Want to take a look at Chrome OS without spending money on a new computer? Wondering if a cloud operating system can improve the performance of the Raspberry Pi as a productivity tool? You don’t need to be surprised anymore — you can install Chrome OS on your computer for $50 and find out how well it works.
Why Install Chrome OS on Raspberry Pi?
Various operating systems are available for the Raspberry Pi. While the default option is preferred by many, many Raspbian options are Linux-only.
But Chrome OS offers something different: cloud computing. The relatively low specs of the Raspberry Pi make it perfect for Chrome OS. The operating system is designed to run most of the software as web applications using servers for processing.
Another reason to install Chrome OS on Raspberry Pi is that it is easy to use. Google has spent years perfecting and perfecting the operating system. These changes are being felt in the official release as well as in the open source Chromium OS.
Open source Chrome OS
While Google manages and releases Chrome OS, the operating system is based on the open source project, Chromium OS. This has been released on various devices and thanks to the FydeOS project can be installed on the Pi.
Note that several other versions of Chromium OS have been released on the Raspberry Pi. They are now out of production; there is every chance that FydeOS may be abandoned in the future. Thus, you may prefer to download and build the source code available at www.chromium.org .
For this tutorial, we will be using the pre-configured code available in FydeOS.
Grab them to install Chrome OS on your Raspberry Pi
To install and run Chrome OS on a Raspberry Pi computer, you will need:
- Raspberry Pi 3 or 3B+ (no working image for Pi Zero or for Raspberry Pi 4)
- microSD card at least 8 GB
- 7-Zip from 7-zip.org
- Etcher from www.balena.io/etcher/
- FydeOS Chromium image from GitHub
- Desktop PC
With a mouse, keyboard, HDMI cable, and spare display, you’ll be ready to get started with Chrome OS.
Prepare an SD card for Chrome OS
The downloaded IMG file is compressed in XZ format, so you need to expand it with the right tool. 7-Zip is your best option on Windows; XZ can be extended on Linux systems.
Next, the IMG file must be written to the SD card. The simplest option here is the excellent Etcher tool, which will also format your SD card. Download, install and launch Etcher, then click » Select Image», to find the Chromium IMG file.