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Google Chrome OS – Built on Linux!

Information released!

After much speculation (and a few faked screenshots) it appears we finally have word from Google as to what & when.

Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010. Because we’re already talking to partners about the project, and we’ll soon be working with the open source community, we wanted to share our vision now so everyone understands what we are trying to achieve. Source: Googleblog

There can be little doubt that after the success of its search engine and the popularity of its other services that Google pretty much knows its customers.  In my opinion Google has what some other companies do not and that is honest champions/advocates of their services/products.  How many people have you heard complain about Google in the average computing environment?

Ever since the news broke of the Google OS we’ve had many thinkers regarding it.  We see the frightened (Wintrolls in comp.alt.linux.advocacy) the over enthusiastic (the promoters of fake screenshots) and the “lets wait and see”.  Now we get further details.

It is being reported that the Google OS (which is browser based) will offer most of its services online and the user having their data stored on Google servers.  There’s been much debate about this (and surrounding topics) and the Do you trust your data to be stored in the cloud? is probably one of the issues that will come out of this eventual release.

Speed, simplicity and security are the key aspects of Google Chrome OS. We’re designing the OS to be fast and lightweight, to start up and get you onto the web in a few seconds. The user interface is minimal to stay out of your way, and most of the user experience takes place on the web. Source: Googleblog

Users of Chrome OS will reportedly not have to worry about updating their software and having other advantages, one being a 7 second boot time (allegedly) IMO there really is much to look forward to when the finished product hits the shelves.  The OS itself is apparently going to be free, with Google working with manufacturers to further provide a better integration between their software and hardware.

Chrome OS is reported to be its own Windowing system on top on a Linux kernel and I think shows yet again that worth of Linux and its community.  I have documented my use of Chromium since its early builds and I must say that the layout (providing it resembles the OS) is intuitive, friendly and quick.

Google also made this statement:

We hear a lot from our users and their message is clear — computers need to get better.

and in my opinion its a shame Microsoft didn’t listen to that message (IMO).

The Chrome OS is aimed at Netbooks and whilst we are on the subject of Netbooks earlier in the year Windows 7 for the netbook, hardly got the glowing praise with Tomshardware.com noting that Windows 7 took 2.5 hours off your battery life and benchmark tests between 7 and XP showed XP outperforming 7 in most tests.  Is that what Microsoft wants to hear when its trying to get in with 7 on the netbook?

So whilst there has been more information released it still leaves many questions unanswered.  Will Chrome support Silverlight? (or does anyone care?) What about drivers for existing and new hardware?  Is Google considering its OS for anything other than Netbooks?

Lets remember what Mr Ballmer CEO of Microsoft had to say about Google (allegedly)

Google’s not a real company. It’s a house of cards.

Source: Techcrunch

Try not to be too hard on him though.  His “teacher” (IMO) Bill Gates said in the 90′s:

The Internet? We are not interested in it

and another alleged comment that Bill Gates made (which may ring some bells with Windows users)

If you can’t make it good, at least make it look good.

Source: http://www.quotesandsayings.com/quotes/bill-gates/ (and theres many more Gates crackers there too)

Microsoft scared?

To ask if Microsoft is scared is wrong.  Microsoft is not a person.  Detractors to Linux make many claims, they would like you to believe its a hobbyist platform.  They would like you to believe its difficult to use.  They would like you to believe that it won’t be compatible with your hardware.  I would put money on similar being said about Chrome OS.

I think Google’s move to produce this software shows an attitude change in the average computer user.  We no longer need to rely on Microsoft to get jobs done in my opinion and there are many alternatives to Microsoft products, either proprietary or indeed FOSS.

The BBC seem to think the Chrome OS will have an impact on the market:

….could dramatically change the market for operating systems, especially for Microsoft…

It certainly will be interesting next year.  Bring on Chrome OS!

Sources

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/8369611.stm

http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/07/introducing-google-chrome-os.html

http://technologizer.com/2009/11/19/chrome-os/

Goblin – bytes4free@googlemail.com

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About Tim Sparrow

Online tech writer, novelist/author of sci-fi literature and co-host of the TechBytes Show! I believe in multi-culturism & diversity. Luton Town FC supporter.

Discussion

20 thoughts on “Google Chrome OS – Built on Linux!

  1. ChromeOS for ARM Smartbooks could be what MS is very worried about. Even though my understanding is ChromeOS will also run on Intel platforms.

