A step by step guide to installing Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron on your Eee PC

by Ross McKillop on July 28, 2008

This tutorial will take you every single step of the way through installing Ubuntu 8.04 (Hardy Heron) on your Asus Eee PC. The steps are specific for the Eee PC 900 (16GB flash SSD model), but will be similar for other Eee PC’s.

  1. First, download the Ubuntu Eee iso. This is a version of Ubuntu 8.04 created specifically for the Asus Eee PC.
  2. You have a choice of 3 different ways to install Ubuntu.
    1. You can burn the .iso file to CD, and use an external USB CD/DVD drive to boot from that CD.
    2. You can transfer the iso file (and make it bootable) to a USB memory stick/thumb drive using the UNetbootin-Ubuntu Eee tool (Windows version/Linux version).
    3. You can transfer the .iso file to an SD card (and make it bootable) using the same UNetbootin-Ubuntu Eee tool. This method might be the most “painful” – but ars technica has you covered with the instructions.
  3. This tutorial uses the “transfer to USB thumb drive” method (I happen to have one), and it’s probably the fastest way.
  4. Download the Windows version of UNetbootin-Ubuntu Eee if your Eee PC is currently running Windows, or the Linux version if it’s running Linux.
  5. This tutorial assumes you have XP installed – if you have Linux, follow this tutorial to transfer the iso to your USB thumb drive, and then skip down to step #11 below.
  6. You may need to format your USB thumb drive in order for the installation to work. Though you may not need to format, it’s easier to just do it and carry on rather than find out later that a format was required.
  7. Launch UNetbootin-Ubuntu Eee by double-clicking it.
  8. Make sure that Ubuntu Eee and 8.04 are selected from the Distribution drop-down menus. Select the Diskimage radio button, and then click the button. Navigate to your ubuntu-eee-804.iso file and select it.

    Finally, select the drive that represents your USB thumb drive. For my Eee PC, the USB thumb drive is E:\ Click OK to begin.


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  10. UNetbootin-Ubuntu Eee will start to convert and transfer the iso file to your thumb drive. Note: if it seems to ‘stall’ at file #8, don’t worry – it’s at that step that the largest file is being converted.

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  12. Once UNetbootin-Ubuntu Eee has finished, you’ll be prompted to reboot your device. Click the Reboot Now button.

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  14. As soon as your Eee PC starts up again, hit the Esc (escape) key a few times until a Please select boot device: window appears. Use the down arrow key to select your USB thumb drive, and once it’s highlighted, hit the Enter key on your keyboard.
  15. Your Eee PC will now boot into Ubuntu. Remember, this is the “live” version of Ubuntu – it’s running from your USB thumb drive, not your Eee PC’s hard drive. Play around for a bit if this is your first time using Ubuntu. You can still back out of the installation and return to whatever Operating System your Eee PC came with (just reboot again).

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  17. To continue and install Ubuntu to your Eee PC, click the Install icon on the desktop.
  18. Select your language and click the Forward button to continue.

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  20. Now select your city (or the closest one to it in the same time zone) and click Forward.

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  22. Choose the keyboard layout you want to use, and yep you guessed it – click Forward.

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  24. If you are in fact using the Eee PC 900 (or higher), select Guided – use entire disk. If you have an earlier model, with a smaller SSD drive, you may want to review the details here and decide if you want to have Ubuntu create a swap partition. Alternately, if you have a model with multiple “drives” (xGB SSD and xGB Flash), you may want to install Ubuntu on the SSD drive, and then mount the /home folder on the Flash drive). When you’re ready, click Forward.

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  26. Enter the appropriate info in each of the provided fields. When you’re done, click Forward.

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  28. Review the summary window, and click Install to begin the installation.

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  30. Grab a cup of coffee – the installation will take a while. Don’t go too far away though…
  31. Once the installation has completed, click Restart now. Let your Eee PC boot normally (don’t hit the Esc key as it starts) – and you’ll boot into Ubuntu. That’s it – you’re done!
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  • http://maketecheasier.com Damien

    Cool!

    I have been thinking of getting an Eee PC. My only concern is the wireless issue. Does it work well under Ubuntu?

  • http://www.gravityblue.com/ Gravity

    thnx alot… i was planning to install Ubuntu. ill use this guide. thnx!

