This article will explain how to use Adobe Photoshop to create a custom splash screen to integrate into your eeePC BIOS.
There is always a small chance that updating your BIOS will brick your eeePC!
Always make sure that your eeePC has a full battery and is connected to the power before doing an upgrade!
You use this tutorial completely at your own risk!
You can also customize startup/shutdown screens, and they are a lot safer than customizing the BIOS screen.
The first step, of course, is to find an image you want to use as your splash screen, or create your own. The final image for the BIOS must be 640×480, but if the image you want to use is larger, don't worry - this article will cover resizing the image too. If your desired image is on the web, the easiest way to get it into Photoshop is generally to right-click the image itself and choose “Copy” in Internet Explorer, or “Copy Image” in Firefox; this puts it on the Windows clipboard. Then, open Photoshop and press CTRL+N to create a new image. A dialog will pop up, and the image width and height will already be preset to the width and height of the image you've copied to the clipboard, so just click OK; then press CTRL+V to paste your image into Photoshop.
If you want to use an image on your hard disk or create your own, the process should be pretty self-explanatory if you've used Photoshop at all before, and is beyond the scope of this article.
The easiest way to resize your image is to use the crop tool. This ensures that regardless of the size or aspect ratio of your original image, you will end up with a 640×480 image. To select the crop tool, select it from the toolbar on the left - it should look something like the icon shown to the left. You can also press C as a shortcut to select it. If you are using Photoshop 7 or later, you will see a crop toolbar near the top of the screen, like the one below. Enter a width of “640” and a height of “480”; resolution can be left blank, as it won't be saved into our final file so it doesn't matter.
Now, click and drag from one end of your image to the other. It might be easier if you first maximize the window so you have some grey workspace around the image - feel free to start and end from opposite corners of this work area, to make sure you select the entire image. You should now see the “marching ants” dotted line going around the image; if part of the image is outside the dotted line and shaded, either you didn't select the entire image or it is at a different aspect ratio. Try dragging the boxes on the corners of the selected area to encompass the entire image, or move the entire crop selection by dragging from anywhere within the selected area, until you have the desired portion selected. You can hold SHIFT while dragging to drag straight up and down or left and right. Keep in mind that if the crop selection goes beyond the edge of the image, the area between the edge of the image and the selection will be filled with your background color… generally not desirable!
When you have your entire image or the desired portion selected, simply press ENTER to finalize the crop. If you wind up with a background-colored area, or are otherwise unhappy with the results, press CTRL+Z to undo and try again.
Once you have a 640×480 image (you can verify this by selecting “Image Size…” from the “Image” menu), you need to reduce it to 15 colors (not 16!). Under the “Image” menu, highlight the “Mode” popout and choose “Indexed Color…” - if Indexed Color is already selected, you will have to change it to RGB Color and change it back (simply select “RGB Color” instead, and then repeat the steps and choose “Indexed Color…”). If you are prompted to flatten the image, select OK, because you don't need any layers that may have been created.
At this point, you should have an “Indexed Color” dialog similar to the one shown at the left. Make sure Colors is set to 15, Transparency is not checked, Preview is checked, and Forced is set to “None”. The settings shown to the left seem to work best for me, but you can play with the remaining values and see if you get more pleasing results - just make sure Palette is one of the three “Local” options (Selective, Perceptual, or Adaptive) for best results. When you're satisfied with the preview, click OK to finalize it.
Now that you have a 15-color image at 640×480, you're ready to save it. From the “File” menu, choose “Save As…”; select “Bitmap (*.BMP;*.RLE;*.DIB)” as the Format, choose the folder you'd like to put it in, and save the file with whatever name you'd like. When you click “Save”, you should get a “BMP Options” dialog similar to the window shown to the left. Ensure the File Format is set to “Windows”, change the Depth to “4-bit” (important!), and make sure “Compress (RLE)” and “Flip row order” are not checked. Click OK and your file will be saved!
If you've done everything properly, you should have a BMP file that is about 151KB. If your file is any other size, then it was either saved in another bit depth (301-302KB is usually the size for an 8-bit image… make sure you changed the “Depth” setting in the “BMP Options” dialog!) or it wasn't resized properly and is larger or smaller than 640×480. If it's the right size, now you can import it into your BIOS using MMTool: http://www.lejabeach.com/sisubb/MMTool_3.19.exe!
This page is created by DoktorJones