Friday, April 3, 2009

What is a Netbook computer? | Defensive Computing - CNET News

This knowledge could be useful for my selection.

Netbook is a new type of laptop computer, defined by size, price,
horsepower, and operating system. They are small, cheap, under-powered, and run
either an old or unfamiliar operating system.
Netbooks run either Windows XP
Home edition or Linux (not only is Linux unfamiliar to many, but the versions of
Linux on Netbooks are not the mainstream popular distributions). They do not run
XP Professional, Vista, or OS X. Microsoft arbitrarily restricts Netbooks from
running the Professional Edition of Windows XP. Likewise, Apple arbitrarily
restricts OS X to Apple hardware and it has never played in the low-end realm
that Netbooks occupy.* Vista requires too much horsepower to run well on a
Netbook. HP has been the only company to offer Vista on a Netbook. The price,
however, was so high that it's debatable whether such a machine qualifies as a
What is a
Netbook computer? Defensive Computing - CNET News
: "Update: On October 24,
2008 CNET's Ina Fried reported that Microsoft has plans to make Windows 7, the
upcoming version of Windows that will replace Vista, available on Netbooks.
Size-wise, Netbooks have 9- or 10-inch screens, weigh from 2 to 3 pounds,
and sport keyboards sized from 80 percent to 95 percent of normal.
Price-wise, Netbooks start at about (all prices are rounded off and
approximate) $330 for a Linux-based model and $350 for an XP-based machine. The
high end of the Netbook price range is debatable. To me, anything over $500
isn't a Netbook. Still, many companies are marketing computers they refer to as
Netbooks for more than that. When HP first released their Mini-Notes, prices ran
from $500 to $1,200.
Update: As of October 15, 2008 prices at HP's website
range from $400 to $780.
Despite a huge proliferation of Netbook models,
these specs seem to be standard:
Screen resolution 1024x600
Intel Atom
CPU running at 1.6-GHz
Wi-Fi B and G
Ethernet at 100Mbps
A slot for
a flash RAM memory card
External VGA output jack
Integrated graphics
Two or three USB ports
Built-in camera
Headphone and microphone
What's missing
What's missing is just as interesting.
For one
thing, there is no optical drive. CDs and DVDs had to be thrown overboard to
reduce both the size and cost. Another omission is the now legacy PC card (aka
PCMCIA) slot. Most Netbooks don't include Bluetooth. And, while they do have
Ethernet and Wi-Fi, they don't include the fastest version of Ethernet (known as
gigabit Ethernet), the latest version of Wi-Fi (N) or the older 'A' version of
I understand these omissions and many people can live with them.
However, I think....."
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