1000h News and Updates

Asus 1000H / 1000HE Eee PC Bios Recovery guide

The Asus Eee PC 1000H was one of the most popular netbooks. Mine has been working fine until yesterday when it did not boot. I freaked out a little. A quick search online revealed that its BIOS was corrupted. I have made an Asus 1000H Eee PC Bios Recovery guide where I have explained how to flash and do the recovery of Bios.

1000h bios recovery

1. Go to Asus support site and search for 1000h in the product box.
2. Download the BIOS for Asus 1000H. You will get a zip file. Download it and unzip it.
3. You will find a ROM file. Rename it to 1000H.ROM or 1000HE.ROM if you are using that netbook.
4. Get a USB drive or an SD card with 1GB or less storage. If you are going to use an SD card, get a card reader.  
5. Format it with FAT file system. FAT32 or NTFS would not work.
6. Put the file into the root folder. Do not put it into any folder.
7. Take battery out and plug in the USB / SD card with card reader. Press the Alt + F2 key repeatedly and press power button. 
8. The system will beep once to tell you that it can found the BIOS. Follow the instructions on the screen.
9. It takes around 3-4 minutes for the flash to complete. 
10. Here is a video that shows the entire process.

Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix REVIEW – Mixed Impressions

I’ve always been a huge fan of Ubuntu due to their ease of use and virus-free environment. When we came to know that the Canonical has unveiled a special netbook edition specially tailored for the netbooks, I could not stop myself installing the it on my EEE.

Installation

The installation was pretty much seamless.

  • First download the image file from the ubuntu’s servers
  • Download Disk Imager from here
  • Use the Disk Imager to ‘write’ the image file to your flash drive (should be atleast 1GB)

One much required improvement over the previous installations was the fact that the dialog boxes and windows were fully visible. You no longer have to do the ‘ctrl+f7’ key combo to move the windows around just to click on ‘Proceed’.

One thing to note is that although Ubuntu suggests that you install netbook edition on an Atom processor, but the installation also worked fine on an EEE 701 running Celeron processor.

Boot Time

Since the video speaks (and show) more than pictures and words, here is the video of EEE 1000HE booting the Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix. It takes just 24 seconds to fully boot up. Earlier versionns like Ubuntu 8.10 used to take nearly 1 minute to fully boot up.


Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Edition booting on an EEE 1000HE from Taran DS on Vimeo.

Web Experience

Since it is called netbook edition, it should provide great web experience to the user, right? Ubuntu 9.04 comes with the excellent Firefox browser. The browsing speeds have improved by miles when compared to previous versions.

But, flash player has not been included! What were the folks at ubuntu thinking? Flash is widely used everywhere on web. You will see ‘install missing plugins’ bar on the top of the webpage, which uses flash anywhere in the website. Clicking that bar will display the list of  plugins required to play flash. I tried all of them and firefox was unable to install any of them. This called for manual installation, something which would be little difficult for the normal user.

How can it say "installed" when it was not able to find the plugin?

How can it say "installed" when it was not able to find the plugin?

Anyway, these are the steps to install flash player:

  • Go to http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/
  • Save it to Desktop
  • Click on the ‘deb’ file to start the installation
  • Restart the browser and the flash should now work fine

For Instant Messaging, it comes with rock solid application called Pidgin, which supports a wide variety of IM services.

Applications

The Ubuntu 9.04 Nebtook Remix comes with an array of applications. Here is the screenshot of the netbook remix launcher.

It also comes with Openoffice suit and I did notice that it opened more quickly than the previous versions, which is nice to hear.

So, how much space does it takes?

It takes nearly 2GB. It should easily fit in an EEE 701 and you will still have ~1.8GB space for applications.

What was annoying?

