Category: Cool Eee


Permalink 09:14:19 pm, by neilb Email , 349 words, 11032 views   English (US)
Categories: Developing for the Eee, Cool Eee

Using USB-Audio

Setting up an external usb device for use with the eeepc music manager (aka amarok) can be challenging. The following steps should work. Unfortunately, you will need to use the command line.

Ensure your usb audio player is plugged in and powered up. I have an m-audio audiophile.

m-audio audiophile usb

Type control-t to bring up the terminal to enter commands.

Into the terminal window, type:

cat /proc/asound/cards

This will list the target cards that can be used by the music manager. Your usb device should be listed. If not, check cabling and that the device is powered up and working. If the device is not listed in this list none of the following steps will work. I’ll assume that you only have the standard device and your usb device. Therefore your card should also be numbered card 1.

Now edit the file ~/.asoundrc. BTW the ~ is a short cut for your home directory.

If you have a favourite editor use that, otherwise type the following into the terminal window:

kate ~/.asoundrc

Kate is an easy to use visual editor. Add the following lines.

pcm.intel8x0 {
type plug
slave.pcm "hw:0"

ctl.intel8x0 {
type hw
card 0

pcm.usb-audio {
type plug
slave.pcm "hw:1"

ctl.usb-audio {
type hw
card 1

This associates card 1 with the name usb-audio. If your card is not card 1, then change each of the two 1s in the pcm.usb-audio and ctl.usb-audio sections.

Now save the file and start up the music manager (if it was already running, restart it).

Select the Setting/Configure Music Manager… dialog and the engine tab.

If the xine engine is not in use, select it and hit the apply button. If alsa is not the selected output plugin, then select it from the drop-down and hit apply.

In the stereo field, type:


and hit apply.

Eeepc Music Manager Engine Settings

Your usb-audio device should now be the target of your eeepc music manager. You should now be able to enjoy music via your usb-audio device.

To change back, use default as the stereo field value. If you run into problems, delete the ~/.asoundrc file.


Permalink 06:11:28 pm, by neilb Email , 127 words, 2765 views   English (US)
Categories: Cool Eee

Eee as iPod replacement

Eee comes with Amarok music player. Sound quality is good.

I used the to convert my lossless ipod files to flac.

I carry a backpack so I decided to use the Eee as a portable player.

Only issue is that the Eee enters suspend mode when the lid is closed. I wrote a small tool to stop that behavior and added it to the Settings tab. Clicking on the tool allows me to choose if closing the lid will suspend the Eee or not.

I used my sennheiser noice-cancelling cans and walked the streets with sound quality as good as the latest version IPod. With network and screen off, the battery didn’t even lose a bar on a 40 min walk.

enjoying it,


Permalink 09:22:59 pm, by neilb Email , 74 words, 8697 views   English (US)
Categories: Cool Eee


Nice! Even more impressive on the Eee PC than Xara is Inkscape.

Inkscape running on the Eee PC

I found Xara a little tricky to use (e.g not all tools could be reached on the toolbar window!). Inkscape uses SVG so nice portable output.

To install, bring up a code window (Ctrl-Alt-t) then type

sudo apt-get install inkscape

Note you will need to have the etch repos set up for apt.



Permalink 05:03:17 pm, by neilb Email , 172 words, 4857 views   English (US)
Categories: Announcements [A], News, Cool Eee


Xara is a useful vector graphics editor. Even better it runs on the Eee.

Xara on the Eee PC

Cool huh?

To install is quick but needs some grunt work:

A couple of issues I’ve noticed are:

  1. On start-up you will get a warning that ImageMagick is missing. This is not problem (it simply means that you can’t save your files in formats such as TIFF) and can be safely ignored.
  2. The options dialog is chopped off slightly at the bottom of the screen. This is partly a consequence of slack of sliding dialogs in Xara – due to it being a port of a windows app.
  3. Toolbars such as the taskbar can become undocked. I’ve not yet discovered how to redock them!



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