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Installing Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon on my Asus Eee PC

November 26th, 2007 5 comments
Rating 4.75 out of 5


You can still play a blackjack hand blackjack hand or two even with Ubuntu, as long as you use the blackjack odds charts, casino blackjack strategy, and Blackjack Tip guides from CasinoBonus.org!


Ubuntu on Eee PC Printer

Click on the Pic to see a bigger version

Hi All,

Well I went and got myself an Asus Eee PC the other day. What a fantastic piece of kit… but I have to say I didn’t like the OS much. You either have a ‘fisher price’ Xandros Linux desktop, or a Xandros KDE based one… Personally (and I am new to linux) I prefer Ubuntu’s Gnome-based layout.

Now in theory, this shouldn’t be too hard, but in order to make sure that this all works properly, I spent a great deal of time researching the process at EeeUser.com and various other sites.

This is my ‘How to’

  1. Reboot your Eee PC and ensure that the boot sequence is set to ATAPI CD Rom as the first choice.
  2. Plug in a USB CD Caddy and insert your Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon Live CD (Download Here)
  3. Once booted, click on Applications, Terminal and type gconf-editor
  4. Browse to apps/compiz/plugins/move/allscreens/options and uncheck constrain_y (Full details Here) – This allows you to move any window up beyond the height of the screen, which is very much needed during this install.
  5. Double Click on the “Install” Icon on the Desktop. Any time a window doesn’t fit, hold down the Alt key and drag the window off the top of the screen so you can see the buttons.
  6. Go through all the normal bits until you get to the Partitioning. Select manual and delete all the existing partitions. Create one partition of 4001Mb that is EXT2 and has a mount point of “/” – Ignore any “swap partition” warnings.
  7. Complete Install (answering any obvious questions accordingly)
  8. Reboot (after removing the CD)
  9. Redo Step 4 again (it gets lost in the install)
  10. Acknowledge the Athos “Restricted Driver” message
  11. Minimise Disk Writes (All obtained from Eeeuser.com) by doing the following:-
    1. Adding the following to /etc/fstab tmpfs /var/log tmpfs defaults,noatime 0 0
    2. Repeat for /tmp, /var/lock, /var/run and /var/tmp
    3. Set defaults,noatime 0 2 on the main ext2 partition (See HERE for more details) to prevent excessive wear and tear on your SSD
    4. If you ignored me and added a swap partition as well, then edit the /etc/sysctl.conf and add a line at the end that says vm.swappiness=0 this will tell the OS to use RAM in preference to Swap files.
    5. Go into Add/Remove, and remove the pointless applications that are taking up room on your little 4Gb SSD… I removed the following:-
    1. Most of the games (Really…How often are you actually going to play these?)
    2. F-spot Photo Manager (I user Flikr, so not needed)
    3. OnBoard (on-screen keyboard… not needed as we have one!)
    4. Orca (I can see just fine thank you…)
    5. Xsane (Nope… no scanners or faxes plugged into my Eee)
  12. Get your GMAIL all set up (Samsung tips here apply equally well… http://www.internet-tools.co.uk/blog/index.php?s=gmail)

Ok. So we have a working Eee PC running Ubuntu, but there are a few things ‘Broken’…. Battery Indicator, Wireless Lan, Webcam, Power Buttons, Lid sensor, Skype…..

Go the the Eeeuser.com site HERE to fix these issues (far to long to cut’n’paste here) and pn Samiux’s Blog HERE

But things I did fix from the Eeeuser site were:-

  • Wireless network (via ndiswrapper method)
  • Suspend/Resume/Power Down issues
  • Webcam support (you have to enable it in the BIOS for Ubuntu to see it – it will reboot twice once enabled)

Ubuntu on Eee PC Printer

Click on the Pic to see a bigger version

The next thing was to make sure that everything took up as little space as possible. These were the steps I took:-

  • Installed the ‘Littlefox’ theme into FireFox (takes up much less screen real-estate)
  • Went into Appearance Preferences and set:-
    • All the fonts to 8pt
    • Icons to “Icon Only” (no text)
  • Adjusted mouse sensitivity (wasn’t detecting my touchpad-taps very well)
  • Set both status bars to 19 pixels in height
  • Added my networked HP printer (I use a wireless gateway adapter connected to the Ethernet port on the OfficeJet)

Then I added some goodies…

  • Enabled all the repositories in System, Administration, Software Sources
  • Updated everything by going into System, Administration, Update Manager
  • Installed all the BlueTooth stuff (so I can beam from my Samsung to the Eee PC)
  • Installed Camorama (Web Cam Capture and Test App)
  • Installed v2 of Skype (it has webcam support under linux)

And thats it…. all working, and I am in fact completing this blog entry on my Eee PC with Ubuntu!

