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$250 Chromebook With Ubuntu Linux Is Very Fast

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the choices-getting-nicer dept.

Chrome 117

An anonymous reader writes "The Google Samsung Chromebook was already interesting for its competitive $250 price-tag and that it can be loaded with Linux distributions beyond Chrome OS, but it turns out that its performance is particularly good, too. When loaded with Ubuntu Linux, the Samsung Exynos 5 Dual ARM SoC on the Chrome notebook had outperformed a 1.8GHz Intel Atom, a quad-core Calxeda ARM server, and a TI OMAP4 PandaBoard."

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But will it blend? first post! (5, Funny)

luckymae (2691983) | about 2 years ago | (#42042639)

But will it blend? first post!

lxde on chromebook unity on atom ?!? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42042671)

not a fair comparaison.....

Re:lxde on chromebook unity on atom ?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043195)

what are we on auto troll mode or something? I don't think its a fair comparison either. Why not compair "apples to apples"?

Re:lxde on chromebook unity on atom ?!? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42049199)

I'm not affiliated with phoronix, but I'm the one that ran the benchmarks.

You can go to any Phoronix article with benchmark results and get the command line for the benchmark run.

So once I had ubuntu up and running on my Chromebook, I went on Phoronix, found a benchmark set that they ran with comparable processors (that would not take more than a few hours), and I ran it too. The results get uploaded to Open Benchmarking. Nobody is trying to trick you.

The Phoronix guys (guy?) noticed the results a few days later and and posted the graphs. There was NO attempt on my part to keep the OS exactly the same as what Phoronix used in their earlier benchmark runs in the comparison. I don't have acceleration in X, so I'm using lxde...

Phoronix just posted the results because they thought they were interesting. I'm sure proper benchmarks are coming since he posted chromebook pics in that article. These are just benchmarks that some random guy (me!) ran to see how his chromebook compares to Atom/Cortex-A9.
 

250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (0, Flamebait)

Kenja (541830) | about 2 years ago | (#42042689)

First off, that is an ugly web site. Their font choices are just bad. Second, they only compare the performance to simular system configurations rather then a regular Intel CPU based netbook. Makes it hard to determine if the performance is actually good without a frame of reference people can relate to.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42042735)

The point is its much better than any netbook

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

Kenja (541830) | about 2 years ago | (#42042783)

Hum... I guess most netbooks do use Atoms at this point. My point however was that it would have been nice to throw a more "standard" Intel CPU into the chart so people have a basis for comparison. I frankly dont know what those CPUs perform like and I don't think I'm alone.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (3, Insightful)

evilbessie (873633) | about 2 years ago | (#42043109)

That'd be an Ultrabook as the 'standard' of which you talk for a small light machine, which isn't really fair as the machine will be faster with an i3/i5 and DDR3. But it'll also cost 3 times as much so. The question then becomes will a $250 netbook in 2 generations beat the ultrabook (ie would you be better to buy a new $250 machine when one comes out for 3 generations than spent the same money in one lot now. That's an interesting question but not one many people would care to ask. I don't know but if you find out you can let the rest of us know.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043479)

the machine will be faster with an i3/i5 and DDR3. But it'll also cost 3 times as much

You can already buy a 15" std laptop with an i3 for $350, so the processor change isn't always going to cause such a huge jump.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (3, Funny)

beelsebob (529313) | about 2 years ago | (#42043619)

But said 15" standard laptop will be 3 inches thick, and made out of cheese and string. Come back when you have something small, light, solidly built, and as fast.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

Patch86 (1465427) | about 2 years ago | (#42044261)

Presumably we're comparing like-for-like in terms of price here. I can find the Samsung Chromebook from TFA for £229. In terms of Windows-loaded netbooks, the best processor I can find for that money is the Asus Eee PC 1025C, which comes with an Atom N2800.

