Originally published at: http://www.howtogeek.com/164257/forget-chromebooks-chrome-os-is-coming-to-windows/
Google didn’t announce any shiny new Chromebooks at Google I/O. Instead, they highlighted their two big “platforms” — Chrome and Android. Whether you’re using Windows, Linux, or Mac, Google will be bringing the Chrome OS experience to you.
I took a quick look at the text editor. It seems promising -- finally browser apps with access to the file system.
Sadly my work requires a lot of big and long-developed open source and commercial software (gnuplot, Mathematica, emacs, ...) so I see little chance of that stuff getting ported to Chrome apps anytime soon.
I have actually been using text drive* for a while now and love it. So much sleeker and modern than notepad, but it still has the basic functions. The only thing I don't like about it is windows doesn't recognize it as something that it can open files by, I can't set it as the default for opening text files, which is fine, just a minor annoyance.
*I know now it is called text now, habit
So these are web applications which you download and run on your computer. How is this any different from any other application then other than it runs in chrome and uses HTML5 and JS. I see only one advantage to this: it is cross platform. But wait, this is sounding just like java .jar files *cringe*. Is this try two at that?
Here is what I don't get about this. It seems like running an OS withing an OS. Modern operating systems are an abstraction layer between the hardware and userspace. Do we really need another abstraction layer between userspace and this new chrome sub-userspace?
I for one intend to stick with my native applications. @Yu0x3 I agree that there is little chance of such mature software getting ported to chrome apps. I use maxima, gnuplot, and vim on a very regular basis. Honestly, I would be very surprised if these were ported to chrome apps. There is absolutely no reason for that. They are FOSS and completely cross platform already. There is no benefit as far as I am concerned with them being ported. One of their greatest benefits is how they are so very lightweight and cuspy.
Cool that this can be done with chrome, but I see no reason for it.
While I would really like to see Chrome OS on Windows this isn't it. It is using the Chrome browser to run Chrome OS apps. There is a world of difference. I want a Chrome OS window in Windows that acts just like a device running Chrome OS, i.e. a virtual ChromeBook. That will make me sit up and take notice.
Awesome! More Chrome apps = more syncing apps. More syncing apps = all my apps in the cloud. All my apps in the cloud = I don't need any more software other than Chrome, drivers, and Rainmeter.
How long will it be before they decide to discontinue a service? Can I trust Google to allow me to get invested in anything that will or will not last? Is the whole company in or Beta?
Don't get me wrong, I like Google...a lot. Yes, Maps, Docs, Picasa and the like are great seem to have staying power, but are you really confident they (Google) will not decide tomorrow to pull the rug out from under you?
I would like to see an official ChromeOS virtual appliance that I could keep on a thumb drive.
ChomeOS in any form will never be on any computer I own. I don't use the Chrome browser either because privacy concerns. I don't want Google recording everything I do.
Wait a minute... the whole idea (or at least one of the big ideas) behind ChromeOS is a lightweight, lightning fast booting OS. Why on God's green earth would I want to boot WinDoze and THEN boot Chrome?
Cause you already do that on all your non-Chrome PC's?
Sure, you can compile them on any desktop platform. But what about mobile platforms? Sadly our usual understanding of "cross platform" seems outdated when faced by mobile platforms, where end-user apps cannot be compiled from C without hacks.
Granted, a desktop interface will be inconvenient on a mobile device anyway. But it would be great for a software if at least most of the backend logic shared its code across ALL platforms, including mobile, for consistency. The Mono implementation of Microsoft's CLR specification could be used for that, but I don't think it is too popular right now.
For a start, the browser-based desktop applications would provide a cross-platform software repository for convenience.
You mean like they did with Google Reader? No, no confidence there anymore. But if they succeed in pushing their app-store, it will become unlikely at least.
The only truely slow Windows I've known was Vista. Granted though, Windows notebooks tend to suffer from bloatware, slow hard drives and lackluster long-term driver support. Same problem as non-Nexus Android basically, except that Microsoft ships at least security updates and service packs in a centralized fashion.
Mac OS' better reputation comes probably mostly from the "hardware and software from the same company" approach that prevents such exploits at the cost of higher prices and the absence of niche solutions such as dedicated gaming notebooks or convertibles.
More importantly though, most people will hardly leave behind all their usual desktop software at once to switch to Chrome OS. They may however find Chrome Apps useful and gradually use more and more Chrome Apps and ultimately may reduce their Windows box to a fall-back solution in case they need PowerPoint.
Linux will will also grow in importance in parallel, because it is going to be required to serve cloud apps. In addition to being write once run everywhere apps, HTML5 Cloud apps have the advantage of the data and apps being in the cloud and therefore both data and apps are automatically backed up and accessible from any device. HTML5 standalone apps only have the advantage of write once run everywhere including easy port to/from cloud apps - but you cannot for example install standalone apps on a netcafe machine which doesn't grant permissions.
They are write once run everywhere. In other words, the same app will run on Windows, OSX, Linux, Android, iOS, and any other client OS that has an HTML5 compliant browser or runtime installed.
Windows apps by contrast will only run on about 20% of client computing devices.
Packaged apps work on Firefox as well - it is just Chrome Web store that works only with Chrome. They are based on HTML5.
Google can't discontinue HTML5.
Does Firefox provide an API for native file access to arbitrary files? If so, does provide the same API?
Otherwise only a small subset of trivial Chrome apps, more in line with smartphone apps than desktop applications, will work in Firefox as well.
Note that I'm explicitly asking about APIs for accessing arbitrary files, like a desktop program can, not for stuff like caching data locally. What good is a text editor that can't read and write files in all my folders?
I wonder how for Chrome Apps can go though; Some programs may even have to start local executables, e.g. think of a LaTeX editor trying to preview embedded eps graphics or equations as required for quality scientific publications. Almost all software currently uses native executables from LateX distributions for that purpose.
I don't entirely agree there. Automatic synchronization is nice to have, but what do you do if your working data is several GB in size or confidential? Or if you have high software stability requirements such that you must be able to roll back to a previous version in case the vendor screws up an Update? In all those cases webapps are pretty much out of question.
Also, online storage is not a backup. Screw up accidentially deleting your data and good luck getting it restored! If the data is not stored locally you are totally at the mercy of the supplier.
- How long does it take to get a previous version restored?
- How long are previous versions stored?
- Are previous versions even kept?
Actually about eighty percent, but that is all versions.
Considering Google's nosiness and propensity for dropping services, there's a snowball's chance in the Sahara that I will ever use ChromeOS.
next page →