Other than the lack of flash support, there were few other annoying problems too. The speaker volume was set half way. I spent nearly an hour figuring out what could be the reason about such low sound volume. Later on, I saw that you must click on small speaker icon and then adjust the volume from there. See the following screenshot:

After that, I wanted to try out its multimedia capabilities. The movie player application started and alerted me that there are no MP3 codecs. How could folks at ubuntu forget to bundle the MP3 codec? Anyway, the problem was quickly resolved as it itself prompted me to download the codecs.

Pros:

  • It is FREE
  • FREE support
  • Boots faster
  • Apps launch faster
  • Basic apps like web browser, email-client and office suit already bundled
  • Easily download hundreds of apps via package manager

Cons:

  • No codecs in movie player to play even basic stuff like MP3

[Download Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix]

update from folks at Ubuntu:

We cannot ship codecs as they cost money. You can but them in the Canonical store. We cannot ship Flash as it is not open source software. You can choose to install it from the repos or go to Adobe. We did not overlook these items.

Asus Eee PC 1002H now in available Australia

The new Asus Eee PC 1002H netbook is now in stores in Australia. The 10-inch widescreen model is similar to the 1002HA. However, it features a chiclet keyboard and an Intel Atom N280 processor. Thus, supporting a battery life of about 4 to 6 hours. It is coming with a price tag of 769 – 879 AUD.

Taran reviewed the EEE 1000HE a couple of weeks back and he was not so much pleased with the chiclet keyboard. I’m yet to try one of these though.

CONFIRMED: No Apple Netbook coming

After months and months of rumors about the Apple netbook, Apple’s chief operating officer finally confirmed in harsh words that Apple will never produce netbooks as they do not deserve the MAC brand. Here are the exact words,

When I look at netbooks, I see cracked keyboards, terrible software, junky hardware, very small screens. It’s just not a good consumer experience and not something we would put the Mac brand on. It’s a segment we would not choose to play in.

He further said, if you want smaller screens, you can go ahead and buy iPhone/iPod for that. This makes me wonder how can an iPod Touch replace my netbook. I own several Windows Mobile devices along with iPod Touch (latest 2G version) and I firmly think that in no way they can ever replace my EEE 1000H.

iPod Touch and Netbooks are both two very different devices. Both of them have their own specific use. I like iPod Touch and WM devices as they are way more mobile than any netbook in the market. But, when I need to do some serious work, I always look up to my EEE 1000H (which is still very portable as compared to normal notebooks).

What this actually shows? This shows that Apple’s Chief operating officer, Tim Cook has actually never used any of the modern day netbooks as none of them have cramped keyboard, ‘junky hardware’ or terrible software.

[via venturebeat]

There is no use of using N280 + GN40 combo if you are using Windows XP

Intel N280 processor and GN40 chipset provides better hardware video decoding and 3D graphics performance only if you are using Windows Vista. This is because only Vista (or later) gives you directX 10 and DXVA 2.0.

Unfortunately, most of the netbooks are still shipping with the Windows XP. With Windows XP, you only get DXVA 1.0 due to which hardware video decoding does not work properly. With Vista, DXVA 2.0 is available and hardware decoding worked fine.

Right now, only Eee PC 1004DN and Gigabyte Technology’s Touch Note T1028 have GN40 chipset. It may be true that netbooks with N280+GN40 combo may offer better hardware video decoding, but the overall performance with a BETA product like Vista is simply horrible on the netbooks.

I tried Vista on my EEE 1000H with 2GB RAM and the performance is disappointing. I will (patiently) wait for the Windows 7 instead.

[via digitimes]

Sharp PC-NJ70A Netbook is different from other netbooks – Features LCD in its Trackpad!

Remember the Sharp Mebius netbook that we mentioned a couple of days back? Well, some new details have emerge about it, something that makes it very different from the other netbooks in the market. It features an LCD trackpad. About the Trackpad: Contrary to what you must be thinking about its utility, it features multi-touch too. Looks like engineers at Sharp took some thoughts from the Apple’s book. The resolution of the trackpad is really notable: 854 x 480. That is more than the one found on the early EEEs! (700 series). The brightness is automatically adjusted. The LCD on the trackpad can also be used as a second LCD and its resolution is not too bad for running programs. However, you will to squint your eyes to read the text.

