Monday, December 31, 2007

Getdata Explorer View 4 for Windows Explorer

I installed Getdata Explorer View 4 for Windows Explorer from the DVD of PC Answers January 2008. It allows you to preview the following files directly within Windows Explorer without the creating application being installed:
  1. Documents - pdf, txt, html, xls, ppt, doc, vsd, wps & rtf
  2. Graphics - dwg, bmp, crw, emf, gif, jpg, psp, psd, png, tiff & wmf
  3. Multimedia - avi, mp3, mpg, mid & wav
  4. Archive - cab, zip, lzh, rar & tar
  5. E-mail - dbx
  6. Database - dbf

Sunday, December 30, 2007

PC Answers January 2008

  1. Do more with your PC
  2. Near Field Communications
  3. Next Year's Upgrade
Cover DVD (Free Paid Version)
  1. PC Tools Registry Mechanic 6.0 (Windows 2000/XP)
  2. Getdata Explorer View 4 (Windows 98/ME/NT/2000/2003/XP/Vista)
  3. Conceptdraw Project 3

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Personal Computer World January 2008

  1. Digitise your heritage
  2. Ultraportable laptops
  3. Security suites
Cover CD (Free Paid Version)
  1. PC Tools Registry Mechanic 6.0 (Windows 98/Me/2000/XP)
  2. Agnitum Outpost Firewall 4.0 (Windows 98/Me/2000/XP/2003 Server)
  3. Visagesoft eXpert PDF 4 (Windows 2000/XP/2003 Server)

Friday, December 28, 2007

PC Advisor January 2008

  1. Shopping for the best deals
  2. Christmas gift guide
Cover DVD (Free Paid Version)
  1. Systweak Advanced System Optimizer 2.0 (Windows 98/Me/NT/2000/XP/Vista)
  2. Paragon Drive Backup 8.5 Personal
  3. Ashampoo WinOptimizer 2008
  4. Omniquad Total Security 2008 (6-month licence)
  5. Dekart Private Disk (Windows 98/Me/NT/2000/XP/Vista)
  6. Simply Personnel 2008 free licence for 10 employees
  7. free licence for 5 employees

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Australian APC Magazine January 2008

  1. The Ultimate PC Sound Guide
Cover DVD (Free Paid Version)
  1. Paragon Drive Copy 8.0 SE

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Australian PC Authority January 2008

  1. Australia's Biggest Ever Tech Survey
Cover DVD (Free Paid Version)
  1. Windows Live OneCare (90-day trial)
  2. PC Tools Registry Mechanic 6
  3. Agnitum Outpost Firewall 4
  4. Paragon Total Defrag 2008 SE

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Australian PC User January 2008

  1. Top 100 Best-values PC products, gadgets, home entertainment gear & games
  2. 2 PCs in 1
Cover DVD (Free Paid Version)
  1. Serif DrawPlus 6
  2. GetData Explorer View for Microsoft Outlook
  3. Ashampoo WinOptimizer 2008 Magazine Edition

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Printing Problem on Eee PC

If you remove cups daemon from running as mentioned on December 13, 2007 in Xandros Linux, you won't be able to print. But, when you click Start as shown, it won't do anything in full desktop mode and you won't be able to print. In easy mode, when you click Start, the print service will start.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

System Recovery Using Flash Disk on Eee PC

I have used a Kingston MicroSD 1GB for system recovery successfully. Contrary to the manual, you don't need larger than 1GB flash disk. As shown, the actual space required to store the image file is less than 876 MB since I have other files on the flash disk as well.
In fact, I can use the free space left on the flash disk in Windows XP to store my documents and temporary files. Contrary to the manual, you don't need to format the flash disk back to Windows format for use in Windows XP.
To start recovery, you just need to set the BIOS to boot from the flash disk.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Mozilla Firefox Portable on Eee PC

I am using Mozilla Firefox Portable on SD card in my Eee PC with Windows XP SP3 RC1. This morning, I encountered the error as shown. Unable to resolve the error, I install Mozilla Firefox 3 Beta 2 Portable instead.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Windows XP Service Pack 3 RC1 on Eee PC

I installed Windows XP SP3 RC1 on my Eee PC. You need at least 1.372 GB of free disk space before install will run. There is no significant change after installation. The only noteworthy security changes are as follows:
  1. "Black Hole" Router Detection
  2. Network Access Protection

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Protecting Your Privacy on Eee PC

You have more options in Full Desktop mode by launching the Control Center:

