Asus EEE PC 901!

July 5, 2008

Yup, I went out and got one a couple days ago, wow these things are small.  Really takes a few minutes to get used to the size of the keyboard, but once you’ve adapted it’s smooth sailing from there.

Now for the painful parts…

Only the XP version of the 901 is available right now, that means only 12G of space (Linux version has 20G) and… well, it’s got windows on it.  Took me about 6 hours before someone told me the Linux version wasn’t released yet.  So I broke down and got the XP one.  I really needed one as I’m going on vacation in a week.  Going to visit a friend in Shanghai, then head down to Hong Kong.  After that it’s off to the producers meeting in the states, and then to Kuala Lumpur with my wife.  Lots of flying, and always got work to do.

So, we all know what happened to XP the second I got home, wipe and replaced with Ubuntu.  Of course things couldn’t be easy, both the wired and wireless drivers wouldn’t work.  Ok, shouldn’t be a problem right… just go find the right drivers… oh was I wrong.

First, the EEE has no optical drive, and with no network connection I had to download the missing packages and put them on a USB drive to move over.  Then you discover that package requires another one… repeat, a lot.  Finally get it, nope… doesn’t work.

Next step, try the IRC rooms, not always so helpful, but sometimes you find a nice guy/gal that knows what they are doing.  Spent all day on it, ended up with what should have worked but didn’t… gave up.

Next day try some more… still no luck.  Ok, let’s just go back to XP and verify that the things actually work.  Oh wait… I deleted the recovery partition… oops.  Ok, I’ve got the DVD.. I’ll just make this into a bootable USB and run from there.  MANY MANY failed attempts later, I gave up and wife wanted to go out to the movies.

Get home, and found this great person by the name of SynrG on the Ubuntu IRC server.  They made me realize I was an idiot… never bothered to check to make sure the Cat5 cable was good… it wasn’t.  Magic, I now have wired connection.  Here’s what it took to make it work:

1) Install Ubuntu Hardy (8.04) with build-essential package (Can download here:

2) Download Linux driver from ASUS (card is Atheros(R) AR8121/AR8113 PCI-E):

3) Unrar them and transfer to USB drive and place in your EEE.

4) Cd to the src directory (<usb drive mount>/LinuxDrivers/L1e_Lan/l1e-l2e-linux-v1.0.0.4/src)

5) sudo KBUILD_NOPEDANTIC=1 make

6) sudo KBUILD_NOPEDANTIC=1 make install

7) A file called atl1e.ko is made, that’s your driver.  Move to: /lib/modules/2.6.24-16-generic/kernel/drivers/net/atl1e/at1le.ko  (If for some reason the atl1e directory isn’t made, just sudo mkdir atl1e, your kernel name may be different)

8 ) Move into the directory from step 7 and: sudo insmod ./atl1e.ko

That’s it, you should have working wired internet now!

Now for the wireless… I’m pretty sure it’s working and it’s just my router is acting up(wife says her laptop can’t connect either) I’ll look into it later.  In the mean time, here’s what I did to get it running (it can see the network, just not connect… but like I said, I think that’s my router).

1) Download driver from:

2) Unzip and move to USB drive(if working with second computer).  Move to EEE.

3) cd into 2008_0325_RT2860_Linux_STA_v1.6.1.0

4) sudo make

5) sudo make install

6) Reboot.

That’s it, should have the driver up and running.  I haven’t had much luck with it in roaming mode, so I would suggest going into the network-manager and taking your wireless connection off of roaming mode(just put any as ESSID and mode DHCP).  Then use ‘sudo dhclient’ to hopefully find and connect to an access point.

An update, I got it working!  Here’s what you need to do:

1) In network-manager get it to connect to anything, if nothing shows up just put any for ESSID and mode DHCP then use ‘sudo dhclient’ and it should connect up for you.

2) Once connected run the magic command… ‘sudo iwconfig <interface, mine is ra0> key open’

3) Boom, you should have a connection.  A note, for some reason firefox keeps starting in offline mode when on wireles(at least for me), if yours does that just goto File and uncheck Work Offline.

