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Old 11-28-2012, 11:13 PM   #1
Night Hawk
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Replacing or Working with Windows CE 6.0 on Netbook - Options are Sought!

This looked like the most appropiate section being mobile since the inquiry here is about the not so likely replacement of the embedded and extremely limited Windows CE 6.0 or stripped to the core Windows 7 on a small Sylvania netbook having 512mb ram and a 2gb SSD.

The Joli OS in the Cloud will be one of the first alternates looked at since the IE is too limited to even log into social networks let alone more secure accounts due to not seeing any Java support. That offers two versions once that installs onto CE but runs the OS in the cloud and the full replacement installer which is likely to fail is the embedded CE is on rom chip.

The question here would be about any other lighter weight versions for any of the other smaller distros like ubuntu or Puppy, etc. that could be made to run along side CE or while booting live from a USB flash drive to run a distro live is also being looked at as well.

The netbook itself was a gift to someone who has never upgraded from XP let alone try out any distro but borrows a 7 laptop as mainly a Windows user. The basics only are sought for this since no large apps or gaming are run on a now in state of repair desktop.

With the CE being limited the user was unable to do things like pay bills online and is not in a situation to buy anything new as far as new laptop or build any newer desktop case. This is why the netbook was origianlly selected being a smaller lower cost option requiring almost no maintainence.

That brings up the main question as to which OS option would be best suited for this type of project?
Old 11-29-2012, 08:04 AM   #2
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If your netbook is based on a VIA 8505 CPU, there's a version of Debian that should work with it. Not sure about any other distros.
Old 11-29-2012, 08:13 AM   #3
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The first thing you need to determine is whether or not the machine actually has a BIOS that allows you to boot from a removable device and run/install another operating system.

You might find some good info in this mega-thread:
Old 11-29-2012, 05:31 PM   #4
Night Hawk
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This will prove to be an interesting project and certainly a challenge since there are no post options of any kind seen as the Win 7 CE OS image loads immediately.You see a flashing screll tab with "loading Win OS image" on the Syvania SYNET7WIC Smartbook according to the Start guide while newegg lists it as a netbook seen at

Without any boot option that leaves out the possible boot from flash drive alternative and the Joli - OS served based OS is also out since the installer is seen as "not a valid win32 application".

This will actually be the second time I will be looking everything over on besides the original inspection when first ordered. The product information is another problem since there was never much provided even by Sylvania. There is an OS fix I found at the support site however that may repair the inability to install anything so far even a system imformation program.

I had to notice the comment in Post #4 on the thread there about not having a bios since all you see is the Win OS image loading screen appear immediately. Without any live boot option there also isn't any way to make a backup image of the small SSD it uses and likely no way to swap the SSD out for a larger one. I will be going over the links on the rhread there however to see what if any options would work.

I tried all tried all 3 usb ports one on the rear and two on the side and none were ready to load the live stick. I have to wonder if a VHD would be possible in order to set up a dual boot of some type or at least the second OS to be placed on a flash drive that would need to be plugged in since the unit lacks any options.

A 1gb the owner provided(one of two provided one was no good at all) was able to see the iso downloaded written to it and am booted live from that for this update. Not being able to boot live from it when it is plugged into the Sylvania however wouldn't allow that installer to run or any other live project such booting from a live source to install a new boot loader.

The thread on the other site mentioned not being to link the netbook with a desktop in an eefort to see a distro flashed fully to replace the embedded Windows. That was right about the time the battery low warning came up since it hasn't been recharged since it was first bought in September! Too bad you can't replace the SSDs in them for something a little larger or substitute a 32gb flash drive while the thread mentions using an SD Card as another option.

Last edited by Night Hawk; 11-29-2012 at 08:53 PM. Reason: Update


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