Thursday, June 12, 2008

Running a KDE OS on the Eeepc

For those who think that the only option on an Eeepc is to run the basic Linux screen with its tabbed headings, think again. Above is a screenshot of the KDE OS running quite happily on notebook and making it very Windows friendly to those who feel the need for comfortable friendly and familiar surroundings.
Is it complicated to do....... no this Linux programming novice managed it courtesy of Linux Format Magazine which in its current issues is running a series on how to tweak your Linux based machine to run in a more user friendly way. It took around 15 minutes in the command line to effect the change on the 900 and around the same on the 701 ( the 900 looks better running the KDE OS),however the 701 owner in my house said she preferred the tabbed simple screen.
The beauty of this change is that you can easily switch between the 2 modes , from the launch bar of the KDE ( where the tabbed Linux screen is called Easy Mode)..... it is this easy :

Ctrl+Alt+T (opens terminal window)

wget http://download.tuxfamily.org/eeepcrepos/key.asc (enter)
sudo apt-key add key.asc (enter)
rm key.asc (enter)
sudo kwrite /etc/apt/sources.list (enter)

at the end of the list you add a line
deb http://download.tuxfamily.org/eeepcrepos p701 main ( close and save)

sudo apt-get update (enter)
sudoapt-get install advanced-desktop-eeepc (enter)
at prompt say Y
It should now be done - you can close the window. Now when you press the shutdown button you have an extra option on the left Full Desktop press and the system should swap over to the new full KDE OS. It is truly a revolution and will feel as if the notebook has been liberated from its blinkered former life. There is a slight delay in opening programmes but this is still nothing compared with the lumbering monolith that is the Windows OS.
Also recommended is Abi-Word as a replacement for the OpenOffice w/p although I haven't successfully managed this change yet.

I intend over the coming week to look seriously at the competition for fear of becoming an Asus bore! There also seems to be an issue in some of the current IT magazines as to who/what is the market for these machines..... my answer to them is the market is defining itself, be it us who simply love the idea of having a mobile and compact device for use on the move, to the kids who see advantages in these compared with lugging large laptops around. This 900 stays mostly in my bag during the day but can appear if necessary without causing the stir and awkwardness of a full sized laptop.

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