Ubuntu. My suggestion to them fell of deaf ears (& blind)!!!
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  • justin
    ubuntu 10.04 for the netbook is actually better. faster too.
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  • Wayne Borean
    Um, why use Ubuntu? Gnome isn't the best desktop lightweight desktop. I'd recommend Bodhi or Moon OS using the E17 desktop, or Linux Mint with XFCE (avoid XUbuntu, Canonical's XFCE implementation is weird to say the least).Wayne
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  • Rob
    Erm, I got a Acer Aspire one with Linpus on it in early 2009 - Linpus was broken; thrice crashed my computer and disappeared completely. I got rid of it, and installed ubuntu netbook remix - Jaunty Jackalope 9.04, and have installed every subsequent release, as and when it became available. yes I think 10.04 was perhaps fastest, but i think that 11.04, using compiz and not mutter, will return us to full speed. Linpus really should be burning on the eternal fires of silicon hell by now!
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  • YorkshireTyke
    Have you tried Joli OS 1.2?Works like a dream on my Acer Aspire One!
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  • Adrian Bridgwater
    Hey there,Thanks for your comment - yes I have heard Joli is very good and was going to opt for that, but had so many problems down at the BIOS level that I thought I would opt for a big "brand name" Linux to start with - my reasoning went, well - if Ubuntu doesn't work then there's something wrong.I think I'll move on to something more scaled for netbooks next.Regards and thanks again for reading and commenting - Adrian
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  • Adrian Bridgwater
    Thanks Rob,Well said.While I was searching for info on how to get the damn thing off I found that Linpus is in the tablet market now. I think the company is from Taiwan.'nuff said - but big thanks for reading, agreeing and replying too.Adrian
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  • Adrian Bridgwater
    I wonder if the netbook editions will suffer now that they no longer exist and have been pulled into one "being" with the desktop editions eh?Adrian
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  • Adrian Bridgwater
    Hmm thanks Wayne,As you'll see from my other comments, I was simply trying to battle with Linpus in the first place. I think I am acutely aware of the fact that there are other more netbook-friendly OSs out there now.Perhaps we should all stand back and get the tablet people to hush up for a moment as we remind them that there are still plenty of us that want an ultra small full keyboard machine right?Adrian
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  • Adrian Bridgwater
    Thanks for your comment Paul,I think Acer feels it is going for the so-called "low-hanging-fruit" by using something that looks cute for the first five minutes and then just drags and feels nasty by the weekend... but by that time you've bought the machine - right?Adrian
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  • roszyk
    I'm amazed that you have such trouble installing Ubuntu based distros. I've installed Ubuntu, Mint, and other distros on a wide variety of desktop and notebook systems old and new. I guess everyones mileage varies but the only thing that I have ever found not set up by default is wireless drivers. These I had to take the additional step of choosing "Hardware Drivers" from a menu and it worked.I've done clean installs, dual-boot installs, and even installed inside Windows (XP and 7)using WUBI (included on the disk).I've certainly had much more trouble with a clean install of Windows XP, searching the net or old disks for various hardware drivers.My Acer Aspire One dual boots Windows XP and Ubuntu Netbook Edition 10.04. Never had the joy of using Linpus. Ubuntu, Mint, or Joli OS would be a much better choice. Cheers.
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  • mikekelley
    I sticked on my laptops as a person who is always on the go. All in all, im pretty satisfied how Ubuntu works on my system considering I have a pretty old system running.
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