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Hardware Hacking

Hacking Asus EEE 150

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the hack-on-this dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Torsten Lyngaas has published a set of instructions with photographs on his personal wiki that describe the steps he took to install $450 worth of extra hardware, including a GPS receiver, an FM transmitter, Bluetooth, extra USB ports, 802.11n, and an extra 4GB flash storage drive."
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Hacking Asus EEE

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  • Honest question (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Pojut (1027544) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @11:43AM (#22235316) Homepage
    Why do laptops not have any kind of universal form factor similar to desktops? Is it because of the varying shapes and sizes of the cases? Couldn't laptop manufacturers just design the case around standardized hardware, thus making it easier to upgrade them (or are they already doing this?)

    For example...say I wanted to upgrade the video card in my old laptop (provided it wasn't one built into the motherboard)...why isn't there a universal way of doing this, similar to how it is done on a desktop? Cost?
    • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Malevolent Tester (1201209) * on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @11:44AM (#22235352) Journal
      Couldn't laptop manufacturers just design the case around standardized hardware, thus making it easier to upgrade them

      And who'd buy a new laptop then?
      • Re:Honest question (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Arthur B. (806360) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @12:16PM (#22235806)
        Why not make laptops break after a month then, they'd sell even more laptop!

        A laptop that is easy to upgrade is worth more to the consumer, so you could sell it for more by pointing out you won't need to buy another laptop. Why doesn't it happen ? In a way it does, there are laptop manufacturers that produce these kinds, but they are not really popular, they're a bit bloated etc.

        I think laptops are going to diverge between a desktop replacement that you can easily carry - transportables, and those will come with standardized hardware, and ultra-portables where people won't care about the upgradability enough to sacrifice weight or volume.

        But the point is, the argument from planned obsolescence works only if the consumer is unable to think mid-long term (which is different from *caring about long term*). Used car sell for much less than new cars so they seem to have that ability.
        • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Insightful)

          by wwwillem (253720) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @12:30PM (#22235978) Homepage
          I would love to see (and willing to pay extra) if for starters standardization appears for laptop batteries and power bricks. Now that we (the world) are using for laptops for 10+ years, I guess nearly everybody has drawers full of old power bricks that are incompatible with your new and different brand notebook. Why can we standardize on 110 resp. 230 volt in our homes, but not on 18 Volt (or whatever) for a notebook.

          Notebook designers can still make their own power-bricks, but the plug and voltage should be standardized. Hey, VGA and USB are also common accross the industry, so why not the power as well.

          Same with batteries. Why do I have AAA / AA / C / D cells for my transistor radios and flashlights, but not the same thing for my laptop. Everex and Mallory should be ones where you buy your battery from. Laptops is now a mature product and the time is over where customized batteries were needed because of the constraints.

          I know of course why this doesn't happen, it's all about profit. But because it all ends up in our landfills, this is something where IMHO governments should step in and regulate. If they can regulate the CO2 emissions of my car, they should also be allowed to take on this.

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by Anonymous Coward
            -1 Makes too much sense
          • by Sancho (17056)

            Hey, VGA and USB are also common accross the industry, so why not the power as well.

            It's partially inertia, I'm sure, but also the fact that each computer maker doesn't want to compete in every peripheral's market. Dell doesn't want to compete on external hard drives, external TV cards, external fingerprint readers, external mice, external keyboards, external keyboard lights, etc, particularly when doing so would preclude providing industry standard ports on their devices. However it's pretty easy to keep proprietary batteries and cables simply because there is no industry standard that

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by evilviper (135110)

            I would love to see (and willing to pay extra) if for starters standardization appears for laptop batteries and power bricks.

            What isn't standardized about batteries and power bricks?

            I've got 3 power bricks from different laptops, and they're all almost identical (+/- 1V DC) and power my current laptops just fine. There are a few manufacturers that insist on funky connectors from time to time, but clearly you're happily buying from them despite this, so it must not matter to you as much as you say it does,

            • by Eddi3 (1046882)
              "You might notice that you DON'T have Li-Ion AAA/AA/C/D cells"

              O RLY? [google.com]
              • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

                by oakgrove (845019)
                The link you provided is a Google search for lithium batteries. Not lithium-ion batteries like the ones generally used in laptops, cell-phones, etc.

