So the Asus Eee is a pretty wonderful machine, all in all. In fact, I’m using it right now to type this, and apart from the occasional mistype it works pretty damn well. The interface is easy and intuitive, it comes installed with more or less everything you need, and it plays well out of the box. It’s great.
So the other day (Friday) I took it to college as a shakedown run, I guess you could call it.
This threw up one rather major difficulty – WPA-Enterprise isn’t supported by default, and that’s what the Imperial wireless network uses. Bugger.
So support for WPA-E has to be rather hackily hacked back in. One ham-handed attempt by me has already cost me the use of the network monitor in the tray. No great loss, but kinda irritating.
Anyways, I’m right now running a specially customised version of Ubuntu Linux, which should fix the network issue, but the list of post-install tweaks on the wiki is frankly just frightening, and some of it is pretty important stuff, like fixing SD cards not mounting.
I’m starting to get the impression that Linux is an operating system designed for people who, a priori, know what the fuck they’re doing, and in the hands of these people it is an incredibly powerful tool. You can do anything you like, assuming you know how to do it.
In some ways it feels like the direct manifestation of the principle that the last 10% of the work takes 90% of the time, so they’ve only done 5% of that last 10%. Most everything works, and you can fix or disable anything that doesn’t, right? Because worst case scenario, you have to delve in to the command prompt, type in some arcane commands and poof, it works.
Thing is, I really don’t want to install Windows on here. I want to get to a point where I can use Linux, but not being able to get onto the Imperial Wireless network might really be a dealbreaker.