Chrome OS 80 Rolls Out with Debian 10 “Buster” Linux Containers

Chrome OS 80

Google finally released the Chrome OS 80 operating system for Chromebook devices, a major update that improves support for Linux apps and adds numerous other features from the Chrome 80 release.

Based on the Chrome 80 web browser, which arrived in early February with SameSite Cookie enforcement, SVG support for favicons, and deprecated File Transfer Protocol (FTP) support (will be completely removed in Chrome 81), Chrome OS 80 is here to inherit most of its changes.

One thing that caught my attention in this release is the move to the Debian GNU/Linux 10 “Buster” operating system series for default Linux containers that allow you to run Linux apps on your Chromebook. Linux app support is still considered a beta feature in Chrome OS, which uses the Linux kernel.

What this means is that all new Linux installs will now get a container based on Debian GNU/Linux 10 “Buster.” Until now, Chrome OS used Linux containers based on Debian GNU/Linux 9 “Stretch,” and existing installs will be upgraded in the future, according to Google.

Other interesting updates are automatic screen rotation for Chromebooks in tablet mode when a mouse is connected to the device, as well as the ability to display PIN pad on the login and lock screens for Chromebooks with touchscreens to make it easier to log into the device.

Furthermore, Chrome OS 80 makes it easier to start the Chromebook Enterprise enrollment process, without using the Ctrl+Alt+E keyboard shortcut, and updates the Google Admin console to allow admins to more quickly switch between pages.

Chrome OS 80.0.3987.128 (Platform version: 12739.87.0) is now rolling out to most Chromebooks as the latest stable release. Users are encouraged to upgrade their devices as soon as the update is available in the stable channel, which could take a few days to arrive for all users.

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