Linux on the Asus eee pc 1005ha
So I just bought myself this nifty little laptop that claimed to be great on battery life and is quite portable with a ten inch screen. It came with Windows XP, and this, of course, was unacceptable. I kicked that off right away and ran through a few distros, like Linux Mint 8 (worked great, but a little heavy for my needs) and eeebuntu 3.0, which was too old for this laptop. For working wireless and ethernet, you need at least kernel 2.6.30. That ruled out a bunch of distros as well, including my favorite, Debian. I finally settled on Xubuntu, which turns out to be fairly snappy (though my debian box running the same xfce configuration on similar hardware checks in at about 150mb less RAM at boot). Unfortunately, the bluetooth just isn’t working as of Xubuntu 9.10. Hopefully the update that’s supposed to come in late April will fix that. I can live without it.
Quick fixes from the wiki…
Wifi worked, but was a bit flaky, this fixes it:
sudo apt-get install linux-backports-modules-karmic
And to get the mic working:
sudo apt-get install linux-backports-modules-alsa-karmic-generic
The eee-control package
Grab eee-control to get at all the eee pc powersaving options, plus
setting hotkeys, wifi, camera, and card reader controls. It’s
and install it like this:
sudo dpkg -i eee-control.deb
TeXLive and the equivs package
Now, my software needs for this computer were pretty slim:
VLC for music and movies:
sudo aptitude install vlc
Firefox is already installed. That’s good.
Emacs for editing all kinds of text:
sudo aptitude install emacs
And finally,AucTeX and the newest version of TeXLive, which will allow me to compile my TeX document to PDF (this program, in combination with emacs is what I use to write and publish damn near everything). This is where things get a little hecktic. AucTeX depends on TeXLive, but the packages in ubuntu’s repo for TeXLive are from 2007. That is way too for me.
So to cure this problem, I used a package called equivs, which
allowed me to create a dummy package to install so that apt will
think the packages from the repo are installed. This allows me to
install other TeX related software without having the old verson of
TeXLive install as a dependency from the package manager. Lets
sudo aptitude install equivs Now, create a dummy file
called texlive.ctl. The content of the file should look like this:
Section: tex Package: texlive-dummy Provides: dvipdfmx, latex-beamer, latex-xcolor, lmodern, pgf, prosper, ps2eps, tex-common, texlive-base, texlive-base-bin, texlive-base-bin-doc, texlive-common, texlive-doc-base, texlive-extra-utils, texlive-generic-recommended, texlive-latex-base, texlive-latex-base-doc, texlive-latex-recommended, texlive-latex-recommended-doc, texlive-pstricks, texlive-pstricks-doc Description: texlive dummy package This package provides dpkg with the information that, there is the package texlive-latex-base installed.
You can add or remove from the “Provides” list to suit your needs.
I wanted to cover a lot of packages, so my list is long. Anyway, in
the terminal, change directories into the same as the texlive.ctl
file, then issues the command:
equivs-build texlive.ctl This will
build you a .deb file that you can then install using:
sudo dpkg -i texlive-dummy_1.0_all.deb
Then go ahead and installauctex from the package manager.
sudo aptitude install auctex
Then install texlive 2009 by using the terminal to change directories into the TeXLive install directory. Then enter:
Answer a few questions in the installer and that is that. I love TeX. It’s yummy.
I am quite happy with the Asus eee pc 1005ha. The batter life is a solid 9 hours, the screen is crisp and clear (and LED backlit!). The keyboard is 92% of the size of a full size keyboard, which makes it large enough to be comfortable. The touch pad is really sensitive, and if my typing posture is not good, I end up moving and click on something else. I’m sure there is a way to disable that. Anyway, go get one. I take mine everywhere.