Vietnamese netbook runs on Hacao Linux – my opinion


Hacao, the Linux-based Vietnamese IT company, did it again.  The good news, they have successfully created a Vietnamese language netbook based on Linux.  The bad news, Hacao Linux, based on Puppy Linux, comes installed by default on these netbooks.

Hacao, made a wise decision by choosing the Pico netbook which is based on the famous MSI Wind netbook.  The MSI Wind is one of the most popular, easy to use, netbooks here in the Vietnamese market (though you will tend to see more EeePCs and Aspire Ones in the coffee shops).  Pico is a good choice with it large keyboard and monitor screen.  My students who own MSI Winds have no complaints.

Unfortunately they decided to install their lackluster version of Linux.  Granted, I have never been a fan of Puppy Linux, previous versions of Hacao Linux, though, were considered too bloated for my Vietnamese students.  They felt the desktop was too clustered with Vietnamized icons (imagine an icon followed by 4-5 word translations).   Hacao Linux 2009 CE seems to have resolved that issue.

Realistically though, they should have installed Ubuntu Netbook Remix remix instead and relied on the large Vietnamese Ubuntu user community in Vietnam and around the world.  That would have been a smart move and they could have used the local Linux user groups, such as SaigonLUG, to help spread the Hacao Netbook.  Furthermore, if a Hacao Netbook user has a problem, they can ask one of the many Vietnamese Ubuntu users for help.  Instead, most new Hacao Linux users will most likely get so frustrated with Hacao Linux, many will decide to install an illegal version of Windows on their netbooks.

Still, as an Open Source Evangelist, Hacao should receive some kudos for promoting Linux in Vietnam.

See article here -> Vietnamese netbook runs on bilingual Linux distro

Wow, did I just give some praises to Ubuntu???

Hacao Linux Screenshot


  1. Forgive me if I say something wrong but it seems like you do have an aversion to Ubuntu, right? 😀

    Beside, a lot of GNU/Linux guys I know do not like Ubuntu too. I admit that Ubuntu does not follow strictly the UNIX philosophies like other distros such as Fedora, Slackware, Gentoo, Arch or Centos. Somehow, that makes Ubuntu become a “Micro$oft-like” GNU/Linux Distro and maybe that’s why the “traditional” GNU/Linux guys hate it.

    However, I think their own Free Software Philosophy (aka the Ubuntu Philosophy) is the best philosophy ever. Personally, I think it’s even better than the philosophy of Richard Stallman and it really attracted me a lot.

    “Every computer user should be able to use their software in the language of their choice” and “Every computer user should be given every opportunity to use software, even if they work under a disability”. It’s so humane and noble and that’s why I use Ubuntu in my Desktop. 🙂

  2. I have installed Puppy Linux and various Puplets on my MSI Wind, only to wipe them off each time. My main gripes against these distros, including Hacao:

    1) Saving wifi settings remains problematic

    2) No way to remove bundled applications as the files are read-only

    The second issue is particularly annoying since one’s inability to remove the stock applications goes against the very concept of user freedom and control which underpins Linux.

  3. The favicon for Hacao looks awfully similar to the Ubuntu logo, or is that just me?

    Have you seen this distro in action? I’d love to know if they ship Firefox/Thunderbird, and if they do, if they’re shipping the 3.5 Vietnamese Firefox.

  4. @An: I do not hate Ubuntu as in the past. I used it in the classroom and on my netbook.

    @windmonger: I will test Hacao on my netbook next week.

    @Gan: Yeah, it does look like Ubuntu’s logo. I will test Hacao next week to see if there are any improvements and let you know.

  5. For someone’s just moved to the Linux I think Ubuntu is the best thing for them to start with.

    I don’t think I hate it, but my feeling is my skill really gets worse after using it for a few months so now I’m utterly happy with Arch. It’s exactly what I’ve been looking for. Thanks Kevin for the suggestion a while ago.

    I can totally understand why they choose Hacao for the netbook. It’s a matter of reality vs ideal. But anyway, as soon as they’ve realized the truth, they’ll switch 😛

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