I probably should have seen this one coming. Last week I asked which Linux distribution was best suited for netbooks, and the overwhelming majority of people voted for Ubuntu. This Linux distro has only really been around for a few years, but already it’s become one of the most popular flavors of Linux. For many people, Ubuntu and Linux are synonymous. The fact that Ubuntu makers Canonical are planning a custom interface to make Ubuntu a bit more friendly for users of small-screen devices like the Eee PC makes it an even more attractive choice.

But the first two Linux-based netbooks to really hit the market in the past few years have run other operating systems. The OLPC XO Laptop runs a custom version of Linux with the unique Sugar OS user interface. And the Asus Eee PC runs a custom version of Xandros Linux. The HP Mini-Note users SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop, and the upcoming Acer Aspire One will run Linpus Linux Lite. So there’s no real consensus on the best operating system. At least not among computer makers.

In fact, the only low-cost ultraportable I’m aware of that is designed to ship with Ubuntu right now is E-Lead’s Noahpad. The Everex Cloudbook does use gOS, which is based on Ubuntu.

This week I’ve decided to run a more topical poll: Do you think the MSI Wind will actually be available on July 7th? MSI first announced that the Wind notebook would ship on June 16th. That date has already been pushed back twice due to the global battery shortage. What are the odds it’ll be pushed back yet again?

More importantly, have the delays shaken your faith in the company? If you were planning to buy one already, have the delays and MSI’s announcement that the Wind will ship with a 3 cell battery instead of a 6 cell one made you change your mind? Or does the fact that the Wind still costs $200 less than an Eee PC 1000H make it an attractive alternative, whenever it hits the streets?

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8 replies on “Poll results: Which Linux distro is best for netbooks”

  1. Try WATTOS linux distribution,, seems to be the best one I’ve used and to top it off everything works on my ACER aspire one.

  2. Ubuntu is a bit to heavyweight for a netbook. I currently have the netbook version on my aspire one and it cuts the battery life by an hour. It’s the best as far as usibility and such but It’s a bit too much of a drain on the battery.

    For netbooks you want an OS without all the power consuming extras and just have a nice simple machine that can type, surf and perhaps do some light image editing. In theory I can make a full 3D game on my ubuntu netbook with blender and the Gimp but I’d need constant access to a power suply

  3. If the Eee PC can enjoy success after its many delays to market and a large price hike from what Asus originally announced, then I’m sure the Wind can still enjoy similar success.if it comes to market late – as long as its price remains unchanged.

    1. Personally the delays have made me take more of a stance of evaluating all the new net books that will be available in the next couple of months. Since I no longer have that GOTTA HAVE IT NOW urge due to the unavailability of the Wind, I will probably wait for the 6 cell to be available before I get one, or seriously look at the DELL E since price wise, it’s a couple of hundred less from the looks of it…


  4. Generally, pushing back dates surely disappoints customers most especially if they awaits the product. And it seems like more customers are excited to see and feel MSI but they are kept waiting. Surely, it also affects its reputation to large percent of customers. But if customers choose to be more practical over their prides, if you know what I mean, they still should get MSI. $200 is quite a value.

  5. You missed Mandriva Spring 2008.1 which works out of the box on the eee PC. My already aging 701 works like a charm.

  6. I’ve been pretty set on the 901, but still seeing the wind get pushed back again and again is disheartening. I don’t think it is MSI’s fault directly, more of the battery/Atom shortage. Which means everyone is getting held up. I’m really hoping that July 7/8 date holds up for MSI/Asus because I’ve been waiting to get a new laptop for far too long.

    I don’t see why anyone would get the 1000H over the Wind. The battery life is a problem right now, but I’m sure after this shortage blows over they will up it back to 6 cell, creating an eee900 like PR disaster. But really, what are the differences between the 1000H and Wind? Draft-N? I think spec wise that’s about it. There are some subtle differences (Dolby Sound Room, keyboard variations) but spec wise it’s just the wifi, and now the battery. Even if they offer the 6-cell later, it still won’t be 200 bucks.

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