Activating Full Desktop (“Advanced” Desktop) on EEE 900a (and probably others)

NOTE: After re-testing this on a clean slate to make sure I have everything right, it isn’t.  It’s off somewhere simple but I’m too tired to care.  I need sleep 🙂  So, until this note is missing, this stays the same.

Information on how to enable the ability to switch between “easy mode” and “full desktop” (or “advanced” desktop as it’s sometimes called)

I’m going to treat you as a semi-knowledgeable individual for this, but in the end it’s really simple to switch between the two desktops after the alteration.
First:
1) backup /var/lib/dpkg/available /var/lib/dpkg/available, and /var/lib/dpkg/available /var/lib/dpkg/status by doing “sudo cp /var/lib/dpkg/available /var/lib/dpkg/available.saved && sudo cp /var/lib/dpkg/status /var/lib/dpkg/status.saved”
2) Edit the file “/var/lib/dpkg/available” with “kate” with the following command “sudo kate /var/lib/dpkg/available”.  Find the line with “Package: libqt3-mt” in it, then go down a few lines into that section to where it says “Replaces” and remove the part where it says “libqt3c102-mt” (along with any preceding comma).  Copy the entire section of the “Package: libqt3-mt” and paste it at the bottom.  Rename the name libqt3-mt in the “Package:” line to libqt3c102-mt, and make sure you have a blank line after the section.
3) Edit the file “/var/lib/dpkg/status” with “Kate” with the following command “sudo kate /var/lib/dpkg/status”.  Find the line with “Package: libqt3-mt” in it, then go down a few lines into that section to where it says “Replaces” and remove the part where it says “libqt3c102-mt” (along with any preceding comma).  Copy the entire section of the “Package: libqt3-mt” and paste it at the bottom.  Rename the name libqt3-mt in the “Package:” line to libqt3c102-mt, and make sure you have a blank line after the section.

4) Edit the /etc/apt/sources.list with the command “sudo kate /etc/apt/sources/list” and add the following two lines after everything:
deb http://update.eeepc.asus.com/p701 p701 main
deb http://update.eeepc.asus.com/p701/en p701 main

5) Open a console by typing “ctrl+alt+T” (hold down ctrl, hold down alt, and press T), then in that console type “sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -f install && sudo apt-get install ksmserver kicker”

6) restart your system and everything should be okay.

You will be in Easy Mode by default, and can go to full desktop by going to shutdown (bottom right corner, or power button) then you’ll notice the “Full Desktop” button on the left.
Another way to get to Full Desktop by default is to go to the settings tab at the top, go to Personalizations, and at the bottom you will see 2 selections “full desktop” and “easy mode”.  Select full desktop and close, then when you restart the system you will immediately go to the full desktop.  You can go back by going to “launch” at the lower left and selecting “easy mode” as the second entry from the bottom.

One note: with full desktop, you will have no login password by default.  It will go straight to the desktop.  While not normal for Linux, this is a totally customized operating environment…
Enjoy, and again, Caveat Emptor… this is specifically for the 900a in my experience.  I’ve only tried it on that particular one.  If it fails on yours, follow the directions and notice the backed up files, then restore them.  Also, remove the /etc/apt/sources.list entries that were put in.

Advanced note: This “full desktop” uses KDE by default.  Of course you can get Icewm in place of it to save memory, but KDE still only takes ~300mb out of your 1gb.  Not terribly shabby if you ask me.  Please don’t email me or comment asking me how since I don’t know yet.  I really am happy with the KDE size since I’m used to it taking an enormously large amount of memory on a desktop PC.

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One thought on “Activating Full Desktop (“Advanced” Desktop) on EEE 900a (and probably others)

  1. Thanks! This was just what I needed, 🙂

    The part that was keeping you from duplicating your steps (very responsible,btw) was that in the lines that you add to sources.list for the 701 repositories you typed ‘eepc’ by mistake.

    It should be ‘eeepc’ foe both lines.

    I also had to run: ‘sudo apt-get -f install’ before I could install kicker and the other package.

    Thanks!

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