Win 8 on a netbook!

strollin

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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.
 
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My Computer

System One

  • OS
    W10 Pro (desktop), W10 (laptop), W10 Pro (tablet)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Home built i7-8700K, Hp Envy x360 EVO Laptop, MS Surface Pro 7
    CPU
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    ASUS TUF Z370-Pro Gaming, HP, MS
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    Dual Samsung U32J59 32 inch monitors, 13.3" display, 12.3" display
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    IBM Model M - used continuously since 1986
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    Other Info
    Retired in 2015 after working in the tech industry for 41 years. First 10 years as a Technician, the rest as a programmer/software engineer. After 1 year of retirement, I was bored so went back to work as a Robotic Process Automation Consultant. Retired for 3rd (and final) time in 2019.

mick823

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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!

mini win8 stats.jpg
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 7 Pro and Windows 8.1 Pro 32 bit and 64 bit
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo and Dell
    CPU
    Intel i3

XweAponX

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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 Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Asus M2N-MX SE Plus § DualCore AMD Athlon 64 X2, 2300 MHz (11.5 x 200) 4400+ § Corsair Value Select
    CPU
    AMD 4400+/4200+
    Motherboard
    Asus M2N-MX SE Plus/Asus A8M2N-LA (NodusM)
    Memory
    2 GB/3GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    GeForce 8400 GS/GeForce 210
    Sound Card
    nVIDIA GT218 - High Definition Audio Controller
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Hitachi 40" LCD HDTV
    Screen Resolution
    "1842 x 1036"
    Hard Drives
    WDC WD50 00AAKS-007AA SCSI Disk Device
    ST1000DL 002-9TT153 SCSI Disk Device
    WDC WD3200AAJB-00J3A0 ATA Device
    WDC WD32 WD-WCAPZ2942630 USB Device
    WD My Book 1140 USB Device
    PSU
    Works 550w
    Case
    MSI "M-Box"
    Cooling
    Water Cooled
    Keyboard
    Dell Keyboard
    Mouse
    Microsoft Intellimouse
    Internet Speed
    Cable Medium Speed
    Browser
    Chrome/IE 10
    Antivirus
    Eset NOD32 6.x/Win Defend
    Other Info
    Recently lost my Windows 8 on my main PC, had to go back to Windows 7.

Mystere

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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 Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Pro
    CPU
    Intel i7 3770K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte Z77X-UD4 TH
    Memory
    16GB DDR3 1600
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVidia GTX 650
    Sound Card
    Onboard Audio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Auria 27" IPS + 2x Samsung 23"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440 + 2x 2048x1152
    Hard Drives
    Corsair m4 256GB, 2 WD 2TB drives
    Case
    Antec SOLO II
    Keyboard
    Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
    Mouse
    Logitech MX

Angrychair

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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 Computer

System One

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    Windows 8.1 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i5 3570k @ 4.7
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    Asus Maximus V Formula Z77
    Memory
    16GB Corsair Vengeance
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GTX 680 Classified
    Sound Card
    SupreFX
    Monitor(s) Displays
    26" Samsung
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1200
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 840 EVO 250GB
    Wester Digital 2TB Black
    PSU
    Corsair ax1200
    Case
    Corsair 800D
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    XSPC Raystorm CPU Block RX360 rad D5 pump
    Keyboard
    Logitech G110
    Mouse
    Logitech MX700

mick823

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Chicago USA
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 Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 7 Pro and Windows 8.1 Pro 32 bit and 64 bit
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo and Dell
    CPU
    Intel i3

strollin

Old Guys Rule!
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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 Computer

