Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Run Google Chrome OS From A USB Drive

Google had launched the Chrome OS source code. After its launch so many people started downloading this new OS to run it on their virtual machines such as VMWare and Virtual Box.

I succeeded to put together my Google Chrome OS Download in complete shape of Virtual Box appliance. I am glad to tell you people that I taken it a step further and now it can be tried on computer from a USB drive.

Important Things to know before downloading Chrome OS

There are few things about that I should tell you before you people decide to download Chrome OS that its on the very early stages of development, so there is still a lot of stuff that don’t work.

This operating system is very simple in design and its main purpose is to use it on netbook computers. So when you will launch Chrome OS, then you will get a web browser, don’t be surprised for that you gone through all this only for a browser.

Download Requirements

Obviously for downloading it a USB drive is needed. For downloading it a 4GB thumb drive is needed, if you are having any files on your USB drive then make sure to is nee back them up to a safe place because this will erase away all data on your USB drive.

A computer that allows booting from USB drive is also needed.  You have to change its settings in Bios for booting it from USB drive instead of hard drive. When you will boot it your computer will show you some information that how you can get the boot menu. In some computers you gets boot menu by pressing F8 or F12 and some haves other key.

While booting it all scrolls so fast that its hard to read all of the contents some computers to allow pause the boot sequence by pressing the pause key. This will show you all stuff to read on the screen. If you can’t see anything about a boot menu then you should change the Bios settings to boot from the USB drive or you can consult to your computer or motherboard manual to know how to do this.

To run Chromium OS on your system you may need some luck also because there is chance the Chromium OS wont work on your computer hardware. Though I installed that on two computers successfully but on my Dell laptop it haven’t recognized the network adapter. One thing more to install this on your computer you also needs a network adapter in your computer.

Finally you need to download necessary files to put Chromium OS onto your USB drive.

The program that you will use to create the Chrome OS USB boot disk is called Image Writer for Windows. This is a smart tiny tool for writing disk images, its free and open source.

Chromium OS Installation on
USB Drive

Launch Win32DiskImager.exe. While installing if you get the warning as shown in image below then don’t bother, this warning is about checking floppy disk, which is not there.

When the image writer started running, click on folder icon and select the chrome_os.img file.

Now connect your USB drive with your computer, if autorun is enabled on your USB drive then wait for few seconds to let your computer to do its thing. Whatever window pops up just close it. After that click on the Device dropdown and select the drive letter that corresponds to your USB drive. Now click on Write and program will begin writing the disk image to your USB drive.

Boot Chromium OS From
USB Drive

Now you can boot up Chromium OS, just plug your USB drive in your system and reboot it. When your computer boots then on keyboard press the boot menu key. From menu select your USB drive; in almost 10 seconds you will see the Chromium OS log in on the screen.

Log in with chronos and password. You will log as a local user. After logging in you will that it almost looks the Google Chrome browser. When you will click on the Chrome sphere in the upper left corner, you will a Google Accounts log in page showing you to log into Welcome. Log in with your Google Account.

If you don’t see this page and on browser page you get that it could not find the page then that mean Chromium OS haven’t recognized your network adapter. Anyhow you can still try it out in a virtual machine if you want it still on your system. If you successfully logged in then you will see the application page.

Now you can see all the applications, different WebPages and everything you do takes place within the browser.

As I experienced though it boot up fast but browser tends to run a little slow and jumpy. The calculator and notepad opened properly in little popover windows but the applications don’t work and nothing loads into the windows at all.

To-do list application doesn’t work also. You get a Google.com login page, this is not the same as Google Accounts log in that’s why you wont be able to log in to your Google Account, because the Google.com login page is only for the Google employees. The Contact application brings up a Google Talk gadget, which don’t work either.

As I said in the beginning that there is a lot of stuff on it, which is not working, right at the top of the application pages you will see a message that says UI under development. Designs are subject to change.

While all other applications are only links to WebPages. The thing, which looks me interesting in it, is that when you click on the Hotmail icon it opens up Gmail. But when I clicked on the Yahoo Mail icon it opened the yahoo mail. I think Google likes Yahoo more than Microsoft.


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