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Got the Acer Aspire One ZG5 today and it's so dang cute it's just crazy. I got Ubuntu/GNOME 13.10 installed and it seems to work well enough. Low and behold ...
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  1. #1
    Linux Engineer TNFrank's Avatar
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    It's so dang CUTE!!!


    Got the Acer Aspire One ZG5 today and it's so dang cute it's just crazy. I got Ubuntu/GNOME 13.10 installed and it seems to work well enough. Low and behold the N270 Atom is a dual core chip and I was thinking that it was only going to be a single core. Installed Hardinfo and it's saying it's 2x Atom 1.6MHz processors. Can't wait to upgrade the 8GB SSD(which I read as being on the slow side for an SSD) to a 32GB faster SSD, that should really wake it up.
    Did a CPU Blowfish benchmark and got 16.68, It'll be interesting to see how it'll do when I bump the memory up from 1GB to it's full 1.5GB and get the faster SSD installed.
    Anyway, looks like it'll be just the ticket for a little take a long to keep track of e-mail and stuff.
    Also, I do see what they were saying in the reviews about the speakers, not much to write home about and in fact the right one sounds a bit "fuzzy", may be a torn cone or something. I'll give it a look when I take it apart to put the RAM and new SSD in it. If it's not too bad I can fix it with a bit of Elmer's Glue along the tear. Use to do that with car speakers "back in the day" and it worked great.
    Anyway, just wanted to share. Talk to ya'll later.

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer TNFrank's Avatar
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    Ok, just found out, the N270, 1.6GHZ Atom is actually a single core but it has Hyperthreading so it "looks" like a dual core even though it's not. Learn something new everyday.

  3. #3
    Linux User IsaacKuo's Avatar
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    Yes, little netbooks sure are cute, aren't they? But given the sluggishness of Atom processors in general, I wouldn't expect much of a snappy boost from upgrading the SSD...or really much of a boost from the RAM, either. Check "System Monitor" or the equivalent to see what your RAM consumption is really like.

    I actually wasn't aware that the N270 was a single core hyperthreading processor until reading your post. Now, the sluggishness of the Fujitsu ScanSnap 1800 I hacked makes sense! It's actually a standalone network scanner, but on the inside it's a USB scanner attached to a small computer with 2.5" Sata drive (30GB Toshiba THNSNB030GBSJ SSD).

    Fujitsu ScanSnap N1800 review | IT PRO

    The specs of this computer are actually rather close to your netbook. I've run both Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and Debian 7 on it (currently, Debian 7). From my experience:

    1) XFCE4 was a great boost in performance compared to using Unity or GNOME3. Basically, I use XFCE4 all around. IceWM is even lighter, but involves more effort for minimal gain (unless I'm dealing with a very old system with less than 128megs of RAM).

    2) The performance difference between using the stock SSD vs a plain old 160gig 2.5" hard drive was actually pretty minimal. In contrast, putting that SSD into my main laptop (a 2.4Ghz Core 2 Duo) made it FLY AT LIGHTSPEED. My conclusion is that the CPU is really the limiting factor.

    3) Upgrading from the stock RAM of 512megs to 2048megs (2gigs) made shockingly little difference in performance. I think the SSD is so fast compared to the CPU that even when the computer is thrashing virtual memory it's not so noticeable.

    So basically, I think neither the RAM upgrade nor the SSD upgrade will make a worthwhile difference in performance. Still, a storage upgrade from 8GB could easily be worth it for the storage space alone.
    Isaac Kuo, ICQ 29055726 or Yahoo mechdan

  4. #4
    Linux Guru rokytnji's Avatar
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    But given the sluggishness of Atom processors in general, I wouldn't expect much of a snappy boost from upgrading the SSD...or really much of a boost from the RAM, either.
    2) The performance difference between using the stock SSD vs a plain old 160gig 2.5" hard drive was actually pretty minimal. In contrast, putting that SSD into my main laptop (a 2.4Ghz Core 2 Duo) made it FLY AT LIGHTSPEED. My conclusion is that the CPU is really the limiting factor.
    3) Upgrading from the stock RAM of 512megs to 2048megs (2gigs) made shockingly little difference in performance. I think the SSD is so fast compared to the CPU that even when the computer is thrashing virtual memory it's not so noticeable.

    So basically, I think neither the RAM upgrade nor the SSD upgrade will make a worthwhile difference in performance. Still, a storage upgrade from 8GB could easily be worth it for the storage space alone.
    Either the specs are skewed or I am standing in a good spot of the Universe with my Netbook.
    I guess your mileage may vary really applies to some members hardware in this thread.

    MEPIS Community Forum - View topic - Aspire One upgrade question

    The A110 model ships with an 8 GB or 16 GB solid-state drive (SSD), although some models do not come with one. Early 8 GB models come with the Intel Z-P230, model SSDPAMM0008G1. This SSD has been criticized for its slow read and write speed. Intel lists the drive's maximum speeds as 38 MB/s read and 10 MB/s write.[30] Later models come with the slightly faster Samsung P-SSD 1800.
    I don't know what model zg5 TNFrank has yet.

    SSD I used was a Amazon.com: 64GB KingSpec 1.8-inch ZIF 40-pin SSD Solid State Disk SMI Controller (MLC): Computers & Accessories

    Compare read and write speed differences between the ssd drives. My M&A Companions came with slow 30 gig 4200 rpm hard drives (stock).

