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Thread: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

  1. #1
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    Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    Hi, I am on the point of buying Chromebook and I wondered if there is a Linux equivalent that would fit the bill.

    Basically, I need a small device (but with a keyboard) so that I can go on holiday and write. Don't need games or fancy apps - mainly word processing and email. And a browser.

    Any suggestions welcome.
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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    you can install linux on chromebook. yes there are a few smaller laptops that will also do what you want (netbooks or a bit bigger netbooks (about 13" size).
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  3. #3
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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    try a lighter distro though,Ubuntu can be a bit demanding.
    elementary / xubuntu to name a couple
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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    Okay, thanks, I didn't know you could install Linux (and therefore LOpenOffice) on a Chromebook. All the reviews talk about Goggle apps.
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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    Quote Originally Posted by Panawe View Post
    Okay, thanks, I didn't know you could install Linux (and therefore LOpenOffice) on a Chromebook. All the reviews talk about Goggle apps.
    I have a Chromebook, and I would highly recommend it.

    However, if you want a laptop to install Ubuntu on, a Chromebook is not ideal for that.

    In order to install Ubuntu (whether it's a dual-boot or a simultaneous installation using chroot to switch), you need to put your Chromebook into Developer Mode, and Developer Mode is very fragile.

    Every time you reboot, it will warn you that you're in Developer Mode, and if you (or someone else using your Chromebook) accidentally hit(s) the Enter key, it will erase your Ubuntu installation and put your Chromebook back to factory settings.

    If you're cool with that, I'd highly recommend using Crouton to have a simultaneous ChromeOS / Ubuntu installation. Ultimately, though, if you don't plan to use Google Drive for word processing or Chrome for your web browser, there's really no point in getting a Chromebook. More trouble than it's worth. Better to just get a normal laptop and install Ubuntu on that.

  6. #6
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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    I have this in the back of my mind as well. Isn't there a distro optimized for installing Ubuntu on Chromebooks so you have a dual boot machine? You'd need a hard driver larger than the 16 GB. SSDs I see in Best Buy though.
    Last edited by kurt18947; September 18th, 2013 at 03:46 PM.

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    Question Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    Quote Originally Posted by aysiu View Post
    I have a Chromebook, and I would highly recommend it.

    .
    Do you have to use the cloud or does it have a hard drive you can use,or ports for a thumb drive if you don't want to use the cloud?
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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    Quote Originally Posted by kurt18947 View Post
    I have this in the back of my mind as well. Isn't there a distro optimized for installing Ubuntu on Chromebooks so you have a dual boot machine? You'd need a hard driver larger than the 16 GB. SSDs I see in Best Buy though.
    Dual-boots are annoying for two reasons:
    1. you actually have to reboot in order to switch operating systems and (for the reasons I mentioned in my last post)
    2. as you note, 16 GB is not a ton of room, so the less you install, the better.


    For that reason, I'd recommend any Ubuntu users wanting to get a Chromebook look into Crouton. It's quite amazing. It allows you to switch back and forth between ChromeOS and Ubuntu without rebooting and without virtualization. You have both installed and then use chroot (via a keyboard shortcut) to instantly change operating systems.

    Quote Originally Posted by Linuxratty View Post
    Do you have to use the cloud or does it have a hard drive you can use,or ports for a thumb drive if you don't want to use the cloud?
    There is about 16 GB of SSD, which isn't a ton of space. I'm not sure if Google's still offering this promotion or not, but when I got mine it came with 100 GB of Google Drive storage for 2 years. I generally keep my documents in Google Drive in the cloud anyway, but you have the option to keep some or all of your docs offline as well. There are two USB ports (one is USB 3.0) and an SD card slot. Keep in mind, though, that the SD card will jut out a bit when inserted.

  9. #9
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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    I've always wanted a chrome book just never found a reason to justify buying myself one, out of interest what are the battery life's like compared to laptops of their price / size?

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    Re: Thinking of buying Chromebook!

    Quote Originally Posted by Panawe View Post
    Hi, I am on the point of buying Chromebook and I wondered if there is a Linux equivalent that would fit the bill.

    Basically, I need a small device (but with a keyboard) so that I can go on holiday and write. Don't need games or fancy apps - mainly word processing and email. And a browser.

    Any suggestions welcome.
    Where do you usually go for holidays? Is there fast internet everywhere you go? Chromebooks need the internet to properly function so when the internet is gone, theyre worth evaporates.

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