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Acer Aspire One UNR 9.04 settings

Sometimes I post things to be able to recall 6 months later what I did. This is one of those “I’d better write this down” articles.

After a couple of iterations, my Acer Aspire One Netbook runs well on Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.04. Here’s what I did.

I created one root 8 GB filesystem formatted in ext2 with no swap space. I don’t know why but using ext3 (a journaling filesystem) and/or swap meant poor performance. It’s probably due to the SSD not handling the read/writes well.

Following the advice from the Ubuntu AspireOne documentation page, I installed linux-backports-jaunty-modules and ran all the updates.  Among other things this gets the wireless LED working. UNR 9.04 is still young yet so it’s not a lot of updates.

In my /boot/grub/menu.lst file I added “enable_mtrr_cleanup pciehp.pciehp_force=1” to my defoption line and kernel line. The mtrr_cleanup is to allow the X server to take advantage of a performance boost and with the pciehp I can use both SD card readers without any problem.

After using lspci to get the correct values, I added this line to my /etc/rc.local

echo "base=0x40000000 size=0x10000000 type=write-combining" > /proc/mtrr

The mtrr part is for improving video performance, the pciehp portion is to get both SD card readers working.

With these settings, the netbook is working well with only a few caveats.  Youtube is still jumpy and slow. But I got this netbook to play with Ubuntu, ssh to my servers, and view web pages so I’m satisfied.

Categories: Geek Software

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Jan Dembowski

5 replies

  1. Hello Jan
    I’m an Ubuntu user and fan, for about 2 yrs. My laptop got stolen 2 weeks ago, I’m stilled bummed out about that, but I might be getting an Acer Aspire One in about a week. It has a hard disk, not SSD and it has 1 gig of ram which I will bump to 1.5 or 2 if possible. I liked reading your post, if I try installing UNR , can I ask you for advice?

  2. I think you’ll get better performance with an Aspire One with a hard drive.

    Except for the SSD, the 1 GB of RAM on my netbook is pretty good for Ubuntu. 1.5 or 2 would be better but for browsing, IM, etc. 1 GB on an Ubuntu netbook is good.

  3. I have a AA0 with the hard drive, and am looking to update to jaunty. (found this page while searching to see if there are any problems)

    I am currently running crunch bang lite with the sickboy kernel and sickboy wifi modules. All is great, fast and relieble.

    I am writting to let you know that I also had problems with choppy youtube. I switched from gnome to lxde(openbox) and youtube is flawless.

    I will give jaunty a try. thanks

  4. From lspci -v

    00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 945GME Express Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 03)
            Subsystem: Acer Incorporated [ALI] Device 015b
            Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 16
            Memory at 58480000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=512K]
            I/O ports at 60c0 [size=8]
            Memory at 40000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
            Memory at 58500000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=256K]
            Capabilities: <access denied>
            Kernel modules: intelfb

    See where it says “Memory at 40000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]”? That’s where I got my value.