After all of that, I finally got things up and running.  Here are some other good sites to help out if you try the same things: – Great information on how to fix some of the smaller things that don’t work. – A version of Ubuntu tailored for the EEE, really nice stuff.  Be sure to read their tip on fixing the shutdown process as there’s an issue where a sound module doesn’t get removed correctly so the computer never really shuts down.  Which reminds me, if you install Ubuntu be ready to yank the battery after the initial install as that fix obviously hasn’t been done yet.


20 Responses to “Asus EEE PC 901!”

  1. anon Says:

    THANK YOU SO MUCH! It made my eeepc 1000h work perfectly on ubuntu-eee! but i used ndiswrapper instead for the wireless and everything seem to work normally even with network-manager.

  2. Ludw Says:

    Thanks! This helped a lot. But the wireless only works with unencrypted networks. Anyone got the windows driver for ndiswrapper?

  3. […] Asus EEE PC 901! « Kunin’s Blog (tags: eee) […]

  4. kryzir Says:

    Great post but I didn’t get build-essential installed, the depencies are sucking, I downloaded all depecies and getting problems also. I there a way to install it over usb repo?


  5. Dean Says:

    this driver isn’t here anymore, you know where else it could be found? btw I updated your post on and added my way of installing wifi.

  6. Alan Says:

    The LAN driver is still on ASUS website, just click on that link above, then click on the “Drivers” tab, then choose Linux as the OS, it will bring you to the page with the linux drivers.

  7. Alan Says:

    If you choose the ndiswrapper method for wifi, there is a new driver in Ralink website:

    ver. date: 07/07/2008

  8. Alan Says:

    I successfully installed (although with some error messages when MAKE and MAKE INSTALL) the atl1e.ko driver, however, when I restart the eeepc, the driver does not load by itself, I have to sudo insmod again. What should I do?

  9. Robert Says:

    Alan, you need to create a init.d script.
    I followed this guide here for ATi drivers

    Essentially you need to create a script that is the insmod command, be sure to chmod your script, and init.d scripts are run as root so no sudo.

  10. Alan Says:

    Thanks, Robert, your method works like a charm

  11. Artemis3 Says:

    Yank the battery to turn off the eeepc? LOL man 🙂

    Just like most computers, to force it off, you push and hold the power button 5 seconds…

    You could also use alt sysrq reisuo which is a linux forced graceful shutdown (switch o with b to reboot instead).

  12. Chris Gray Says:

    Hi, I get stuck trying to compile the drivers, I get “*** Linux kernel source not found. Stop.”

    I’m using OpenSuse 11.

  13. Katya Says:


    the LAN drivers worked fine, until I’ve tried to setup the wlan, following the instructions for madwifi and made a nasty typo, installed packages for kernel…16 instead of 19 😦

    After reboot LAN wouldn’t work, and the attempt of reinstalling the driver results in the same error Chris Gray has: Makefile 62: *** Linux kernel source not found. Stop.

    I’m running ubuntu eee 8.04 though.

  14. Nick Axmaker Says:

    Hey, Kunin,

    thanks so much for posting about the Ubuntu EEE. I was having troubles deciding which one I wanted to go with and this was perfect. Please do tell me though, did you get the webcam working on yours? My webcam doesnt want to work on my 701.

  15. fizekul Says:

    Ya me too Chris. Im on debian.

    Any help for this? Is there a way to have a usb repository for build-essential. finding all the dependencies is a major pain in teh arse.

  16. […] WLAN-Chip. Als Ethernet-Chip kommt ATL1E zum Einsatz, für den Asus selbst Treiber bereitstellt (Anleitung hier). Der Treiber befindet sich auch bereits in 2.6.27-rc3 und im gepatchten 2.6.26-1 aus Debian 4.0r4. […]

  17. Oerb Says:

    Nice Work. Ubuntu ist working fine. Hmm there some one who has compiled the 2.6.26 Kernel and test if webcam is working with in?

  18. […] I think a good example of the average user, one who shouldn’t bother with bleeding edge software, is here. Here’s another blog posting detailing some available options. Another user experience can be found here. […]

  19. Kalimaha Says:

    Many many thanks!!!

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