Ubuntu on Eee PC Printer

Click on the Pic to see a bigger version

27th November – NOTE: When installing the ndiswrapper, make sure you place the ndis folder that you downloaded from the cd/website somewhere sensible! I deleted the folder (thinking that ndiswrapper would copy the relevant files somewhere) and spent 2 hours trying to get my wireless lan working again :(

29th November – Added some screenshots of it in action.

30th November – Firstly… sorry if you haven’t been able to view this blog… Fasthosts cobbled my MySQL server :( Secondly… I have had a minor problem (irritating, more than an issue) where the Eee PC will randomly reboot during the initial boot sequence. Essentially it gets ‘stuck’ about 20% through the first Ubuntu progress bar, and then reboots just fine. Haven’t sussed what it is yet, but it only happened after I enabled the Webcam in the BIOS…

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WM6 finally available for Samsung SGH-i600 in UK (and Free!)

October 30th, 2007 8 comments
Rating 3.25 out of 5


UPDATE: 12th May 2008

Sorry if you have experienced ‘spam’ or URL redirections from this page. This has been caused by someone hacking my Blog (again!) – Let me know if you spot any more dodgy pop-ups going on. Cheers, Paul

Hi All,

We can you believe it? Finally we get WM6 (for Free!) from Samsung for our sexy little Euro-Blackjacks!

The link is: http://www.samsungmobile.com/promotion/i600/index.jsp

Countries now supported; Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, UK and Ukraine – Austria still greyed-out….

Samsung Country List

OK, here are the steps required:-

  1. Visit the link above and click on UK
  2. Enter your version number, this should look something like i600???? to get this information, simply dial *#1546792*# on your phone, select 1 (Version), 2 (Software Version) and then make a note of what is detailed next to PDA Version
  3. Complete the contact details, along with the serial number on the back of your phone (under the battery). The Serial should be under the bar code and look something like R7WP44????? (*last 5 digits hidden for obvious reasons!)
  4. You should now see a screen that looks like this
    • Samsung Upgrade Instructions
  5. Install ActiveSync 4.5
  6. Right-Click save the Samsung Driver and then unzip into a folder somewhere and install using the “Setup.exe”
  7. Connect your i600 (It will re-detect the drivers for the phone at this point)
  8. You may be asked to ‘delete’ a profile (e.g. Windows PC 1) as it the Samsung only holds 2 profiles… just delete both as it makes no difference…
  9. BACKUP EVERYTHING!!!!! using ActiveSync… Well… Sync everything anyway. The Samsung FAQ’s state “During the update, all of your data, including your applications, contacts and games, will be erased Please note that it is possible to re-sync your outlook data once your new Firmware is installed, but this depends on your Active Sync settings and saved PC data before you upgrade.” – Browse to the phone and backup all your pictures, sounds etc.
  10. Download the Firmware Updater (I suggest using something like “GetRight” as its 90Mb!!!)
  11. Run the Updater…. wait a looooonnnnnggggg time
  12. Let the phone reboot as required, and there you have it…. Windows Mobile 6

Of course… all you need to do now is restore all your files and applications back again :(

NOTE: i600XXGD1 firmware (i.e. “De branded” WM5 as detailed in my other listings) seems to come up with “Invalid Version Number” when you run the Updater…. I will post more as and when I solve this….

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Orange UK Still blocking Windows Mobile 6 on the Samsung Blackjack?

October 23rd, 2007 No comments
Rating 4.50 out of 5


Is it a conspiricy? I think so….

If you visit the Samsung upgrade site (http://www.samsungmobile.com/promotion/i600/index.jsp) you can download Windows Mobile 6 (WM6) for your Samsung SGH-i600, so long as you don’t live in the UK.

The only provider for the Euro version of the Blackjack in the UK is Orange, and they seem to have an agreement with all the manufacturers that ensures that the software on the phones is branded, and sometimes crippled!

If you visit the site, you will see that many countries are now supported… but alas no UK :(

[photopress:samsung_upgrade.jpg,full,centered]

Countries now supported; Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands (Holland), Norway, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland and Ukraine – in addition, it appears that Austria and Italy will be available soon as well.

