Remember yesterday when I told you how Dave Marples placed an order for a Dell Inspiron Mini 9 on Thursday and it was delivered by Friday afternoon? Well, he sent in a few photos to show off his new toy productivity machine.

There appear to be a couple of items that contributed to this case of super-fast shipping. First, Marples is in the UK. Second, he ordered a Windows XP model. Dell is not shipping the Linux version in the US yet and doesn’t appear to be even offering it outside of the US.

Some Liliputing readers who ordered an Inspiron Mini 9 with a 16GB SSD say their computers are already beginning to ship, while customers who ordered the 8GB version are still waiting. I’m not sure if there are enough reports out there to call this a trend.

But while if you’re still waiting for your Dell Mini to arrive (or even if you’re not), you can check out some more pictures from Dave Marples after the jump.

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32 replies on “Dell Inspiron Mini 9 unboxed”

  1. This is Sean over at I just wanted to remind readers that all Inspiron Mini 9 users get 2 GB of free online storage from, along with our simple sharing tools.

  2. Well, following a conversation with Dell this morning, the machine is going back 🙁

    Its a real shame – the form factor is great, the build quality is a step up from anything else I’ve seen, the keyboard is acceptable given the compromises that are needed, its properly silent and the battery gives me a genuine 4 hours under Ubuntu…. I -love- this machine.

    If Dell had informed me that there was no connector for the WWAN I would have held off until they were shipping devices with the WWAN, but their website (referenced elsewhere in these replies) indicated that the connector was fitted and it was a user upgrade….it isn’t, it’s solder pads, which ain’t an upgrade path for the majority of users 🙁

    Its a shame for everyone concerned – it’s cost Dell a significant amount of money to -not- sell me a machine and, worse, to get a shop soiled one back. It’s cost me in time and effort to get the machine configured the way I wanted it to be and it’s cost the planet a bit for the dead trees that have been wasted getting the thing to and from my house. Grrr.

    Oh well, back to surfing liliputing….


  3. I ordered mine the 4th. It was supposed to ship today, the 19th. Its been pushed back to the 26th. What a disapointment.

  4. Well my mini shipped today. according to the site it should arrive tomorrow, here’s hoping for no DHL delays. i even told my boss i want to work from home tomorrow!

  5. I ordered on the 8th and according to Dell my ship date is 23 September.

    Got the 16GB / 1GB Ram WinXP Model with bluetooth, 0.3MP WebCam. Hopefully by the end of the month it’ll be in my hands – looking forward to it as a replacement / suppliment to my EEE 701.

  6. I ordered the mini the day it came out, and like other US customers, am expecting a shipping date on the 19th. I am very disappointed, really wanted to have it sooner. I’m amazed that european and australian customers have been getting it much sooner but I guess it is due to the fewer skus/limited options.

    The ubuntu version is supposed to be coming out in October, which is a dissapointment as well. I ordered the XP version so I could get the system sooner, since I can always add the ubuntu OS onto it when it comes out (Dell will be offering it as a free download from their support site)

    1. Forgot to mention that 3G isn’t a deal killer for me, since at least in the US, WWAN service is typically $50 a month, and I personally can’t afford it nor do I think putting it on a cheap device is really worth it. I am guessing it’s much cheaper in Europe where it’s more standardized…

      1. I ordered the same black xp, bt, 1.3cam from US as well 19th as above and too didn’t intend to use 3g at 50 bucks a moth either but am disappointed that I will not have the option to blow the extra money in the future. It would have made this device the first to market of its size with that particular selling point. Looks like not only are dell commercial spokesman on weed but also there marketing strategist. Still I am looking forward to getting my bloated down version on winblows from dell. If anyone can tell me if they can boot an os like Linux from the sd slot I would be very happy to hear back on it. Thanks in advance

        1. Don’t know about booting from sd slot but I know for sure that you can boot from flash drive.

  7. >Dell is not shipping the Linux version in the US yet
    >and doesn’t appear to be even offering it outside of the US.

    Can someone find out why this is?

    I trolled all the Ubuntu and Dell forums and there are a lot of guesses but no one has heard the official reason for the delay.

    We bought an Acer One last month and my wife loves it and I was thinking about getting our daughter one for back to school….which Dell blew of course. Then we said we’d wait but if there is no Linux version for the Dell and the EEE and Acer One have, then its not even a choice.

    Dell has been associated with Ubuntu since last year. I’d be stunned that they could customize the laptop since then. So if anyone has a link to a story about the delay, id appreciate it.

    1. Also shipping in Australia
      (again only a 16gb / WinXP / Bluetooth / 1.3 Mp configuration) for A$599 (US$500)).

      Ordered mine Wed, appeared on Dell system Fri morning as under construction, showing arrived in country Fri lunch (they clearly have a stockpile given single SKU), delivered Monday morning

  8. Hi, this is Dave. Important issue; This machine does -not- have a mini-PCI connector for the WWAN … just solder pads on the board. This is a major issue for me and might well result in the machine going back.

