Clicking Sound Inside Asus G1S
When you use Asus G1S in silent environment, you may hear a clicking sound every now and then inside the chassis. The sound can be located to upper left corner of the laptop. One may also notice that clicks occur at the same time when the hard disk light flashes. Yes, it is Hitachi hard disk which clicks.
When I googled for "Asus G1S clicking", there were a bunch of hits. Obviously Hitachi hard disk is not the most silent hard disk around. However, it should not affect the performance or reliability of the hard disk - at least this it what is told by Asus.
Year 2008: It seems that Asus has acknowledged the problem and some people has reportedly got new hard disk under warranty. So you may want to contact Asus and ask for replacement. Be sure to backup your data before sending your notebook for service as Asus will replace your hard disk :)
I usually work in a silent environment and this clicking sound bothered me quite a lot, so I went and bought another hard disk - Samsung Spinpoint M5S HM250JI 2.5" 250GB 5400 rpm SATA for 120 euros. The new Samsung is very silent - Only if you place your ear close to the upper left corner you may hear very faint sound when the disk is accessing data.
You may wonder what happened to the old disk. Well, I also bought an external USB-SATA chassis, so I can use the old Hitachi disk for my backups. For improved privacy I use a nifty freeware program called TrueCrypt to encrypt all my backup data in order to keep my data protected if I accidentally lose my backup disk.
The upcoming TrueCrypt 5.0 is also going to provide means to encrypt whole laptop hard disk, which will provide ultimate protection from outsiders, for instance if the laptop gets stolen.
Asus G1S Problems with 3GB/4GB RAM
I am using my Asus G1S to run multiple virtual machines inside Virtualbox, so my system may benefit from as much RAM as possible.
I went and bought two 2GB RAM modules in order to upgrade my system to have maximum 4GB RAM supported. It turned out to be easier said than done. When I booted XP, the system could not use nVidia drivers any more and the screen appears to be very sluggish. And when I booted Kubuntu 7.10 or openSUSE 10.3, the X screen appeared as garbage.
After I googled for a while I found some similar stories. Obviously there are some issues with BIOS 205 and earlier when installing more than 2GB memory. It seems that BIOS allocates some PCI resources so that they conflict with the GeForce 8600M GT display hardware so that nVidia drivers doesn't work correctly in XP or Vista. This affects also Linux 2.6.23 and earlier kernels.
See "Upgrading Asus G1S to BIOS" for the solution.
I am currently running Asus G1S with BIOS 300, 4GB of RAM and 64-bit version of Arch Linux: the nVidia drivers loaded correctly, X windows manager works correctly, performance is superb and I have 3.86GB of physical memory available!
With Windows XP SP2, I have 3GB of RAM available - Obviously an 32-bit operating system cannot use all the memory as part of the address space needs to be allocated for video RAM and PCI peripherals.