                There are several important differences. The practical difference between Lithium batteries and Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries is that most Lithium batteries are not rechargeable but Li-ion batteries are rechargeable. From a chemical standpoint Lithium batteries use lithium in its pure metallic form. Li-ion batteries use lithium compounds which are much mor

              • by evilviper (135110)

                http://www.google.com/search?q=lithium+AA+batteries&hl=en&show=dd&sa=N&tab=fw

                "Lithium" and "Lithium Ion" are completely and totally different things. Note those "Lithium" batteries are disposable, and NOT rechargeable.
          • Power bricks (Score:3, Insightful)

            by upside (574799)
            One small positive experience for me was IBM Thinkpad power supplies, which stayed the same for years. Until Lenovo came along, that is.
          • Re:Honest question (Score:4, Insightful)

            by tlhIngan (30335) <[ten.frow] [ta] [todhsals]> on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @05:55PM (#22240140)

            I would love to see (and willing to pay extra) if for starters standardization appears for laptop batteries and power bricks


            There was a standard, briefly, in the mid-90's. Pushed by Duracell, I believe (who obviously wanted to sell laptop batteries), and was used in a few laptops (Toshiba?). Alas, it died mostly because it was "Yet another battery" and very few people used it. Plus, since the battery determined the formfactor, it was somewhat constraining in that all laptops now had a fixed minimum size in two directions (the last one isn't very constraining, since you need the rest of the laptop hardware). Of course, it probably lasted a few years, then people realized that they either didn't bother buying extra batteries, or if they did, it sat on the shelf, and by the time they needed it, it was as bad as their current one (such is the life of Li-Ion/LiPo batteries - their life decreases as they get older - so if you bought an extra battery when you bought the laptop, in 2 years, they both will hold very similar capacities if treated well).

            A laptop that is easy to upgrade is worth more to the consumer, so you could sell it for more by pointing out you won't need to buy another laptop. Why doesn't it happen ? In a way it does, there are laptop manufacturers that produce these kinds, but they are not really popular, they're a bit bloated etc.


            Perhaps. BUt as we see with desktops - people don't upgrade their computers much. Sure they may stick in another hard disk or change the memory, but that's about all. Video cards, other accessories are added way less often nowadays (especially since everything's gone USB or Firewire), so upgradability is less of a concern now than it was. Laptops offer portability and enough power, and with all the external hard drives, capture cards, etc. etc. etc., all the functionality that was once in a desktop without having to install cards and all that.

            A modern laptop is designed to upgradable within a limited range of parts (see the "customize" button on every manufacturer's page? They just pop in different parts), which for most people is OK. Incremental upgrades are done less and less these days because it's not worth it.
          • by clem (5683)

            Why can we standardize on 110 resp. 230 volt in our homes, but not on 18 Volt (or whatever) for a notebook.
            Your friend didn't realize that here in East Germany we use 220 Volts current. He was found in his hotel room impaled on a large electrical device. Our surgeon did what they could but it took them 2 hours just to get the smile off his face.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by drew (2081)
          Laptops (even carefully used ones) also take more more of a beating than a desktop system, so their life expectancy is less. A desktop can run for 10 years with occasional upgrades if your needs are not too demanding (my parents current home PC is a PIII that I originally got in 1997 or 1998 and it's still going strong). I've yet to have owned a laptop that needed to be upgraded before it started to show significant physical signs of age- loose power adapter plug or bad charging circuits, busted hinges or
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by TheRaven64 (641858)
          I upgrade my laptop roughly every three years. Last upgrade, pretty much everything got upgraded. The WiFi added support for .n, the CPU got faster (and dual-core and 64-bit), the RAM got faster, the optical drive supports writing dual-layer DVDs (the previous one was single-layer only), the GPU got significantly better. The screen, while the same physical form-factor, got a higher resolution and the machine got a slightly smaller box. The USB and FireWire ports are the same speed as is the Bluetooth, b
        • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Insightful)

          by misleb (129952) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @01:43PM (#22236920)

          A laptop that is easy to upgrade is worth more to the consumer, so you could sell it for more by pointing out you won't need to buy another laptop.


