Apr 252009

Update: installing Karmic Koala

Based on an earlier Dutch post to install Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex on an Asus Eee PC here an English how-to guide to install the desktop version of Ubuntu Jaunty Jackalope (version 9.04) on an Eee PC. This guide has been tested using an Eee PC 701 and will take one or two hours to execute.

For installing the Ubuntu Netbook Remix (UNR), see this weblog.

Starting points

  1. The (smaller) SSD will be erased (backup important data!)
  2. Ubuntu will be installed without customizations (‘Vanilla’)
  3. You have some experience using the CLI (Terminal)
  4. An USB flash memory stick of at least 1 GB is available


The first four instructions can be executed on a desktop PC running Microsoft Windows too.

  1. Download the desktop version of Ubuntu here
  2. Download UNetbootin here
  3. Insert the USB flash memory stick into your desktop PC
  4. Start UNetbootin
    • Select ‘Disk Image’ and select the downloaded .iso file
    • Select the inserted USB flash memory stick and press ‘Ok’
  5. Remove all removable media from the Eee PC and insert the prepared USB flash memory stick
  6. Turn the Eee PC on
    • Press Esc soon after startup
    • Select USB Disk
    • Select ‘Default’ (or wait a moment)
    • Ubuntu Live should startup
  7. If you’re not using an Eee PC 701 check if everything works (wireless, sound, etc)
  8. Select System | Preferences | Appearance, Visual Effects -> None
    • Press the ‘Close’ button below
    • By pressing Alt + left mouse you can drag larger windows using the mouse pad now
  9. Start the installation wizard by double clicking the install icon and follow its steps
  10. At the step ‘Prepare disk space’:
    • Select ‘Specify partitions manually’ and press ‘Forward’
    • Take a good look at what drive you want to install Ubuntu (all data will be erased!)
      • You probably want to install on the smaller SSD, because it is the fastest
    • Delete all partitions from the chosen drive (click on each partition and press ‘Delete partition’)
    • Select ‘free space’ and press ‘New Partition’ (I don’t recommend using Ext4)
    • Leave everything default, but choose ‘/’ as ‘Mount Point’
    • Check ‘Format?’
    • Press ‘Forward’
    • Confirm the message that no swap has been selected by pressing ‘Continue’
  11. Continue the wizard, the installation will take about 15 minutes
  12. Remove the USB flash memory stick and press ‘Reboot Now’

Jaunty Jackalope is installed and should work now.


The following steps are to improve some things and to setup others. Skip what you don’t need/want.

  1. Open the terminal and run this command:
    • gconftool-2 —-type bool —-set /apps/compiz/plugins/move/allscreens/options/constrain_y 0
    • By pressing Alt + left mouse you can drag larger windows using the mouse pad now
  2. Limit the number of writes to the SSD this way(sudo gedit /etc/fstab)
    • Don’t change the UUID!
    • Optionally change the settings of the IO scheduler
  3. Make the microphone work:
    • Open volume control (right click the speaker in the upper task bar)
    • Click ‘Preferences’, uncheck ‘e-Mic’, check ‘i-Mic’ and ‘i-Mic Boost’
    • Check ‘Input Source’ and press ‘Close’
    • Set the i-Mic volume to maximum and i-Mic Boost to about one-third
    • Enable i-Mic and i-Mic Boost by clicking on the little speaker when you need the micorphone
    • Select the tab ‘Options’ and select ‘i-Mic’
    • Press ‘Close’
  4. Disable login sound: System | Preferences | Sound | Sounds | Login -> Disabled
  5. Right click on the battery in the upper task bar
    • Preferences | On xxx Power | When laptop lid is closed -> Suspend
  6. Setup wireless internet (finally working out-of-the-box now!):
    • Click the signal indicator in the upper task bar
    • Select your network of preference
    • Enter the network password if required
    • Choose a password for the keyring (and remember it)
  7. Select System | Administration | Synaptic Package Manager, then Settings | Preferences | Files
    • Select ‘Delete downloaded packages after installation’
    • Set ‘Delete History files older than 0 days’
    • Press ‘Ok’
    • Press ‘Reload’
  8. Select System | Administration | Time and Date
    • Press ‘Unlock’ and enter your password if asked
    • Set ‘Configuration’ to ‘Keep Synchronized’
    • Press ‘Install NTP support’
    • Select one or more servers near your location
    • Press ‘Close’
  9. Right click on the date/time in the upper task bar and select ‘Preferences’
    • General | 24 hour format
    • Location | Add, enter a location name near to you
    • Weather | C & km/h
  10. I installed the following applications:
  11. Localized spell-checker: sudo apt-get install aspell-<language> (thanks Satyamo)
  12. Localize OpenOffice: start Writer, select Tools | Extension Manager (thanks Satyamo)
  13. I changed the following Firefox settings:
    • View | Toolbars | Bookmarks Toolbar -> Uncheck
    • View | Status Bar -> Uncheck
    • Edit | Preferences | Advanced | Network | Offline Storage ->Use up to 0 MB
    • Type ‘about:config’ in the addres bar
      • Press ‘I’ll will be carefull, I promise!’
      • Set ‘browser.urlbar.clickSelectsAll’ to ‘true’ by double clicking
    • Tool | Add-ons, search ‘Firebug’, click ‘Add to Firefox…’, etc
  14. Start Pidgin automatically
  15. Default detailed file lists: Open a file browser, Edit | Preferences, View new folders using -> List View
  16. Default subtitles: Move Player | Edit | Preferences, Text Subtitles | Automatically Load … -> Check
  17. If your display is slow, follow this how-to


