ASUS Eee PC 1101HAB Netbook RAM & Hard Drive Upgrade

Read this entire blog before beginning this process since there is an issue with SSD hard drives and Windows 7 in this particular netbook model. I will also warn you that this is one of the most difficult machines to replace the hard drive in that I’ve seen.

First, remove the battery and hold down the power button for 30 seconds.

Memory Upgrade
Turn the computer upside down. Remove the single screw from the memory cover:

Remove the memory cover:

The memory cover has clips on both sides and an L shaped plastic bracket at the end opposite to the screw. Lift the cover out at an angle as shown in the above image.

The memory comes out just like any other machine.

I recommend using a precision set of screwdrivers so the computer doesn’t look like it was taken apart with a jack hammer.  I use a Swiss Tools Screwdriver Set.

Hard Drive Upgrade
Remove the 8 screws from the bottom of the computer:

Remove the keyboard by pressing the 4 tabs at the top of the keyboard with a small flat head screwdriver. There are actually no screws that hold the keyboard in place.

Here’s a close up of one of the tabs:

The keyboard lifts out from the top. Be care, there’s still a cable connected underneath it.

Rotate the keyboard so you can disconnect the cable from its ZIF socket. Press both sides of the ZIF socket toward the cable.

Remove the 8 screws from underneath the keyboard including the one underneath the warranty seal. Yes, you will be voiding your warranty by removing this seal. The warranty on my netbook has already expired. Disconnect the touchpad from its ZIF socket. This ZIF socket flips up. Do not press this socket towards the cable or you risk damaging it.

I recommend removing the SD card and start working the top off from the back right side near the RJ-45 jack. Work your way around the entire machine clockwise down the right side, across the front, up the left side, and finally across the back. Pulling forward slightly helps the back come loose easier. Remove the entire top cover portion of the machine. Do not force anything. The clips are not very difficult to work loose, but a small screwdriver may be needed. They can be worked loose without marring the plastic case.

Remove the left side of the cable that’s over the hard drive from its ZIF socket. This ZIF socket also flips up. Remove the single screw that holds the hard drive caddy in place:

Lift the left side of the hard drive up slightly and pull it out to the left. You can completely remove the cable that’s on top of the hard drive by disconnecting the other side of it, but that’s really unnecessary and is just something else to have to reconnect.

Remove the four screws, two on each side and then remove the hard drive from the caddy:

Reassemble all of the hardware in reverse order using the new replacement hard drive. Be sure to connect all the ZIF cables properly. You don’t won’t to have to do all of this again.

Now that you have all of the hardware back together, power on the computer and enter Setup by pressing F2. Verify the computer sees the new amount of memory.

Verify it also sees the new hard drive:

The easiest way to load Windows 7 on a netbook is to create a USB installation drive with a Windows 7 ISO image. See my blog on “The Easy Way to Create a Bootable Windows 7 USB Flash Drive“.

I decided to install Windows 7 Home Premium on my netbook considering the cost was cheaper than pro or ultimate and I wouldn’t use any of the additional features of those editions. The ISO I used included SP1. When you reach this point during the installation:

If the hard drive is not already formatted, the installation will hang or lockup on the first step when it is attempting to “Copy Windows files”.

There are two options to work around this problem. You can boot a copy of Vista or Windows 2008 (non-R2) x86 and format the drive. Then cancel out of the installation. Boot the Windows 7 SP1 installation media and then the install completes without issue. This is the first method I used. I then decided to disassemble the computer again, connect the hard drive to another Windows 7 machine and format it since Windows 7 uses a newer version of the NTFS file system that may have some optimizations for SSD hard drives. This also gave me a chance to document the process and write this blog about it.

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1 Comment

  1. Scott

    I have an Asus Eee pc 1101HAB. Can I use windows 7, 8, or 10 with its factory configuration?

    Reply

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