Asus EeePC 900

Asus EeePC 900


Asustek was the first company to realise the potential of small, portable and affordable computers.

User interface (cntd.)
Each of the tabs gives you a selection of over-sized icons for various programs, including web browser Firefox, mail client Thunderbird, Skype, OpenOffice office tools, games, SMPlayer media player. The icons have simplified names underneath them, making the recognition of the programs easy for a beginner, but providing some annoyance to someone who would really like to know, for example, which media player he or she is going to launch by clicking on the icon. The Favorites tab allows you to collect together all those programs that you use most often.

Asus EeePC 900
There are also some limitations that the tabbed UI causes and that can be annoying to the user. For example, the EeePC automatically tries to detect your home Windows network, if you have one set up, but it will connect properly only if you have named it “Workgroup”. If you happen to use a non-English version of Windows or have named your home network something else for some other reason, you have to go to the terminal window (hidden behind Ctrl+Alt+t) and use superuser privileges to change a configuration file. This is clearly not something a first-time computer user will be able to do and there is no graphic interface to reach the same goal. Even after this, if you happen to be unlucky enough with your network settings, you may have to do some extra tweaking and tell the EeePC the IP addresses of the computers you want it to see – which is pretty difficult if you happen to have dynamic IP addresses.

Similarly, the Add/Remove Programs icon does not launch Synaptic, like one might expect, but merely a program that checks for system and program updates. If you actually want to browse the repositories for additional programs and games, you have to launch Synaptic from the terminal window and perhaps add additional repositories so that you can actually find stuff to install. And if you install new games or programs with Synaptic, they will not automatically be given icons in the UI tabs – again you need to edit system files by hand.

The specs of the EeePC 900 are: Intel Celeron processor, 1024Mb system memory, 20GB SSD (4GB system SSD and slower 16GB SSD for user's files). In addition, you get 3 USB ports, an MMC SD/HD card reader, Lan port, RGB port and the usual headphone/microphone plugs. The EeePC itself has a 1.3 megapixel web camera, speakers and a microphone built-in so you don't need any extra gear for making Skype video calls.

Anyone looking for a powerhouse should steer clear of all the netbooks on the market – these computers are best described as secondary computers that you use in places where you don't have access to regular desktop computers or more powerful laptops. In no way are these computers meant to run the latest and greatest games, but you can expect them to run some older titles just as long as they behave well with the limitations of the screen resolution.