July 8th, 2005, 09:29
"I bought a Biostar iDeq 220K mini-PC.

For the archives, here is my experience with it.

The case is very well designed. Just like any mini-PC, it's a bit tricky
to fill it with cards and hard disks (you have to insert the right things in
the right order). But the internal design is handy. Most parts can easily be
lifted after removing one or two screws. And although the cables are very
short, their paths can easily be changed. For instance I changed the path of
the SATA power connector in order to put a hard disk in the floppy slot. It
might sound stupid, but for a mini-PC, it's not that common. And all
metallic parts are large and "safe", unlike most PC cases that can slice your
The only thing I dislike about the case is the fact that putting your
fingers on it immediately create marks (I got a black one, maybe there are
other colors that reduces this).

Here's what I added into it: 3 hard disks (2 ATA + 1 SATA), AMD64 3400,
512 Mb RAM, Orinoco Wifi adapter, and (later) my old Radeon 7000 card.

Here we go for the OS experiences.

Linux (Debian unstable), DragonFlyBSD and OpenBSD installed flawlessly.
Disks were properly discovered, USB2 works, sound works, NIC works.

However, as expected, the built-in video adapter (Via Unichrome Pro)
doesn't work with stock X servers. Well, it works with the "vesa" driver,
but it is awfully slow and it obviously lacks support for XVideo.

Drivers available from (committed to Xorg CVS)
are supposed to support it. I tried the Debian package, and it didn't work,
the screen was always black. But maybe that package doesn't contain the
latest code that includes stuff for the K8M800.

I'll try to merge the Unichrome stuff into the OpenBSD Xorg tree to see if
there is some hope.

But with an extra graphic adapter, this barebone works very well with
OpenBSD i386 and OpenBSD amd64 (tested with -current), except one (noisy)
thing. The CPU fan spins like hell, and it never stops even when the host is
cold and idle. It doesn't happen with the kernel from the install disk and it
seems to happen just after USB has been probed."