If you can find a device with the same form factor (ultra-portable) and same price but with an Intel Core processor, link away.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (4, Interesting)

bfree (113420) | about 2 years ago | (#42045425)

Acer C7 Chromebook [amazon.co.uk] £199 from amazon.co.uk (for a sterling comparison as you said £229). This has a Sandy Bridge Celeron so it's a cut back Core processor but it would be the one I'd be most interested in seeing benchmarked like-for-like with this $250 Arm Chromebook.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

Patch86 (1465427) | about 2 years ago | (#42045877)

Touche. And that would actually be the most obvious like-for-like, seeing as it's a Chromebook.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (2)

Joehonkie (665142) | about 2 years ago | (#42042739)

They do compare it to an Intel Atom based netbox, which is the desktop form factor of your "regular Intel CPU based netbook."

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

CdBee (742846) | about 2 years ago | (#42045189)

I'm guessing their testing doesn't include the overhead of a virtualised x86 processor to run the apps that for me make Ubuntu an obvious choice of OS: Chrome browser, Dropbox, Jungledisk, VLC - as I don't recall any of them have ARM or even PowerPC ports (yes, thats another platform I tried ubuntu on..)

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (4, Informative)

preflex (1840068) | about 2 years ago | (#42045561)

Hogwash.

Chromium and VLC have been working just fine on Ubuntu ARM for years (as well as Ubuntu PPC). No need for virtualized processor. They're compiled for ARM. Dropbox and Jungledisk should also compile just fine if the source is available. That's the beauty of free software.

There's a source tarball for Dropbox here [dropbox.com] .

Jungledisk (never heard of it before) appears to be propretary, so fsck 'em.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

icebraining (1313345) | about 2 years ago | (#42049465)

That's not the source of Dropbox, that's just the Nautilus extension. The daemon is proprietary too.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (2)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045665)

VLC does run on ARM, and I believe you can get Chromium (but NOT Chrome) on ARM as well, but I haven't tried that. No luck for Dropbox, though :(

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (2)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 2 years ago | (#42042903)

Second, they only compare the performance to simular system configurations rather then a regular Intel CPU based netbook.

Uhh, an Atom is a regular Intel CPU based netbook. Atom was designed specifically for netbooks, in fact. I'm not sure how much more "regular Intel CPU based netbook" you want, because you can't get more regular Intel netbook than that, unless you expect them to compare it to "Ultrabooks" 2-3x the price (which aren't netbooks). Agreed, the site is terrible.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

Stormwatch (703920) | about 2 years ago | (#42043281)

I'm not sure how much more "regular Intel CPU based netbook" you want

I suppose he meant the usual desktop processors, such as the Core series.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 2 years ago | (#42043569)

But why? It's not like you are going to be encoding video or rending a Pixar movie on the thing. You want video playback, document editing, some gaming, and web surfing, anything beyond that is pretty much redundant and a waste of battery life.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (3, Insightful)

Obfuscant (592200) | about 2 years ago | (#42043839)

But why? It's not like you are going to be encoding video or rending a Pixar movie on the thing. You want video playback, document editing, some gaming, and web surfing,

What's interesting is that you use as examples of "high performance" activities those things which can most easily be left running unattended, and use as low performance activities those things that need the most system performance to provide realtime interactivity. Encoding video can be done on a P90 (given enough time) and nobody will know when it is done that it took a minute or a week. Watching that video on a system that skips and jumps because the CPU/GPU cannot keep up is immediately noticeable and would be unacceptable to most people.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | about 2 years ago | (#42048575)

if you're using a P90 to encode video, it'll be unusable for a week.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043337)

Yeah, I hate that the iPad isn't compared with hexa-core desktops with 32GB of RAM, too.

Agreed (1)

DogDude (805747) | about 2 years ago | (#42043379)

Agreed. It also buys you a lot of laptop, too. One can pick up a fully functional laptop with Windows 7 and an Intel Core 2 Duo in it for $250 right now.

Re:Agreed (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043763)

And half an hour of battery life.

Re:Agreed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42049217)

and the damn thing will weigh 8 pounds and break within a year

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (1)

Fnord666 (889225) | about 2 years ago | (#42043591)

First off, that is an ugly web site.

I totally agree. Or did you mean the second link?