    What I see right now in the USA was a couple of ARM Smartbooks that were being marketed, oddly enough with Windows CE on them. Think Kmart has one on sale after the Holiday. Since MS went way out of its way to “protect” the USA market by putting XP Home on Intel Based netbooks, it seems to reason that MS is now going try that same trick with ARM Smartbooks by dumping (and twisting OEM’s arms, pardon the pun) with Windows CE.

    The purpose of putting Windows CE on USA Arm Smartbooks, might be to stop people buying them, as most likely CE is very old, and does not have enough apps to make it into a real laptop experience. It would be interesting to find out which version of Windows CE it is? Is it CE, or Mobile with the “windows CE” name to confuse and trick buyers into thinking they are getting a “Windows” computer that will run all their XP programs, NOT!

    Maybe MS thinks that buyers of ARM CE Smartbooks will blame ARM and the Chinese OEM’s that make them, and not MS for putting the most likely (IMO) unless and bad CE on them, and therefore stop buying them.

    But here is where maybe ChromeOS will shine. While the core is Linux, its put out by Google, which remembers that Ballmer promised to “kill them.” Unlike the community GNU/Linux distro’s, Google has money to spend, to get Android and Chrome on these ARM Smartbooks. ARM Smartbooks is where most likely the where the “battle for the desktop” will begin in earnest at least for the USA, which is behind in Linux adoption.

    Yahoo has in all candor, become a client of MS, only Google and Adobe stands in MS way now to take over search and advertising. MS is presently pulling out all the stops in going after Google, most of which are unethical.

    Posted by Chips B Malroy | November 21, 2009, 9:24 pm
  2. Theres rumored to be a Murdoch/MS conspiracy…he’ll find out the hard way.

    MS doesn’t like to loose at anything (IMO)…maybe thats why its shooting in the dark with so many schemes and ideas….meanwhile Google remains focused and produces the tools/services which people want to use.

    Posted by openbytes | November 21, 2009, 9:58 pm
  3. Oh please, Google Chrome OS has been panned. Everybody is saying its lame and Google is way ahead of its time. The fact that they are using this draconian measure of requiring specific hardware leaves much to be desired. If Google goes forward the two biggest losers will be Google and Linux. A web centric operating system is not viable today, next year, 5 years or even 10 years from now, because the ubiquity of an Internet infrastructure that Google is requiring for Chrome OS does not exist, even if there is a good internet infrastructure in some part of the world, its not completely reliable.

    Why are you do gung ho invested in having Google keep all your data? You say Microsoft is the bad guy, well I think you are mistaken and need to take a closer look at Google. At least with Windows you have choice, OS X you have choice, Ubuntu Linux you have some albeit, limited choice (but its still choice). With Chrome OS its Sergey Brin’s way or nothing else. Sorry, but what Google is offering through Chrome OS, I can already get through my Windows 7 PC by simply hibernating it and I can be back on the Internet in 3 seconds or less plus I have access to hundreds of thousands of applications and devices.

    So please, stop this defensive non-sense immediately because of some deep unnecessary hatred for Microsoft.

    Posted by Andre Da Costa | November 22, 2009, 5:19 am
    • Quote “oh please, Google Chrome OS has been panned. Everybody is saying its lame and Google is way ahead of its time.”

      Really? Who? Most people are waiting to see when its deployed on the hardware its intended for if its any good.

      Quote “web centric operating system is not viable today, next year, 5 years or even 10 years from now, because the ubiquity of an Internet infrastructure that Google is requiring for Chrome OS does not exist, even if there is a good internet infrastructure in some part of the world, its not completely reliable.”

      Again, Really? Are you sure? How many web based apps and services is the average user running right now. Since the popularity of the computer with the average user is social media and standard WP/office functions, I’d say a web based service is exactly what mainstream users are looking for.

      Quote “Why are you do gung ho invested in having Google keep all your data?”

      Im not. Infact I ask the question about having personal data stored in the cloud and put that point as a possible bone of contention.

      Quote “At least with Windows you have choice, OS X you have choice, Ubuntu Linux you have some albeit,”

      You are seriously putting the point about choice in the same sentence as promoting Windows? Really?

      Quote “With Chrome OS its Sergey Brin’s way or nothing else.”

      Come on Andre, you can do better than this. If you have a point to make, make it, don’t re-use allegations that have been put against Microsoft time and time again.

