The NorhTec Gecko Edubook that I’m testing this week shipped with WattOS, a light weight Linux distribution optimized to support the netbook’s somewhat unusual hardware. But drivers are also available for Windows XP,and you can configure several other Linux0based operating systems to play well with the Edubook, including Ubuntu, Debian, Zen, and Puppy Linux.

Although I haven’t had a chance to test Puppy yet, NorhTec’s Michael Barnes has. And he’s posted a video showing Puppy Linux 4.12 running on the Edubook from a USB flash drive.

The OS runs quite smoothly on the low power netbook, which makes sense since it’s designed to run on older systems with slow processors. The entire operating system actually loads itself into RAM and runs without affecting your hard drive at all.

As Barnes points out, the netbook can handle internet audio and video streaming under Puppy, although the video playback is a bit choppy.

You can check out the video after the break.

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5 replies on “NorhTec Gecko Edubook with Puppy Linux – Video”

  1. I would like to see the Edubook and how fast it is if you put in the PATA slot in the Edubook a RunCore Pro IV PATA SSD. Just to see how fast that it runs with that. Note that Jkkmobile had success in a video showing the results where he via demo proved that using that SSD that video indeed ran faster (normal fast) using the RunCore Pro IV SSD (where it was choppy before with the other drive). That video is here (video test is at end of video):
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9FloAm4fFC8
    Jkkmobile video is SATA Pro IV, would be interesting if PATA model showed same results? Sometimes the speed of a device is directly related to the I/O of the disk system (RunCore’s is very fast as Jkkmobile has shown us, what can it do on the Edubook)?

    Try CrunchBang Linux (OpenBox based and also very quick booting up using less than 10 MB RAM). The Crunchbang “desktop” is friendly to small screen netbooks.

    A LXDE distro (also based on OpenBox) would be another interesting test.

    And… Kubuntu Netbook Remix is interestingly quick as well (but as it seems with KDE 4.0 maybe the release of 10.04 might be more “friendly” and stable?
    But, I do like KDE 4.0 and the direction it is headed. It seems pretty fast on this Kubuntu distro. AND for a GUI the Kubuntu Netbook Remix allows applications to use a lot of the screen space (use to quickly change between open apps).

    Note to those using USB Flash, or SSD hard drive replacement (like the RunCore Pro IV) on such a device… You might want to check out this link to make Flash disks last longer as some “experts” on Groklaw insist that SSDs and Flash disks do wear out, and they give some suggestions for setting up Linux to use SSDs and Flash where this wearing out will not be a problem.
    See:
    https://www.groklaw.net/comment.php?mode=display&sid=20090601233512914&title=SSDs+are+not+better%2C+they+are+provably+very+much+worse&type=article&order=&hideanonymous=0&pid=759422#c759514

    1. Correction – Crunchbang boots using 100 (not 10) MB or RAM. Would be nice is something did work on only 10 MB RAM 🙂

    2. i would worry that the pata connection would be saturated long before the sata would, as right now the thing about sata is that a convention HDD can not really make use of the bandwith sata provides.

      oh, and yes, flash do wear out. but SSD and similar provide redundant chips, so that it has more actual capacity then whats stated on the case, and basically use the extra space to level out the wear.

      with that in place, i think the math comes out to suggest that one can have a continual write going for a couple of years, that is, changing the content of a “sector” each second, before the first problem of wearing out shows up.

      i suspect these experts are used to working on bare metal flash, where this is done in special file systems rather then controller chips standing between p/s-ata and the actual flash media, as thats how its usually done on phones and similar.

      1. If you see the jkkmobile video, the SATA bus was even “restricted” to lower speeds by Dell in that machine. The SSD and the features regarding the “testing” you can observe in the video (FOCUSED ON VERY SMALL FILE OVERHEAD), is the part that is of interest. So, with PATA vs SATA then maybe all is relative as the tested system was “hampered by Dell, by design” it seems. A testing of the RunCore PATA SSD in a system like the Gecko Edubook would tell us quickly the answer if the small file management advantages of the RunCore Pro IV SSD helps with video in that machine at all (and helps overall with boot times, and general application operations)?

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