System One

  • OS
    W10 Pro (desktop), W10 (laptop), W10 Pro (tablet)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Home built i7-8700K, Hp Envy x360 EVO Laptop, MS Surface Pro 7
    CPU
    3.7Ghz Core i7-8700K, 11th Gen Core i7-1165G7 4.7Ghz, 10th Gen Core™ i5-1035G4 1.1Ghz
    Motherboard
    ASUS TUF Z370-Pro Gaming, HP, MS
    Memory
    16G, 8G, 8G
    Graphics Card(s)
    AMD Radeon RX580, Intel Iris X Graphics, Intel Iris Plus Graphics G4
    Sound Card
    ATI High Definition Audio (Built-in to mobo)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dual Samsung U32J59 32 inch monitors, 13.3" display, 12.3" display
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160 (Desktop), 1920x1080 (laptop), 2736x1824 Pro 7
    Hard Drives
    500GB ssd boot drive with 2 & 10TB Data (Desktop), 512GB ssd (laptop), 128GB SSD (tablet)
    PSU
    Corsair CX 750M
    Case
    Antec 100
    Cooling
    Coolermaster CM 212+
    Keyboard
    IBM Model M - used continuously since 1986
    Mouse
    Microsoft IntelliMouse
    Internet Speed
    665Mbps/15Mbps down/up
    Browser
    FireFox, MS Edge
    Antivirus
    Defender on all
    Other Info
    Retired in 2015 after working in the tech industry for 41 years. First 10 years as a Technician, the rest as a programmer/software engineer. After 1 year of retirement, I was bored so went back to work as a Robotic Process Automation Consultant. Retired for 3rd (and final) time in 2019.

nenad285

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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 Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 7 Home Premium x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Hewlett Packard P7-1017c
    CPU
    Intel Core i3-2100 @ 3.1Ghz
    Motherboard
    Pegatron HP
    Memory
    Crucial 2x4GB DDR3 1333 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 2GB GDDR5
    Sound Card
    Realtek HD Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP 2211x
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    Hitachi 1TB 7200 RPM
    PSU
    Corsair CX600 80+ Bronze
    Case
    Coolermaster HAF 912
    Cooling
    Stock Intel Fan
    Keyboard
    HP Keyboard
    Mouse
    HP Mouse
    Internet Speed
    30+ Mbps Download; 2Mbps Upload
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Norton 360
    Other Info
    New build with custom parts later in the year

XweAponX

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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 Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Asus M2N-MX SE Plus § DualCore AMD Athlon 64 X2, 2300 MHz (11.5 x 200) 4400+ § Corsair Value Select
    CPU
    AMD 4400+/4200+
    Motherboard
    Asus M2N-MX SE Plus/Asus A8M2N-LA (NodusM)
    Memory
    2 GB/3GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    GeForce 8400 GS/GeForce 210
    Sound Card
    nVIDIA GT218 - High Definition Audio Controller
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Hitachi 40" LCD HDTV
    Screen Resolution
    "1842 x 1036"
    Hard Drives
    WDC WD50 00AAKS-007AA SCSI Disk Device
    ST1000DL 002-9TT153 SCSI Disk Device
    WDC WD3200AAJB-00J3A0 ATA Device
    WDC WD32 WD-WCAPZ2942630 USB Device
    WD My Book 1140 USB Device
    PSU
    Works 550w
    Case
    MSI "M-Box"
    Cooling
    Water Cooled
    Keyboard
    Dell Keyboard
    Mouse
    Microsoft Intellimouse
    Internet Speed
    Cable Medium Speed
    Browser
    Chrome/IE 10
    Antivirus
    Eset NOD32 6.x/Win Defend
    Other Info
    Recently lost my Windows 8 on my main PC, had to go back to Windows 7.

Mystere

Power User
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1,925
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 Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Pro
    CPU
    Intel i7 3770K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte Z77X-UD4 TH
    Memory
    16GB DDR3 1600
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVidia GTX 650
    Sound Card
    Onboard Audio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Auria 27" IPS + 2x Samsung 23"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440 + 2x 2048x1152
    Hard Drives
    Corsair m4 256GB, 2 WD 2TB drives
    Case
    Antec SOLO II
    Keyboard
    Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
    Mouse
    Logitech MX

drbernie

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Messages
1
I too have an Acer Aspire One that came with XP Home - it's almost a clone of the machine you described below ... Some time ago I upgraded to XP Pro, but now I fear it's time to upgrade again. Ideally, I'd like to follow your excellent advice here (see below). I'll be sure to backup my key files first, and I can easily connect the external USB-based CD drive.

I'd like to upgrade all the way to Win8.1, and I notice in your profile that your Aspire One is now at Win8.1. Your post below only goes to Win8.0 ... Is there anything I might need to know to get to Win8.1? Do you think I can just upgrade to 8.1 directly from XP, or should I go to 8.0 first?

Your advice is most welcome and appreciated!!

drbernie - drbernie@gmail.com

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.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 7
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