Tala Ko

Posts Tagged ‘netbook

I’ve decided to take what I’ve learned and put it into a tutorial. But just so you know, these things aren’t new. I’m just compiling information from other sources and presenting them here for other Wind users’ benefit. A more apt title for this post would be “How I Got Ubuntu 8.04.1 Running on the MSI Wind U100.”

These instructions are for setting up an Ubuntu-only system, plus guides for getting the wireless and webcam to work. If you got Windows on your Wind and want to keep it, I suggest you search for a dual-boot guide first.

Anyway, let’s go:

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This is officially the first Tala Ko blog post written on my netbook. :)

While I’m not wireless at the moment, I did manage to compile drivers for the wireless card using this guide. I was a little apprehensive at first, because I don’t often use the command line. I was afraid that I was going to break something. But after reading related forum posts (I <3 the Ubuntu community), I was reassured, and I dove into the command line just… under ten minutes ago!

I know the wifi’s working because it detected three wireless networks within the building – none of them offering free access, hence the gray LAN cable twisting near my toes.

I think I’ll now download Cheese, to see if I can get the webcam working. :)

I was thinking of getting Smart Bro Prepaid, but the feedback hasn’t been all that great. Wonder how my roommate and I should get Internet access once we’ve moved out of our relatives’ homes.

Other Tala: our office IT department is thinking of enforcing its policy that Internet Explorer be the only browser in use. :( I’m thinking, though, that our department can get some exceptions. As the web developing team, it should make sense that we get to use as many different browsers as possible, to make sure that our work is accessible to as many people as possible.

In any case, IT won’t crack down without hearing from the folks at the office first. Poor guys.

Pardon the corny title. :) Yesterday, I was able to buy an MSI Wind U100 with some money from a savings account that my dad started when I was smaller (thanks, Dad). I needed to be more mobile, and he agreed that a laptop would be a good investment.

I’ve named it Teacup, after the ones in “Train Man,” by Hitori Nakano. My desktop PC is named Stella, after the abandoned theater in “The Thief Lord,” by Cornelia Funke. Just felt like sharing.

I’d done research before going to the store. But even if I already knew what I wanted, I let the clerk go through the motions. They didn’t have it in pink or red. I don’t really love pink or red; I just wanted the chassis to be different from the usual black or white units.

I asked for the OS-less Wind, of course; no use paying extra for Windows XP when I was just going to delete it. I did, however, accept their offer to install, at no extra cost, a trial version of XP, just so I could try out all the hardware’s bells and whistles.

Once at home, I’d determined that all the bells were ringing and the whistles whistling within about fifteen minutes. Five, if Trixi and I hadn’t been goofing around in front of the webcam.

I soon reached for a GNU/Linux installer.

I downloaded the Puppy Linux ISO first, because it was only 88Mb large. The MSI Wind doesn’t have a CD-ROM drive, so I decided to try UNetbootin to turn my USB Stick into a LiveUSB. The tool’s amazing. :D It’s quick, and it works.

Puppy Linux didn’t detect my screen settings properly, though. :/ After asking at the forums, I still didn’t learn the proper configurations, and then one poster finally said that Puppy probably didn’t support my screen. :(

Back to Ubuntu, then. I downloaded the ISO from an Indonesian mirror and got it intact on the first try, within a few hours! The first time I ever downloaded the ISO, I chose the Taiwanese mirror, because it was geographically nearer. But it took a whole day, and quite a few tries (so, a few days) before I could get a good ISO. :p

UNetbootin again (I feel really sorry for my USB stick. But now that I have a laptop, it should now get some rest from all my PortableApping.). Ubuntu detected my screen settings right away, so I didn’t hesitate to click on “Install.” Planned partitions with the help of the trusty Psychocat tutorials and this byte calculator.

(Teacup, not Stella, is my first Ubuntu-only system. Will probably convert the desktop, too, once Intrepid Ibex is out.)

Installation took minutes, no hiccups at all. So, that’s it. I now have an MSI Wind running Ubuntu! :)

There’s still a lot left to do, like configure for wireless and install updates and codecs. Will let you know how that goes, of course. But in the meantime, I’ve got a busy day ahead. I’m taking the Wind and going sailing into Project Land. :)

“In Uruguay the parents wait for the kids to go to bed so they can use the laptops. So you saw people move to rural communities… so their kids could take advantage of [the laptops]. In Rwanda the families brought electricity to the schools so that the kids could keep using the laptops.”

I find that really cool. Yay for OLPC!

clipped from news.zdnet.com
described the response of some commercial laptop makers to the OLPC project
some of the companies have taken this as just a market to compete in — and compete in a very vicious way and that’s unfortunate, because we’re not trying to take market share and make profit or knock anybody else out,
While skeptics claimed the laptops would be sold or stolen by their young owners, it seems they have been converting truants into school-lovers and encouraging kids to brush up their reading and writing
if it was in a remote place, the people would say the kids only show up for school half the time. And that just changes. Now you have basically… more than 100 percent attendance. Because they come on weekends, they come early to school and they stay late
The families start to take education seriously. One of our students — when OLPC was just getting started–did a project in rural Costa Rica, and 70 percent of the parents entered vocational education using the computer at night after the kids
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