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Netbook Linux at a Crossroads

Feb 02, 2009, 17:02 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jamie Lendino)

"It's one thing for a new Linux user to fire up a browser and check Gmail, or create a new document in OpenOffice and begin working--especially with the slick, well organized UIs that come with some netbooks like the Asus Eee PC I tested. Just about anyone can do those tasks within minutes.

"But it's another thing to figure out why a Linux system isn't synchronizing properly with a digital camera or external DVD drive. Even simple tasks like listing the contents of a folder, listening to an MP3 track, or installing a new program are different. As I said in a previous article, "The Netbook OS Question: Windows XP vs. Linux," none of these things are necessarily difficult, but they're all completely different from what mainstream users expect.

"Most things that aren't working right on Linux can be solved with a trip to Google or some of the various Linux forums. But that's also why Linux isn't right for a lot of mainstream users."

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