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ASUS Motherboard Ships With Embedded Linux, Web Browser

Michael Larabel

Published on 6 October 2007
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 5 of 8 - 31 Comments

The SplashTop Configuration Panel allows for adjusting the date and time, input method, language and keyboard, LaunchBar settings, network, reset SplashTop, screen resolution, and volume control.

The input support is using the SCIM (Smart Common Input Method) platform. The GUI setup utility has areas for the FrontEnd global setup, IMEngine global setup, smart pinyin, generic table, and the GTK panel. LaunchBar settings include the orientation, auto-hiding, always on top, and whether to display tool-tips.

Another thing we unsure about when first hearing about ASUS Express Gate was whether it's onboard WiFi would work in this Linux environment. This onboard WiFi isn't just a normal 802.11g adapter but ASUS WiFi-AP @n, which supports 300Mbps 802.11n while being backwards compatible with 802.11g and 802.11b. The ASIC providing the onboard draft-N wireless capabilities is a Ralink RT2770F chip. To our surprise, this 802.11n wireless had worked with this SplashTop Linux out of the box! To configure the network, just enter the configuration panel and click on network. Via checkboxes you can enable either (or both) of the integrated 10/100/1000 network interfaces and if required you can manually configure a static IP address and DNS information. In addition to the LAN1 and LAN2 is the WiFi option and even xDSL/cable dial-up. While this network interface isn't as slick as using NetworkManager on Linux, by clicking on the WiFi Setup you can enter the SSID of the point to connect to and enter in any encryption information. After we had done that, the integrated 802.11n/802.11g integrated wireless with dual antennas was working in Linux! With the troubled but improving state of wireless support in Linux, this was a pleasant surprise.

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