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Old 01-12-2008, 12:15 PM   #1
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Have goal for Eee, need help

I'm a complete novice with Linux, and I've tried to read as many FAQs as possible, but I was hoping to get someone's specific advice (if I can appeal to your good nature!).

My primary goal is to use Linux for a yet-to-be-bought simple laptop like the Asus Eee for the following purposes:

Note taking
Book writing
Spreadsheets (would use Excel if I could use Windows)
Surfing information-related sites like Wikepedia via wifi

(I don't need to watch movies, listen to music, or play games on it)

My concern is that I've used Word and Excel for so long, and many of the computers I would use at the university, for instance, would still be using MS Office. If I were to get something like the Eee, would there be an easy way to use a flash memory device between Linux and Windows computers, working on the same document or spreadsheet?

I have a "sandbox" computer to experiment with Linux (IBM netvista, 1.8 ghz, 256) and would like to know if there is a certain package or distro that would be good to use on both it and the Eee for the purposes mentioned above.

Also, if you think the Eee is a poor choice for what I'd be using it for, please let me know what you would suggest.

Thank you very much!
Old 01-12-2008, 12:25 PM   #2
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Have you tried working with Open Office? This should be pre-installed on the Eee-PC, and looks and works very similar to Microsoft Office.
You can establish a network between linux and windows with samba to exchange files.

In the worst case scenario, you can still install win xp.

Ubuntu is pretty much a failsafe choice. I would recommend the long term support version if stability is your primary concern, and the short-release cycle version if you are interested in bleeding edge features, and willing to compromise some stability.

I see that the custom installation on the eeepc is pretty much Ubuntu with xfce, and wireless drivers installed. I would just leave it the way it is. Most likely you can turn it into a standard ubuntu desktop by installing ubuntu-desktop via synaptic.

Last edited by oskar; 01-12-2008 at 12:34 PM.
Old 01-12-2008, 12:34 PM   #3
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Format your flash drive as fat32 and there won't be any problems.

The one problem I can see is how you will write books. Eee kayboard is not comfortable enough for book writing + you'll need special software like TeX package, DocBook, etc, which might not be available with Xandros OS, which is provided with Eee. Those aren't provided with XP either.
Old 01-14-2008, 07:34 AM   #4
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Also, Everex is working on a UMPC similar to the Eee from Asus. I believe Everex's model is called the Cloudbook, but I could be wrong.

It triumphs over the Asus Eee, IMO. Well, technically speaking anyway. It features a VIA 1.7GHz CPU (iirc) and a 30GB hard drive. RAM is the same. The best part? It has the exact same price tag!
Old 01-14-2008, 12:18 PM   #5
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I have had an eee for a while now (ordered early!)
It is excellent as a highly portable computer, not too big, and not too small = "Just right". I love it - but it is not my main computer.
It has wireless, ethernet, USB x 3, External monitor and MMC-SD card connectors. It has a webcam built in. Its charger is tiny and very light (like a mobile phone charger).

It works "Out of the Box" and is Grrrreat for playing with linux. It talks to my (linux) network and prints on my networked printer (this took all of 60 seconds to set up, as did the wireless connection).

It runs Xandros, and comes with Openoffice, which you will find functionally (almost) equivalent to MS Word & Excel & Powerpoint. Documents / spreadsheets / presentations are compatible with MS.

About half the people I show it to want one / have gone and bought one.

Other distros (mostly ubuntu, kubuntu and xubuntu) have been installed on it.

I suggest you take a look at and where there is a very active community.

Meanwhile, Welcome to LQ!


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