ASUS Eee PC 1015pn

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This page includes general information regarding Asus EEE PC 1015pn and related notes on installing/using Arch Linux on it.

System Specs

  • CPU: Intel Atom Dual-Core N550 (1.5 GHz)
  • RAM: 1GB 1066MHz DDR3 (up to 2GB)
  • HDD: 250 GB, 5400 RPM
  • GPU: nVidia ION2 with Optimus
  • Display: 10.1" 1024 x 600 pixels LCD display
  • Wireless: BCM4313
  • Bluetooth: TODO
  • Webcam: Working (remember to add yourself to video group)
  • Card Reader: Working
  • Extras: 3 USB 2.0 ports, Bluetooth 3

HDD important issue

With the Western Digital hard drive (not SSD), there is an important issue: using the APM (Advanced Power Management) there are too nomerous spin-down, that can damage the hard drive. To confirm this issue, you have to install Template:Package Official:

# pacman -S smartmontools

And you have to run multiple times this command (once in a minute for like 5 minutes):

# smartctl -a /dev/sda|grep Load_Cycle_Count

If the number under Load_Cycle_Count is increasing in a small amount of time (1 or 2 in a minute) you have this issue.

Method 1

The problem is easily solvable using laptop-mode-tools. In your Template:Filename, you have to set:

#
# Should laptop mode tools control the hard drive power management settings?
#
CONTROL_HD_POWERMGMT=1

#
# Power management for HD (hdparm -B values)
#
BATT_HD_POWERMGMT=255
LM_AC_HD_POWERMGMT=255
NOLM_AC_HD_POWERMGMT=255

This disable all power management systems of the hard drive cause a light heat up (maybe). The same behaviour can be obtained running this command:

# hdparm -B 255 /dev/sda

the 255 number is the power-management level, in a range of 1-255 where 1 is maximum powersaving and 255 powersaving disabled. However setting the value to 253 causes a lot of spin-down. Setting the spin-down feature (it parks the heads away from disk) however can save the hard disk in case of a fall.

Method 2

This method correct this issue once and for all : WDIDLE3

nVidia ION 2 with Optimus

Optimus doesn't work at all but it is possible to choose which graphical card will be used on next reboot.

You can get 2 'modes' :

  • By default (if you do not do anything) the machine starts with the Nvidia beeing the only VGA controller visible (so it will use the ION chip).
  • Using some tools you can start with the Intel and Nvidia VGA controller visible. In this mode the Intel controller is used and it is possible to power-down the Nvidia part.


To switch between those modes you will need Template:Package AUR.

Installing acpi_call

Manual Install:

git clone http://github.com/mkottman/acpi_call.git
cd acpi_call
make
sudo insmod acpi_call.ko

OR

Install Template:Package AUR from the AUR. Add Template:Codeline module into Template:Filename.


Selecting Video Card

To select Intel + Nvidia on next reboot :

echo "\OSGS 0x03" > /proc/acpi/call

Note: You will need to do this at each boot as long as you want to stay with the Intel part (If you do not do this the Eee will start with only the Nvidia Ion VGA controller). Adding the above command to /etc/rc.local will run the command on every boot (for the next boot). This is ideal if you want to run X on the Intel VGA controller.


You can check the current mode with :

echo "\AMW0.DSTS 0x90013" > /proc/acpi/call
cat /proc/acpi/call

For example if the result is 0x30003 :

  • First byte 0x03 means mode 3 (returnvalue &= 3)
  • Logical AND with 0x10000 and right-bitshift 16 bytes gives whether Optimus is supported (1=true, 0=false): here 1


After reboot you can see with lspci that the Intel VGA controller is visible. You can now power down the ion part with (you'll need the acpi_call module loaded):

echo "\_SB.PCI0.P0P4.DGPU.DOFF" > /proc/acpi/call

Note: When leaving suspend you need to do this again because the Nvidia part reactivates itself.

rc script to disable nvidia:

 #!/bin/bash
 
 . /etc/rc.conf
 . /etc/rc.d/functions
 
 
 if lsmod | grep -q acpi_call; then
         stat_busy 'Swith per ACPI_CALL to Optimus'
         echo "\OSGS 0x03" > /proc/acpi/call
         echo "\_SB.PCI0.P0P4.DGPU.DOFF" > /proc/acpi/call
         echo "\AMW0.DSTS 0x90013" > /proc/acpi/call
         result=$(cat /proc/acpi/call)
         case "$result" in
         0x30003)
                 stat_done
         ;;
         *)
                 stat_fail
         ;;
         esac
 else
         stat_busy 'ACPI_CALL mod not loaded'
         stat_fail
 fi

Check consumption

You can check consumption with:

cat /sys/class/power_supply/BAT0/current_now
  • Before disabling: ~1700mA.
  • After disabling: ~1000mA.

As you can see this method saves a lot of battery!

ACPI

As of kernel 3.1, Adding acpi_osi=Linux to /boot/grub/menu.lst is no longer necessary to enable ACPI. The proper modules should be automatically called at boot.

Wireless

Kernel >= 2.6.37 include the required module natively.

Note: The Broadcom BCM4313 card requires the compat-wireless-brcm80211 module which is available in the AUR if kernel <=2.6.36

For kernel 3.0 or higher, wireless card seems to be blocked due to a bug. To solve this issue, you can try blacklisting the kernel module Template:Codeline.

Bumblebee

The 1015pn can be configured to run automatically on the Intel video card, turn on and use the Nvidia part for specific processes when requested, and otherwise leave the Nvidia part turned off.

First, add the command

echo "\OSGS 0x03" > /proc/acpi/call

to /etc/rc.local to ensure that the Intel VGA controller is used on every subsequent boot. Next, install and configure Bumblebee per the instructions on the wiki. Finally, remove any automated or otherwise scripted acpi calls to turn off the Nvidia VGA controller.

Power management of the Nvidia VGA controller can also be handled by Bumblebee. Please note, however, that Bumblebee support for power management is currently experimental. To use automatic power management of the Nvidia card, first go to /etc/bumblebee/bumblebee.conf, and change ENABLE_POWER_MANAGEMENT=Y and ECO_MODE=Y. This gives Bumblebee permission to turn on and off the Nvidia card. Eco mode means that the Nvidia card will be turned off when not currently being used by any process.

Next, two new files, cardon and cardoff, must be created in /etc/bumblebee/, with the following contents:

cardon
\_SB.PCI0.P0P4.DGPU.DON
cardoff
\_SB.PCI0.P0P4.DGPU.DOFF

These are the acpi calls that Bumblebee will use to dynamically control the power of the Nvidia card. Now if bumblebee is included in the MODULES section of /etc/rc.conf, Bumblebee will automatically power down the Nvidia VGA controller unless it is being used with the optirun command.


To Do

  1. Manage to get the Template:Package Official and Template:Package Official packages installed (specific libgl being used by each one)
  2. Get the Bluetooth working, without kernel panic attacks.

 Links