  • http://www.simplehelp.net Ross McKillop

    @Damien – Wireless and wired connects both work great right out of the box (assuming you’re using Ubuntue Eee as the distribution – “regular” Ubuntu will take some tweaking to get wireless working)

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  • wooikok

    i am really interested to get ubuntu 8.04 on my eeePC 701 (4GB SSD), but i am a bit concerned about ur guide no. 17,care to explain please?
    i have a 16GB SDHC card plugged into the card reader, can i install ubuntu on the SSD and put the /home on the SDHC card?..if yes how do i go about doing it?
    is there any issues with the hardware compatibilities and i use a lot of skype(video) on Xandros eeePC, any solutions?
    thanks

  • wooikok

    sorry another question, will i be needing the fix suggested by this http://wiki.eeeuser.com/getting_ubuntu_8.04_to_work_perfectly
    once i install ubuntu 8.04 on my eeePC 701..

  • http://www.simplehelp.net Ross McKillop

    @wooikok,

    1. Yes you can make your SDHC card your /home folder.
    2. Re: Step #17 – read http://wiki.eeeuser.com/ubuntu:eeexubuntu:customization carefully. It explains the pros and cons of having a swap on a small hard drive.
    3. I don’t know exactly what hardware comes with the 701 – I don’t have one, so I can’t test it. I suspect that if you follow this guide and use Ubuntu Eee instead of “normal” Ubuntu, it will all work. But again, I can’t confirm that because I don’t have a 701.
    4. Backup Xandros and try out Ubuntu Eee. If it doesn’t work, use the restore CD and then move all your files from the backup to your Eee PC.
    5. It’s unlikely you’ll need any of the fixes outlined in the link you included in your second comment. Ubuntu Eee includes most of them (maybe all) by default.

    Hope this helps,

    Ross

  • wooikok

    sorry..reslly linux noob here..
    can explain how i can make the sdhc as /home folder?…
    thanks for the really prompt reply..
    will be booting up with the “live” version on my usb thumb drive later…n test out all the hardware on eeePC 701..
    thanks

  • wooikok

    tried the live version..liked it…considering migrationg my eeepc 701 to ubuntu 8.04
    but what about webcam function n the wifi..seems to be some problem
    any solutions?

  • wooikok

    got ubuntu 8.04 on my eeePC now…all working…except having issues with mounting my sd card.i noticed that when i opn the fstab file in a text editor this is the referrence to my media>>
    ‘/dev/sdb1 /media/cdrom0 udf,iso9660 user,noauto,exec,utf8 0 0″
    i tried to change it using a text editor to
    “/dev/sdb1 /media/MMCSD auto user,auto,exec,rw 0 0″ (from
    http://wiki.eeeuser.com/getting_ubuntu_8.04_to_work_perfectly)
    but i got a response of “You do not have the permissions necessary to save the file.”…any help
    thanks

  • wooikok

    got ubuntu 8.04 on my eeePC but now having problems with mounting my sd card. tried the tweak form ubuntu wiki but when i try to change the fstab file, i got a response of not having permission to change the file.
    this is found in the fstab file
    “/dev/sdb1 /media/cdrom0 udf,iso9660 user,noauto,exec,utf8 0 0″
    need to change to
    “/dev/sdb1 /media/MMCSD auto user,auto,exec,rw 0 0″
    how to do that?
    thanks

  • http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?p=5670841#post5670841 Rmon

    While installing 8.04.1 ubuntu-eee and writing up my own similarly-intended guide (good job, btw), I noticed that the installer skips step 6 of 7. Same thing appears in your screenshots. Any idea what’s up? The website form above links to the question as posed on ubuntu forums.

    Two other comments:

    -first of all, how do you get such great screenshots while installing?
    -secondly, I think some more discussion about partitioning may be useful. Check out my discussion here, feel free to make use of it in this guide if you find it useful.

  • wooikok

    got everything working on my eeePC n now also got it on my dell laptop and desktop….one word…wow…

  • azharz

    please send me , a tutorial for instal ubuntu in my eee pc

  • http://www.simplehelp.net Ross McKillop

    @azharz -

    You can find a tutorial to install Ubuntu on your Eee PC here.

  • Scott Westron

    Hi,

    I’ve been trying to do follow this firstly with an SD card and then went and bought a USB memory stick large enough to do it but I’m having a problem at stage 12.

    After I slect the USB drive, instead of seeing the OS I get a black screen with writing along the top, then some dots appear and draw along the top before it says ‘ready’ and then stops at that…

    Am I doing something wrong?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • Joachim Holden

    Hi, and thanks for a great guide! I have a problem with the wireless (I followed this guide on an Asus eee 900). I don’t see any wireless networks, even though I know there is one available. Any known issues with this?

  • http://www.j-o-o.com/ Joo

    Thanks for the help buddy! You have a great tutorial!
    Good luck with everything!