    Other than that, I have to say the machine is great. It was infected with Windows but that was quickly replaced with Ubuntu and ‘doze under emulation using Virtualbox for the times I need it. Ubuntu is using something like 300-440MB RAM, so the rest of the memory as cache is making things quite snappy. Build quality is good and I still have to get my head around the fact that it’s silent…big bonus. I wish there was a drive light so I could see when things are happening, but my Macs have already semi-conditioned me to the lack of one.

    Keyboard is good, given it’s size, but it is small, and touch-typing would be impossible.

    Battery forecast is about 4 hours. At some point I’ll try a rundown test, but haven’t got the time/patience at the moment.

    Ubuntu drivers work out of the box (Wireless needs fw-cutter to get the firmware) excepting sound. I think it’s the usual HDA/Dell sound issues, but it’s not been a high priority to get it fixed yet….doubt its anything serious.

    Any other Q’s please post them. Network login is intermittent over next few days, but I’ll try.


    1. Dave – could you post the exact config you ordered? I’m trying to figure out if mine is going to ship before I go on travel next week…

        1. That makes sense then – the UK versions are shipping much faster since there is only one SKU

    2. Dave,

      I’d like very much to hear how you were going to implement your plans for the WWAN mini-PCIe slot (if it had had one).

      Thanks for all the information.


      1. Doug,

        The cards are available separately here in the UK (eg. from ITC and other companies) for about 60 UKP, so it’s just a case of plugging one in….much more difficult when they’ve not fitted the socket. Incidentally, I just looked in the service manual thats published on the Dell UK website, and there’s nothing that suggests that the connector might not be fitted.

        Seems very short sighted to me. They’ve saved maybe 0.50 EUR leaving it off, but they’ll get significantly reduced sales as a result.


        1. Dave,
          Sorry about the delayed response… I’ve been out of pocket, but just in case you happen back this way: I was thinking you were from the US when I posted. It’s indeed a gyp that they left out the slot, but seems typical for Asus and others as well.

          My present mobile provider is Verizon, which is the most difficult to deal with about using anything not provided by them, but there are sighs that they may be forced to loosen up a bit to compete with other providers. I might even be able to buy a mini-PCIe 3G card with their EV-DO from the Dell parts department and put it in the netbook of my choice and sign up for their data plan.

          1. I have to say I’m pretty sore about the socket bring missing and I wouldn’t have bought the machine if I’d known it wasn’t there.

            My experience with Dell getting this resolved has, so far, been less than impressive. Historically I’ve been involved in a -lot- of Dell kit purchased for business use and been quite impressed with their support …. My experience of their ‘consumer grade’ support hasn’t been so very impressive so far. One of the main reasons for getting a Dell machine was that they’d look after it if something went wrong ….. But quite frankly, as of today, I would advise private customers to try quite hard to avoid them. I’m hoping everything will come good over the next couple of days, but let’s wait and see.

            The machine is -great- and there’s little to complain about, except the lack of connector!
            At the moment I’m quite disappointed.

  9. Well, I live in the USA, ordered the XP version with 16GB, 1GB memory, 1.3MP Webcam, and Bluetooth, and I ordered it the first day it came available. I am still waiting and it has said since the first day that it will not even ship until the 19th. Anyone know why?

    1. having just been in england for a month, i can testify that netbooks are far more visible there. you see them in shop windows, and in many mobile phone stores, where they are given away practically for free. if i were dell, i’d want to give that market priority. not to mention that everything is more expensive there, making a cheap computer that much more desirable.

  10. There are some interesting differences between the keyboard seen on Dave Marple’s UK machine in the video with that in the photo of a US review model:

    For instance, the ZXCV row has 14 keys on the UK model, vs. 13 on the US. There are extra keys on other rows on the UK model as well. These are all expected for a European keyboard, I would guess. I think the letter keys on the UK model must be slightly narrower than the US model. The US letter keys look rectangular in the picture above, and the UK keys look somewhat squarer.

    The offset of the QWERTY and ASDF rows also looks better (more like normal) on the UK model, which might make touch-typing easier. The Tab, Caps Lock and Left Shift look bigger.

    1. Thanks for the tip about the abnormal key offset. I find this more off-putting than the rearranged punctuation; one more thing to take into account in a purchase decision. I don’t mind some sacrifice for the larger letter keys, but I think they should been able to have the row placement more normal.

  11. On the subject of Dell offering the Linux version outside the US: I work for a company who is a dell corporate customer. I inquired with our dell account manager when the Linux version would be available. The reply was that it will be available on Sep 22nd. I shall be ordering mine then.

  12. So far the OOBE (out of box experience:) looks pretty good, but what does he think of the keyboard?

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