Filed under: OS Updates, Google, Beta
Sure, you've seen us post about Chromium OS here at Download Squad — Sebastian and I both set up Ubuntu build environments and can blast out fresh compiles whenever we feel the urge. But suppose you don't have extra hardware to do that, or maybe you just can't be bothered.
Good news — you don't have to! Thanks to Hexxeh, you can now download buildbot snapshots of the plain-vanilla Chromium OS code. In case you missed out the first time around, Hexxeh is an ambitious young dev from England who rolled his own modified version of the Chrome OS code early on called Flow. It's still available for download, too, and likely due for an update soon as well.
The Vanilla builds he's offering are unmodified compiles of the Chromium OS source. You may have seen Google's buildbot site where they churn Chromium browser builds all day long — Hexxeh has done the same thing for Chromium OS. He's gone the extra step of putting together some PHP and CSS to present things in a more attractive way.
To download the most recent build, click the USB drive image immediately beneath “Download a USB image from the list below.” A few things you should know:
This image likely won't work in VMWare or VirtualBox. Converting the Chromium OS image to a format that will run in virtual environments requires running some extra commands post-compile
You'll need a utility which can write the image file to your USB flash drive. Mac and Linux users can use dd in a terminal window. Windows users: download Win32 Disk Imager, it works extremely well.
There are actually LOADS of files in the archive you're downloading. The only one you probably care about is chromiumos_base_image.bin. The non-base image includes developer tools, code samples, and a few other things that you don't need if you're just going for a test drive. (Hexxeh has updated the Vanilla site to only display the .img file you're after. Nice!!)
You may need an app which can handle .GZ archives to extract your download — 7-Zip is a good choice.
Not all hardware is going to work. The Chromium x86-generic images don't include a ton of drivers, so you may be missing one fairly important piece of the puzzle: wifi support. Most netbooks will work 100% — full-sized laptops are more iffy.
Performance from a USB flash drive is OK, but you will experience some sluggishness from time to time. If you happen to have a spare HDD or SSD you can image and use, go for it!
When you first try to log in, the time may not be correct for your zone. If it's not, you won't be able to log in to your Google account. If that happens, click to browse without signing in, right-click the clock and change to your timezone, and wait for the time to adjust. Once it does, log out and log in with your own account.
This is pre-beta stuff. Certain things don't work properly yet (like the media player) and when it does work you won't be able to play MP3s or most video formats. This is Chromium, not Chrome — so licensed codecs aren't part of the package.
If you're still interested in taking spending a little quality time with it, download Chromium OS Vanilla, extract it, image it, and take it for a spin! Got a question? Want to share your thoughts? Head on over to our Facebook page!
Full props to Hexxeh on this one — we know a lot of our readers are going to appreciate the hard work!
Trying out Chromium OS is now easier than ever
Fuente: Download Squad