Lots of my fellow Mini-Note troopers, including JKOnTheRun and Brad Linder, have found installing Windows XP on the Mini-Note to solve lots of the speed and performance issues. But as my colleagues know, I am a believer in Vista. So as a last chance for Vista on the Mini-Note, I decided to increase the preloaded 1GB of RAM with a 2GB stick. Unfortunately, the Mini-Note has only one DIMM slot so if your system comes with less than 2GB and you want to upgrade, you'll need to throw out the factory-installed RAM. You can check out the video below for the full process of changing the RAM. It was pretty simple and only cost me $52 for a stick of Corsair branded DDR2 SO-DIMM Memory. [flv:/flvs/hp-mini-note-ram.flv 320 240] One odd thing, however, is that when I increased the RAM to 2GB, it only registered as 1790MB (1.74 GB). I am not sure why the system isn't utilizing the full 2048MB.
So, what has the 2GB increase done? Well, to be honest not much. Boot time has stayed the same at 1 minute 30 seconds, give or take. Skype performance isn't drastically different; video is still really pixelated and it can't run when you have other applications on in the background. And lastly, I am still having a seriously hard time running Second Life, even with a bunch of OS tweaks. I do, however, notice a difference in multitasking. With 1GB, the system was slow to launch programs, like GIMP for photo editing. Now GIMP launches in under 20 seconds. I also see the system is less sluggish; watching a downloaded episode of Heroes in DivX Player, writing this blog post in WordPress (in FireFox), running Skype and editing a photo in GIMP isn't crashing any of the programs. Before it would have taken a good 10 seconds to switch between all of the tasks and caused a Not Responding window. Unfortunately, the 2GB of RAM and Vista still aren't cutting it for me. I am yearning to make a decent Skype video call and get some decent graphics performance. The answer, I am afraid is a new OS. That is where you all come in. We have seen XP in action, is there any other OS you would like to see me try on the Mini-Note?