linux netbooks

Almost all of these notebooks are based on the exact same Intel chips, and yet there's such a variety in size, weight, build quality, drive performance and price.

Aside from the Elonex ONEt's low-end CPU and the Aspire One's lethargic SSD, performance doesn't vary enormously between them: all but the ONEt are perfectly capable of web browsing, YouTube, office work and even a spot of on-the-go programming, providing you're not working on an outrageously demanding 3D showcase.

In each review we've looked at the machine from the point of view of the right kind of user for each model, so you've probably already got an idea of what would suit you best.

If you're approaching this solely from a financial perspective, though, here's what we recommend:

Under £150

The Aspire One. Absolutely. Even if you see the ONEt (or another netbook based on the same internals) for under £99, avoid it. The money you save isn't worth the pain of sluggish web browsing with many sites out of bounds.

£150 to £250

If maximum portability is crucial, go for the Dell Inspiron Mini 9. The keyboard is a stumbling block, but it's a very well designed and constructed machine. If you can tolerate something more bulky and noisy, get the Asus Eee PC 1000 – a great all-round machine.

£250 upwards

We really love the LG X110; it's just a shame it's only available with Windows. If you're tempted, keep checking online in case LG expands its options and offers a Linux version, in which case it's a must-buy. Otherwise you should consider the slightly weaker, but still good, MSI Wind.