Jul 07, 2020. If you don’t have a Windows 7 or newer computer, download the 64-bit CloudReady image below to your Downloads folder (not to the USB stick) and then click the appropriate OS link below for instructions on how to manually create a USB installer.
Google’s Chrome OS is an alternative to operating systems like Windows and macOS. It’s a great platform that’s aimed at a specific audience and has its pros and cons, just like its rivals. If you’re thinking of buying a Chromebook, the first thing you should do is learn exactly what is Chrome OS, how it compares with more traditional operating systems, and who exactly should and shouldn’t use it. You’ll find answers to all these questions and more in this post.
What is Chrome OS, anyway?
Chrome OS is an operating system developed and owned by Google. It’s based on Linux and is open-source, which also means it’s free to use.
A big advantage of Chrome OS is that it’s super simple to use. Although it has a desktop environment similar to the one you get on a Windows machine, Chrome OS is basically a web browser at its core. You can watch videos, scroll through Facebook and other social networks, and do everything else you can do in a browser on rival operating systems like Windows and macOS.
Just like Android phones, Chrome OS devices have access to the Google Play Store, but only those that were released in or after 2017. This means that most of the apps you can download and run on your Android phone can also be used on Chrome OS. However, keep in mind that not all of these apps are optimized for Chrome OS. Those that aren’t can only be used in phone screen format, which takes up just a portion of the screen on a Chromebook. To learn more about exactly how to run Android apps on Chrome OS devices, head to our dedicated article here.
Read next:The best Android apps for Chromebooks you can install right now
The simplicity of Chrome OS also has a major drawback. Unlike on Windows and macOS devices, you can’t download and run AAA games or use desktop programs like Adobe Premiere Plus, for example. You can only run programs and games that are in the Play Store. This is why Chromebooks aren’t for everyone.
What’s the difference between Chrome OS and Chrome the browser?
Google’s Chrome browser allows you to access the web and works pretty much the same on all platforms including Windows, macOS, and Android. Its rivals include browsers like Firefox, Opera, Microsoft Edge, and Brave, among many others. Chrome is currently the most popular browser in the world with a market share of around 65 percent (all platforms combined), according to StatCounter.
Some say Chrome OS is nothing more than a glorified browser.
Chrome OS, on the other hand, is an operating system that powers Chromebooks, just like Windows powers certain laptops. It comes with the Google Chrome browser installed that can be used to access the web. The OS is designed around simplicity, so there aren’t a lot of extra features you get outside of just launching the Chrome browser and surfing the web. There are a few, though, including things like running Android apps and the ability to save images to the device’s local storage, just to name a few.
Because of its simplicity, some refer to Chrome OS as nothing more than a glorified browser. While that may have been the case years back, it isn’t true anymore, mainly because of the support for Android apps.
Who is Chrome OS for?
Chromebooks are designed to be simple and cheap, although there are high-end models available as well. If all you want to do with a laptop is to browse the web, watch YouTube videos, play Android games, and use the same apps you do on your phone, a Chrome OS device is definitely something to consider.
Read next:What is a Chromebook, what can and can’t it do?
However, if you’re a more advanced user who wants to play popular AAA PC games and use software like Photoshop, a more traditional Windows or even a macOS device is better suited for your needs. Keep in mind that while software like Photoshop can be used on Chrome OS since you can download it from the Play Store, the Android version of the app is far less powerful and feature-packed than the Windows variant.
That’s just a general guideline for who should use a Chromebook and who shouldn’t. If you want to dive deeper into the topic, check out the main pros and cons of Chrome OS below, which will help you figure out whether a Chromebook is for you.
- Simple: Chrome OS is all about simplicity. The Chromebook operating system is so simple, even your grandma could use it. It also works fast and boots up in mere seconds.
- Cheap: Chrome OS is open-source and free to use. It’s designed for simple tasks like browsing the web and running Android apps, so it doesn’t need high-end hardware. For those reasons, Chrome OS devices are generally cheaper than their Windows/macOS counterparts, although there are a few expensive models on offer as well.
- Android app support: As already mentioned, Chromebooks released in the last few years all support Android apps, making them a lot more useful than they once were.
- Secure: Because of its simplicity, Chrome OS is a lot more secure than Windows laptops, especially since most of what you’ll download will be from the Play Store. There are also frequent and automatic Chrome OS updates available as well as built-in virus protection.
- Cloud-based: Chrome OS is designed to be cloud-based as much as possible. You have all of Google’s services available including Google Docs for creating documents, Drive for storing your files, and Photos for all your images. That means you can access all these files and documents on other devices with an internet connection, regardless of your location. You can also be sure that if your Chromebook gets lost, stolen, or damaged, you won’t lose your files.
- Weight: Chrome OS-powered devices generally don’t have large hard drives and other high-end specs, which means they are lighter than most other laptops — making them ideal for road warriors.
