20 Jan 2012

Netbooks

For many years I used a little Asus EEE PC701 (7 inch screen) netbook running a pre-loaded Linux OS. This was ideal for basic net surfing and emails, but it lacked the flexibility of a Windows OS when looking for ham radio software. At the moment I am looking at a possible replacement that I can use for general web browsing and also to run WSPR, OPERA and hopefully Spectran and Spectrum Lab freeing up the main PC. Such a small netbook would also be useful for field use with VLF tests, lightbeam experiments etc.

It is quite amazing what £200-250 will buy today. My first laptop cost me £1499 back in 1998 and the performance was nowhere near that of even my little Asus EE PC701!

My inclination is to buy another Asus machine unless someone can give me good reasons to choose another make.

3 comments:

muggins said...

i am writing this on an Asus 1000HE, which runs PowerSDR for my Flexradio 1500 adequately. The problem is the screen size. 600 lines vertically is not enough. There is a mode in the video driver where it pretends to be a larger screen with scrolling but that is somewhat awkward. The nice thing about this netbook is it is small and light, and the battery lasts 6 to 8 hours. If i were doing it again, i go for something slightly larger with a dual core, and a less squished keyboard.

Julian Moss said...

I just tried running Opera on my Samsung NC10 netbook. CPU usage is close to 100% and in the red. If you went for a netbook with similar power you might not get away with it. I think you need a real computer for this kind of software.

Dave M0DCM said...

Hi Roger,
I run Linux on my Acer Aspire One AO751h 1.66GHz CPU in the form of Ubuntu 9.10, and I run FLDigi, CQRLog, WSPR & WSJT along with various other applications, connected to a Yaesu FT-817ND with full CAT control using a USB-to-Serial lead. I also run Opera with no issues or slow down. There are a couple of Linux distributions that work great with the ASUS eePC701, these are Easy Peasy and LEENUX.
The latter is actually designed for your device and comes with Opera pre-installed, and as its based on Ubuntu you can run the amateur radio software that I run without any issues. LEENUX also only takes up 1Gb of the hard drive.
I've just started a blog on Linux and Ham Radio, which will have tutorials and videos showing newbies how to use this great Open Source operating system, no matter which version people are using. I know it saved myself a lot of money on splashing out on new computers and it showed me that there's actually something else that works better than the OS that has the monopoly hold on the market at present.

Hope this has helped you in your choice in what you want to do....

Dave