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Posts Tagged ‘dell’

Maverick Netbook impressions

Posted by anjilslaire on October 12, 2010

So I installed Ubuntu Netbook Edition 10.10 Maverick Meercat on the Mini 9 the other day, and after a bit of adjustment to the new GUI, I think it’s a nice release. Everyrhing worked straight out of the install. With my replacement Intel 3945 wifi card, my system doesn’t need any restricted drivers to work.

Of course, the factory Broadcom wifi card shouldn’t have any driver issues in the future since Broadcom open sourced their drivers.

Boot time is improved, and there are actually 4 work spaces, like gnome. Also, there’s a slick menu on the left side, saving the limited vertical resolution.

The only real tweaks I’ve made include disabling the user list in GDM, so you need to type the user name as well as password. This is a very portable system. Should it be stolen, why would I want to give the thieves half of my login credentials? The code to do this is:

sudo gconftool-2 –direct –config-source xml:readwrite:/etc/gconf/gconf.xml.mandatory –type Boolean –set /apps/gdm/simple-greeter/disable_user_list True

Also, I’m not a fan of Empathy, so I replace it with Pidgin. Gwibber rocks for Twitter, though.

By the way, Wesnoth plays nicely at 1024×600 while mobile.


Posted in internetz, linux, mobile, netbook, ubuntu | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

New battery enroute for Mini 9

Posted by anjilslaire on October 4, 2010

So I saw that mydigitaldiscount has a replacement extended battery in stock for the Dell Mini 9. My current original 3-cell battery is completely dead, so I’m hoping the new 8-cell will do the trick.

I should have it in a week, and will post results later. Hopefully my netbook will be resurrected in time for 10.10

Posted in mobile, netbook, ubuntu | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

BIOS A06 updated on Mini 9 sans Windows

Posted by anjilslaire on July 8, 2010

So I packaged up the Windows A06 bios for the Dell Mini 9 in a dos-bootable form, available on here:,20142.

Just extract the zip onto a dos-bootable usb drive, and from a DOS prompt, cd to \910A06\ and run 910A06.BAT.

I’ve been waiting to update my linux netbook, and finally got around to it. Too bad Dell doesn’t make it easy 😦

Posted in linux, mobile, netbook, rants, ubuntu | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

wireless surgery completed: Mini with 3945 Intel

Posted by anjilslaire on June 20, 2009

Alright, the broadcom started acting up again 2 days in a row, so I wasted no more time fighting it.
Within a few minutes, I had the bottom panel of the Mini 9 opened, and the wireless cards swapped with the lid replaced. Once I added the new MAC to my router’s approved list, the Mini is back in business, just the way I like it.

Posted in internetz, linux, netbook, ubuntu | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Mini 9 Bios A05 now available: Still no official Linux support

Posted by anjilslaire on April 20, 2009

Coincidentally with Jaunty right around the corner, Dell has released Bios version A05 for the Mini 9, in a Win32 .exe and a DOS-only version as well. Of course, there is still no officially approved method to update via linux unfortunately. Well, there is, but it’s outdated and reports are that it’s never worked well.
Also, nothing newer than A01 is recommended even though users report that they are getting them shipped with A02 or newer.

In any event, I’ve been running with each successive bios upgrade, from A00 on up til today’s release, A05.

While I agree that there should be a native way to update the bios easily, I’m a bit pragmatic, using the appropriate tool for any given job. For simplicity, I just use a 64mb usb flash drive that’s formatted to be DOS-bootable and run the update in that environment.
With this latest A05 release, th DOS version is a simple executable as well. I just placed it on my DOS flash drive, booted to it, and ran the new exe. The system immediately processed the upgrade and rebooted. Now my Mini 9 is running Bios A05, vanilla Ubuntu 8.10 i386  with the Netbook Remix, and everything is running smoothly.

However, I would like to know what Dell is doing, not providing a way to upgrade the BIOS to their own hardware for Ubuntu…

Posted in linux, mobile, netbook, ubuntu | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Netbook PPA errors

Posted by anjilslaire on March 4, 2009

More of a mental note than a proper post, but when installing the netbook remix PPA on the Mini 9 using the repository:

deb intrepid main
deb-src intrepid main

I always get a key error similar to

W: GPG error: intrepid Release: The following signatures couldn’t be verified because the public key is not available: NO_PUBKEY xxxxxxxx

The fix is simple:

gpg –keyserver –recv xxxxx


gpg –export –armor xxxxxxx | sudo apt-key add

All fixed

Posted in linux, netbook, ubuntu | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Xubuntu: 1 month in

Posted by anjilslaire on December 9, 2008

So I’ve been running Xubuntu Intepid for about a month now. I must say I’m feeling very much at home now. As much as I enjoy all the settings & options in KDE3.5 (still no fan of KDE4, sorry) I’m really getting my groove on in the stripped down environment that is XFCE.

I’m really an application fan anyay, so as long as I have a DE that stays out of my way & lets me run my preferred applications without any unneeded overhead is good in my book. Give me firefox, AmaroK, acidrip, pidgin, k3b, a few choice applets & I’m a happy camper for the most part.

Compiz is running great, much better than in KDE3.5 (yes KDE4 has built-in eye candy, blah blah blah) and the whole system feels more responsive, even running QTE/KDE apps under what appears to essentially be a gnome  framework.

I’m getting my mini 9 for Christmas (there are some things the missus just can’t get for me), and I plan on wiping the Dell Ubuntu image & loading Xubuntu 8.10 with 2 gigs of ram. I haven’t seen any reports yet of XFCE being run on this thing, so I’m excited to try it out and report back.

I’ll post details after New Year’s about the mini, but I’ll likely be back before then rambling about something else, I’m sure.

Posted in linux, xubuntu | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Dell Inspiron Mini 9 – Linux love

Posted by anjilslaire on September 5, 2008

Dell has finally released it. I’m thrilled, and will hopefully be ording it by Christmas. I’ve been looking for a small portable to stay connected, and will be a perfect compliment to Her 1420. In fact, when I order the 1420, I received a $100 gift card from Dell as well, so I can get a loaded netbook with 1gig of ram & a 16gig SSD driver for about $350.

That has me excited, to say the least.

Right now, it comes with a special Dell-modified version of the Ubuntu Netbook Remix. I’m hoping with the next Ubuntu release, 8.10, that there will be a vanilla Ubuntu release for me to load on myself. Having a pre-installed linux seems so unnatural (in a good way I guess)

Either way, this is great news to see such blatant advertising from Dell.

Posted in linux, mobile, ubuntu | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »