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EEE Week two

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Okay, we've had the EEE PC for a week, and the critter's still really happy with it.

Turns out that it's not possible to combine the 4-gig C: and 8-gig D: drives into a single drive, as they're two different Flash drives inside the unit. But thankfully there's a pile of information on the internet as to how to prune the extraneous chunks out of EEE XP that you take for granted (file indexing, virtual memory, etc), and I now have a decent amount of elbow room on C:

One problem I had was that the touchpad was a bit too sensitive and I found myself accidentally clicking and double-clicking when I touched it. And the touchpad was just identifying itself as a generic PS2 mouse, so there weren't any adjustments available for it in the control panel beyond what you could get from a regular mouse (assigning buttons, double-click speed).

Easy fix, though. It's apparently an Elantech touchpad, and a quick google search will avail you of a replacement driver that fixes the sensitivity issues, allows you to shut off tapping on the pad, and even enables multi-touch. I played around with multi-touch for a while. It's cute but the touchpad is so danged small that it's difficult to use.

I also discovered a "squished" 1024x768 mode that you control with a hotkey. It sets the screen to 1024x768, but with nonrectangular pixels. The upshot is that the one thing that absolutely refused to fit on the screen, Webkinz.com, now works fine. Now Maggie's favorite avatar, "Pinky Pony", looks like she needs a diet :)

I also slapped a couple of movies on the D: drive, installed GOM player (like Media Player only better), and discovered that it plays movies very nicely. Tiny speakers are still a problem, though. I offered to put some headphones on 'em, but Maggie prefers to watch movies in our bedroom alone with the lights off.

This also means I can sell the Zune. The only thing I was using the Zune for was for Maggie-videos on car trips. The EEE doesn't have as much storage as the Zune, but it makes up for it with a bigger screen and much wider format support.

After that Microsoft rebate thingy (see about two entries ago) and ebaying the Zune, I think I'll end up ahead on this deal.

According to ASUS, they wanna get the price of the Linux ones down to $200 next year, which is cool.
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Make sure you get the latest bios update; turns out that my weird intermittent freeze problem with my Eee was because the stocker bios had power-management bugs.

I don't think Asus' software guys are quite up to the level they used to be, so there's probably a patch available for your model.

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Yeah, it came with an auto-firmware utility that downloaded and installed the latest update. No freeze problems here.

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