  1. Under File Manager -> Web Browser -> Browser Identification, uncheck Send identification and click Apply.
  1. Under File Manager -> Web Browser -> Web Behavior, uncheck Enable completion of forms and click Apply.
  2. Under General Settings -> Desktop Behavior -> Privacy, click Clean Up.
In Firefox, Edit -> Preferences -> Privacy, check Always clear my private data when I close Firefox.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Computer Shopper January 2008

  1. Mobile Internet
  2. Create a Home Recording Studio
  3. Scam Baiting
Cover DVD (Free Paid Version)
  1. Kaspersky Anti-Virus 7 (6 months free online updates)
  2. CrazyTalk Messenger 4.6 Special Edition
  3. Omnis Studio 4.1 Standard Edition
  4. Serif PagePlus 8.09 PDF Edition
  5. ActivePDF Toolkit Lite 4.0

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Making a live Windows XP CD

If you just want to try out Windows XP on your Eee PC, you can build a live Windows XP CD and boot from it instead of doing the installation. This will not destroy the existing Xandros Linux.
  1. Download PE Builder program and run it.
  2. Insert original Windows XP installation CD.
  3. For full Windows desktop, you need the Windows XPE plug-in. Save the file to the !custom folder in the plugin directory in the pebuilder folder.
  4. In PE Builder, set the location of the Source and click the Plugins button. Click the Add button, then browse to the !custom folder in the plugin directory in the pebuilder folder. Now click on the plug-in you want to add and click Open. You can enter a folder name for the plug-in or leave the default. Click OK. Scroll down the plug-ins list until you find the Nu2Shell plug-in. Click Enable/Disable to turn it off. Find the Startup Group plug-in and disable it. Click Close.
  5. Select Create ISO image and click Build.
  6. Insert a blank CD-R or CD-RW and create your bootable live CD from the ISO image.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Monitoring System Performance on Eee PC

Top utility - view most frequently used CPU processes

In Full Desktop mode, click Launch -> Applications -> System -> Performance Monitor - view system load and process table

Vmstat utility - view system usage information averaged over 5s intervals 16 times

df & du utility - view disk usage

Friday, December 14, 2007

Printing from Eee PC

You can choose local or network printer. I have a D-Link wired print server DP-301U connected to a Linksys wireless router and Brother HL-2040 printer connected to the DP-301U. The host name (ip address) & queue as shown must match the settings on DP-301U.
Since Brother HL-2040 is not listed, I selected Brother HL-1430 as the printer model. It works and I can print from the Eee PC using wireless connection.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Securing Eee PC

If you don't know how to install & configure a firewall, at least do the following:

In Easy or Full Desktop mode,
/home/user> netstat -l
Active Internet connections (only servers)
Proto Recv-Q Send-Q Local Address Foreign Address State
tcp 0 0 *:netbios-ssn *:* LISTEN
tcp 0 0 *:sunrpc *:* LISTEN
tcp 0 0 localhost.localdoma:ipp *:* LISTEN
tcp 0 0 *:microsoft-ds *:* LISTEN
udp 0 0 eeepc-m:netbios-ns *:*
udp 0 0 *:netbios-ns *:*
udp 0 0 eeepc-m:netbios-dgm *:*
udp 0 0 *:netbios-dgm *:*
udp 0 0 *:bootpc *:*
udp 0 0 *:sunrpc *:*
udp 0 0 *:ipp *:*

You can remove the following processes permanently if you don't need the following daemons & services:
  1. Common Unix Printing System Daemon (printing service)
  2. Samba Daemon (enable file and printer sharing for Windows networks)
/home/user> su
Password: {enter root password}

Edit /usr/sbin/ and comment out the lines for "cupsd", "portmap" and "samba". Restart your Eee PC.

For temporary solution until next restart, you can kill the processes.

/home/user> su
Password: {enter root password}
eeepc-m:/home/user>ps -A | grep cupsd
eeepc-m:/home/user>kill {1st column no}
eeepc-m:/home/user>ps -A | grep portmap
eeepc-m:/home/user>kill {1st column no}
eeepc-m:/home/user>ps -A | grep smbd
eeepc-m:/home/user>kill {1st column no}
eeepc-m:/home/user>ps -A | grep nmbd
eeepc-m:/home/user>kill {1st column no}
eeepc-m:/home/user>ps -A | grep dhclient3
eeepc-m:/home/user>kill {1st column no}

You have another option in Full Desktop mode by launching Control Center:
  1. Under System Administration -> Remote Desktop Sharing, uncheck Announce service on the network and click Apply.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Linux Commands on Eee PC