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42044641)

I'm the one that ran those benchmarks...so here''s why it is what it is:

Phoronix always tells you which command line to use if you want to run identical benchmarks to theirs. So I went there once I had Ubuntu 13.04 installed on my new Chromebook.

I was looking for a pre-existing article that had benchmarks that (1) Had reasonable systems in the comparison (ARM and x86), and (2) Would complete in less than 5 hours or so.

The only one I could find that met those requirements was one that had an Atom and a few quad core ARM processors. So I used the phoronix-test-suite command provided to run a few benchmarks.

A week or so later, Phoronix noticed that I had uploaded those test results and posted them online. The point is that those aren't the benchmarks that Phoronix wanted to run. They're just the ones that some random reader (me!) uploaded to the Open Benchamrking website... I guess that Phoronix will have their own more interesting benchmarks pretty soon.

If you want to compare to faster intel systems, then you can install phoronix test suite and run: "phoronix-test-suite benchmark 1211119-SU-1210247RA91"
It will make the same pretty graphs in the article.

Re:250$ buys you a lot of netbook... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42044767)

In FF I don't alow sites to set their own fonts.

How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (4, Interesting)

timeOday (582209) | about 2 years ago | (#42042749)

This sounds like a potentially fun, cheap device. Does Ubuntu for ARM have all the same packages as x86? (From a check of the Ubuntu ARM web page it appears a lot of the focus for ARM is on the Server distro?)

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (2)

larry bagina (561269) | about 2 years ago | (#42043295)

I run debian/ARM on a qnap TS 409 (text only, no X). Some programs/kernel modules are x86 specific by their nature (example: virtual box). Everything else should be available.

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043415)

The "server distro" of Ubuntu is just the desktop distro without a GUI or an office suite, both of which can be installed via apt. There is no appreciable difference between the distros.

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 2 years ago | (#42043439)

Per the discussion here [google.com] (which includes a Google dev who wrote up some early instructions on running standard linuxes on this ARM Chromebook, and at least one Linaro project person, among other clueful types, Apparently mainline kernel support for the Exynos 5 SoC is expected in the near future but not 100% just yet.

As for ARM packages, you are very likely out of luck for 3rd-party binaries(eg. Flash, Oracle JVM), and may be a more or less second-class citizen in some areas(the javascript JIT compilers in suitably recent versions of Chromium and Firefox do support ARM targets; but older ones didn't, and older or less common JIT compilers like psyco tend to be x86 only); but aside from that most of the FOSS stuff should be cross platform.

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (2)

snadrus (930168) | about 2 years ago | (#42043755)

(to help GP)
The open-source JVM is available though, which is very feature-complete. The open-source flash lags behind or (usually) isn't worth it, but YouTube has HTML5 videos now.
Anything Windows-oriented is unavailable (FOSS or not) like ndiswrapper (which you shouldn't need), wine (not running windows apps directly may affect you). There's KVM (Kernel Virtualization Module), but it only virtualizes ARM systems. If you must, there's bochs to run x86 on ARM, but it's slow and limited.
Other "common for me" 3rd-party drivers like Lightscribe won't work.

But otherwise things like scanners & well-supported (openprinting.org) printers should work. You'll even get to use USB devices that work in x86 Linux via open-source drivers.

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (1)

petermgreen (876956) | about 2 years ago | (#42043817)

I haven't kept a close eye on ubuntu but debian armel and armhf are at about 98% while debian i386 and amd64 are at about 99.5%. Since ubuntu is based on debian i'd expect their figures to be similar.

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42044777)

You can get ubuntu working on an ARM Chromebook without accelerated video (I'm using lubuntu-desktop since I don't have acceleration).

I have Libre Office, Abiword, Chrome, Firefox, etc. I installed Octave, and even compiled ATLAS to get a tuned BLAS package for my super fast ARM Cortex A15 ;)

I don't know which packages are unavailable for ARM. And I know a few install, but don't work. How much of that is the ARM port's fault and how much is it that it's a VERY early ubuntu 13.04? I have no idea. But I've been using my Chromebook (with ubuntu) as my main laptop for a week or so.

