Asus EEE 901 och Ubuntu EEE

I bought an Asus EEE 901 today. I chosed the black model with Windows XP. But it didn’t take long time before I installed Ubuntu EEE, which is a tailor made Ubuntu based distribution.

On their homepage there are some optimization guides. I started with How to: Reduce Disk Writes to Prolong the Life of your Flash Drive [ubuntu-eee.com]. I skipped the second part of the commands under “blkid.tab and mtab”, since I wanted to continue with Transparent Encryption for home folder [ubuntu-eee.com] which uses FUSE.

I followed the guide mostly step by step, except I didn’t add pam_encfs.so in /etc/pam.d/common-session. That line make sure that the volumes is unmounted when logging out, but it resulted in some error messages every time I ran a command with sudo:

umount: /home/mikael: device is busy
umount: /home/mikael: device is busy

I’m not really sure what sudo is up to, but it seems like the login process for users ends, which results in trying to unmount the home directory.

Eyecandy is a must, it was however not possible to enable them via “System”, “Settings”, “Apperance”, “Visual effects”. So I had to install them manually and then activate them.

sudo apt-get install compiz compizconfig-settings-manager avant-window-navigator

The first package enables visual effects in genera, the second is for being able to configure the visual effects and the third is a Mac OS X-like dock. Recommended effects are “Rotating Cube”, “Reflection Cube” and “Ring switcher”.

Next step was to get my Huawei E220 3G modem working. Fortunately, people had already solved that problem: Mobitel 3G with Huawei E220 on Debian [sayura.net]. I skipped the udev rule and the associated script since I didn’t want it to connect automagically when detected. When I want to connect, I plugin the modem, click on the NetworkManager applet and uncheck “Enable wireless”, then right-click on the same applet, chose “Dial Up Connections” and “Connect to ppp0 via modem…”. Unfortunately there’s a bug in NetworkManager that makes it not possible to detect a working connection that has been configured outside of it, this results in Firefox running in offline-mode. Since Firefox 3.0.1 the way to get around this is to configure “toolkit.networkmanager.disable” to “true” through “about:config”.

A really annoying thing is that pipe (|) doesn’t work in the terminal. A quick google search took me to skrivmaskin.se/linux. I never use caps-lock, so let’s remapping it to |:

echo "setxkbmap -option ctrl:nocaps" >> ~/.bashrc
echo " xmodmap -e \"keycode 66 = bar\"" >> ~/.bashrc

Bluetooth worked out-of-the-box, as long as the feature was activated in BIOS. “Accessories”, “Bluetooth File Sharing” was the only thing needed to get it work. It does however have a really ugly icon in the menu bar, so with the help of strace I found out which icon it was using and replaced it with something that suited my taste. There are 6 pictures which has to be replaced in /usr/share/gnome-bluetooth/pixmaps: frame1.png, frame2.png, ..., frame6.png.

The end result: