Update: Install 12.04 on Eee 701
I have been running Xubuntu a while on my Eee 701. However the 4 GB SSD drive is not enough for making system updates anymore. I could probably get rid of some applications to fix it, but I decided to try Ubuntu 12.04 instead. To improve the storage situation I got an 8GB SD Card. I have 1GB of RAM in this Eee 701, and perhaps the original 512Mb is not enough for Ubuntu.
Note, with the small 800×480 display, Alt-F7 helps you move windows around.
The disk limit
The Ubuntu installer complains that it does not have 8.6GB available. It seams it knows that it needs 4.3GB, but it wants extra space… and, I dont think it reconizes the SD Card as a legal place to install. Anyway, there is a file where you can make a change:
min_disk_size = size * 2
Replace the 2 with for example 0.5, and you can attempt any configuration you want.
Partitioning and disk usage
When installing, I had the following drives:
/dev/sda -- 4GB (internal SSD)
/dev/sdb -- USB memory that I install from
/dev/sdc -- 8GB (SD Card)
I decided to try the following partitioning:
/dev/sda1 -- 128 MB /boot (24 MB used)
sda5 -- 3.8 GB /home (empty)
/dev/sdc1 -- 8 GB / (3.8 GB used, usr=3.2GB, var=423Mb, lib=176Mb)
The safer alternative would be to put / on sda, and /usr on sdc (but that would leave me with 600Mb less space for home).
Two possible problems with my setup:
- Is the memory card available when / needs to be mounted, at boot?
- Will Ubuntu figure out that what was sdc during install is now sdb?
Second problem should be easy to fix.
So, after installing, I rebooted WITH install USB memory stick (sbd) still inserted. And the system boots perfectly. I attempt a boot without the memory stick inserted. As I feared, root filesystem is not found, but I get a prompt (not a Panic like in the old days):
I boot back into Ubuntu (so I put the USB stick back – and now sbc is root again) to fix Grub. Now, this is how grub works… you edit /etc/default/grub and/or files in /etc/grub.d/. Then you run grub-update. However, this procedure automatically figures out your root device, and that is what you want to change… so I did the forbidden:
sudo vi /boot/grub/grub.cfg
and replaced root=/dev/sdc1 with root=/dev/sdb1. Finally, I ran
sudo /usr/sbin/grub-setup /dev/sda
And shutdown, remove memory stick, and boot… and it works! To make sure everything is in order, I now automatically generate /boot/grub/grub.cfg
sudo /usr/sbin/grub-setup /dev/sda
And confirm with another reboot.
I believe that now everything weird I have done is history, and I have a clean system. Booting is actually reasonably fast from SD Card. Probably using the internal SSD for / would give better performance.
Updated disk usage
After updating the Beta to latest everything, this is how disk usage looks like:
Could be interesting for those of you who wants to install on limited disk. Probably /var can be reduced (and will grow when updating the system). Chrome is installed in /opt.
Raise CPU from 630Mhz to 900MHz
The Eee 701 is equipped with a 900MHz CPU clocked at 630MHz. It is perfectly fine to run at 900MHz, especially when plugged in to AC. This is what I did:
sudo apt-get install cpufreqd cpufrequtils
sudo modprobe p4_clockmod
# now check with
sudo vim /etc/modules
# add p4_clockmod
If you are not connected to AC, the cpu will run slower. See /etc/cpufreqd.conf.
Moving / to SSD?
Now that I know how much disk space is required it is tempting to move / to the SSD (sda). I did some read/write performance tests…
SSD (sda) SD (sdb)
Write 1GB 44s 327s
Read 1GB 35s 64s