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (1)

timeOday (582209) | about 2 years ago | (#42047893)

Thanks, personal experience is more useful than just consulting a package listing.

Since video acceleration doesn't work, how bad are youtube and DVDs? I don't suppose 1920x1080 tv captures would play too smoothly?

Also my kids play a lot of flash games which I guess are out. Too bad Java didn't take over :(

Re:How complete and up-to-date is Ubuntu/ARM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42051461)

If you are talking about from a desktop user perspective (not a server or CLI geek) I would hazard a guess to expect next to nothing in the way of useful productivity, entertainment, media apps. Similar to how no x86 desktop app compiled for windows will run on the arm version OS, Win RT.

So yeah, woo hoo, you can get the OS to run and it's fairly snappy. Pointless to me, as an OS is in practical terms merely a way to run apps. Until useful apps are rewritten to be compilable for this anyway, I'd rather have a slightly slower Atom that can actually run things. Or any cheap Android tablet. That begs the question, why not put Android on this Chromebook hardware, you'd actually be able to run some apps with it.

I think Win RT will fail, and Linux an ARM (other than Android) will also go exactly nowhere on the desktop. A niche of a niche. Servers, maybe. Linux on x86 hasn't exactly done well on the desktop, and it actually has tons of useful apps.

Big Ubuntu fan and user for many years, by the by. (Um, on x86 anyway.)

Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (5, Funny)

CajunArson (465943) | about 2 years ago | (#42042791)

Now that the latest ARM chips from late 2012 are actually faster than a similarly clocked Atoms using the exact same architecture that was introduced in 2008 (well at least in some of those benchmarks, the Atom won some too), will we finally see the ARM fanboys talk-up Atom as Intel's best chip of all time?

Remember, when you say that Atom is a complete PoS and simultaneously crow that you finally beat it in performance 4 years after it hit the market, you kind of sound like someone who bragged about cheating to win the Special Olympics...

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42042981)

Architecture fanboys don't use benchmarks to form opinions, they use benchmarks to form propoganda.

The only numbers that matter are whatever ones [insert favorite architecture here] is better at.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

Joehonkie (665142) | about 2 years ago | (#42043033)

What the hell? Maybe if the Atom was operating in the same power margins. The whole point is the arm is using way less power, hence why you can see it in phones.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

CajunArson (465943) | about 2 years ago | (#42043349)

You haven't bothered to look at Anandtech's review of this system then. Considering the Exynos SoC is sucking down 8 watts of power running a single-threaded non-GPU Mozilla Kraken benchmark, you better believe that Samsung is going to have to cut down this chip's performance to run in a smartphone power envelope.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (2)

Joehonkie (665142) | about 2 years ago | (#42043493)

I was thinking of EXACTLY that review, where they mention all it needs is a lower clock speed. As opposed to the much slower atom used there, which has a higher consumption, or the apparently equal performing atom used in the test above which has a 35W draw AT IDLE with chipset. The Exynos 5 chromebook as a whole system including display has a draw of just over 11W when running a benchmark. So no, the Atom isn't even close on power draw, and clocking it down will not make it work in a phone.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (2)

CajunArson (465943) | about 2 years ago | (#42043745)

Ahem...you are comparing a state-of-the-art 28nm SoC on the ARM side with a several years old 45 nm Intel netbook that includes a separate chipset.

I find it hilarious that you only looked at that one part of the Anandtech review and declared victory for ARM when even you know that 32nm Medfield SoCs were on sale before the Exynos 5 even launched and have substantially better power/performance ratios than were exhibited in the Anandtech numbers.

I find it even more hilarious that you summarily ignored the Haswell demos I mentioned since you must think that denying the results will make ARM win...

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

Joehonkie (665142) | about 2 years ago | (#42044041)

I read the whole review where the Atom N570 fared extremely poorly in comparison for more power draw. Nothing in that review supports anything you are saying. And I don't see any links to any Haswell demos in any of your quotes. If you can find me anything showing equivalent performance per watt on the Intel side, please link it. I would be interested in seeing it.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

0123456 (636235) | about 2 years ago | (#42044111)

Yes, today's ARM uses less power than a 45nm Intel CPU released nearly two years ago. Shocking news!

