Arch and Asus EEE 900

August 25, 2009

My collegue bought an Asus EEE 900 about a year ago, and confessed he was a bit disappointed with the power and HD space, so he sold it to me at a good price.¬† It had Win XP installed, but I quickly wiped that and installed Arch on it. Mind you, at that point I wasn’t at all confident. I assumed I wouldn’t get things like wireless, webcam, suspend and resume and the function keys to work, and I expected to have to use specialist distributions like EEEbuntu or Moblin.

Well, wireless even worked during the install, so no problems there. The install itself went flawless, which meant that all I had to do was the usual configuration. There were some differences with my normal PC, since I wanted to save as much space as possible. A panel was out, the system tray is on auto-hide, I cropped the window decorations from applications like Firefox and Thunar, and that was pretty much it. Everything else was my normal install of Openbox.

The function keys I got working by adding an extra module from AUR, and although I’m not a regular user of Skype, I installed it to see if the webcam worked. It did, without any tweaking from my part. Same thing for going to sleep when I close the lid. Opening pops it back to live, without a hitch.

Battery life is surprisingly good on this little thing. I’ve been working on it for what must be over two hours now, and I’m still at 30%. CPU load is something like 10% on average, and memory usage has yet to rise over 200 MB, and that’s with Firefox open. About the only thing I don’t really know how to do is slightly adjust the keyboard layout. It’s close to be-latin, but not quite. Some of the more exotic keys aren’t really where they’re supposed to be…

All in all, I love this little thing which I named Tinkerbell, so here’s some showing off:

Tinkerbell: Pseudo clean

Tinkerbell: Pseudo clean

Thunar and audacious. Stalonetray bottom right

Thunar and audacious. Stalonetray bottom right

San

Advertisements

Arch + PekWM screenshots: August

August 19, 2009

Yes, no Openbox this month. I was aching to try something new, and PekWM looked inviting because it’s themes are pixmap based, which in plain English means they simply look better. As a WM it’s just a tad less good: it’s not entirely standard compliant, and configuring it was more difficult for me than when I first started using OpenBox. Most of all, PekWM’s default mouse and key configuration is just insane. In any case, I got it the way I want it. This is the result.

Arch August 2009: Clean

Arch August 2009: Clean

Arch August 2009 - Busy

Arch August 2009 - Busy

San


Install Linux using a USB stick

August 12, 2009

Because something happened to my main Arch install (I don’t know exactly what I screwed up, but half the time X wouldn’t boot and I was stuck at a blank screen), I decided to download the latest release and re-install it. However, I accidentally ended up with a file with an *.img extension, which is not an image for a CD-ROM but for a USB stick. I must have clicked the wrong link somewhere…

In any case, I knew my PC is able to boot from a USB stick, and I didn’t want to wait for the “right” download to finish, so I gave it a try. “Burning” it to the stick was the most difficult part, but as always, the Arch wiki came to the rescue. The CLI command “dd” doesn’t offer much visual feedback, so I just waited until the light on the stick stopped blinking, checked if the job had indeed finished, rebooted, and installed.

The package install was quite a bit faster than usual, so I’ll keep installing distributions this way (if possible). It’ll save me a lot of CD-ROMs that’s for sure, and the USB stick can contain 4GB instead of 700 MB…should open another range of possibilities.

San


Oh noes! I haz virusses!

August 9, 2009

It’s been a while since I encountered one of these, but browsing the Arch forums I clicked a link that should have led to a ScummVM but actually gave me this:

Oh Noes!

Oh Noes!

It’s well done really, and quite clever too, since I clicked a link a second time, and the layout was different, as was the file they wanted me to download. In any case, the message was the same: Your computer is infected! Look at all the authentic looking Windows popups and security messages!

Yeah. Nice try.

San


I got suckered into Windows support

August 4, 2009

Well, suckered in…It’s my job these days. But I like to leave my job when I’m at home. Unfortunately, I couldn’t yesterday. I’ve been playing Heroes of Newerth lately, and one of the people I sent a beta key to is my sister in law, who couldn’t connect to the game server. Neither could The Sims. Or Everest Poker. I grumbled a bit about Windows, asked her if she had a firewall installed (she hadn’t, because she had removed ZoneAlarm…too many annoying popups). She also claimed that she had to use a special tool to remove it and that there were processes running she couldn’t stop, and that she knew where the .exe files were but she couldn’t delete those directories either. She didn’t have the rights or there were in use or whatever.

Sigh.

“Boot into safe mode…no, just google it, I can’t be bothered, and then delete them. Yes, it’ll work.”

It did, and so I was forced into something I vowed not to do anymore. On the upside, she’ll be able to play HoN tonight. I’ll kill her a few times to make me feel better.

San