      Quote “Sorry, but what Google is offering through Chrome OS, I can already get through my Windows 7″

      and you have just given a damn good reason to use Linux instead of Windows. I asked the same question of Windows (in that what could it do that Linux couldn’t that was relevant to the average user) not even a claimed Microsoft employee who commented here could answer that.

      Quote “So please, stop this defensive non-sense immediately because of some deep unnecessary hatred for Microsoft.”

      Defensive? Where is the defense of Google’s OS. You seem to want to make guesses about how it will be recieved even before its been deployed on the hardware its intended for…thats defensive.
      Please read again my article, you will see comments such as “So whilst there has been more information released it still leaves many questions unanswered.”
      Im not implying its going to be a raging success because we can’t know yet. You on the other hand seem to be able to deem it a failure.

      I thought you had gone beyond dishonesty Andre. I thought the days of Microsoft-Watch were behind you, since you made the confession that you were nymshifting under the name of Mr DEE on CNET and we finally got the truth about your free laptop gift, we had moved on. Obviously not.

      Quote “because of some deep unnecessary hatred for Microsoft.”

      Lets look at the facts. I champion XP as a solid system (said it many times before and even defended its deployment in the home over Vista/Windows 7)

      What about me saying that whilst 360 had issues, you could not fault the customer service Microsoft provided?

      What about me saying that Bing was just as relevant as Google, but the problem was that Google was a word that had almost become part of our vocab and that was the problem.

      What about my championing (and support of users) when the Flightsim range was discontinued (arguably the most loyal userbase of any MS product)

      How about my repeated stance of “not fit for purpose for me” (in relation to MS products) I do not suggest that they are unfit for everyone. I can only give opinions on my own usage.

      Microsoft hatred? I don’t think so. I just think that their products are wholly unfit for my purposes.

      Wait and see the article I write on Windows 7, Ive given it more time than any Linux distro.

      Posted by openbytes | November 22, 2009, 8:51 am
  4. GOOGLE IS LOVED BY EVERYONE! Well, almost everyone it seems, except for a few free laptop guys from Microsoft. LOL, I wouldn’t want to mention any names (Andre) here as to who they are, or who they shill for (M$).

    Also remember, that Windows Seven costs money, where Community GNU/Linux and ChromeOS are and will be free and also free as in GPL and open source. But at least its nice to see even Andre admit that “ubuntu you have some limited choice.” Running this Andre statement threw the MS translation machine, and the hidden shill message is that MS and their shills, are very worried indeed.

    Posted by Chips B Malroy | November 22, 2009, 6:06 am
    • Hi Chips!

      I was a little disapointed by Andre’s post since he has put himself forward as being able to predict the future.

      We all remember Ballmers attempts with comments such as “house of cards” whilst Google is destroying Bing in the search stakes.

      Moving on though, Ive noticed Andre is touting the Ipod…after reading his post I am willing to bet that as soon as he gets his hands on a Zune, it will be touted as better with the justification “I have both, so I should know”

      I do respect Andre’s opinion as it often echo’s what Microsoft is worried about (IMO). Thats not suggesting Microsoft employ’s him (although Wintroll Richard suggests he does)

      We all remember that Andre was selling Vista with comments such as “Vista is loved” which progressed onto (after the Win7 beta’s) “its a shame Michael Jackson didn’t live to see Windows 7″. Now Andre seems very quiet on the Vista subject, especially since Ballmer made the comment about “listening to early good reports” as if some sort of justification for the product.

      Quote “Running this Andre statement threw the MS translation machine, and the hidden shill message is that MS and their shills, are very worried indeed.”

      Completely agree, but then we both had the advantage of seeing him in action for a long time over on Microsoft-watch.

      Posted by openbytes | November 22, 2009, 9:03 am
  5. “I can already get through my Windows 7 PC by simply hibernating it and I can be back on the Internet in 3 seconds or less”

    Thats funny, pure fiction but funny

    I like your posts Andre they sincerely make me laugh, you should do standup so others can share in the laughter.

    Posted by chew | November 22, 2009, 2:34 pm
    • Hi Chew!

      I think you will find (just like we did over on MS watch when Andre was pushing Vista) that the claims will get more outlandish by the day.

      Andre’s best Windows 7 comment was along the lines of “Its a shame Michael Jackson didn’t live to see Windows 7″ – Yes Andre, a real shame…I bet his family totally agree with that one.