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

Joehonkie (665142) | about 2 years ago | (#42044179)

Find me the Atom chip that has more performance per watt. Go ahead.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (2)

hattig (47930) | about 2 years ago | (#42044267)

This Exynos 5250 is a 32nm SoC.

The 28nm Exynos 5450 is coming out next year, with two more cores, twice the GPU and a faster clock speed.

Haswell is simply not going to compete in this area of the market, where price, power consumption and performance come together. It will compete at higher price points, maybe even at low power in single-core ULV (ultra-low-clock too) variants, but not all three.

Intel's 22nm next-generation Atoms are coming out in 2014.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

Hatta (162192) | about 2 years ago | (#42043089)

You forget the importance of efficiency. Performance per cycle is irrelevant, performance per watt is what matters.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043529)

lol, and what exactly does a cycle imply, to you sir?

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42044363)

I hope to gods that you aren't so stupid as to imply that processors are limited to one clock cycle per watt.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043133)

This is the definitive comparing of apples and oranges..

Atom was a scaled down desktop CPU running at a high 1.6ghz clockspeed on cutting edge silicon.

The best ARM in 2008 was ~800mhz (tegra). Running on less cutting edge silicon and built on an arch designed purely for effeciency before power.

Catching up with atom in power or efficiency should have Intel running scared.
Nevermind vast differences between the chips.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (4, Insightful)

CajunArson (465943) | about 2 years ago | (#42043249)

Catching up with atom in power or efficiency should have Intel running scared.

Well, these benchmarks don't include power consumption but when Haswell has been demoed at 8 watts running Unigine Heaven and other benchmarks of the Exynos 5 at Anandtech show it running at 8 watts while doing the single-threaded non-GPU Mozilla Kraken benchmark, you kind of have to wonder who is doing the "catching up" and who is "running scared"....

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043521)

Well, the Atom also uses 10 times the power... and deliberately hides that fact, by pushing most components out to the north bridge, so that the Atom looks small and cold. Open an Atom system, and you'll be surprised, that the north bridge needs active cooling, while the CPU doesn't.

That's because of this.

You have to add the NB to the calculation. And yes, processing-power-per-watt-wise, the Atom always was, and still is a piece of shit in comparison.

There is no discussion that the ARM is slower. But you can stack a damn 10 of 'em on top of each other, including "NB", before you even reach the power consumption of the Atom/NB combination. And then the ARM kicks the Atom's ass fair and square.

But of course it's sooo convenient, to keep clinging to that nice trick/lie that Intel (a notorious liar) created.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (2)

0123456 (636235) | about 2 years ago | (#42044067)

Please...

Yes, the original Atom chipset was a power-munching pile of crap, but that's not because they 'pushed most components out' to it. It was a perfectly standard chipset for that time, providing the memory interface and, I think, a crappy GPU. Everything a non-Atom Intel CPU of a comparable time period did the Atom did.

And my Ion HTPC uses less power at the wall than the Atom chipset used by itself, while providing a faster memory interface and faster GPU. The original Atom problems were due to crappy chipsets, not crappy CPUs.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (5, Insightful)

rbmyers (587296) | about 2 years ago | (#42044039)

Ok, so I noticed that one system is apparently using a solid state disk and the other a conventional disk.

Given that the limiting bottleneck of a notebook with a decent processor is almost always the disk subystem, I stopped reading. Did I miss something?

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (2)

hattig (47930) | about 2 years ago | (#42044225)

The next generation of 22nm Atoms with the new core has been delayed until 2014.

A best of breed current generation Atom (dual-core, quad-thread) is thoroughly beaten in many benchmarks by this slightly slower clock-speed, first generation, 32nm dual-core Cortex A15 product. Next year brings a lot of 28nm quad-core A15s at 2GHz including the Exynos 5450.

