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Too little, too late: Linux app support is finally coming to Skylake Chromebooks

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GNU
Linux
Google

Chromebooks are incredible tools for school and home use, and although they're often thought of as simple machines, they can do a variety of tasks beyond surfing the web. When Google launched Linux support for Chrome OS in 2018, it unlocked access to thousands of desktop applications. While modern Chromebooks have had access to Linux apps for years, capable Skylake-powered systems like the Samsung Chromebook Pro got left in the dust. It seems the wait may finally be over thanks to recent updates — but it may be too late to matter.

Google broke its silence via the Chromium bug tracker last Friday, confirming that the work to run Linux apps on Skylake Chromebooks is complete. This should finally close the curtains on this issue, with support arriving in subsequent updates without flipping on the "Enable VMs on Experimental kernels" Chrome flag. It's unclear how much longer users with a Skylake device will have to wait, but it could appear in the next major Chrome OS update (M92).

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Google waited way too long to bring Linux to older Chromebooks

  • Google waited way too long to bring Linux to older Chromebooks

    Chromebooks are incredible tools for school and home use, and although they're often thought of as simple machines, they can do a variety of tasks beyond surfing the web. When Google launched Linux support for Chrome OS in 2018, it unlocked access to thousands of desktop applications. While modern Chromebooks have had access to Linux apps for years, capable Skylake-powered systems like the Samsung Chromebook Pro got left in the dust. It seems the wait may finally be over thanks to recent updates — but it may be too late to matter.

    Google broke its silence via the Chromium bug tracker last Friday, confirming that the work to run Linux apps on Skylake Chromebooks is complete. This should finally close the curtains on this issue, with support arriving in subsequent updates without flipping on the "Enable VMs on Experimental kernels" Chrome flag. It's unclear how much longer users with a Skylake device will have to wait, but it could appear in the next major Chrome OS update (M92).

As if it matters, your Skylake Chromebook can finally use Linux

  • As if it matters, your Skylake Chromebook can finally use Linux apps

    We are three years into the Crostini project that brought Linux app support to Chrome OS. Unfortunately for users of devices like the Samsung Chromebook and ASUS Chromebook C302, Linux has eluded the 8th Gen Skylake processors from Intel. This was a bad situation all around given the fact that these Chromebooks were the cream of the crop at that point in time. As newer Kaby Lake Chromebooks came along, Skylake device owners were feeling rather put out as developers weren’t clear as to whether or not the 8th Gen chips would even get support for Linux. Time ticked by and before we knew it, 10th Gen Comet Lake devices became the standard for Chrome OS and it began to feel as if Skylake Chromebooks would simply be left out in the cold.

    Don’t get me wrong. There were glimmers of hope here and there. At one point, a new flag emerged that would allow for “experimental kernels” on some devices but these trials were done on a limited basis. This resulted in a handful of users actually gaining access to Linux (Beta). However, after months passed, no sign of official support surfaced and most of us gave up hope and moved on. It was a sad state of affairs, for sure but new devices were dropping left and right while Skylake Chromebooks were inching closer and closer to end of life. That’s not to say that Google wasn’t making a concerted effort to get this working. It just felt like the effort was in vain.

Google brings Chrome OS Linux support to Intel 6th Gen ‘Skylake’

  • Google brings Chrome OS Linux support to Intel 6th Gen ‘Skylake’ processors

    Linux support for Chrome OS makes every Chromebook a much more useful tool, and now, the feature is finally headed to older Chromebooks powered by Intel 6th Gen processors, otherwise known as the “Skylake” generation.

    Google first launched support for Linux in Chrome OS in 2018 but only on select models and chip configurations. The list of supported models has grown considerably in the time since, but older Chromebooks using Intel 6th Gen processors have lacked support for Linux.

    As spotted by Android Police, Google has unceremoniously announced on the Chromium bug tracker that “All work to enable this has been completed.” That’s roughly 18 months after that thread was opened up by Samsung Chromebook Pro and Asus Chromebook Flip owners who were irked by their fairly expensive machines lacking support for the feature.

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