Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Win 8 on a netbook!

  1. #1


    N. Calif
    Posts : 2,584
    W10 Pro (desktop), W10 (laptop), W10 Pro (tablet), W10 (laptop)

    Win 8 on a netbook!


    I have an Acer Aspire One A150 netbook that's just about 5 years old that originally came with Win XP Home installed on it. On a whim, I decided to install Win 8 on it.

    I'm happy to report that it runs Win 8 very well and I believe it works better with Win 8 then it ever did with XP.

    The netbook has a 1.6Ghz Atom N270 processor and is maxed out with 1.5G of RAM.

    I installed Win 8 using an external USB DVD drive. The install went very smoothly and when I booted it for the first time after the install, all the hardware was working including the wifi, video, ethernet, etc... Win 8 did notify me that there was an updated driver available for the SD card reader which I installed. I thought I would need to hunt down at least 1 or 2 drivers but didn't need to after all. Device manager shows all hardware as working correctly with no problems indicated.

    One glitch was that Metro apps wouldn't open since they require a minimum resolution of 1024x768 and the netbook's native resolution is 1024x600. I found this with a little searching on Google:

    1. Run REGEDIT
    2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Video
    3. Do a search for "Display1_DownScalingSupported"
    4. In the key containing "Display1_DownScalingSupported", set the value to 1
    5. Quit REGEDIT and reboot the netbook
    6. After rebooting you will now be able to change the display resolution to 1024 x 768


    The little netbook has been able to run everything I have thrown at it so far. Yesterday, I decided to give it a workout. I fired up FireFox 24 with 8 tabs open, had a spreadsheet loaded in Excel 2007 and a document loaded in Word 2007. Then I opened IE 10 and Chrome 29. Memory and cpu still weren't maxed out so I also opened a Windows Explorer window, then finally kicked off a scan from within Defender. At this point I was using 1.3G of the machine's 1.5G of RAM but the cpu wasn't maxed out like I expected. It was fluctuating up and down between 100% and 50% or so. At the same time the machine remained responsive and I was able to surf to new web pages within the browsers and such.

    I'm not a big fan of Metro apps but I tried a few such as Maps, News, Camera, Skydrive, browsed the Store, etc... Everything seemed to work fine.

    I watched some YouTube videos and loaded up a movie using WMP.

    I am using the internal wifi with a Bluetooth dongle and a BT mouse. All in all, I'm pretty impressed by how well Win 8 runs on this little machine.
    Last edited by strollin; 27 Sep 2013 at 13:32.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Chicago USA
    Posts : 84
    Windows 7 Pro and Windows 8.1 Pro 32 bit and 64 bit


    I have a Gateway LT4009u with an Intel Atom N2600 with the dreaded GMA 3600 video chip. It originally came with Win 7 Starter which ran like a dog. I blew away the Win Starter and put Lubuntu on it which is supposed to be one of the lighter versions of Linux. It ran better but still not as good as I had hoped. I purchased the Win8 upgrade for $15 because the computer qualified for the cheap upgrade and I have never looked back. This baby flies! No luck with the registry tweak to increase the resolution. I can get the change to take but the modern apps still won't run. Nothing but a black screen and a total hang up of the system which requires a hard shutdown to get back to normal. I suspect it is the graphics chip causing the problem. Also mine will take a 4GB ram stick in the single slot but it will only recognize 3 GB in either 32bit or 64 bit. I tried them both and just stuck with 32 bit. A third party Start Button (StartisBack) and I am a happy camper!

    Click image for larger version
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Sloe Deth, Californicatia
    Posts : 3,908
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7


    I had a an old Dell laptop I was intending to install it on, but the laptop fried before I had a chance! I'm sure it would run great on it, because I installed it to an old Dell Precision 370 Workstation. I tried sticking a Core Duo into the motherboard, but not enough power to run it or the chip is simply not right for the board. I've got a POS E Machines ETower with a Socket 775 Celeron, I tried sticking the chip into that too, but it won't run. I'll probably end up using it in the Gigabyte MB I got with it.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by mick823 View Post
    Also mine will take a 4GB ram stick in the single slot but it will only recognize 3 GB in either 32bit or 64 bit. I tried them both and just stuck with 32 bit. A third party Start Button (StartisBack) and I am a happy camper!
    The screenshot clearly shows it recognized all 4GB. Not sure why you say otherwise. It says only 2.99 available. but in a 32 bit OS that's normal. Are you sure about the 64 bit? Cause it clearly is recognizing the 4GB.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Posts : 38
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    best metro app so far imho is the weather, I really like it. Netflix is good but i think using it in a browser is better for my a.d.d.

    Metro side by side is col, but it makes my netflix video tiny
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Chicago USA
    Posts : 84
    Windows 7 Pro and Windows 8.1 Pro 32 bit and 64 bit


    Quote Originally Posted by Mystere View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mick823 View Post
    Also mine will take a 4GB ram stick in the single slot but it will only recognize 3 GB in either 32bit or 64 bit. I tried them both and just stuck with 32 bit. A third party Start Button (StartisBack) and I am a happy camper!
    The screenshot clearly shows it recognized all 4GB. Not sure why you say otherwise. It says only 2.99 available. but in a 32 bit OS that's normal. Are you sure about the 64 bit? Cause it clearly is recognizing the 4GB.
    Sorry a bad choice of words. The system recognizes the entire 4GB but only 2.99GB usable. A 64-bit install shows the exact same thing. It must be a bios or motherboard limitation.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    N. Calif
    Posts : 2,584
    W10 Pro (desktop), W10 (laptop), W10 Pro (tablet), W10 (laptop)


    Quote Originally Posted by Angrychair View Post
    best metro app so far imho is the weather, I really like it. ...
    After reading your post, I tried the weather app on my netbook. I can get to the first screen with the sample data but whenever I click on any of the links such as to add a place or set my home location, the app is exited and I am returned to the Start screen. So far the weather app is the only thing I haven't been able use.

    EDIT: Tried again and now I am able to get in. I think the difference may have been that the first time I tried, I wasn't logged into my MS account. Not sure why I would need to be logged into my MS account for the weather (it never prompted me to sign in) but it works now.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    My house
    Posts : 148
    Windows 7 Home Premium x64


    Windows 8 runs great on my brothers HP 2000 laptop running a AND E-300 CPU @ 1.3Ghz with 4GB of RAM at 1366x768 res. It seemed a bit slow at first but once i disabled the visual effects, it ran pretty smooth!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Sloe Deth, Californicatia
    Posts : 3,908
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7


    I'm sure it would run great on an E-300, those are amazing little chips. It would probably run better than Windows 7 does on the same system.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by mick823 View Post
    Sorry a bad choice of words. The system recognizes the entire 4GB but only 2.99GB usable. A 64-bit install shows the exact same thing. It must be a bios or motherboard limitation.
    If that's the case, it may be reserving 1GB for video memory in a shared memory configuration. Check the bios to see if you can configure how much memory is set aside for this.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Win 8 on a netbook!
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