And because it is cheap - no Intel tax - you can get a very decent computing device using it for $250, which is a darn sight better than the pricing of Atom netbooks, AMD netbooks and certainly anything called an Ultrabook.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about 2 years ago | (#42046197)

Dual core haswell ULV parts are coming in at 8-10W TDP, which is far more interesting than Atom at those power levels. That's too much for a smartphone, but almost in tablet range, and definitely in net book range.

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42047449)

But what about the price?
Those 17W ultrabook CPUs have some interesting prices:
i3-3217U $225.00
i5-3427U $225.00
i7-3517U $346.00

Only the CPU costs that much!
Do you really thing Haswell would be cheaper? I doubt

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about 2 years ago | (#42050103)

The cheapest ChromeBook on the market, at $199 for the whole system, has a Sandy Bridge CPU, the Celeron 847. That CPU has a published tray price of $134.

If they can put a Sandy Bridge chip in a system costing $199, then yeah, they can put Haswell in a similar system.

You don't actually think Acer or Samsung are paying the published customer tray price, do you? When a large company tells Intel "pricematch or we're going ARM", what do you think Intel does?

Re:Now that ARM is faster than Atom... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42045431)

You must be a nervous Intel shareholder.

Make it run even faster (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42042937)

Use NetBSD. NetBSD is much faster than Linux. A lot less crap to start with. Of course, you have to know how to use a real Unix to handle it though.

Re:Make it run even faster (1)

masternerdguy (2468142) | about 2 years ago | (#42042973)

or at least use a distribution besides ubuntu £inux

Re:Make it run even faster (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043153)

Netcraft said that NetBSD is dead.

Re:Make it run even faster (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 2 years ago | (#42043539)

Nietzsche said Netcraft is dead.

XBMC and Minecraft?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043107)

But is the usable experence enough to play 720p content along with Minecraft (client *not server!*) to run alright?

SVG images/graphs (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about 2 years ago | (#42043311)

Those are completely unreadable, the text is about 3 pixels tall. Tried zooming, didn't work.

Junk (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043375)

Your typical cheap junk......didn't people learn from netbooks????

Google currency conversions... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043441)

This $250 device is listed in the UK for £250 which doesn't make it that competitive compared with the cheap netbooks that can be purchased for £170 and £200 with WIndows 7 starter shovelled onto the hard disk. AND you can install Ubuntu or whatever too!

I've had a little Compaq netbook for just on 2 years now, which cost me £190 then. Ok the Atom CPU isn't much to write home about, but it works fine dual booting between Win7 Home Premium and Ubuntu. Its fast enough for all the stuff you would want to do on a tiny 10" screen, I'm not hankering after anything "better" for the niche it occupies.

Screen Resolution (0)

Rob Riggs (6418) | about 2 years ago | (#42043503)

The screen resolution (1366x768) is ridiculously bad on these things. I have that on my 2 year old tablet. I don't consider it a useable resolution. Give me the same dot pitch as my phone.

Re:Screen Resolution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42043719)

You probably need to go see an optician, or at least rethink your expectations for the price That resolution perfectly adequate - especially when only a handful of years ago 1024*768 was seen as perfectly normal for quite expensive 15" laptops.

Re:Screen Resolution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42050709)

I remember using my friends 1600x1200 dell laptop 10 years ago, so I beg to differ when you say the 1990's resolution of 1024x768 is normal. Unfortunately we seem to have gone backwards, most likely to keep prices down.

Re:Screen Resolution (1)

jampola (1994582) | about 2 years ago | (#42043735)

Cmon, be kind, It's a $250 laptop for Christ sake. I think we can allow an exception for the 1366x768 res in this case. HOWEVER, I still find it ridiculous to see the same resolution on laptops 3 times the price, especially since my 10+ year old thinkpad rocks 1600x1200. Oh god, don't get me started on how useless screen resolution is these days.