          Most laptops are relatively easy to upgrade. That is, for the things that are important: HD and RAM. Some even allow you to upgrade the optical drive without too much trouble. Might have to have someone with some skill do the work, but it isn't impossible. Beyond that, what would you upgrade? CPU? Yeah right, CPU sockets change on a weekly basis. Even on a desktop, your motherboard is probably going to be obsolete by the time you want to make an upgrade. You'll need a new one. And with that, all new RAM. So what on a laptop is really good long term? The GPU? I suppose you could have a standard slot for that, but it would add to the bulk. The display? The keyboard? Certainly not the battery.

          -matthew
          • by bhtooefr (649901)
            And, Alienware, nVidia, and DAAMIT all have their own specifications for expandable GPUs on their laptops.
            • by misleb (129952)

              And, Alienware, nVidia, and DAAMIT all have their own specifications for expandable GPUs on their laptops.


              But they are upgradable. So what's the problem?

      • by misleb (129952)

        And who'd buy a new laptop then?


        Probably the same people who buy brand new Dell desktops rather than upgrade anything more complex than RAM or a hard drive.

        -matthew
      • Personally I love my eee. Now I didn't do any hardware upgrades, but changed the OS to Ubuntu and added a Bluetooth dongle, and it is slick as a second PC using my cell for internet access. The key to your question is very few people upgrade their desktops anymore. Most do so via USB. While I'd love open standards for laptop hardware, an easily upgradeable laptop just isn't in demand. Most people don't change their OS when they buy a computer or upgrade when a new version comes out. There are some exc
    • by Hatta (162192)
      Because different people have different needs.
      • Wouldn't that be the point?

        People have different needs and wants with desktops and you can build any way you want. Full atx down to itx, 15in screen, 21in, etc. Why not the same options with notebooks?
        • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Hatta (162192) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @12:10PM (#22235726) Journal
          Because if I don't need an internal optical drive on my laptop, it would be dumb for me to buy a case that has one. Extra weight and bulk for no benefit. But there are plenty of people who do want internal optical drives, so there really is no one size fits all solution. Is this not obvious?
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by schnikies79 (788746)
            I know that, but why not different sized laptop bodies and such.

            Why not have say, the itx version of the laptop body which has no optics and then the atx version which has room for all the bells and whistles, with a few options in between? I'm not saying a one-size fits all size laptop body.

            There are all different sized desktop cases, why not a selection of like 5 or so different laptop body sizes? Every size has more or less room, size, options, etc.? Then you pick and choose your parts, screen size and
    • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @11:49AM (#22235434)

      For example...say I wanted to upgrade the video card in my old laptop (provided it wasn't one built into the motherboard)...why isn't there a universal way of doing this, similar to how it is done on a desktop? Cost?

      Because then you couldn't get a really, really thin laptop?

    • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Interesting)

      by TheRaven64 (641858) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @11:57AM (#22235552) Journal
      It's mainly about size. Every laptop I have bought has been smaller than the one it replaced. A fixed form factor would make this impossible. That said, there is a standard for miniPCI Express and if your GPU is on one of these cards it can be upgraded. Quite a few older machines came with miniPCI slots for things like WiFi or crypto accelerators. They're not often used though, since laptops tend to have everything the designers thought might be useful soldered on to the motherboard.
      • by Catbeller (118204)
        Interesting. Is it possible that manufacturers pursue ever-shrinking devices mainly so that standardization cannot occur? Is the ever-"free" market arranging the furniture to keep prices high and interchangeability of parts impossible... yep.