      With Andre promotion, anything goes…mark my words he will have a Zune soon and he will be using his comments on Twitter about the ipod as proof that he is giving a balanced view and the Zune is better.

      Posted by openbytes | November 22, 2009, 3:09 pm
  6. The Michael Jackson statement is gold, on that note regarding his computing uses I would suppose he would be more inclined to be a Mac user due to it`s proliferation in the music biz (not confirmed but would make sense)..

    http://www3.bc.sympatico.ca/greenacres/macusers.ht

    That (IMHO) is pretty low to invoke a recently deceased celebrities name in order to create/associate product awareness.

    Perhaps a copy of that statement should be mailed to the Jackson estate or lawyers so they may also be able to share the joy that is Windows 7.

    Posted by chew | November 22, 2009, 3:24 pm
    • Im sorry your post was held in spam….I think WordPress took exception to the link you included….

      It shouldn’t happen again!

      In respect of Andre, thats one of many classics…to be fair to him he is unwavering in his blatant promotion of MS (IMO)

      Posted by openbytes | November 22, 2009, 5:04 pm
  7. I do respect Andre for posting here, as he knew he was going take some flak for outlandish type comments. Remember the one he made on MS Watch about Linux needing a “compiler to play cd’s” or some such nonsense. What a M$ shill does best is to try to create some sort of FUD that will stick in the general public’s mind. Today it seems that Google ChromeOS is at the top of the hitlist for M$ Shills.

    Quoting Openbytes: “Thats not suggesting Microsoft employ’s him (although Wintroll Richard suggests he does)”
    ——————————————————
    Well, this time I have to agree with the Wintroll (although I don’t know this Richard) that most likely Andre is paid by M$ beyond the free laptops and computers, other swag, free airline, hotel, meals, to attend PDC MS conferences every year. Question is does he get paid by the word or comment he posts? I have always been convinced that he works indirectly through a 3rd party that pays him to do all the commenting.

    But I do notice a small change in tone. Andre’s left handed compliment to Ubuntu: “Ubuntu Linux you have some albeit, limited choice (but its still choice).” Notice at least, by saying this, Andre is accessing some kind of valve to Ubuntu Linux. The question is, is this a shift in the thinking of Andre, or is it a shift in the thinking of M$. Has M$ finally figured out that their shills making comments about “needing a compiler to play cd’s,” is hurting them as a company? That even the general public can see though comments like this and see the dishonesty, and therefore are more likely to try Linux.

    Sad, if it has taken MS this long to find out that honesty, is the best route in a debate.

    Posted by Chips B Malroy | November 22, 2009, 6:54 pm
  8. I use the word “directly” as I think gifting buys loyalty to a company in my opinion. Is Microsoft paying for him as an employee? is Microsoft merely gifting him and getting loyalty back in the hope of more gifts….or worst case scenario, Andre Da Costa actually thinks that its a shame Michael Jackson didn’t live to see Windows 7….

    The last option is probably the most frightening and I do hope that someone is encouraging Andre to post like that…otherwise it would make Andre (in my opinion) in dire need of help.

    When is your next article for Openbytes chips?

    Regards

    Goblin.

    Posted by openbytes | November 22, 2009, 7:02 pm
  9. Sorry about my frequent posts, and my typo in my last comment, valve should have been value.

    Also, I don’t have the cystal ball right now to see the future with, so I can’t tell you its going be great or bad. Can tell you that Google is using the Linux kernel as base, and some other GNU programs as well, thinking Xorg too. What is important to me, is if Google ChromeOS comes on a ARM Smartbook, then most likely I can put my own Linux distro (Debian has ARM) on it, as both have the same kernel, and that is where the hardware drivers are.

    The fact that Andre commenting on Google ChromeOS is very telling that Redmond is very worried about what is coming. And what is coming is the small battle for the desktop, the ARM Smartbook desktop between Windows CE and Google ChromeOS/Android/Linux (all Linux based).

    What is important in this mini battle for the ARM Smartbooks, is that most people will use these as second computers. Which means even in the USA, people will be exposed to the value of Linux, as opposed to the malware target that is Windows Seven.

    Posted by Chips B Malroy | November 22, 2009, 7:08 pm
  10. Quote “Sorry about my frequent posts, and my typo in my last comment, valve should have been value”

    Firstly you are welcome to post as often (and as much as you like)…thats why I like you to contribute another article…

    Posted by openbytes | November 22, 2009, 7:17 pm

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