Windows Mobile 5 and 6 Comparison 

I also found a great comparison document that shows the differences between Windows Mobile 5 and 6

Windows Mobile 5 and 6 ThumbClick on the Thumbnail to open the full PDF document in a new window.

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Categories: Mobile, Modding Tags:

Even more Samsung Blackjack SGH-i600 Tips and Tricks

October 13th, 2007 6 comments
Rating 4.25 out of 5


Hi gang,

I have a new list of goodies for your Samsung i600 – the only thing I can’t seem to solve yet is the WM5 Bluetooth DUN issue. For those of you who are unaware, Microsoft (in their infinite wisdom) have removed DUN [dial-up networking] from the Bluetooth Stack. The net effect of this is that things like TomTom can no longer access the phone as a data modem for traffic downloads etc… Really bloody annoying….

Anyway, some more top tips and software for you:-

More Codes

*#1546792*# – this code provide access to the Network & Call Settings – This allows you to switch off 3G functionality, which will considerably increase battery life if you don’t use your phone for data. Once in the menu, select 3, then 5 and then change to GSM

Ringtones from Storage Card

If you want to store all your ringtones on your memory card in order to save space, you can make it show them automatically by placing them in the \Storage Card\My Documents folder.

Software

Registry Editing – Something we have to do from time-to-time in order to hack our little phones… well here is a nice free one for you; Total Commander [link]

Screen Capture – This freeware application from Iliumsoft lets you capture your screens so that you can show them in your blog [link]

Customising the Main Screen (Cardwheel Theme)

First, copy the following files from the Samsung and save them (make a backup copy as well!!!!!) – All are located in the \Windows folder on the Phone; background_320x240.bmp, center_tile.png, top1.png, top2.png, low1.png, low2.png, low3.png

[photopress:sshot001.jpg,full,centered]

Edit all the images, based on these rules;

Transparencies figure a lot in this template – use a decent editor like Photoshop or PaintShopPro 9/10

background_320x240.bmp – This is the main background when the screen is first drawn.

top2.png – First menu bar (Where it says ‘Now Playing’)
top1.png – Second menu bar (Where it says ‘Favourite Contacts’)
Both of these have different degrees of transparency set in the Alpha channels… Don’t mess with this! (Keep it the same on any new image)

center_tile.png – Main Card Area (Where is shows ‘Gmail’ and icons)
Ensure that this is a solid image (no Transparency) with hi-contrast to make the text show.

low1.png – 1st lower menu Bar (‘appointments’)
low2.png - 2nd lower menu Bar (‘profiles’)
low3.png – 3rd lower Bar – visible when card wheel scrolls
Again, both these images have transparency set in the alpha channels, which should stay the same on any edited image.

Once you have edited your images, change the theme, copy the files over the top of the originals (back them up first!) and then change the theme back to Card Wheel.

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More Samsung SGH-i600 Blackjack Info, Tips, Tricks and NES Emulation

October 8th, 2007 No comments
Rating 4.50 out of 5


[photopress:samsung_i600.jpg,thumb,pp_image] [photopress:samsung_sgh_i600.jpg,thumb,pp_image] 

Specification: Samsung SGH-i600 is a HSDPA/Tri-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE Class 10/WiFi Windows Mobile 5 smartphone and with a  QWERTY keyboard, 1.3 Megapixel camera/camcorder, Music player, Bluetooth, Micro SD slot, 218MB ROM and 64MB RAM – Samsung Spec Sheet: [Link]

Official Samsung SGH-i600 User Manual – [Link] – PDF 2.2MB


Hello again.It seems my ‘hacks’ for the i600 are going down a treat, so I thought I would list a few more for everyone…In the UK, the Samsung SGH-i600 (Called the ‘Blackjack’ in the USA) is only provided via Orange. Unfortunately this means that it has the horrible Orange branding [crippleware], and is only running Windows Mobile 5.

The Samsung site allows you to upgrade from WM5 to Windows Mobile 6 via this link: http://www.samsungmobile.com/promotion/i600/index.jspUnfortunately… the UK is not listed (to to Orange… Grrrr…), but if you are from one of the following countries, you can slide on over there and grab some WM6 (well… WM5.2 in new clothes!); Belgium, Bulgaria, Demark, Estonia, Finland, France, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, and the Ukraine.