  • calxgreen

    This tutorial looks really straight forward I am really looking forward to installing ubuntu on my eee pc 1000.

    I have one small issue that perhaps you can assist me with; I am running xandros and want to install unbuntu instead using only a usb drive (since an external cd drive for me is not an option). I cannot Launch UNetbootin-Ubuntu Eee since it doesn’t have a program that can execute it.

    Also I have loaded the ubuntu iso disk image to my usb drive but the drive says its unbootable eventhough it is formatted correct. Can someone pls assist me??

  • Wastedvampire

    Tried installing ubuntu eee pc on a 1000HA but i’m stucked at step 16. It doesn’t go beyond that. You’re guide has been a great help. I hope you can help me shed light on this one.

  • H4X0R

    this is ubuntu remix for eee pc NOT (Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron)
    WAST OF TIME

  • http://www.simplehelp.net Ross McKillop

    @h4x0r

    No, actually, this is Ubuntu 8.04. The Eeebuntu (soon to be renamed) was updated after this tutorial, and included Netbook Remix in THAT version (they called it 8.04.1 (see this tutorial). If you can find an old version of Eeebuntu (8.04, the version this tutorial uses) it will come without Netbook Remix. Or, you can just uninstall Netbook Remix from the current version, and it will be “regular” 8.04 Hardy Heron.

  • André Camacho

    Hi all.

    I would like to know, i have a Eee-900 with linux, the version with 20gb.
    How to put the drivers after installation of this version ?

    - Wifi
    - Webcam
    - Micro / Sound Recorder
    - Bluetooth
    - HotKeys

    Thanks ;)

  • Grant

    The link in step 5 doesn’t work. It’d be great if you could update. : )

  • http://www.simplehelp.net Ross McKillop

    @Grant -

    Done! :)

  • JOHN GILLIS

    YOUR SITE IS WHAT I HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR! I RECENTLY PURCHASED A EEE PSC 900A LINUX. I AM GOING TO NEED A LOT OF INFO.

    THANKS JOHN

  • Michael

    Hi,

    I’ve just installed Ubuntu on my Asus 900 following all of your instructions, everything worked exactly as you said. I’ve rebooted and now have the Ubuntu OS, but I have no wireless connection – any ideas?

  • Contageous Ninja

    How do you install wireless internet on this OS? im running it side-by-side with Windows Vista Home basic 2008 on the same Acer Aspire laptop. I cannot find anywhere that will explain how to install/set up wireless.
    Would be really helpful if anybody could help!

  • Steve Casas

    Ross,

    Thanks for this guide…as the 1000HE I just bought came with WinDoze installed, I was looking forward to installing ubuntu on this system.

    But I also have a problem with wireless. How is it configured and where? Kinda defeats the purpose without being able to use the wireless capability.

    Thanks again Ross!

    -steve

  • http://www.majedjarrar.co.cc Majed Jarrar

    Thanks super so much!

    I got an error while resizing the partition and it had to abort, then I had to prepare the partitions manually.

    I got the exact same problem while installing Ubuntu 8.04 on my HP Pavilion ZD8000, and when I chose to ‘ignore’ it completed the install successfully then after I restarted my whole programs and data partition (100Gb) was missing ~_~.

    why is it doing that?

  • Nick

    Hey,
    For starters I’m a complete n00b when it comes to anything that’s not Windows.
    My Problem – I have done as the instructions have told me up until Step 10. I have formatted my portable HDD correctly, no problems there but when I extract the .iso to the HDD it doesn’t exactly do anything. It writes 4 files onto the HDD but nothing else, no Ubuntu files. Then on the single time it did extract everything I rebooted to the Portable HDD and it came up with some sort of command prompt. I ahhh dont exactly remember what everything said only that when I pressed escape, it took me to a small menu with options to reboot or halt.
    If theres anyone out there who had the same problem or who knows what I’m doing wrong, would you please be kind enough to share your knowledge with me.
    Thanks

  • antigooner

    Hi Ross, thanks for a really good tutorial. I have a question re: the ‘eee pc1000 40g’ which has an 8gb SSD (partitioned into 2 x 4gb) plus a 32gb SSD I’m assuming the two smaller drives are the operating system and either a swap drive or a partition which may relate to ‘recovery’ if I wish to revert to the default xandros system. How should I handle this when installing ubuntu? Lastly, is battery runtime impaired in any way with ubuntu?
    Many Thanks
    Mel

  • kazhealey

    Just wanted to say thanks for posting- really helped me out!