Netbook Resurrection

We all know netbooks are dead, right ? These cheap low powered laptops had a short time in the sun between 2008 and 2012. They were eventually killed by consumer apathy, Microsoft trying to install Windows on them and most of all by the iPad and Android tablets.

I’ve always been sorry to see them go. A netbook does most of the things a tablet does (minus touch of course.) It also has a proper keyboard, and makes a nice little system to take along on holiday for email and saving photos.

The netbooks should have had Linux installed in the first place. Some early models did feature a Linux O/S but the OEMs did a bad job of choosing and installing Linux. Customers wanted Windows so Microsoft gave away XP at first and then developed a Windows 7 Starter installation which ran like a hog, especially after you loaded up all the CPU sucking security apps. But I digress.

Yesterday I did a little IT work for one of my neighbors. He has recently bought a new small laptop to replace his old netbook and asked me if I would like to take the old machine away. I jumped at the chance. This particular netbook is from ca 2010 and is really a nice one. Toshiba NB 305, second generation Intel Atom processor that supports 64 bit systems, very Linux friendly hardware. I wiped Windows 7 away, installed Linux Mint and everything worked right out of the box. Here’s how it looks now:

I have a couple of older netbooks in the Computer Museum but nothing with the memory and performance of this one. It’s great – just as long as you don’t try running Windows on it.




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