Sugar on the Asus Eee 701

Tabitha Roder tabitha at
Tue Oct 27 01:54:45 EDT 2009

Copy of my blog post on the experience of installing Sugar on Asus Eee 701
Sugar on the Eee <>

I wanted to put Sugar on an Asus Eee 701 for my niece. Thanks to Trademe I
could pick one up at a reasonable price.  For those that know me well, yes I
had some help with setting up Sugar and yes I had some help with writing
this post.

SOAS Strawberry runs well on the Eee, but you can't really install it. There
are various guides, which basically consist of

   1. Install anaconda
   2. Run liveinst
   3. Fight with partitioning (hint, don't choose automatic, choose custom,
   delete everything and make an ext3 partition)
   4. Fix the resulting broken redhat installation with no graphical
   interface by installing the entire KDE stack and messing with inittab (note,
   you'll need a wired ethernet connection, or epic iwconfig fu)
   5. Install sugar

The first work around was just to dd the SOAS usb image directly onto the
Eee's drive. This was good, the Eee boots quickly and starts sugar by
default, however our USB image was only 1GB so we couldn't use the rest of
the disk, and the journal complained that it was full, even when it wasn't.
I think the journal problem was probably to do with the tricks the live
image performs to boot of read only media, since we did a byte-for-byte copy
of the live image, these are all still present when booting from the Eee's

I'm told a future version of SOAS may support installation to the hard disk.

The current solution is the Ubuntu Netbook
Remix<>and Sugar from alsroot's
PPA <>. I used the Karmic Koala
Beta <> and updated to the latest
packages. This wasn't entirely plain sailing, Sugar's web browse activity
didn't work until I did *apt-get build-dep python-hulahop*, see this
This has made the Eee a really nice platform, you can alt tab between Sugar
and your other apps but not the netbook remix menu thing, so you can't start
new non-sugar apps without quitting Sugar. The only real problem is the Eee
701's low res screen - not all activities are designed to shrink this far,
Scratch being the most missed example as it is my nieces favourite.

The things you do (or your helper does) to please a nine year old. Big
thanks to said helper for giving up about 10 hours more than I thought we

Sharing the experience, I hope that this helps the developers see where the
issues were and that next time I try this (I have another Eee ready) that it
is easy to see improvements - I can wait a while ;-)
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