Remarque : une version plus Light de l’OS chrome (300 Mo) bootable sur cle USB, cliquez ici
Just a few days ago, Google announced the release of the Chrome OS source code. Within less than 24 hours, the web was littered with disk images for running the new OS on virtual machines such as VMWare and VirtualBox. I even managed to put together my own Google Chrome OS download in the form of a complete VirtualBox appliance. I’m pleased to announce that I’ve taken it a step further, and now you can easily try it on your own computer from a USB thumb drive.
Before You Get Started
Before you decide to download Chrome OS, there are probably a few things I should tell you about it. It is in the very early stages of development, so there is still a lot of stuff that doesn’t work. In fact, it may not work for you at all.
You should also be made aware that this operating system is very simplistic by design, as it is intended for use on netbook computers. By definition, a netbook is a small and inexpensive laptop intended for very casual use such as web browsing and simple office tasks. When you launch Chrome OS, pretty much all you get is a web browser. Don’t be surprised if you go through all this and say to yourself, “I did all that work just to log into a freakin’ browser?”
First of all, you will of course need a USB drive you can use to try it out. The disk image is 2,988,442,112 bytes, so you’ll probably need a 4GB thumb drive to be able to use it. If you have any files on your USB drive that you need, be sure to back them up to a safe place because this will wipe all the data from your USB drive. Consider yourself warned.
You will also need a computer that allows booting from a USB drive. You’ll need to instruct your computer’s BIOS to boot from the USB drive instead of the hard drive like it normally does. When you boot up your computer, it should provide you with information as to how to bring up a boot menu. On some machines it is the F8 key and others the F12 key or some other key.
If it all scrolls by too fast, some computers will allow you to pause the boot sequence by pressing the Pause key. That should give you all the time you need to read all that stuff on the screen to see if you can find out what the boot menu key is (if there is one). If you don’t see anything about a boot menu, you could also try editing your BIOS settings to boot from the USB drive. You may wish to consult your computer (or motherboard) manual on how to do this.
You will also need a little bit of luck. Chromium OS may or may not work on your computer hardware. I did successfully run it on two home-built frankenstein computers (with ASUS motherboards), but it did not successfully recognize the network adapter on my Dell laptop. All of this work may be for nothing, if it ends up that Chromium OS does not like your network adapter. Ah yes, I forgot to mention that you do also need a computer with a network adapter.
Finally, you’ll need to download the necessary files to put Chromium OS (that’s what the open source version of Google Chrome OS is called) onto your USB drive. I’ve packaged it all together in a torrent for you:
You’ll need a good BitTorrent client like µTorrent to download it. If you’re new to BitTorrent, be sure to check out our Big Book of BitTorrent. You’ll learn more than you’ll ever want to know about it.
The torrent has a zip file that includes the disk image, as well as a Windows tool for putting the image onto a USB drive. The program you’ll use to create the Chrome OS USB boot disk is called Image Writer for Windows. It’s a nifty little tool for writing disk images, it’s free, and it’s open source.