Hardware Review: Elonex Webbook with Ubuntu 8.04

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Hardware

I haven't done many distro reviews lately I know, things have been busy but I do have a new review for you which I hope you'll find interesting. Today's victim *ahem* I mean subject is the Elonex Webbook from Carphone Warehouse with Ubuntu Hardy pre-installed.

First impressions:
Being something of a netbook virgin I was really curious about one thing, could this cheap machine really function as a useful everyday computer or was it a toy? It has quite a generous spec for a netbook as you can see above. Most of these machines come with very little internal storage, normally 4 or 8gb of solid state memory. They instead rely on SD cards for expanded storage and it works well for most people but I've had my doubts personally. I can understand that you don't need to carry a 200GB hard drive around with you everywhere but a lot of these machines seem limited to me. The Elonex however packs a well proportioned 75GB hard disk, plenty of space. It does offer slower access speeds than solid state memory of course but performance seems very respectable (more on that later). One of the first things I did was time how long it took to boot the machine up and login. I wanted to see if the Elonex would be markedly slower than I'm used to with my powerful laptop. It compares very well taking 1min 10secs from pressing the power button to reach the login prompt. It's not lightning fast but hardly like the old days where you could go off and make a cup of tea, fix the roof and maybe write your autobiography while waiting for a computer to boot. The machine came setup with one large root partition of 73gb and a swap partition of 1.5gb.

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