- Battery life: Since Chrome OS is a simple operating system and Chromebooks don’t need a lot of power, battery life is generally excellent.
- Software compatibility: I’ve already mentioned this, but I’ll mention it again since it’s the biggest drawback of Chrome OS devices. You can’t use full versions of Photoshop, Microsoft Office, and many, many, other programs on Chromebooks. You can only use services that work within a browser or software in the form of Android apps. For example, you can download Microsoft Word from the Play Store, but you don’t get all the features you’re used to on Windows machines.
- Not great for gaming: You can play games on Chromebooks, but you’re limited to the titles available in the Play Store. So you can’t play AAA games on Chrome OS devices, as they don’t support them. But even if they did, you wouldn’t be able to play many of them since Chromebooks are not powerful machines to begin with.
- Small storage space: Since they are cloud-based, the storage space you get on a Chromebook is generally a lot smaller than what you would expect on a Windows laptop. Instead of 500GB, expect around 64GB. This isn’t a huge drawback since you don’t need a lot of space, but it is worth mentioning nonetheless.
- Offline mode: Chrome OS devices work best when you have access to the internet. You can use them in offline mode, but the experience isn’t always the best. Some apps won’t work at all, while others will have limited functionality in offline mode.
Chrome OS devices
Chrome OS primarily powers Chromebooks. There are plenty of them to choose from at different price points, although there are more affordable models available than those boasting high-end specs and matching price tags.
We won’t list our pick for the best Chromebooks in this post, as that would make it too long. To learn which ones we think are worth your money, check out our dedicated best Chromebooks post at the link instead. If you’re on a budget, we also have a list of the best Chromebooks under $300 you can get. Alternatively, you can check out our lists of the best Chromebooks by brand via the links below.
In addition to Chromebooks, you’ll also find Chrome OS on a few tablets. These devices are even more portable and can also be paired with a keyboard in case you have to write a longer email or create a document. One of the best Chrome OS tablets is definitely Google’s own Pixel Slate, but it’s also quite expensive. There are cheaper alternatives available, which you can check out by reading our “The best Chromebook tablets you can buy” post.
Top Chrome OS questions and answers
Q: Can all Chrome OS devices run Android apps?
A: No, they can’t. If a Chromebook was released before 2017, it likely can’t run Android apps. Here’s how to check.
Q: Are Windows and macOS devices superior to Chrome OS devices?
A: They can generally do more, but I wouldn’t call them superior. They are just different. Each OS is aimed at different users. Which one is better comes down to personal wants and needs.
Q: Can Chrome OS run Fortnite?
A: Although Fortnite is available on the Play Store, you can’t download it on a Chromebook. The only way to get it on your device is to sideload the app, but even then there are requirements that have to be met. Your Chromebook has to have a 64-bit processor and at least 4GB of RAM, among other things.
Q: How much does Chrome OS cost?
A: Nothing, as it’s an open-source Chromebook operating system. This means that, unlike Windows, manufacturers can use it for free, which is one of the reasons why Chromebooks are so affordable.
Q: Can Chrome OS run Microsoft Office apps?
A: Yes, but only the mobile versions that are available on the Play Store. They get the job done but aren’t as feature-packed as those you get on Windows machines.
Q: Will Chrome OS replace Windows?
A: It doesn’t look like it. Due to their differences, Chrome OS isn’t a direct competitor to Windows. It’s better in some ways and worse in others, which is why the two will have no problem coexisting on the market.
Q: Does Chrome OS have multi-user support?
A: Yes, it does. That means each member of a household can create their own profile on a Chromebook, which protects their privacy and enhances the overall experience.
Q: Is Chrome OS a safe operating system?
A: Yes, Chrome OS is a very secure platform. You don’t have to worry about bugs and viruses as much as you do with Windows laptops.
Read next:The 8 best Chromebook deals you can get right now
Today you’ll learn to install Chrome operating system on your computer, and the special thing is you do not need a Chromebook, install and run Chrome OS on an ordinary computer let it be a Workstation or a lightweight laptop. This article is curated to depict everything about Chrome OS forks.
The Best Android OS for PC
How to Install Chrome OS on Computer using USB Drive
How to Install Chrome OS on non-Chromebook Computer
Before jumping check out these screenshot of Chrome OS running on a typical
And this is the minimal yet beautiful home screen. Interested? It has the round-shaped google quick access shortcuts. The screenshots are of Chrome fork by ArnoldTheBat and FydeOS. You’ve also got other forks to choose which one you like better.
Chrome OS for PC (Chromium Forks)
These forks are based on Chromium OS, start tinkering with ArnoldTheBat builds – for an easy and amazing out of the box experience.
