If you recall, on April 11, I wrote "Linux Store Open for Business: A Fantastic Voyage," where I told you that I wanted a Netbook for my anniversary. I also described my fantasy computer store where you select your computer, OS, other options and walk out happy. I had a great anniversary (My 9th) and I got my Netbook. I've got the Netbook bug now. I'm hooked.

It's the Acer Aspire One with 1GB RAM, 160GB HDD, built-in web cam, wired and wireless LAN and even a small USB mouse. It weighs a mere 2.44 lbs and comes with Windows XP Home Edition preinstalled.

I've spent the past few hours customizing the desktop, installing my frequently used applications and preparing it for its journey to InterOp Las Vegas for live show broadcasts from the conference exhibitor floor.

I promptly told my good friend (via Google Talk), Jason Perlow, about my new Netbook to which he promptly replied, "Put Ubuntu on it."

I paused for a while--thinking about that process. I considered my response for several minutes before giving it (knowing the wrath I was about to receive a la Jason). My response was swift and decisive. I typed the words, "I'll reimage it with Ubuntu after InterOp."

I've never seen anyone type so fast or with such zeal. His attempt to sway me was convincing but I stood firm.

Undaunted by his onslaught, I changed the subject to something less religious. His blood pressure soon returned to normal.

Oh sure, I'm going to install Ubuntu on it in a few weeks. I'll cure it of its preinstalled virus--I am, after all, the Daniweb Linux guy; a card-carrying member of the Linux Foundation; a writer for Linux Magazine and a fervent advocate of all things Linux.

So, what's my hesitation, you ask?

I've dealt with computers for a long time and I know that when I estimate how long it will take do perform a task like reimaging my Netbook with Linux--it's going to eat up a lot of time that I just don't have right now. Don't misunderstand--whatever it came with preinstalled--I would keep until I have the time to change it--be it Windows, Red Hat, Fedora, SUSE, Slackware or some other distribution. Even if it came with Ubuntu, I would reimage it with my own custom installation--that's just how I roll.

I'll let you know how it goes with the Ubuntu upgrade but in the meantime, for better or for worse, I'm a Windows Netbook user. I might be friendless (and fanless) by the time I return home from InterOp but I'll still have my Netbook and what's left of my sanity.

And, for what it's worth, I'm glad I didn't ask for (or get) a tie.

My wife bought me the AOA 110-1531 model as an early Christmas present (512 MB RAM, 8 GB SSD, Linpus Linux). After testing the hardware with Linpus to be sure everything worked fine, I put Ubuntu 8.10 on it. Not perfect, but much better. Later I got her a 2 GB RAM stick for her iMac and doubled the RAM in the Aspire with her old 512 MB one (and yes, that was <a href="http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2009/02/19/aa1_memory_upgrade/">an ordeal</a>!)

A while back I started testing 9.04 on it and watched as the improvements rolled in. It definitely benefits from using ext4 (not default in Ubuntu... yet).

However, I did want to test the Netbook Remix; its available as an IMG file now (use usb-imagewriter to write it to a 1GB or larger USB drive). I must say that they've got it working very nicely! =D Much more polished than the last time I tried it (in 8.10 as an add-on install)

So that's what I'm using right now on it and quite happy. As a suggestion, at least keep a thumb drive with UNR on it to play with; Live USB drives don't have to install, but they do offer a backup in case Windows does you wrong ;)