Startup until login prompt: about 45 seconds (Intrepid: 65 seconds)
Login until desktop: about 25 seconds (Intrepid: 30 seconds)
Shutdown: about 15 seconds (Intrepid: 15 seconds)
Used space after all updates: about 2.2 GiB (df -h) (Intrepid: 2.6 GiB)


After some shuffling around, my desktop looks like this:
Asus Eee PC desktop Jaunty Jackalope
Basically the bottom panel has been removed and most of its items have been moved to the top panel.

Function keys

F1 Zzz Works
F2 Wireless Does not work
F3 Contrast- Works, no OSD
F4 Contrast+ Works, no OSD
F5 Externe monitor ?
F6 Task manager ?
F7 Mute Works
F8 Volume- Works
F9 Volume+ Works

Other functions

Suspend on lid close Works
Video/sound Works
Microphone Works
Webcam Works
Bluetooth (Sitecom CN-516) Works *

* See here and here for information about bluetooth PAN and here and here about bluetooth A2DP (headset).

Comments, corrections and additions are as always very welcome!

 Posted by at 10:11  Tagged with:

  12 Responses to “Installing Ubuntu Jaunty Jackalope on an Asus Eee PC”

  1. Hi again,

    Thanks for you reply. I found out that CPU scaling is no longer supported (unless you have an Atom CPU). It was simply removed from the newer versions by the developers. It didn’t really save the power, but it helped keeping my eee 900 cool and quiet, and after the upgrade from 8.04 to 9.04 it became pretty warm and noisy. However, I managed to fix the problem by upgrading the BIOS. Latest BIOS versions fix some issues with the thermal policy settings.

  2. Hi! Thanks for a great walk-through. Now I upgraded my Eee 900 from 8.04 to 9.04. It went almost without any problems. The only thing I am missing right now is the automatic cpu frequency scaling. Ubuntu 9.04 says that it is not supported, but it worked fine on 8.04. Any ideas on how to fix it? Thanks in advance.

    • You could take a look at the utilities mentioned a few comments before. I don’t use CPU frequency scaling on my Eee PC 701, because the power savings are not worth the trouble in my opinion.

  3. Oops, it looks like some kind of filter on this page makes two dashes display as one. I was trying to say the command parameters need two dashes in front of them, but I see in my comment where I put two dashes it now displays as one on the website. I guess you probably typed it correctly the first time too.

  4. Thanks for this walk-through. One thing, under tweaks, number one. Where it says -type and -set in the command, it has to be –type and –set. Or -t and -s.

  5. and the wireless hot key?
    how I can fix it?
    can you help me?

  6. I added those two useful ones:

    Unconstrain windows to the top of the screen

    # gconftool-2 –set /apps/compiz/plugins/move/allscreens/options/constrain_y –type bool 0

    All applications can go full-screen using F11

    # gconftool-2 –set /apps/metacity/window_keybindings/toggle_fullscreen –type string “F11”

  7. thanks a bunch, all works fine for me.

  8. Thank you for these great tips! Really helped a lot as I was setting up Ubuntu 9.04 on my EEE PC 701.

    I also did the following in addition:

    Install Microsoft fonts

    Install Mac fonts

    Now Ubuntu simply looks great!