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Author Topic: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?  (Read 11161 times)

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Offline perknh

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Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« on: June 09, 2014, 08:04:42 am »
Hello Peppermint Nation,

I noticed that Jeff Hoogland, over at Bodhi Linux, had developed a Bodhi Linux OS for Chomebooks.  Since my wife's computer was having issues with dropped Wi-Fi reception, while her Android cell phone and her Android tablet were not, I wondered, in my hardware support post, if Peppermint could be put onto a Chromebook, or if even Chomebooks were the way to go these days.  My thoughts were this:  if the Android devices weren't dropping off of my home's Wi-Fi, I suspected a Chomebook wouldn't either.

I discovered, here at Peppermint Nation, I wasn't alone considering the idea of a Chomebook.  Now, I'm hoping this post will open up ideas concerning Chromebooks for further discussion.

AndyInMokum had some thoughts concerning Chromebooks himself.   His quote is below:

Quote
Hi perknh, I like the sound of Peppermint on a Chromebook.  You would need a Chromebook with an X86 chip not the ARM ones.  I guess you could install Peppermint in Developer Mode.  It would be interesting to find out if anyone has done this.  Chromebooks haven't caught on here in Europe like they have in the States.  I can't understand why either.  The Internet is pretty much ubiquitous  - strange  ???.  I had a look at some the other week.  They are really impressive and I really would like one.  The difficult bit will be convincing the Mrs how much we need one
--AndyInMokum :(.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2014, 09:28:37 pm by perknh »
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Re: Chomebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2014, 10:42:31 am »
As has been said, as long as the Chromebook has an x86 architecture CPU and not ARM .. such as the Acer C720, there are plenty of online tutorials for installing Ubuntu/Linux .. such as:
http://www.linux.com/learn/tutorials/764181-how-to-install-linux-on-an-acer-c720-chromebook
which will also apply to Peppermint

And according to this:
http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=acer_c720_ubuntu1404&num=1
Ubuntu 14.04 was "a breeze" to install on the C720 .. so the same should apply to Peppermint 5 (when it's released).
« Last Edit: June 09, 2014, 01:40:15 pm by PCNetSpec »
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Offline perknh

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Re: Chomebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2014, 01:12:04 pm »
Well, this is interesting news.

Thank you!

Well, I thought I'd find more people would be interested in discussing Chromebooks here.  I do see more Chromebooks being sold, and I know one senior gentleman who is very happy with his.  He told me in essence,  "Look -- no viruses, automatic updates, it's light and easy to carry, and just $200.  I'm delighted with it." 

In fact,  I bought my wife her laptop computer using the idea of a Chromebook.  I bought her a 15.6 inch computer, as opposed to a 14 inch Chromebook.  To us the 1.6 inches does seem to make a difference when looking at the screen, but the difference in weight is minimal when carrying the thing around.  There's only a pound or so difference between the two devices -- the laptop being the heavier of the two.  That's the reason why we didn't buy her a Chromebook.  But, now, as she uses her Android tablet more and more, I'm wondering if I made the right decision buying her the computer instead of the Chromebook.   And, on the rare occasion, when she needs a larger screen, she uses the computer I'm using now -- which has a 17.3 inch screen.  Hopefully, she'll begin to use her own laptop more now that we appear to have fixed her Wi-Fi issue.  Thank you, PCNetSpec!   ;)

« Last Edit: June 11, 2014, 07:08:11 am by perknh »
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Re: Chomebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2014, 09:17:29 am »
Well I'm certainly tempted by the C720 .. pretty good spec for the money.

I think the reason they're not discussed so much here is people like the "idea" but obviously

a) think Peppermint does the "idea" better
and
b) can turn existing hardware into a Chromebook Plus

As Chromebooks are "fairly" new .. I guess most owners are neither interested in changing the OS for guarantee reasons, are  unaware they can, and/or are unaware of Peppermint.

Maybe we need to get a tutorial up somewhere .. I've noticed that when you google "install linux chromebook" nearly ALL returns are about Ubuntu
(but then we'd need someone with an x86 Chromebook .. anyone ?)
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Offline perknh

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Re: Chomebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2014, 03:25:43 pm »
Quote
Maybe we need to get a tutorial up somewhere .. I've noticed that when you google "install linux chromebook" nearly ALL returns are about Ubuntu (but then we'd need someone with an x86 Chromebook .. anyone ?)
--PCNetSpec

I think the idea of a tutorial is an excellent idea.  I've seen instructions how to install Ubuntu to a Chromebook, and I know that Bodhi Linux has a download specifically made for Chromebooks.  I know this because I've put a Chromebook edition of Bodhi Linux onto a flash drive, and I've also discussed this briefly with Jeff Hoogland, within the Bodhi Linux forum.  But that's all of I've seen so far for those of us who use Linux. A tutorial for Peppermint is an excellent idea.  At least we'd be keeping up with the Joneses around here!

