Most of the HP Mini-Note reviews and writeups have focused on its performance with Windows Vista or XP. And while I ordered the version running SUSE, I installed Windows XP within a few hours of opening the box. So I never got the chance to compare the out of the box Linux experience on the HP Mini-Note with the out of the box experience you get from an Eee PC. Fortunately, Mini-Note User has posted a video comparing the startup times on each machine.
As is stated in the video, the comparison isn’t really fair. The Eee PC 900 loads a simple user interface in just a few seconds while processes continue to load in the background, while the Mini-Note loads a full desktop environment. But the net effect is that the Eee PC is usable about 20-25 seconds after you hit the power button, while you have to wait up to 90 seconds to get a usable desktop on the Mini-Note running SUSE.
While it’s not clear from this video which Mini-Note we’re looking at, SUSE only comes on the $549 and $499 models, which means this unit has either a 1GHz or a 1.2GHz processor. If it’s the $499 unit, it might also have the 4GB SSD option instead of a hard drive, which would actually speed up the boot a bit.