Friday, February 18, 2022

Chrome OS Flex

Tim Hardwick:

Google has announced early access to Chrome OS Flex, a method of replacing the operating system on older PCs and Macs “within minutes” to essentially turn them into Chromebooks.


The idea is that if you have an aging Mac lying around that can’t run macOS 12 Monterey, then you can install Chrome OS Flex on it using a bootable USB stick and then try out what Google’s cloud-first operating system has to offer.


However, there’s currently no Google Play Store, and Google has outlined some other, mainly system-level limitations of OS Flex that distinguish it from Chrome OS on native Google devices.


5 Comments RSS · Twitter

This is good. Apple won't support older Macs (leaving them unsafe and useless), so Google will.

I've used that company that Google bought to turn an old crappy PC laptop into a decent Chromebook.

It's one of the best ways to combat ewaste apart from not upgrading your phone once a year that I can think of.

Is this a rebranding of the Cloudready thing they bought a while back? I’ve used that on old PCs and it was great.

I see that the requirements are fairly basic (4 GB RAM, 64bit CPU), with a warning that pre-2010 machines/components might not have enough gusto. I picked up a few mid-2012 MacBook Pros some time ago, and they are certified by Google as working with Chrome OS Flex. Windows 10 works well on these machines, but I think I'll take a look at Google Flex for them once support for Catalina ends.

Shrewd move. Microsoft must be kicking themselves. And yeah, this is the product of the CloudReady acquisition and it's working great, and will be even better with Google's blessing. I'm no Google fan, but it's rather hard to overstate the practical uses of this for making old and perfectly usable hardware sing.

Also, will this be the year of Linux on the desktop? (Sorry, sorry ...)

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