    Maybe once Gaer Boy upgrades his AAO. He will post back in that thread what differences he noted between the ram and ssd upgrade on his.
    Funny how 2 threads are running the same subject. For the same hardware.
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  5. #5
    Linux Engineer TNFrank's Avatar
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    Yep, mine has the slow SSD in it and I've also read that you get quite a jump in performance by going to a faster SSD. As for RAM since it was a Windows XP machine it came with 1GB instead of the 512MB that the Linux machines got. Max is 1.5GB(crazy isn't it, why not 2GB, oh well) and IIRC the video processor uses 8MB of that RAM. There is a Driver tweak you can install to get the video up to 244MB of RAM, I need to look into it since I like watching YouTube vids.
    Also, it takes a 1.8" hard drive so the 2.5" laptop drives won't fit. I just figure since it is such minimal specs I may as well max it out best as I can to get it as good as it'll get. Like I said, it did a 16.68 on the CPU Blowfish benchmark. My "real" laptops(which are still older models but IMHO decent enough) are getting 9.28. I'll be curious to see how it does when the upgraded and faster SSD and 512MB more RAM. It for dang sure can't hurt anything.
    I also want to look into getting a small optical mouse and a small set of external headphone jack powered speakers to use with this little guy since the internal speakers are really nothing to write home about and I don't want external speakers that'll need batteries or anything. Should be able to find something.
    Just got it for surfing the net, not looking to do video production or anything, LOL. Seems like it'd the perfect size to take around with me when we go places and I still want to have a laptop of some kind with me.

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    Linux User IsaacKuo's Avatar
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    Okay, I didn't realize how utterly awful that SSD's specs were. A max speed of 38MB/s read and 10MB/s write is only 1/5th the speed of the Toshiba SSD I've been using, and even slower than a typical 5400rpm 2.5" drive. Note that the Fujitsu ScanSnap N1800 I've been hacking around with uses 2.5" Sata drives, rather than 1.8" ZIF or PCIe or anything else.

    That said, I actually am curious about your experiences with that 64GB KingSpec 1.8" ZIF SSD. I've been considering an SSD upgrade to my Motion Computing LE1700 slate (1.5Ghz Core 2 Duo), which currently has a sluggish 4200rpm drive. But I've read horror stories about KingSpec--like they go bad after some months.

    Note to the OP--assuming your model uses a 1.8" ZIF drive, be wary when you try the replacement. The plastic clip is flimsy and not hard to accidentally break. I broke the clip from one of my 1.8" drives.
    Isaac Kuo, ICQ 29055726 or Yahoo mechdan

  7. #7
    Linux Engineer TNFrank's Avatar
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    Tearing into this little Netbook is something that I'm not looking forward to but I figure if I take my time and not try to force anything I should be ok. It'll definitely be an experience, that's for sure. LOL

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    Linux Guru rokytnji's Avatar
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    That said, I actually am curious about your experiences with that 64GB KingSpec 1.8" ZIF SSD. I've been considering an SSD upgrade to my Motion Computing LE1700 slate (1.5Ghz Core 2 Duo), which currently has a sluggish 4200rpm drive. But I've read horror stories about KingSpec--like they go bad after some months.
    You aren't the only one who mentioned horror stories to me when I bought that SSD. Being who I am and my personality. I went for the cheapest bang for buck so,
    the drive came from Hong Kong New from ebay. I've had it installed and running AntiX 13.2 using JFS file system .

    antiX-forum - View topic - SSD,,AntiX 13beta2 32bit, JFS /, F2FS /home

    No hiccups yet. Since then I am running a 3.12 kernel on it also. I can post back with it later as I am on other gear presently in my motorcycle shop.

    Code:
    harry@biker ~ $ uname -a
    Linux biker 3.12.0-7-exton #15 SMP Mon Dec 9 10:23:02 CET 2013 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux
    harry@biker ~ $ cat /etc/issue
    Linux Mint 14 Nadia \n \l
    harry@biker ~ $ cat /etc/os-release
    NAME="Ubuntu"
    VERSION="12.10, Quantal Quetzal"
    ID=ubuntu
    ID_LIKE=debian
    PRETTY_NAME="Ubuntu quantal (12.10)"
    VERSION_ID="12.10"
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  9. #9
    Linux Engineer TNFrank's Avatar
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    I hope any issues with the KingSpec SSD's have been resolved. I'm getting the 32GB version of that SSD.
    Still trying to find the Video Accelorator Drivers for Ubuntu 13.10 so I can get the 8MB of video memory bumped up to 244MB. Anyone have a clue where to find them?

  10. #10
    Linux Guru rokytnji's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TNFrank View Post
    I hope any issues with the KingSpec SSD's have been resolved. I'm getting the 32GB version of that SSD.
    Still trying to find the Video Accelorator Drivers for Ubuntu 13.10 so I can get the 8MB of video memory bumped up to 244MB. Anyone have a clue where to find them?
    I guess you can start at reading all about it at https://wiki.debian.org/DebianAcerOne

    But kinda hard to do without a

    Code:
    $ inxi -G
    Graphics:  Card: Intel Mobile 4 Series Integrated Graphics Controller 
               X.Org: 1.13.0 drivers: intel (unloaded: fbdev,vesa) Resolution: 1366x768@60.0hz 
               GLX Renderer: Mesa DRI Mobile Intel GM45 Express GLX Version: 2.1 Mesa 9.0.3
    kind of graphics report 1st.
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