Make the Acer Aspire One More Flexible

Image courtesy of Friprog on Flickr.
Image courtesy of Friprog on Flickr.

The Acer Aspire is quite a handy device that falls into the category of “netbooks”. There are numerous reviews and unboxing articles available already about the AAO, so I won’t get into the details of the device other than to say it is quite capable for its size.

A few weeks ago I was charged with setting one of these devices up – for what purpose, I was unclear – but it was a chance to work with something small and shiny with lots of buttons, and I of course jumped at it. With a wifi connection available and AC wall outlet nearby, I sat down and booted the device on for the first time. There were some screens asking my name and the region I was located in, and what language I speak. The next thing I knew, VIOLA! the device was fully operational. The entire process was truly uneventful, so much so that I went hunting for updates, which I acquired just as quickly by clicking the update button. It was already online, it downloaded the updates and installed them for me. Done.

The AAO is easy, stupid-proof even, and comes running Linpus with all the basic software to get most of your mundane tasks done. Out of the box you find Open Office, Firefox, a whole slew of games, and a few more things that are handy. The thing about the AAO is that it IS stupid-proof. I soon realized I couldn’t see under the hood, leave icons to clutter my desktop, or even right-click!

That dog won’t hunt, monseigneur. I decided immediately to remove Linpus and install Ubuntu. Why Ubuntu? Well, it’s open, free, and can do pretty things (and yes, it still runs all those boring apps so you can get stuff done).

Here a few articles that will walk you through the entire process:

Installing Ubuntu (Intrepid Ibex)
Setting up Avant Window Navigator and GnomeDo
Setting up Conky
Tweaking

If you haven’t ever worked with Ubuntu or any other flavor of Linux before, fear not. There’s a large community base out there documenting tweaks and answering questions. There’s even a surprisingly large group of AAO fans out there sharing their mods. Getting rid of Linpus is the first step to really giving the Aspire One more flexibility.

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