After some significant ‘learning’ I have got my new netbook just about set up just about right.
I was going to tweak the standard Linpus Linux to get it set up right. But reading around suggested that it was a bit hacky and not the best base to build from. Also when I did the first update I got a bunch of package conflicts so I assume adding a load of new apps would make things even more fragile. So I went the Ubuntu route.
This was very useful:
Basically it installs fine, with no fatal errors. And netbook remix is a lovely interface – very easy on the eye. And the way it maximises every window is V useful on these small screens.
There seem to be 2 main areas of problems. And I think these seem to indicate that it was not just Linpus that is a little hacky. Wired networking works just fine, wireless not so. Also sound does not work right.
Wireless networking I fixed (eventually) with the backports solutions from link 2. The link one solution actually broke my wired networking so if you are doing this yourself then try
sudo aptitude install linux-backports-modules-intrepid
The sound took a lot of buggering around. There seem to be a bazillion places where you can set sound levels and they all interfere in some mysterious way. I’ve always had hassle with sound in Windows too so maybe its just me.
Anyway updating pulse and faffing around finally got sound in and out working with the recorder and Skype using an external mic. I have some other things to try to see if I can get the internal one working.
I followed the ALSA route described here and now everything works fine, incl internal mic.
There also seem to be some issues around USB sticks and SD cards, I havent bumped into those yet.
One vaguely amusing event was the next day start up when wireless networking was broken again. What a ball ache, I jumped through all sorts of hoops until I eventually switched the wireless hardware switch and it all came to life. Somehow it had started up with wireless disabled via the front switch.
All of this could have been avoided if Acer had worked with the main distros rather than creating their own Linux. It seems the issue is one of timing, the AA1 has some new hardware that the latest Ubuntu does not know how to handle, but the fixes are becoming available. I assume they will get rolled into an Ubuntu update soon enough.
I have yet to migrate fully to the netbook but I will do in the next few days. I am writing this from it though.
Summary – a bit of a challenge to get working, but interesting and educational so no bad thing in the long run. Now its working it is Very nice indeed.