For this OpenSuse 12.1 review I used an Advent 4213 Netbook.
Intel Atom N270 Processor Running at 1.6GHZ
1GB DDR2 RAM
Integrated Graphics Card
Integrated Mobile broadband Modem
Integrated 802.11 b/g Wireless
The Installation uses the now standard OpenSuse Installer. There is a slight change to the Installer in OpenSuse 12.1 as there is the choice to use the new btrfs file System. The btrfs Filesystem has more features available in OpenSuse 12.1 like the Snapper that takes Snapshots of your hard disk (similar to System Restore in Windows), the down side to using the btrfs Filesystem is that you need an ext4 Partition to put the boot files in, in the case of the review machine there is a 38.9GB151.1MB /boot partition formatted in ext4 and a 147.9GB / (Similar to the C Drive in Windows) formatted in btrfs.
There are literally loads of Applications and utilities included with OpenSuse 12.1. For the review machine I Installed the Microsoft Office Compatible LibreOffice, Mozilla Firefox Web Browser, Mozilla Thunderbird Email Client, gimp Image editor along with Web and Application development Applications and some default utilities and Applications that get Installed as standard.
You have a choice of 3 different desktops to uses. There is the Windows like KDE Desktop that aesthetically pleasing than the other two with visual affects, Window animations and Desktop widgets, The Gnome Desktop Environment this is a little bland and ugly compared to KDE but is perfect if your system isn’t up to running KDE, then there is the minimalist XFCE Desktop that is suited to low end machines or for anyone that doesn’t like too much desktop clutter, there are also some minor desktops that I don’t know that much about. For the review machine I chose to use KDE.
All the hardware of the review machine works out of the box, and I can’t see why it won’t work with other hardware in other Desktop, Laptop or Notebooks as well as external Hardware like Bluetooth or Mobile broadband Dongles.
OpenSuse is a serious competitor to Microsoft Windows as it can be downloaded off of the OpenSuse website for free (opensuse.org)and comes in both 32 and 64bit versions.