Sharp PC-NJ70A

After built-in DVD drives and bigger displays, now companies have another gimmick to offer to the users:  a netbooks with LCD trackpad! How useful that would be? Only time will tell. The Sharp has bundled Windows Vista Home Basic with it. I hope they make the Windows XP drivers available soon as performance of Vista on a Atom machine won’t be that good at all. The price is to be around 80,000 Yen ($815). That would really hurt your wallet in such tough economic times. For that price, you can two EEE 1000H easily.

Here are its full specifications:
* Intel Atom N270 (1.60GHz)
* Mobile Intel 945GSE Express chip set
* 1GB RAM (max 2GB)
* 160GB HDD
* 10.1-inch
* 1024 x 600 pixel display
* USB 2.0×3
* Ethernet and WiFi b/g
* Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
* Dimensions: 260×190×23.3
* Weight: 1.46kg
* Battery life: 3h

Toshiba unveils the UX Series Netbooks

Toshiba launches its new 10.1 inch widescreen range of netbooks in Japan this week, with a price tag of £400. The UX Series boasts of a longer battery life of about 4 hours compared to the NB100 netbook with battery life of 2.9 hours. However, inspite of its larger screen the model is smaller, at 263 x 192 x 31mm and weighs between 1.2 and 1.3Kg depending on the configuration. The other specifications are same as many other netbooks in the market, like:

  • Intel’s N280 Atom processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • 160GB Hard Disk Drive
  • 1,024 x 600 pixel resolution

The new netbook from Toshiba looks very promising. The chicklet keyboard seems to be of much better quality than the found on ASUS EEE 1000HE (reviewed here)

[via pc watch]

ASUS EEE 1000HE review – Best netbook of 2009

ASUS EEE 1000H was one of the most successful netbooks ever rolled out by ASUS. The EEE 1000HE is the new netbook on the block which provides some noticeable enhancements over the EEE 1000H. Read this detailed review to find out more about EEE 1000HE!

ASUS EEE PC 1000HE review

1000HE with its brother 1000H

Read More

Downgrade Plan for the Windows 7 OS

The Microsoft has confirmed that those who buy a PC with Windows 7 installed will be allowed to downgrade to Windows Vista or Windows XP. This downgrade offer is available to both businesses that buy bulk licenses as-well-as to the consumers that get the Windows 7 OS on a laptop/PC.

Yesterday, Windows XP entered into extended support only period. Luckily, the final release of Windows 7 is going to be somewhere in January, 2010. Before that, Microsoft will also release RC of Windows 7, which is more likely to be the final product.

This is a clever move by Microsoft and will convince more buyers to make the change to the new OS as the consumers as-well-as companies can always roll back to tried and tested Windows XP if they face any sort of problem with the Windows 7 OS. I personally have been immensely impressed by the Windows 7 performance on my EEE 1002HA as-well-as my 1000H. Vista is slow as snail on my EEE 1000H even with the 2GB RAM and all the performance tweaks. That is why I am dual booting between Windows 7 and EEEbuntu.

[via BBC]

Samsung N120 not as wide as expected – full specifications revealed

When we first heard about the Samsung N120’s claim that it features not 90% laptop size keyboard, but 100% laptop size keyboard, our initial thoughts were that the N120 is going to be a really wide netbook. But as per Samsung N120 official webpage, the dimensions are 10.27″(w) x 1.19″ x 7.3″ . To give you a better idea of the width, here are the dimensions of the ASUS EEE 1000H: 10.47″(w) x 7.53″ x 1.50.

This means that the N120 is infact smaller width-wise. Now, how did they manage to put in a full laptop keyboard in there? Or is it may be just a new marketing idea by Samsung.

[Samsung N120 official webpage]