Chromebook Linux – From Crouton to GalliumOS

How I finally got to use my Chromebook as a full-featured Linux machine.

I love my Chromebook; I bring it everywhere as it comes in handy for long commutes and, weighing in at around 3 pounds, isn’t the least bit cumbersome.

However, the restrictions ChromeOS placed on me had been noticeable since the beginning; and I knew I would be restricted to Chrome Apps, extensions, and Play store applications, but didn't count on how annoying this restriction would wind up being. Fortunately, there were workarounds.

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Chromebook Web Development

A breakdown of my current web development setup on my Samsung Chromebook 3.

Quick Rundown

  • Machine:
    • Samsung Chromebook 3
  • Environment:
    • ChromeOS for a GUI and native drivers
    • Lubuntu for server-side programs and scripts (treated as headless)
  • Text Editor/IDE

I recently purchased a Samsung Chromebook 3 so I could work on projects during my long commute or at my local coffee shop without worrying about losing or breaking my other more expensive portable machine. It’s really nice and light, and with a little configuration, makes for a great portable web development environemnt. After all, ChromeOS is itself a linux distro, but things are a little hidden in this environment as ChromeOS is meant to be easily accessible and to leave the user as little room as possible to screw things up.

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