Re:Screen Resolution (1)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045685)

I'd also certainly like to see a better resolution, but what exactly is unusable about it on this laptop, given its overall size, speed, and intent?

how about quake? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 2 years ago | (#42043661)

couldn't they find less exotic tests?
anyhow, the benches are from phoronix. the intel tested is the cheapest crappiest foxconn all-in-one you can find. you'd think they'd have plenty of test results from some other relevant machines too. I mean, who the fuck gives a fuck about how pandaboard does on the bench? nobody, that's who. and maybe bambino.
and anyhow, intels lowest atom pricing is.. well, it is what it is due to competition having been what it is (that's right. they're selling atom as shit cpu as the lowest priced model they got on offer).

still, it's nice a15 isn't a total dud. I'd like to see some power use figures though too. but it's nice that it isn't a dud since it will force intel to upgrade their shit category products a generation.

but before you say x86 is dead, check some benches for i3 - the intels "almost totally shit" category product.

Windows? (1)

ashvagan (885082) | about 2 years ago | (#42043679)

When can we run Windows XP on it?

Re:Windows? (1)

silenc3r (2473146) | about 2 years ago | (#42044279)

No, you can't. Windows XP is x86 only.

Re:Windows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42044441)

From Wikipedia:
Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition released on April 25, 2005 is an edition of Windows XP for x86-64 personal computers. It is designed to use the expanded 64-bit memory address space provided by the x86-64 architecture.[1]

The primary benefit of moving to 64-bit is the increase in the maximum allocatable system memory (RAM). Windows XP 32-bit is limited to a total of 4 gigabytes. Windows XP Professional x64 Edition can support much more memory; although the theoretical memory limit of a 64-bit computer is about 16 exabytes (16 billion Gigabytes), Windows XP x64 is limited to 128 GB of physical memory and 16 terabyte of virtual memory. Microsoft claims this limit will be increased as hardware capabilities improve.

Windows XP Professional x64 Edition is in fact an edition of Windows Server 2003. Both Windows Server 2003 x64 and Windows XP Professional x64 Edition use identical kernels and are built based on the same code bases.[2] Although based on the Windows Server 2003 code base, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition does include client features of 32-bit Windows XP such as System Restore, Windows Messenger, Fast User Switching, Welcome Screen, Security Center, Games, etc. which Windows Server 2003 does not have.

Upgradeable? (1)

Richy_T (111409) | about 2 years ago | (#42043947)

I've been trying to find out if the internal storage can be upgraded. So far I've drawn a blank which is making me think that it can't (so far). For certain the RAM can't but I could live with that. Not with so little internal storage though.

Re:Upgradeable? (1)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045617)

The dude who posted instructions on how to through Ubuntu on there does mention SSD upgrading in passing (http://chromeos-cr48.blogspot.com/2012/10/arm-chrubuntu-1204-alpha-1-now.html - "Note: If you've installed a larger SSD in your Chrome device..."), but I'm not sure how easy/possible that is from a hardware perspective. I haven't opened mine up, but others have alluded to everything pretty much being soldered onto the mainboard.

Re:Upgradeable? (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 2 years ago | (#42046613)

The internal storage device is an eMMC module soldered to the motherboard. Unless you have a BGA rework setup and nerves of ice, no go.

this gallery [anandtech.com] has motherboard shots.

It does support SDHC cards and USB mass storage devices.

Re:Upgradeable? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42046883)

*edit*

Specifically, the part is a SDIN7DU2-16G from Sandisk, There are references to SDIN7DU2-32G and SDIN7DU2-64G packages in the wild; but not in this product. This suggests that, if you can find a vendor and don't mind getting your hands dirty, it would at least be possible...

Samsung's page for their "iNAND" products says that the line comes in 11.5mm x 13mm packages(2,4,8,16 GB capacities) and 12mm x 16mm packages(16,32,64 GB capacities.) What I don't know is whether the 16GB package in this device is one of the 11.5 x 13 or the 12 x 16 flavor. I'm also not 100% clear on whether the two are pin-compatible. JEDEC JESD84-C44 defines 5 package sizes, with these two being 'BA' and 'AA' respectively. They look like they have the same signal and power pins, with a bunch of extra NC pins in the larger AA package, and both are .5mm ball pitch; but I'm not certain. Anybody know?

