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please help mum want's a laptop !! gulp


Active Member
my 66 year mum wants a computer her first one !! i've decided a laptop would be best for her.
the thing she wants it for is writing letters,send email and internet.

she also says she wants a mouse ,she doesn't to use the finger control.

i've seen the following

Buy the ASUS Eee PC 2GB White Internet browsing on the move online from PC World.

Buy the ASUS Eee PC 4GB Pink Netbook with Linux Preloaded, 512MB RAM, 4GB Hard Drive online from PC World.

would linux be ok to write letters ?


Well-known Member
I've got an Asus eeePc (I've got the 701). As long as your mum will be ok with a smaller than average keyboard/screen, they're fantastic little machines. Linux can be tricky to get to grips with though - depending on how much experience your mum has with O/S's, it might be a good idea to go for one of the newer Acer One netbooks with XP installed.

Writing letters will be fine on either, as you can just download OpenOffice - free, open-source, and compatible with MS Office.

By the way, my eeePc came with a mini-mouse in the box... :smashin:#

Edit: Having said all that - the eeePc has a very simple menu system in "Simple Mode", so isn't that difficult to deal with. Plus, I think it comes with OpenOffice pre-installed anyway, so no messin' about there.
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Member 280751

Standard Member
Asus Eee PC would be fine, although I'd recommend buying one of the larger models as the keyboard and screen on the 7" models (in your links) are quite small and your mum may find them somewhat cramped.

With regards to Linux on these machines ... if it's your mum's first PC, then the "Simple Mode" will be perfect for a first-time user. Not all Eee PCs come with a mouse, but they do have USB ports so you can buy and add your own without any issue. As already mentioned, the Eee PC comes with OpenOffice already installed and ready to use, which includes MS-Office compatible version of apps to write letters/documents, create spreadsheets and (if you really want to) create presentations too. It also has other apps pre-installed so you're covered for web-browsing and email, as well as many other things too (can even do MSN, Skype etc).

I presume that the same will also be pre-installed on the Linux-based Acer you've linked to (which does look great, and is probably a big enough model too).

Clearly, if you're planning to keep costs down, then a Linux-based laptop will do the job, and they're really very good and have most (if not all) of the apps a basic user is ever going to need.


Well-known Member
I agree that the netbook linux OS's are simple to navigate for a novice, but you can easily set windows up to be just as simple to easily find the applications.

What are printer driver availability and installation like for these Linux netbooks. Im assuming writing letters would mean printing them too ? I've played with Linux but never installed a printer.

I'd advise against the ultra small netbooks as they keyboards are small and can be a little frustrating.

For around the price of the netbooks you can pick up a 15" screen, they are obviously slightly heavier but most people use laptops on a desk so this might not be an issue. Pretty much any spec will run OpenOffice and do web browsing with ease.

Have a look at the refurb laptops at PCW to keep costs down
Clearance computers from PC World including cheap reconditioned pcs, laptops, desktop computers, printers and pc peripherals.

As for a mouse, if you can find a Logitech mx nano at a good price then they are excellent. Really good size, wireless, move very smoothly and have a very small USB receiver which can just be plugged in and forgotten about.

Logitech's MX Nano boasts smallest USB receiver - FierceCIO:TechWatch
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