Apparently, you can override your i600 to another country + language (make sure it’s one you can read!) and then download the appropriate update, get WM6 and then change the country settings back. This is all controlled by the service menu by dialling *#1546792*# and then using the preconfig password *#81230*#THIS WILL WIPE YOUR PHONE so don’t do this without making a full backup first! Full instructions over at vowe.net; http://vowe.net/archives/008792.html

Keyboard Shortcuts (For the European Model)

Function Details
Task Manager Hold Down the [Home] button to show the task manager
Quick Links Hold in the [Jog Dial] to brings up a editable list of Shortcuts
Quicklist Pressing the power button brings up the quicklist (Change to Silent etc…)
Voice Assist Press and hold the “volume up” button on the left side of the phone, near the top to bring up the voice recorder
Custom You can set the Back button on the side to open whatever app you want when held for a few seconds (by default is ‘Camera’)
Quick “KeyLock”  Hold down the [End] Key for a few seconds
Quick “Silent Mode” Hold down then ‘#’ key to toggle Silent mode.
Numeric in TXT Quickly enter numbers without changing input mode by holding down the according button for a couple of seconds
Page Up/Down in IE When browsing the internet using Internet Explorer Mobile Edition, use T and V to scroll Page Up / Down

I have found lots of information and hacks here: http://i607.org/ the SGH-i607 is the USA version, but many of the ‘hacks’ work on the European version of this phone

Hidden Applications

Whilst rooting around in the \Windows folder on my phone, I found a series of applications that don’t normally show on the menu. Here is a list of the more interesting ones I found. If you want to use them on a frequent basis, use the ActiveSync explorer to right-click-drag and create a shortcut in the \Start Menu folder for any of these apps.

EXE Name Details
CamTest_Int, CamTest_Ext Turns on and shows the Internal (front) or External (rear) cameras. Interestingly, this takes <1sec to initialise, so why does the camera app take so long to load!?
cprog Appears to show the last call details
instmsgr MSN Instant Messenger (You could setup a quick shortcut to this instead of having to go through the Internet / MSN / Messenger route…
MySimMessage Shows SMS Messages that are on the SIM (as opposed to on the Phone)
Playsound MP£ Test app that allows you to test the Speaker, Earpiece and Headset – Handy for checking your Bluetooth headsets etc
RTCViewer Shows the internal RTC (Real Time Clock)
SoundTest Haven’t quite worked this one out… it appears to be a more advanced version of PlaySound
wrlsmgr Wireless Manager – Top Tip: Set a shortcut to startmenu, then assign to a speed dial (Press Menu when the icon is selected, then choose ’1 – Menu Shortcut’) – I’ve set mine as speedfial 9, so I just hold down the ’9′ key for a couple of second to bring up the Wireless manager
TestMode Hidden App: You need to create a shortcut to the Start Menu to access this, or use something like Resco File Explorer to see it.

This shows *lots* of Engineer stuff (3G, UTMS, GSM Cell Info etc), and appears to let you do (possibly) damaging things to your phone. Only use this if you know what you are doing!


NES Emulation

I found most of this information on i607.org’s NES Page [Link], but here is the simple guide for the UK Version of the Samsung SGH-i600

  1. Download Pocket Nester Plus – http://mobile.surrealnetworks.com/Dash%20Applications/SN%20PocketNesterPlus%20D.cab
  2. Download either All the ROM’s as a 40Mb CAB File (http://surrealnetworks.net/NES%20ROMs/393NESROMS.cab), or the ’50 Classics’ as a 10Mb CAB File (http://surrealnetworks.net/NES%20ROMs/50%20NES%20Classics.cab) or individual games [HERE]
  3. Install Pocket Nester
  4. Install the ROMS (to your Memory card!)
  5. Install the Pocket Nester Update [Pocket Nester Update] by copying the .exe over the top of the one in the \Program Files\PocketNester (You only need this if you already have an older version)
  6. Open the game, go into Preferences and tick “Associate .NES Files”, also set up all the keys (Try to make them memorable!)
  7. The Open ROM option does not work unless you install tgetfile.dll… this is time-limited, so I suggest just browsing to the ROM Folder and select the Game you want. Nester will automatically load. The ROM’s should be located in \Storage Card\My Documents\ROMs

When playing a game, if you can’t seem to get it to exit, hold down the HOME key, this will bring up the menu.

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