        Well, it won't last forever. (I may underestimate the power of rich people wanting more money). Optical interconnects will eventually evolve to the point where components can be swapped by simply unplugging and replugging, or perhaps components could communicate by simp
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Bartab (233395)
          I may underestimate the power of rich people wanting more money

          I, however, will never underestimate the ability of People With A Cause to see conspiracies.
          • Well you see the conspiracy at work here: GP thinks the problem is between rich people and poor people, while the issue is between people who want money as a weapon of control and demolish all competing value systems and all the rest. Many rich people are simply the slaves that believe the "Life is a game and money is how you keep the score" propaganda.
            And you dismissing conspiracies in general. Maybe you have seen some debunked? So? Maybe you find other possible explanations? So? Conspiracies are part of h
        • Interesting. Is it possible that manufacturers pursue ever-shrinking devices mainly so that standardization cannot occur?
          No, manufacturers shrink devices because they are still a fair distance away from the ideal form factor. When they get there, standardisation will bring down costs and the non-standard models will be consigned to niches, exactly as happened with desktops.
        • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Insightful)

          by pragma_x (644215) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @01:48PM (#22236974) Journal

          or perhaps components could communicate by simply "seeing" each other and transmitting data via light.

          I've dreamed of this for a long time. Everything just plugs into "the bus", by mating lenses, GND and +5V rails. Plus, optical interconnects have just silly amounts of bandwidth at their disposal, all interference free. The major problem is having a cheap-but-good UART of sorts that can drink from that firehose.

          The neat thing about this is that your tech problems then devolve into rather trival territory:

          - "Don't plug that into slot 5, the lens is scratched."
          - "I can't use that, I need a few more mA on my power supply, plus my bus manager has feckity power management."
          - "I had a device conflict since that network adapter was factory preset to 'blue' - I switched it to 'red' and off I went."

          Anyway, you're right: this'll be a huge boon for portables. Removing the sheer number of metal-to-metal contacts on devices would be a huge step towards proper miniaturization of a lot of devices. You may also see some broad compatibility between desktops, laptops, palmtops and cellphones, depending on the level of miniaturization involved.
    • Cost and size. Connectors take both, and in a price and space constrained thing like a laptop - which tend to be more "disposable" in terms of longevity than desktops - it's simply a better choice to solder the graphics chip on to the motherboard.

      Note too that laptop motherboard chipsets tend to have the most integrated peripherals, compared to desktops - integrated video, LAN, ports, etc. simply because of the need to save space.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by gEvil (beta) (945888)
        Not to mention the power and heat issues...
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by LandKurt (901298)
        It's not just the size of the connector, it's the size you have to devote to an unknown future upgrade board.

        Just look at the amount of empty space inside the average tower PC. You can't add that much upgrade flexibility to a laptop without ballooning its size.

        Laptops are optimized for low size and weight. Desktops are optimized for upgrade flexibility. This naturally leads to two distinctly different products. Even hard drives and memory, which you can usually upgrade on a laptop, use different form factor
        • by avronius (689343) *
          Just build the laptop case out of spandex - might learn more than you ever wanted to about it's anatomy, however...
    • by Nimsoft (858559)
      Some already have upgradeable hard drives, memory, graphics cards via MXM modules, socketed processors and expansion cards via mini PCI express or expresscard.

      That's pretty much everything, not bad! The trouble is all these sockets and expansion slots and connectors add to the size and weight so smaller laptops are unlikely to use them.
    • by Vellmont (569020)

      Why do laptops not have any kind of universal form factor similar to desktops?

      Because the size, shape, weight, etc of a laptop matters in a laptop, and it doesn't matter terribly much in a desktop. Compatibility and flexibility matters more in desktop design, as it allows manufacturers to pick and choose based upon need and cost without having to re-design everything.

      A laptop is packed so tight, that the space considerations are a lot different, so the needs of flexibility in packing things together, diffe
    • Asus aaaw. As in "aaaw my battery is dead already!?!?!"
      • by vux984 (928602)
        Asus aaaw. As in "aaaw my battery is dead already!?!?!"