ArnoldTheBats Website Tools used to make bootable USB Win32 imagewriter
Chrome Os Software Download
Daily, weekly, and special Chrome OS builds to choose from. This site provides up-to-date Chrome OS build based on Google’s Chromium project. This is the best option to get the same look of Chrome OS that you see on a real Chromebook. The limitations are fair, you won’t be able to run Android App and Google Assistant (and that seems final). Otherwise, everything will work out of the box I must tell you that the stability of this Chromium OS fork is astounding.
*Chrome OS fork = Chromium OS fork in this guide.
On the website you notice 3 types of builds, CARMOS builds denote ARM processors, Camd64OS builds denote x64 processors and Cx86OS builds denote x86 processors. If you’re not sure start with Cx86OS which stands for 32-bit machines, rather old computers.
The special builds contain these following perks.
Google Assistant and Play store won’t work.
Because the special builds come with additional drivers, it supports more computers. You should try the weekly latest build because it may not have bugs and compatibility issues.
Since there are continuous updates it hard to download each new system image, burn to a USB to boot so you can just go to Settings > About > Check for and apply updates and it will install the latest update. Thanks to the Air (OTA) updates from dev servers.
How to use (on Windows).
- Install a Zip utility like 7zip to extract IMG/bin file from the downloaded file.
- Use Win32 Image Writer, then select the IMG file and select the USB device from the menu.
- Click on “Write”.
- Boot from
* Alternatively, you can use Rufus tool.
2. Fyde OS
Download FydeOS Etcher
FydeOS is based on chromium fork to run on Intel computers. Version 10 is running on Chromium r83 and supports Android Apps. Despite you won’t find play store as it was mainly focused on the Chinese market where Google services are banned. Still, you can sideload Android apps or
even install the Google Play Store. It is available as a PC and Vmware system image.
Use FydeOS with a Google Account, for that to work registration is required with a FydeOS account.
You need FydeOS because.
- Runs Chrome Extensions, Android Apps* and Linux Apps* That’s epic actually.
- Chrome fork with more extra features such as Google Sync.
- Linux Kernal is 5.4 (8th, 9th, and 10th gen processor support)
Unlike the older beta version took 10 minutes to boot up, the new version was insanely fast and booted under 20 seconds. This is tested on my HP ENVY laptop with an i7 8th generation processor. Android subsystem and related functionalities are limited to Intel series graphics cards. We are quite impressed to see how it manages to run Linux Apps and Android apps together. That being said you could install Chrome extensions, Android Apps, and Linux Apps, on FydeOS. Being a Chromium OS fork we found that Google’s Assistant wasn’t working.
*Enable Android and Linux support before sideloading apps.
3. Nerveware’s Cloudready
Download Cloudready make bootable USB Guide
Nerveware a company, forks the open-source code of Google’s Chromium OS and forges Nerveware CloudeReady. It’s like Phoenix OS (Modded Android OS with extra functions) but Chrome OS for PC. The changes include additional management features and hardware support. The company’s business plan is to sell it directly to schools and businesses that want to use Chrome OS on their existing PCs.
They also offer a free version of CloudReady for home users. Since it’s Chromium OS-based, you don’t get the functionality to run Android Apps on it; moreover certain multimedia and DRM features may also not work on some websites.
Chromefy is a project to make a Chrome OS image on your computer. Due to limitations, such a website can not ship ready-made images. So what the project requires is a recovery image and custom Chrome OS image (Arnoldthebat) and the special script, When mixed together it will be built a Chrome OS image that you can burn into USB and boot. You might be asking? what’s special! is arnoldthebat build arent enough? The answer is simple, Chromefy adds things that other custom Chrome OS forks fail to deliver. The biggest feature is the Android app and maybe Google assistant.
I tried to put my hands in the dirt and was unable to build Chrome Image using this (since I do not know about this topic). If you happen to get it to work, please leave a comment below.
5. CrOS Linux (an exception)
It’s easy to mistake this as a Chrome OS. It’s a Linux based operating system with chromium Browser to give you the look of the Chrome operating system. It is the best of these two Worlds. Since it is running on Linux you can install Linux applications and play with the terminal. In past we have discovered is a similar Linux project Goes by the name Cub Linux but unfortunately, the developer shut down the project after having a copyright dispute with Google. If you have used a Linux operating system before it is easy to get used to it the operating system plays around the chromium web browser.
Which Chrome OS fork you’re going to use?
It is very confusing to choose a Chrome OS fork for your PC, but you can choose the very first option which is Arnoldthebat. What you will get it frequently OTA updates for an up to date experience. If you want to use another Chrome os for PC you can give FydeOS a shot. Don’t want a Chromium OS-based operating system but similar look then you can go with CrOS Linux.
Chrome Os With Play Store Downloads
This story originally published in 2017 and last updated on 26 August, 2020.
Chrome Os Download Usb Free
Chrome Os With Play Store Download Pc
Chrome Os With Play Store Download Free
- Chrome OS for PC (Chromium Forks)