Modding the Asus 701 (Eee)

After spending several evenings exploring the motherboard of my Asus 701 (Eee) for USB signals and 5V (off in standby) here’s what I’ve discovered.

There’s a 5V trace (off in standby) that’s available without draining current from the existing USB connectors - take a look at the picture above, snapped with my Sony Ericsson K850i (then scaled to 640×480 and annotated).

There are 8 USB ports provided by the Intel chipset:
- 3 are the existing USB connectors
- 1 is used by the SDHC/MMC card reader
- 1 is used by the webcam
- 2 are used by the mini PCIe card slots (1 for each)
- 1 is still unknown (debug connector, perhaps?)

I damaged a USB Bluetooth module while looking for USB signals on the debug connector - doh! Consider this a warning :)

The MDC card slot does not have USB signals available, but both mini PCIe card slots do…

The Atheros mini PCIe wireless card does not appear to use USB signals (only PCIe signals):

These USB signals are available even when the Atheros mini PCIe wireless card is installed and working, along with another 5V trace (off in standby):

Inserting a Novatel mini PCIe EVDO card into the empty mini PCIe card slot disabled the built-in SSD - as a result, my Eee was unable to boot! I think this mini PCIe card slot is designed for an optional SSD that replaces the built-in SSD…

The Novatel mini PCIe EVDO card does not appear to use PCIe signals (only USB signals), so I think there’s a detection pin on the empty mini PCIe card slot such that the built-in SSD is disabled when a mini PCIe card is inserted.

But, without a mini PCIe card inserted, the USB signals are available, along with a 3.3V trace (off in standby):

That’s it… Enjoy hacking your Eee :) Of course, I’m not responsible if you damage anything!

For more information, visit the Eee user forums. Thanks to user “tristand” for validating some of this information.

12 Responses to “Modding the Asus 701 (Eee)”

  1. Port PCIe : La suite ! » Blogeee.net Says:

    […] propose sur cette page de suivre ses pérégrinations en matières de modifications du EEE. Pour ce faire, elle a passé […]

  2. Jesper Thomschutz Says:

    Have you dissected the battery case? I’m very curious to see how the insides look, and if there are any hacks that could be made there…

  3. exouy Says:

    How do you look for usb signals? I’ve been trying to hook up a notebook’s fingerprint sensor hat I think uses USB signals but can’t figure out. I would realy apreciate your help

  4. jkOnTheRun Says:

    What every hacker needs to know about the Eee PC

    If you’re planning to mod or hack an Asus Eee PC, you’ll want to bookmark this page now. It’s tnkgrl’s all-inclusive modding information on the unit, which frankly looks a little bare. Not the information mind you, the small notebook is what I mean…

  5. ipstacks Says:

    The main bus of this platform seems to be usb. The surf versions without the webcam would allow another devices to be installed (since the webcam takes one of the usb ports). No bluetooth is a bummer, seems like it would atleast be useful for a mouse AND not need a dongle.

  6. ipstacks Says:

    @exouy prolly uses gpio?

  7. Jeremiah Says:

    So what is this information good for again? Sorry for my naive-ness.

  8. ayahshiva Says:

    nice info

  9. memals Says:

    Jeremiah: this is the begining

  10. exouy Says:

    @ipstacks: how can I figure out if it’s gpio or usb?

    someone knows how looks like the gpio and the usb signals in a oscope?

  11. Tropa de Elite Says:

    I’m From Brazil!
    Very Good you Site!

  12. makis1958 Says:

    hello

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