on 7 January 2016
After reading the most helpful 4-star review, I can agree with most of it - except the solution of using an SD card as a 'Readyboost' feature to speed it up. You really won't notice much difference. I used a good quality 8GB SDHC card in it and dedicated 4GB of it for this, but the effect was hardly noticeable. But do not fear! I am writing this review on my X101CH and about a week ago when I bought it, it was so unusably slow. The 1GB RAM is the most limiting feature which really is the root cause of its constant freezing and stalling. The CPU however is absolutely fine, and good enough (it's dual-core too).
First thing to notice a slight difference is hover your mouse over 'Computer' in Start Menu, right-click, click Properties, and then in the window click 'Advanved System Settings, then click 'Settings' under the Performance category. A 'Visual Effects' tab should open. Tick for 'Best Performance' which unticks everything in the box, then manually tick the lowest box 'Use visual styles...' (keeps the nice Win7 taskbar). Then go into 'Advanced' tab, and click 'Change' under 'Virtual Memory', and for the C drive, click 'Custom' box and type "2056" in 'Initial size' and "4112" in 'Max size' - this sets a portion of the hard disk to be used as RAM (similar to the Readyboost, but hard disk is much faster than SD card). Click 'OK' or 'Apply', then 'Apply' when back under the previous box. Make sure you apply all changes.
Next (this is optional but recommended), update components of the netbook. Go to "http://www.asus.com/Notebooks/Eee_PC_X101CH/HelpDesk_Download/", select Windows 7 32 as OS and download BIOS 1203 (latest one) to computer. Now open in Start 'ASUS Update', choose 'Select BIOS from file' (something like that), and find the downloaded BIOS 1203. Then press 'Flash' (ensure netbook connected to mains and DON'T turn it off or use it at all when it's flashing the ROM). The second important software from the website is Intel Chipset under 'Chipset' - download it and install (restart later). Then under 'VGA' do the same for the Intel Graphics driver. Those 3 are the most important. Restart netbook when done all.
Now what primarily uses so much RAM is absolutely UN-necessary Windows services that run in the background. These can be disabled or set to be started manually. Under 'Start' menu click 'Accessories' then 'Run' then type "msconfig". Under 'Services' tick 'Hide all MS services' and untick everything (apart from any Anti-Virus which I'll come onto later). Now untick the 'Hide all...' and all the Services will show. I unticked these ones: ActiveX Installer, Bing Bar, Microsoft .NET, Fax, Homegroup Provider/Listener, HP DS Service, Peer Networking (both), Quality Windows, Remote Access (both), Remote Registry, Remote Procedure Call, Secondary Logon (untick only if you have ONE user account on netbook), Internet Connection Sharing, Tablet PC, Telephony, Remote Desktop, VideAce, Problem Reports, Windows Error Reporting, Windows Remote Management, Windows Media Player Network. Trust me, all of these are USELESS and can be turned back on if needed (highly unlikely). Please trust me on this. Now click the 'Startup' tab (these are services that run on start-up) and untick: Adobe Acrobat, IconUtility, ASUSWeb, AsusSender (all), EeeDocking, VAWinAgent, AsusVibe, HP Installer. Done! Now click 'Apply' and you can choose to restart now or later (Later is best - not done yet).
In the 'Run' program again, type 'Services' and enter. (If nothing happens, go into C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools and click 'Services'). All the services you unticked above (not in start-up, but services) are ALL here so you ever need to enable them again, here they are. The ones you unticked are set here to 'Disabled' - you can also disable (right-click, Properties, under 'Start-up type') all the 'Net.' services ('Net' with full stop and letters after it), all 'Microsoft .NET', 'Routing and Remote Access', 'SeaPort' (bing bar update service). After that, set all the following to 'Manual' (same method): Application Experience/Identity/Information/Layer/Virtualization (5 here), ASP.NET, BitLocker, Block Level, Bluetooth, Certificate, CNG Key, COM+, Computer Browser, Credential Manager, Desktop Window Manager, Diagnostic Policy/Service/System (3 here), Disk Defragmenter, Distributed Link/Ttansaction (2 here), Encrypting File, Extensbile Auth, Function Discovery (both), Health Key, Human Interface, Interactive Services, Internet Explorer ETW, IP Helper, IPsec, KtmRm, Link-Layer, Microsoft iSCSI, Microsoft Software Shadow, Netlogon, Network Access/Connections/List Service (3 here), Office Software Protection, Parental Controls, Peer Name, Performance Logs, Pnp-X, PNRP, Portable Device, Problem Reports, Program Compatibility, Protected Storage, Remote Desktop Configuration, Secure Socket, Smart Card (both), SNMP, SPP Notification, SSDP Discovery, TCP/IP, Thread Ordering, TPM Base, Trend Micro, UPnP, Volume Shadow, WebClient, WIndows Backup/Biometric/CardSpace/Color/Connect Now/Driver/Event/Installer/Modules/Presentation/Time (all these), WinHTTP, WIred AutoConfig, WMI Performance, Workstation, WWAN. And done. You can exit the window, it saves the changes automatically.
I believe that is all. Do a final restart (you might get notification that says No AntiVirus detected - that's OK as long as Avast symbol is there and it says 'You are protected'. I hope this has helped you, and I have to say it has made this netbook VERY usable. RAM usage should be down from about 80/90% idle to 50/60%. I installed MS Office 365 and all Word/Outlook opens fine and quite quickly. Don't install loads of programs on this thing - just the necessary. Enjoy using the X101CH!