        Good thing he thought of that and added external power switches so he could turn off the devices he didn't need at any given time, but don't read the article, its much more fun to see off-the-cuff wit like this repeated ad nauseum. ;)
    • by Sockatume (732728)
      On-board graphics cards and CPU slots are becoming increasingly standardised, and memory and hard drives are thankfully pretty much all the same these days. A few of the bigger laptop manufacturers are collaborating on a standard for the rest of the components ("common backplane" or something), including the LCD panels and keyboards which often make laptop overhauls a nightmare. As an example I have a 6-year-old Toshiba at home, and main thing I'm worried about is the death of the LCD backlight, which I can
    • by PFAK (524350) *
      No, they do the opposite. IBM and the like actually whitelist what Mini PCI cards you can put in a machine.

      Lame, I know.
    • by misleb (129952)

      For example...say I wanted to upgrade the video card in my old laptop (provided it wasn't one built into the motherboard)

      I think you just answered your own question. To make the stuff fit into the smallest possible space, they need to build just about everything into the mainboard. You'd more or less be buy a new computer when you "upgrade" anyway. Might as well replace the shell too. And the battery is probably not going to be very good buy the time you get arund to upgrading. Might as well replace that

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by sbrown123 (229895)
      I remember opening a friends computer many years back to help him upgrade the memory. After close examination we noticed that the memory was soldered in to place. Later someone asked me to help them upgrade their graphics card. I opened the case and noticed the AGP slot looked funny. I quickly figured out that the slot was actually backwards. So to answer your question about laptops: the answer is vendor lock-in for hardware upgrades and limit choices. Until customers start demanding standards the man
    • Desktops have plenty of room, size and weight aren't a concern. You can have liters of dead space and it doesn't matter. If space and weight did matter, then we wouldn't be stuck with full height cards and space for full-length boards.

      Notebooks need a heck of a lot of optimization to fit that power into a space that's less than 2" thick and a carryable weight. Sure, there's MXM for video, but that's only part of the problem.
    • I would guess that the added cost of creating a standard for doing this, putting the connectors in for this (versus soldering everything in) would make it not cost effective.

      A Dell laptop can be found for $400-$500 entry level. If They are going to add the ability to put in a better video card, then they also need to allow for upgradeable power circuits (or do that from the beginning) to carry the draw of whatever video card you may put in. This would include the brick and any circuits on the mobo that m
    • Re:Honest question (Score:5, Interesting)

      by evilviper (135110) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @02:08PM (#22237230) Journal

      Why do laptops not have any kind of universal form factor similar to desktops? Is it because of the varying shapes and sizes of the cases?

      Laptops are largely standardized. You can swap RAM, miniPCI devices (usually for graphics) WiFi, modems, keyboards, PSUs, etc.

      As for motherboards... desktops really aren't standardized either. It's just that ATX is so large to begin with that making cases a few inches larger than an ATX motherboard (...is supposed to be) is hardly noticed, so cases are significantly oversized in both depth and width to ensure every motherboard out there will fit... and nobody cares. With laptops, size is a big selling point, so there's no room for several inches of such a fudge-factor.

      When prices on the tech go down much further, so that top of the line motherboards can be made extremely tiny (say, 4" diameter) at only nominal expense over larger boards, you'll see laptops standardized just like desktops were, when the technology advanced to the point where ATX was more than big enough for everybody.
    • In a desktop, you really only have to worry about fitting in the box. In a laptop, you have to carefully manage a lot less space, and make sure heat generating components are properly ventilated.

