[RESPONDED] Dual booting linux on framework chromebook

Has anyone managed a full dual boot linux setup with the Framework Chromebook? I was hoping to have linux on a storage expansion while keeping Chrome OS on the internal drive, but it’s not detecting the Ubuntu USB drive I set up using the Chrome OS recovery utility (after enabling developer mode and configuring external drive booting in crosh). Is this something I should expect to be doable / moderately easy?

Ftr, I’m aware of crostini, and it’s great, but something about multiple workspaces on external monitors and/or crostini is proving a bit too glitchy for me (usually just minor odd UI behavior; sometimes crashing Chrome).

Hi @Y111 welcome to the forums,

Happy to be corrected, but I think chrome OS is designed to be that way i.e can’t be fully dual booted, crostini is still running linux apps on top chrome OS right?

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I found some resources including nirav patel quoted that suggested this might be possible, but maybe it’s beyond my skill level:

I’d heard that it wouldn’t be as straightforward as dual booting on a Windows Framework, but I wasn’t sure where it would get complicated since there are instructions for booting a chromebook from USB in dev mode.

And yes, crostini is linux apps in a VM/container. It’s super useful for one-off apps – I was using it for vscode, but I’m realizing that the chrome OS desktop doesn’t work for me when docked to external monitors, so I’m trying to get the full linux experience.

I also found some resources mentioning that running a full linux desktop within Crostini is also possible, but I’ve not had luck with that either.

Would very much appreciate hearing of successes (or failures / warnings) with any solution to getting a linux desktop on this hardware. I’m honestly leaning towards requesting a return at this point – having a full linux option is pretty important to me.

If you’re still within the normal return window, I’d do it. If you like ChromeOS, have you heard of ChromeOS flex? You are supposed to be able to install it on a regular windows (or linux) computer. It has some differences though. I read it doesn’t support Android apps for one.

Honestly, Chromebooks are not worth it to me. And paying for a locked down or restricted computer, as if you don’t own what you paid for, just feels wrong.

Perhaps returning and getting a standard Framework Laptop is the way you wanted to go originally.

Thanks for the perspectives - yes I’m very much debating switching to a normal Framework and putting linux on it. I have a few more days, so I’ll make a bit more effort at this.

The vision I had for the chromebook route (which I think is somewhat affirmed by one of Nirav’s comment on HN [1]) is that chromebooks effectively offer linux with stable hardware support and battery life. But I’m realizing there are still some details to work out to make that dream a reality.

Also, IIUC, ChromeOS flex doesn’t help with hardware compatibility / battery life, right?

Also, for anyone else planning to try what I’m doing, I feel like I should mention that I’m using 24GB of RAM. The default 8GB wasn’t realistic for doing anything serious with Crostini since, as I understand, memory gets split between Chrome and the VM.

  1. In practice, full, stable hardware compatibility and battery life. The Linux exp... | Hacker News

Not here to sway opinion, but following this thread for visability.

Might be possible to install Linux/Windows on an expansion card if that hasn’t been mentioned yet!
Also if I remember correctly ChromeOS has a built in LinuxVM right?

We have users who do this, however, if you run into issues, we at support will tell you this is going to be treated as USB storage as it is. Capable of running an OS, yes. Runs fast enough, yes. Works as well as nvme, not in my experience. I have seen issues with suspend and other hiccups along the way.

On any computer, I will always recommend internal drives over external USB powered ones with Linux.