  1. Kernel Version
/home/user> uname -r
  1. System Version
/home/user> cat /proc/version
Linux version (root@sda2) (gcc version 4.1.2 20061115 (prerelease) (Debian 4.1.1-21)) #21 Sat Oct 13 12:14:03 EDT 2007
  1. CPU
/home/user> cat /proc/cpuinfo
processor : 0
vendor_id : GenuineIntel
cpu family : 6
model : 13
model name : Intel(R) Celeron(R) M processor 900MHz
stepping : 6
cpu MHz : 900.000
cache size : 512 KB
fdiv_bug : no
hlt_bug : no
f00f_bug : no
coma_bug : no
fpu : yes
fpu_exception : yes
cpuid level : 2
wp : yes
flags : fpu vme de pse tsc msr mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat clflush dts acpi mmx fxsr sse sse2 ss tm pbe
bogomips : 1261.30
clflush size : 64
  1. Actual CPU Speed
/home/user> sudo modprobe -r p4-clockmod
/home/user> cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep "cpu MHz"
cpu MHz : 630.109
  1. Memory
/home/user> cat /proc/meminfo
MemTotal: 508328 kB
MemFree: 144140 kB
Buffers: 7924 kB
Cached: 138504 kB
SwapCached: 0 kB
Active: 137504 kB
Inactive: 86276 kB
SwapTotal: 0 kB
SwapFree: 0 kB
Dirty: 52 kB
Writeback: 0 kB
AnonPages: 77372 kB
Mapped: 50644 kB
Slab: 15984 kB
SReclaimable: 10300 kB
SUnreclaim: 5684 kB
PageTables: 1520 kB
NFS_Unstable: 0 kB
Bounce: 0 kB
CommitLimit: 254164 kB
Committed_AS: 232608 kB
VmallocTotal: 524252 kB
VmallocUsed: 4656 kB
VmallocChunk: 519000 kB
  1. Partitions
/home/user> cat /proc/partitions
major minor #blocks name

8 0 3907512 sda
8 1 2409718 sda1
8 2 1477980 sda2
8 3 8032 sda3
8 4 8032 sda4
  1. Disk Free
/home/user> df -h
Filesystem Size Used Avail Use% Mounted on
rootfs 1.4G 103M 1.3G 8% /
/dev/sda1 1.4G 103M 1.3G 8% /
unionfs 1.4G 103M 1.3G 8% /
tmpfs 249M 16K 249M 1% /dev/shm
tmpfs 128M 60K 128M 1% /tmp
  1. USB Devices
/home/user> lsusb
Bus 003 Device 001: ID 0000:0000
Bus 004 Device 001: ID 0000:0000
Bus 002 Device 004: ID 0458:0003 KYE Systems Corp. (Mouse Systems) Genius NetScroll+
Bus 002 Device 001: ID 0000:0000
Bus 005 Device 002: ID 0951:1606 Kingston Technology
Bus 005 Device 001: ID 0000:0000
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 0000:0000
  1. Battery Information
/home/user> cat /proc/acpi/battery/BAT0/info
present: yes
design capacity: 5200 mAh
last full capacity: 100 mAh
battery technology: rechargeable
design voltage: 8400 mV
design capacity warning: 10 mAh
design capacity low: 5 mAh
capacity granularity 1: 52 mAh
capacity granularity 2: 52 mAh
model number: 701
serial number:
battery type: LION
OEM info: ASUS

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

F9 on Eee PC

If you press F9 when Eee PC is starting, you will see the following options:
  1. Normal Boot
  2. Perform Disk Scan
  3. Restore Factory Settings
Choosing Restore Factory Settings will format the user partition. All user data will be lost including the Full Desktop mode. This is different from the system recovery using recovery DVD which will delete all existing partitions, create 4 partitions and restore the recovery image.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Xandros Linux on Eee PC - Full Desktop Mode

As shown is the Full Desktop (Advanced Mode) in Xandros Linux. To get to this mode, do the following in the default easy mode after connecting to the Internet:
  1. Open terminal using Ctrl+Alt+t
  2. Type sudo bash
  3. Type apt-get update
  4. Type apt-get install ksmserver kicker
  5. Press Power Switch button and select Full Desktop to reboot
Some of the additional tasks you can do in Full Desktop are Performance Monitor, Event Viewer, Synaptic Package Manager etc and you can use 2 desktops. Once you shut down or restart, it will revert automatically back to Easy Mode. If you want to switch to Full Desktop again, you can press Power Switch button and select Full Desktop to reboot.

