Hello and welcome to my guide for the Asus eee pc 900 laptop.
I brought mine from morrisons for £200, new in box!
Well, let's cover the basics : 900mhz CPU (slow by modern standards), 1GB of Ram (some models have 512mb), 16gb solid state drive, 9.8inch widescreen LCD, web cam, touchpad, 5200mah battery, mains adapter, linux operating system, windows XP drivers disc.
The laptop weighs just under 1kg, the keyboard is clear enough, the screen is quite sharp for a budget laptop, the built in speakers are adequate, there nothing special!
The linux operating is not bad, if you are a novice to computing, you find it easy enough to use, if you are an experience P.C. user, you'll find it restrictive and annoying, as it is difficult to install anything beyond the pre installed software.
If you are planning to install Windows XP (recommended for most users), you'll need an external CD/DVD-rom drive, i used an Xbox 360 HD-DVD drive, no problem!
However, you'll need a version of windows XP with at least service pack 2 or higher!
Despite the claimed advantages of solid state drives compared to normal hard disc drives, the solid state drive on this is slow, the SSD on the 701 I reviewed earlier is quick but limited, on the 900 I own, it's no faster and possibly slower than normal hard disc drives, load times for linux is short, for windows XP is around 30 seconds, then another 3 to 4 minutes before you can actually use the thing!
The built-in wireless is very good, but if you use linux, you have to type in the network key, everytime, it won't save wireless settings, which is very annoying, unless you don't turn it off, on windows XP, this problem does not exist.
the software provided for going to windows XP is excellent, covers all drivers and FN keys!
The battery life is around two hours, that's with wireless on, screen at full brightness and volume at maximum too, and it takes around the same amount of time to recharge the battery, you can buy a battery with twice the capacity (10400mah), but they are not cheap, around £50 I've seen them for!
Apparently you can also upgrade the SSD to a 32gb or 64gb with better read and write speeds, but, same again, they are not cheap, the 64gb capacity is in excess of £100, pretty steep compared to a normal hard drive!
This laptop's main problem is the slow SSD, after a while it is just annoying, especially if your browsing the internet and the site you are on has lots of content, a website with a gif advert (everyday occurence sadly, even on ebay) will grind it to a crawl, it's stalls quite often as well!
For experienced computer users, I wouldn't recommend the asus eee pc 900, you would quickly get annoying with it's lack of drive speed, seriously, the problem is so bad, you'll remember pentium 1 desktops running quicker.
for novice computer users, it is okay, you can browse the internet, write documents, look at photos, it's silent, handheld, won't cook your thighs, bbc iplayer and other TV playing sites work on it, but don't expect smooth video playback, this I have discovered it can't manage.
The Asus eee pc 900, okay for novices and light users, but for regular to heavy P.C. users, avoid or you'll end up throwing it against a brick wall in frustration.