FYI: This is legacy information. Since the Asus 1215N is an older model, I don't know if this interests many of you. I will keep it online for the sake of completeness. I switched to a Clevo W370ST, also under Debian.
|Hardware||Status under Linux||Notes|
|Atom D525, 1.8 GHz, dual core||works|
|2 GB DDR3, single channel||works|
|Western Digital hard disk||works||disk permanently spins down and ignores all hdparm commands except disabling APM completely, this is what I did to solve the problem|
|Broadcom BCM4313 WLAN chip||works||use the brcm80211 driver|
|Atheros AR8152 LAN chip||works||use the atl1c driver|
|USB 2.0 controller (3 ports)||works|
|HDMI port||?||didn't test|
|Intel GMA 3150 graphics||works|
|nVidia Optimus technology||problematic||you can disable Optimus manually via acpi_call which gives you at least 1 hour more running time|
|nVidia ION 2 chip (512 MB DDR3)||problematic||no support|
|Intel HD audio chip||works|
|Card reader (SD, MMC)||?||didn't test|
In February 2011, I got my new notebook, a 12.1" Asus 1215N. I chose this one because of its low weight and its (currently) superior hardware (for a netbook). I started with Debian 6 and moved to Debian 7. (I always use Debian Testing.)
sudo hdparm -B255 your-drive-namehelps. (I modified /etc/hdparm.conf so that the change is not forgotten at reboot.) Beforehand, I had made a BIOS update using Windows and ASUS Update (the original version in the machine is outdated) and changed the disk mode from AHCI to IDE, so I don't know if hdparm alone suffices to solve the problem or if the BIOS update is also necessary.
I use Debian Testing (kernel 3.2 from the official repo) together with Xfce 4.10. The RAM usage is very moderate: immediately after startup, with NetworkManager and some panel applets loaded, the system consumes less than 128 MB memory. The software I use most of the time is gedit, Opera, LibreOffice, Pidgin, Terminal, and GCC. I also use Iceweasel, Eclipse, Netbeans, GIMP, Inkscape, VLC, Audacity, Hydrogen, FileZilla, Nemiver, and some other programs. All works smoothly, even watching full screen Flash videos (depending on the player). Also games are possible with integrated graphics: Bos Wars, Extreme Tux Racer, OpenArena, and OpenTTD work fine, only SuperTuxKart has a low frame rate (which probably is the fault of SuperTuxKart). Since kernel 3.1, the system is completely stable (before, the WLAN driver could cause kernel panics in certain avoidable situations).