I know that one can turn Windows 8,1  into a faux Chromebook --  if Chrome is set as the default browser within Windows 8.1.  But I would think that this doesn't count for much, because all Chrome is doing is riding on top of Windows.   Still, it does look like a Chromebook when one is finished with the process.  But it would still be a fake Chromebook -- that's for sure.  There would only be whispers of Linux found within the Chrome browser itself.   :D                                                               
« Last Edit: June 11, 2014, 03:31:24 pm by perknh »
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Re: Chomebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2014, 09:20:54 am »
It'd still be wide open to viruses/malware too  ::)
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Offline perknh

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Re: Chomebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2014, 03:33:08 pm »
PCNetSpec,

If you're going to go for an Acer, I see here that its processor is slated for an upgrade soon -- might want to wait awhile.

I just found his link this morning.

http://www.slashgear.com/this-is-acers-core-i3-chromebook-06327850/

And something I just found this afternoon:

http://www.gizmag.com/2014-chromebook-comparison-guide/32518/

I think, to bottom line it, we should continue to wait.  We would best be served if we waited and put our upcoming Peppermint 5 release onto the same devices we are using right now for our Peppermint 3, and our Peppermint 4, releases.  Hardware is about to get better for Chomebooks, but the hardware components for Chomebooks are not quite as developed as we might like right now.  From all I've read, the hardware in Chomebooks will soon be getting better.  Let's all save ourselves a couple hundred bucks right now! 

As for Linus Torvalds thoughts as to why Linux has not been competitive on the desktop, and why projects like Google Chromebook may offer some hope for changing this, please take a look at this short 3 1/2 minute video called  Q&A session with Linus Torvalds: Why is Linux not competitive on desktop? 

What Linus Torvalds says here is pertinent to our discussion concerning Chromebooks.

To watch this video one needs to click onto the arrow below in YouTube, and then when within YouTube, click the link that says, Watch this video on YouTube.  After this, the video will start playing at Youtube's official site.

Enjoy!


« Last Edit: September 19, 2014, 08:24:38 am by perknh »
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Offline zoolkeeper

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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2014, 07:27:54 am »
I have just bought a 16Gb Acer C720 Chromebook and have a 32Gb MSata card to upgrade it to. I intend if possable to dual boot this with Peppermint 5 and Chromeos.

In the UK Morgan Computers have them on special offer see http://www.morgancomputers.co.uk/product_detail/14874/Acer-Chromebook-Aspire-C720-2GB-16GB-SSD-11-6-inch/

Offline perknh

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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2014, 08:07:39 am »
Hello zoolkeeper,

So you're the brave soul amongst us!  ;)

I'm in the States, but I keep looking for any new models that might be coming out for Christmas.  There's nothing new here yet at Walmart -- no new models, no deals, nothing.

I'd be curious to hear how it goes for you with your duel-booting idea.  Is there enough hard drive space for the two OSes?  I suspect with 16 Gbs there is. (I used to run Peppermint 3 on an 8 Gb flash drive.)

Please tell us how you end up liking your Chromebook -- if you figure you need to use EFF's Privacy Badger, or AdBlock, anything....

Thanks for telling us, zoolkeeper, and please keep us posted.

perknh

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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2014, 11:30:49 am »
So I can keep what I have i was going to order a 30Gb mSata off amazon

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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2014, 11:48:58 am »
I suppose that depends on how much of that 16GB is already being used by ChromeOS .. and what you intend to do with Peppermint and ChromeOS.

Personally I'd want the extra space.

That said I can't really see the point in ChromeOS *and* Peppermint .. I'd just backup ChromeOS then replace it with Peppermint.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2014, 11:52:48 am by PCNetSpec »
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Offline perknh

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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2014, 02:34:48 pm »
Hello, PCNetSpec!

How would you back up ChromeOS from the Chromebook?

It's true that if zoolkeeper had Peppermint 5 installed, and then downloaded Chrome browser for Linux, he'd have more functionality than if he just had ChromeOS alone.  But how would he be able to back up the entire OS?  Is this process like Windows -- where you get one shot to make a recovery drive?  Would he just copy ChromeOS to a flash drive, and then be able to re-install ChromeOS when, or if, he ever needed or wanted to?

This is something I've never tried with Linux.  It's so easy to re-install Peppermint, but how would zoolkeeper get his mitts on ChromeOS?  Would a Chromebook have an option similar to a Windows recovery option?

perknh
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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #12 on: September 22, 2014, 04:38:24 pm »
See the first things first section of this:
http://www.linux.com/learn/tutorials/764181-how-to-install-linux-on-an-acer-c720-chromebook

or you could use a Clonezilla or Redo Backup & Recovery LiveUSB to create an image of the SSD
« Last Edit: September 22, 2014, 04:39:58 pm by PCNetSpec »
WARNING: You are logged into reality as 'root' .. logging in as 'insane' is the only safe option.

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Offline perknh

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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2014, 05:02:18 pm »
Okay, got it!

This is another useful Peppermint forum thread to bookmark.  :)

Thank you,

perknh

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Offline zoolkeeper

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Re: Chromebooks? Any thoughts concerning them?
« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2014, 08:25:37 am »
To backup ChromeOS all you do is launch Chrome and navigate to chrome://imageburner. This will download if not already installed the recovery image from Google and write it to a USB stick or SD card. You need to use a minimum of 4Gb stick / card.