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Installing Development Tools

Installing Development Tools

The following steps are needed to get gcc and friends running on your eeePC (¿which eeePC models does this apply to?)

  1. start eeePC

  2. get a shell by typing ctrl-alt-T

  3. become superuser by typing sudo su -

  4. browse to http://www.debian.org/mirror/mirrors_full and select a mirror near to you. You might want to use netselect to find which one has the best connectivity but netselect is outside the scope of this post. Also apt-spy might be usable.

  5. edit /etc/apt/sources.list (by using sudo kwrite /etc/apt/sources.list in terminal) and add the following line:
    deb <your mirror goes here> stable main contrib non-free
    As I am in NL I entered

    at the place where it says <your mirror goes here>, but if you are not in NL you should find a closer mirror (could also be an http mirror). Note that the < and > symbols should be removed so for NL the line should read:
    deb ftp://ftp.nl.debian.org/debian etch main contrib non-free

  6. run apt-get update This will update the packages lists. (btw, I use apt-get from the command line; you might also try to use synaptic)

  7. apt-get install build-essential (press Y when asked to install tings)

  8. log out of your superuser bash by ^D or exit; then cd /tmp; create a file hello.c with the obvious content, then gcc hello.c; ./a.out

Alternately you may want to go for these:

Installing on Surf 2G

The above instructions do not state which model they apply to, and do not work on at least one Surf 2G (Black). However, with modification, they are close. Specifically:

  1. the p701 URLs at the bottom of the preceding section do not work (the first two appear to work, but GCC is not installed; the third fails to install)

  2. the longer sequence does work after modification; in the step that suggests
    apt-get install build-essential

    this simply gives warnings; it is still needed but one must then enter the command
    apt-get -f install

    and then (after that installs some packages) re-enter the command:
    apt-get install build-essential

After that installs more packages, GCC is available from the command line and works. (Reply Y to questions from above commands.)

Installing on 90x

As far as I know the issues described here has only been verified on the 901, but it might as well be affecting the whole 900 series. If you have upgraded to FlashPlayer10 or Firefox3 you will be unable to install build-essential because it breaks its dependencies. (This also happens if you upgrade FlashPlayer/ Firefox after installing build-essential)

  1. If you have upgraded to FlashPlayer10 or Firefox3

    1. Factory restore the EEE. Select “Restore the OS (Remain the user files)” if you want to keep your files.

  2. Follow the Installing from downloaded SDK But with the following change:

    1. In the /etc/apt/sources.list comment all the existent entries (add a '#' to the beginning of the line)

Then do the rest as described.

Note: You might as well install “libncurses5-dev” with build-essential if you want to do “make menuconfig” later on.

Installing on 1000H

As with the 2G instructions above, though no error given with
apt-get install build-essential

it goes straight through.

As above “After that installs more packages, GCC is available from the command line and works. (Reply Y to questions from above commands.)”

Remember to # out the line in /etc/apt/sources.list that you added above
deb ftp://ftp.nl.debian.org/debian stable main contrib non-free

in case you forget and end up breaking your system by installing incompatible upgrades.

Installing from downloaded SDK

Adding the Debian repositories as described above is convenient to get basic tools like GCC, but is potentially unsafe if things like developer versions of system libraries are required. For example, many games require the SDL library, and compiling them requires the libsdl-dev package. Attempting to install this from Debian repositories risks overwriting the installed libsdl package with the Debian version. Overwriting the Eee versions of some libraries can cause major problems for your system.

However, help is at hand. Asus have released an SDK for the Eee, which includes far more packages than are installed by default, including all of the missing developer tools and libraries.

The snag is that the SDK is only available as a DVD image. However, the files are still usable, and there is no need to burn a DVD. You will need 1.4GB of spare disk space, which can be on an SD card or USB drive if you do not have enough space available on your internal storage.

These instructions have been tested on an Eee 901 freshly restored to factory settings.

  1. Download the DVD image from http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group_id=215613 . At time of writing, the file you want is called EeePC-SDK-2008.04.24_19.46.iso . There may be a newer version available by the time you read this.

  2. Mount the DVD image directly, using the loopback device:

sudo mount -o loop /path/to/EeePC-SDK-2008.04.24_19.46.iso /mnt

  1. Edit /etc/apt/sources.list and add the following line:

deb file:/mnt xandros5.0 main contrib non-free

  1. Run the following command to note all the new packages available:

sudo apt-get update

  1. Install the packages you want, using apt-get as documented elsewhere. For example, to install development tools as described above:

sudo apt-get install build-essential

  1. You will probably get warnings that the packages cannot be verified. Please ignore these.

If you do not plan to keep the DVD image mounted permanently, you probably want to comment out the line in your sources.list file to avoid errors from apt-get in future. To do this, simply add a # character at the start of the line, and run
sudo apt-get update

again. Whenever you want to install from the DVD image, simply repeat the steps to mount the DVD image, add the repository, add packages, and remove the repository when done.

Multi Platform Development

You can create applications for linux, mac and windows using the REALbasic IDE. The version 2006r4-2 is not the most recent one but working (www.geekconnection.org). It runs under Xandros (the default Eee-PC OS) and the linux version seems to be free of charge.

  1. open a terminal window (ctrl + alt + T) or launch console in advanced desktop mode

  2. using vi editor add the line: 'deb http://www.geekconnection.org/ xandros4 main' (without quotes) to the file /etc/apt/sources.list as root and start synaptic (or aptitude,..)

  3. search for “realbasic” and install

  4. 226 MBytes of disk space are used for this installation. RAM was expanded to 1GB on the G4 under test.

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