Thursday, November 15, 2007

Zonbu at Home

After the Zonbu thin client computer worked satisfactorily on a high speed Internet connection, I took it home to try my slower 256/64 kbps wireless iBurst link. As expected this worked okay; the applications and data are stored in local flash memory, along with documents. It is only when you need something from the Internet, such as the Zonbu documentation, which is on the web, you notice the slowness.

The unit worked successfully with a different mouse, keyboard and screen. On booting the unit detected a large DELL 2405FPW LCD wide screen was installed and the Zonbu set the resolution ot the screen's native 1920 x 1200 pixel resolution, giving a very good image. Unfortunately, even with this large screen the "large" system font is still too small for comfortable reading.

A USB external hard disk (originally from a Windows XP laptop) was connected and worked satisfactorily, with the Windows files being accessible. The WiFi USB was attached, was recognized by the software and several WiFi stations were detected.

One issue is the effect of files copied to Zonbu Online Storage on my limited broadband allocation. Data is being continuously uploaded. This does not seem to effect the web use, but there were 204 items in the queue to be uploaded at one stage. So optimization of this process may be possible as it is unlikely that many of the temporary working files need to be backed up.

After several hours of use the reason for the heavy aluminum case for th Zonbu became apparent, the whole case became warm, apparently acting as a heat sink for the CPU. When mounted tower style, the fins on the sides carry away heat, but the top becomes almost uncomfortably warm to touch. The top of the case was the hottest to touch. With the room temperature now at a comfortable 20 degrees, it would be interesting to see how hot the unit would get on a Canberra day of 40 degrees.

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