When Chromebooks started getting support for Android apps, there was some confusion about which Chromebooks would be supported. The same thing is starting to be felt – albeit to a lesser extent – with the support of Linux applications.
You have always been able to install Linux applications (or other Linux-based operating systems) on Chromebooks through a workaround called Crouton, because Chrome OS is based on the Linux kernel. The new method of installing Linux applications is much simpler than before because it is an integral part of the operating system.
However, not all Chromebooks will have official support for Linux applications. Here is the deal.
Why are some Chromebooks not supported?
The HP Chromebook X2 runs version 4.4 of the Linux kernel.
The new method of installing Linux applications on a Chromebook (called Crostini internally) relies on the changes introduced in version 3.14 of the Linux kernel. When a Chromebook is developed, its firmware is written around a specific version of the Linux kernel. The main reason is stability; Keeping the kernel version locked makes it easier for Google to update Chromebooks without compromising performance. A Chromebook works as well in the fifth year as the first day.
The significant change in kernel 3.14 is a better support for virtualization. This means that the application runs in a sandbox. Thus, an incorrect process in an application does not block your entire system. It also adds to the security of the Crostini method, which is a big selling point behind Chromebooks.
Some models may also not support the hardware of many Linux applications. A good part of this list includes Chromebooks using 32-bit ARM processors, while most desktop Linux applications are written for 64-bit X86 platforms.
Many unsupported Chromebook models are also approaching the end of Guaranteed software updates. The Chromebook will continue to do everything it does today, but it does not make sense, from Google's perspective, to spend time and money adding new features to a device which, in any case, will no longer be supported.
Which Chromebooks are not supported?
According to Google, all Chromebooks will not be able to use the new method to install Linux applications:
Acer AC700 Chromebook
Acer C7 Chromebook
Acer C720 / C70P / C740 Chromebook
Chromebook Acer 13 CB5-311
Chromebook Acer 15 CB3-531
Chromebook Acer 11 C730 / C730E / C735
ASUS Chomebit CS10
ASUS Chromebook C200
ASUS Chromebook C201
ASUS Chromebook C300
ASUS Chromebook Flip C100PA
ASUS Chromebox CN60
AOpen Chromebase Commercial
AOpen Chromebase Mini
AOpen Chromebox Commercial
AOpen Chromebox Mini
Dell Chromebook 11
Dell Chromebook 11 3120
Google Chromebook CR-48
Google Chromebook Pixel 2013
Chromebook HP 11 G1 / G2 / G3 / G4 / G4 EE
HP Chromebook 14
HP 14 G3 Chromebook
HP Chromebox G1
HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook
Lenovo 100S Chromebook
Lenovo N20 Chromebook
Lenovo ThinkPad 11th Chromebook
Lenovo ThinkPad X131e Chromebook
LG Chromebase 22CV241 / 22CB25S
Samsung Chromebook (2012)
Samsung Chromebook 2 11 "
Samsung Chromebook 2 13 "
Chromebook Samsung 2 11 – XE500C12
Samsung Chromebook Series 5
Samsung Chromebook Series 5,550
Samsung Chromebox Series 3
Toshiba Chromebook 2
If you do not know exactly which Chromebook you have, it's easy to know which model it is.
Here's what you can do if you have an unsupported Chromebook
If you want full Linux applications on your Chromebook, you can still use the old installation method. known as Crouton. It works on any Chromebook, regardless of the version of the processor or Linux kernel. If you want to easily switch between your Linux applications and your web tools, you can run a Linux workstation. in a single browser tab. If you prefer that each application has its own window so that it feels more native, You can do that too.
If you really want to experiment, you can also install another operating system based on Linux. like Ubuntu. If you've had your Chromebook for a long time, it's not a bad idea to look ahead when Google stops sending security updates to your device. Because Chrome OS is Linux-based, there should be no display problem or audio driver issues that prevent you from using the device.
You can also continue to use your Chromebook as it is. You do not lose any of the features you rely on, so if you've already learned how to be productive with Web tools, you can continue.