Cub Linux Is a Worthy Chromixium Offspring

2016-09-10-01Cub Linux, an improved rebranding of the innovative Chromixium Linux distro, combines the look, feel and functionality of Google’s Chrome OS with traditional Linux performance.

Cub Linux provides a complete Chromebook experience on the hardware of your choice. The innovation is quite impressive. Cub Linux also runs software from the Ubuntu distro ecosystem.

When I reviewed the Linux hybrid Ubuntu-based Chromixium distribution in May of last year, I liked it so much that I continued using it on some of my aging hardware. I found that it ran super-fast on my new gear, and I now run the new Cub Linux version on that same gear.

Chromixium’s success apparently hit too close to the real deal for Google. Google’s Trademark Enforcement Team politely invited sole developer Rich Jack to change the product’s name to avoid suggesting an affiliation with the Chrome project. So the former Chromixium community rebranded the distro as “Cub” Linux — Chromixium + Ubuntu = Cub.

Cub Linux 1.0, released on July 1, is a replacement for the former Chromixium 1.0. It does not disappoint. In fact, performance-wise, it picks up where Chromixium left off. It has some new features and system updates. Cub has expanded into a 64-bit version.

Cub Linux Is a Worthy Chromixium Offspring

How to Enable Chrome OS Developer Channel, Try New Features

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Chrome OS may be Google’s simple, minimalist operating system, but the company is still adding features to make it more useful for users. These features are often first found in Developer Mode, which isn’t difficult to enable.

For example, users running Chrome OS in Developer mode can access a PIN Unlock feature, so they don’t have to type in your entire Google password to unlock the display after putting the notebook to sleep. Here’s how to enable Chrome OS’s Developer Mode.

Chrome OS may warn you from using Developer mode, telling you it’s not as stable as regular Chrome OS, but remember, you’re already saving all of your files in the cloud. What’s the worst that can happen: having to perform factory restore?

How to Enable Chrome OS Developer Mode, Try New Features

Instantly See Every Keyboard Shortcut on Your Chromebook with This Combo

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Ask any computer power user how much more efficient they are by using keyboard shortcuts, and the general consensus will likely be “a lot.” It’s no different for Chrome OS users, and Google baked-in a slew of useful keyboard shortcuts—including one that will show you all the others.

Basically, if you’re ever in need of a definitive list of every Chrome OS keyboard shortcut available to you, just press Ctrl+Alt+/ on your keyboard.

Hitting that one shortcut will show an on-screen keyboard, where you can then press Ctrl, Alt, Shift, and Search (or any combination of the four!) to expose all available shortcuts with the currently-pressed combination. It’s pretty awesome.

For example, if you can’t remember how to take a screenshot, just hit the master shortcut, then press Ctrl. You’ll quickly find that the combination of Ctrl + “switch window” will take a screenshot. Add the Shift key to that combination, and it’ll take a regional screenshot. Use Ctrl+Alt+switch window to grab a screenshot of a window.

There is a huge collection of key combinations that you can use on Chrome OS, so this is definitely something you’ll want to explore more thoroughly.

Instantly See Every Keyboard Shortcut on Your Chromebook with This Combo

Android, Chromebook Make a Sweet Couple

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Chrome OS and Android Apps now run together on some Chromebooks. Many, but not all, Chromebook models will get the operating system update that allows it as fall approaches.

The Asus Chromebook Flip C100P — the first Chromebook to get the upgrade — is an impressive example of what will come with the hybrid integration of Chrome OS and Android apps. The performance is not flawless, but many of the apps work well enough to offer a nonplussed working experience.

The Google Chrome OS developer team last month released the first Chromebook upgrade that put the Google Play Store on the Chromebook. The Chromebook’s Chrome OS has its own inventory of apps and browser extensions provided by the Chrome Web Store.

The Google Play Store gives the Chromebook platform a huge boost in usability. Depending on the Chromebook form factor selected, being able to run Android apps alongside Chrome OS apps and browser extensions could allow users leave their tablets and traditional laptops behind.

Android, Chromebook Make a Sweet Couple