Android apps on Chrome OS (1)

blind biker (1066130) | about 2 years ago | (#42043965)

As the title suggests, I'd like to know if there is any way to run Android apps on ChromeOS. If yes, that would make Chrome OS the desktop Linux OS with the largest application base... even if most apps aren't designed for desktop use.

Re:Android apps on Chrome OS (1)

Joehonkie (665142) | about 2 years ago | (#42044753)

There is not. Chrome OS is literally that: an OS that runs a browser and only the apps that work inside of it.

Re:Android apps on Chrome OS (1)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045385)

As the title suggests

What's being suggested? "Ubuntu on Chromebook" isn't "Ubuntu on ChromeOS", it's a straight up dual boot with ChromeOS and Ubuntu.

Re:Android apps on Chrome OS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42046053)

The title refered to is the comment's title; "Android apps on Chrome OS"

Sounds good to me. (1)

darjen (879890) | about 2 years ago | (#42043997)

I'm pretty intrigued by these new chromebooks, and I am seriously considering getting one for my wife. She mostly just does web surfing, facebooking, and email checking, so I think it would be fine for her needs.

Re:Sounds good to me. (1)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045599)

I'd definitely agree. I received my ARM-based Chromebook last week, and have played around with both ChromeOS and manually throwing Ubuntu on there - for the casual user looking to do some regular ole web surfing, ChromeOS is great. The machine itself is great too; form factor is awesome, doesn't overheat, keyboard is amazing (even if it's a ripoff of Macbooks, it's a great ripoff).

Dissatisfied with practising on trailer hitches... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42044201)

...fagets have now switched to chrome laptops. 11.6" screen is good simulation of approaching knob from lengthwise side for gobbling. Fucken chromebook fagets.

built for linux (1)

Cyko_01 (1092499) | about 2 years ago | (#42044427)

Of course a device built to run, linux derivative, chromeOS runs linux faster then a device built to run windows!

Re:built for linux (1)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045459)

What? Atom-powered machines aren't "built to run windows", they're just simply x86 processors, which common Linux distros and Windows both happily work with.

But does it run Flash/HTML5? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42044461)

No binary video driver is the biggest problem for a lot of Ubuntu on Arm systems
Hence no Opengl based benchmarks in phoronix.
I been trying out Odroid-x (Exynos 4412) based soc on Ubuntu and the fact that it doesn't have any video card drivers is a deal breaker for my use.
Its supposed to be out this month or next but than everyone knows history of video card driver support for linux so i dont have my hopes up
I know linaro is working on it but they been working on it for a long time since Q1 2012 and i know how hard it would be getting requiste information without signing NDA's etc.

Re:But does it run Flash/HTML5? (1)

frostfreek (647009) | about 2 years ago | (#42044725)

Does it run Netflix in Ubuntu??? If Chrome OS can do it...

nm, I am sure I know the answer.

Re:But does it run Flash/HTML5? (1)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045499)

Netflix does not currently work on the ARM-based Chromebooks, period. There are grumblings on teh internetz that it will soon, however.

AMD? (1)

DirePickle (796986) | about 2 years ago | (#42045415)

Why are we comparing against antique Atom chips? Aren't AMD's Brazos 2.0 chips significantly faster at half the power draw?

Re:AMD? (1)

admdrew (782761) | about 2 years ago | (#42045559)

Agreed, but - I suspect it's due to the ubiquity of Atom-powered machines; Brazos-based machines are still faaaaaar less common.

mops the floor, then Apache (1)

epine (68316) | about 2 years ago | (#42046037)

There's something not quite right about these benchmarks. A huge margin in FFTE is completely reversed on Apache. Often you can normalize this a bit by knowing which chip has how many cores and whether the floating point unit sucks or doesn't suck.

This discrepancy is more extreme than normal. Usually you find out that one chip or the other was hobbled by software indigestion, then the discrepancy dissipates in subsequent rounds.

Probably can run OpenArena (1)

Hsien-Ko (1090623) | about 2 years ago | (#42047855)

at a staggering 12-30fps on minimum settings

*sigh*

Uh oh, something remotely positive about Ubuntu! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42050261)

Cue the "Unity sucks" comments in 3...2...1...

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