Google just announced at their Google I/O event something amazing. Starting immediately, all new Chromebooks will include Linux and ChromeOS.
Even though Chrome OS is based on Linux, it is not a native Linux desktop environment. Chrome OS started as a fork of Ubuntu Linux. Later on Google forked Gentoo Linux and that is their current kernel base.
I thought we had Linux previously?
Last year, Google released a way to run desktop Linux within Chrome OS. There have also been methods for years to run different Linux distros with Crouton in a chroot container. But this is different, Linux will now come pre-installed and ready to launch with any new Chromebook.
What does Linux bring to Chromebooks?
Allowing Chrome OS to natively run Linux applications means more things you can do on your Chromebook. You will be able to run Linux applications directly from Chrome OS. Linux applications will now become like any other Android or Chrome OS application.
Previously, your inexpensive Chromebook that was limited to Web applications, now it can be a full fledged power house laptop. Almost any application available for Windows or MacOS have an equivalent Linux application.
Which Linux distros will be supported?
Google has already said Debian Stretch is going to be the first Linux distro. You can already get a near production version of this out. Subscribe to the Beta or Dev channel release of Chrome OS for the PixelBook and you can play with this new feature.
Google says security will still stay at the forefront of Chrome OS. Chrome OS uses Linux’s kernel based VM. All Linux distros will run in VM sandboxes. This will block Linux applications from accessing or controlling your chromebook. This means you can now use your Chromebook for more serious use like software development or security testing.
The mainstream Chrome OS release channel should support Linux distros by end of July 2019. You can switch to the Beta or Dev release channel if you would like to experience this today. You can expect to be using Linux applications some time soon!
For help with your Chromebook or any other Linux computer issues, call us at 1-800-620-5285. Karls Technology is a nationwide computer service company with offices in many major cities. This blog post was brought to you from our staff at the Phoenix Computer Repair Service, if you need computer repair in Phoenix, AZ please call the local office at (602) 445-9862.