If you want to switch to Full Desktop perpetually, you can go to Settings -> Personalization in Easy Mode. Under Login Mode, select Full desktop mode and click OK. This Full Desktop mode will remain even if you shutdown or restart until you switch back to Easy Mode.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Xandros Linux on Eee PC - Easy Mode

The default operating system on Eee PC is Xandros Linux in easy mode. The screens are as shown.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Everest Corporate Edition & SiSoftware Sandra on Eee PC

I ran Everest Corporate Edition and SiSoftware Sandra on my Eee PC.

The first software checks CPU temperature whereas the second software determines what are connected to the two mini PCIe - wireless card and available but the connector may or may not be present.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Australian PC World Summer 2008

  1. 39 exceptional sites
  2. AMD's new Phenom CPU
Cover DVD (Free Paid Version)
  1. Paragon Drive Copy 8.0 SE
  2. QuarkXPress 5

Thursday, December 6, 2007

HD Tune on Eee PC

I ran HD Tune 2.54 on my Eee PC. The results are as shown.

In terms of transfer rate, the internal SSD is the fastest followed by SanDisk U3 Cruzer Micro and SanDisk microSD.

In terms of access time, the internal SSD is the fastest, followed by SanDisk microSD and SanDisk U3 Cruzer Micro.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

CPU-Z on Eee PC

I ran cpu-z on my Eee PC. The results are as shown.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Atheros Configuration Service ACS Error

I encounter this error whenever I resume from standby on my Eee PC. After checking online, I found it is related to Atheros Configuration Service.
It gives access to single sign on and a mechanism to communicate with the supplicant for security negotiation.
As I prefer to use Windows to configure my wireless network settings, I have disabled ACU from startup. To remove the error, I have stopped this service from running and changed the startup from automatic to manual.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Xandros Linux vs Windows XP Home Edition on Eee PC

Pros - Xandros Linux
  1. Can run pre-installed diagnostics test to check system health on hardware
  2. Takes 5 minutes to restore image for system recovery
Cons - Xandros Linux
  1. Difficult to configure third party software such as firewall
  2. SMPlayer can be configured with libdvdcss2 to play DVD but there are black bars at the top and bottom of screen and volume is too soft even at maximum.
Pros - Windows XP Home Edition
  1. Easier to install third party software such as AVS DVD player to play DVD or firewall for protection. Aspect ratio can be changed in AVS DVD player such that no black bars will appear at the top and bottom of screen.
  2. Shows percentage of charging status
  3. Has more free disk space available with default installation
Cons - Windows XP Home Edition
  1. Need to purchase a separate license
  2. Takes longer time to do fresh installation or restore image from backup

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Eee PC 4G (701)

I bought two Eee PC 4G (701) for testing - one white (7A) and the other black (7B).

The white Eee PC is pre-loaded with BIOS 0204 and Rev 1.1 image (2007.10.07_04.33) whereas the black Eee PC is pre-loaded with BIOS 0401 and Rev 1.3 image (2007.10.19_13.01). The first thing I tested was internet browsing. My home Wifi network is encrypted using WPA2 Personal with AES/TKIP. I have no issues connecting to the internet using both Eee PCs except that you can't use any space in your passphrase. Both Eee PCs can reconnect to the wireless network automatically after shutdown or restart.
I chose the black Eee PC with the latest BIOS to install Windows XP Home Edition SP2 with an external DVD drive. During installation, I deleted all existing 4 partitions and formated the SSD with FAT32. It went smoothly and finished after 40 minutes.
I encountered problem with the white Eee PC. Sometimes, the touchpad is not working. In the end, I decided to update to the latest BIOS and latest image from the DVD of the black Eee PC. I am surprised that the restore took only 5 minutes.
I tested booting both Eee PCs at the same time. The white Eee PC running default Xandros Linux boots up faster but takes longer to get connected to the wireless network. So, in the end, both took almost the same time from startup to getting connected to the Internet.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

East-Tec Eraser Lite Build

I installed this software from the DVD of APC September 2007. It can be used to
  1. protect your computer and Internet privacy
  2. erase previously "deleted" files beyond recovery
  3. erase specific files and folders beyond recovery
The East-Tec Eraser Lite edition can clean Windows & Browsers only whereas East-Tec Eraser 2007 can clean Windows, Browsers, Applications, Peer2Peer, News and Email Readers and Custom. It supports all browsers - Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Opera. The differences between the two versions are as shown.