      I think there may have been a few Dell laptops with a specialized video adaptor, but otherwise they're all part of the motherboard.
    • Why do laptops not have any kind of universal form factor similar to desktops? Is it because of the varying shapes and sizes of the cases? Couldn't laptop manufacturers just design the case around standardized hardware, thus making it easier to upgrade them (or are they already doing this?)
      Take a look at a standard desktop and monitor. Now take a look at a mac mini. and one of dells slim buisness desktops.

      the standard desktop is hugely expandable and customisable but you pay a huge size penalty for that fle
  • Because it already seems to be slashdotted.
  • Corel Cache? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Razed By TV (730353) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @11:46AM (#22235376)
    There are something like 92 pictures on that page. I don't think his personal wiki is going to be able to survive the onslaught of /. readers. May want to corel cache that next time.

    http://beta.ivancover.com.nyud.net:8090/wiki/index.php/Eee_PC_Internal_Upgrades [nyud.net]

    Hopefully it gets all of the pictures.
  • I was gone for what - 10 minutes? I come back to check some news, and hit the shortcut to /. bby accident (I was going to NYT), but I figured - OK - I was here 10 min ago, but - Oh Look - an article on the EEEPC - I've been tinking of getting one of those - looks interesting!

    Bingo - article was slashdotted. Damn that was quick. 10 minutes. amazing. I think with some effort slashdot could bring the internet itself to its knees...maybe...possibley...kinda...sorta...almost...not really...never happen...fuhge

    • if your thinking about getting one let me say... do it! I got 2 when they first came out, they work great. 1 is now a linux router (w/usb 10/100 ethernet) and the other is currently running windows XP. works great. I'd go back to the Linux that came with it, as its a great web browser, but oddly enough it boots really fast with winxp, and my t-mobile shadow is a modem in XP. so I've got a laptop with internet that I can fit in my pocket. why bother with 802.11n, bluetooth, gps... phone does gps, usb cable t
      • by windex (92715)
        An exception to the above, I have an eee running XP and I did a bluetooth hack, which was totally worth it in my case because I can use my blackberry as a bluetooth modem.

        Bluetooth is pretty easy as the extra express card pin out has an integrated USB port and works well, it's actually a little easier in the eee's they removed the express card socket from, since you no longer have to build an adapter and can instead just solder it right to the board.

        It's also not odd that it boots XP (or linux, or anything)
        • I'm pretty sure you're referring to MiniPCI-Express (mPCIe), not ExpressCard. ExpressCard is the PCMCIA replacement, and is external usually.
  • This was on Hackaday first. FYI.
  • Thanks for the coral cache.

    It all looks great, but he never shows it back together. Does the keyboard and palm rest actually fit back down on the computer correctly now?

    Hacking a laptop is fine, but it should be useful as a laptop.
  • Oblig. (Score:4, Funny)

    by hairykrishna (740240) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @12:03PM (#22235638)
    Is he running his website off it?
  • ...my hacked Asus EEE. Feel free to brows%&&&a6 G66HH*78 (*(jjjjjj.....

    connecting.....
  • The thing won't ready for prime time until it's got a kitchen sink.
  • I just got issued an Eee PC for a travelling laptop. So far I'm planning on leaving it in "Easy Mode" - when in Rome, right? I want to spend more time actually using it than hacking on it.

    Having said that, 512MB RAM just isn't enough when there isn't swap to fall back on. Anyone know how much the extra capacity will increase power consumption and decrease battery runtime, assuming it takes more current to keep 2GB refreshed than .5GB? And in such things, is CAS 4 any different than CAS 5? Finally, hi

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by glop (181086)
      Actually, I have read some pretty interesting stuff on the eeeuser.com forums.
      They notably explained that when in sleep mode the RAM is refreshed normally (i.e. not with a special low power technique) and uses 2W.

      This forces me to turn my EEE off to avoid running out of battery after a day or an night of sleep mode.

      I did not see if the 2GB stick made things worse or not... Maybe there is more about this in the eeeuser.com forums.

       
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      The 8G EEE has twice the RAM of the 4G model but it has the same battery and is rated for the same amount of battery life, so I don't think it makes much of a difference.
    • by compro01 (777531)
      1. good question of ram power use. i can't really find any meaningful stats on the power usage of ram, besides the rule-of-thumb of 15-30W/GB for desktops, which definitely doesn't apply to laptops.

      2. i wouldn't think the CAS would make any difference. the performance difference is marginal and i wouldn't think it changes the power use any.

      3. yeah, no change in performance, but i also wouldn't using faster rated ram running at the same speed as lower-rated ram would make any difference in power use.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by xj (958167)
      RAM is a bunch of memory chips stuck on a circuit board. Those chips are rated at how fast the memory can be accessed in nanoseconds. A stick of ram operating at X frequency and X CAS latency will correspond to a given access time in nanoseconds. CAS latency is the number of clock cycles that the computer must wait between accessing the RAM. A company can use lower cost memory chips and sell ram rated at a higher frequency but at the expense of a higher cas latency. If you want the fastest ram possible get
      • When you get to slower frequency at lower CAS latency it is not as clear cut, because now the clocks you are using to measure the latency are not the same so even if the latency was the same the CAS latency would not be.

        Well, apparently the Eee's FSB is locked to 70MHz, so I'd imagine that the stock DDR2 533 is about as fast as it could possibly take advantage of. I guess what I was really wondering (but expressed poorly) is whether "faster" RAM was the same as "slower" RAM, just certified to work at higher clocks, or if there was some fundamental difference that would affect power consumption (such as earning the higher spec by drawing more voltage or something like that). Crappy car analogy that triggered this questi

    • by Zerth (26112) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @01:28PM (#22236728)
      Be aware that the default OS kernel only sees 1 gig. There is a precompiled 2 gig kernel on the eeeuser wiki, or roll your own.
    • The only guide I've seen that makes sense about DRAM has timings was at LWN.net [slashdot.org] and was part of a massive series called What every programmer should know about Memory [lwn.net]. Part One [lwn.net] explained how dynamic ram picks the words it reads from an access matrix, so requires time to energise the reading portion of the memory cell. IIRC, the answer to your question is in that link, but I can't remember the exact details to recite here.
  • It's not clear from the page whether he's working with the 700 series or the 701 series, although I'm guessing since he didn't have to solder in more RAM (yet he mentions buying a 2GB DDR2 module) he's working with a 701.

    Anyone heard about upgrading a 700? (They're $300 off NewEgg)
    • AFAIK, the only thing the 700s are missing is the RAM slot and camera. In that case, you should actually have a extra USB header. Note, however, that the 700s have a weaker battery in addition to the soldered-on RAM, so I would keep that in mind.
  • by MECC (8478) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @01:31PM (#22236768)

    Hacking ASUS EEE

    Will ASUS come out with an iEEE laptop?
    • by juhaz (110830)

      Will ASUS come out with an iEEE laptop?
      No, but they will be shortly releasing AIEEEE -laptop for the whatcouldpossiblygowrong crowd.
  • Not every desktop case can fit the latest and greatest video card. I think the main factor is cooling. There is such a wide variety of notebook processors and video cards, you would have dozens of standards. Do you want straight up desktop performance? Mobile gaming? Mobile gaming with battery life? Ultra portable? Large screen with battery life? There are so many ways to optomize a laptop you would have dozens of standards. Not just ATX, Mini-ATX, mid tower, full tower, etc. Actually, that is exa
  • by e2d2 (115622) on Wednesday January 30, 2008 @01:37PM (#22236862)
    Why is almost every post lately labeled "what could possibly go wrong". Who the fuck is doing that and what is the purpose? Every single thing you do could go wrong, wtf is your point? Do we halt progress you son of a bitch! I throw my hate at you sir!

    That being said, what could possibly go wrong?

    • by EnsilZah (575600)
      Am I the only one not caring about tags and unaware of their utility?
      I've never seen a "what could possibly go wrong" tag but I've seen quite a few posts complaining about them.

      Must be because I'm using RSS and haven't visited the main page in weeks.
  • Thank you, to the submitter, and the editor who actually approved it, for finally posting a REAL hacking story. Not some wussy "I changed a config line and now i'm 1337", but a real honest to god hard hack.

    Plus, this now sounds like a really cool device. Built in GPS and FM transmitter?
    Awesome.

    I wanna go dust off my soldering gun now.
  • Very professionally done. Shows what is within reach without expensive tools. Jusat some dedication, dexterity and insight into electronics needed.

To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing. -- Elbert Hubbard

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