Debian on a Chromebook

I recently (and very unexpectedly) bought a Lenovo Chromebook. The reason was that my Dell XPS laptop fell apart rather spectacularly and I was without a computer. The Chromebook is a cheapish stop-gap until I can afford to buy another “real” laptop. To be clear, I wasn’t too excited about the prospect of using a Chromebook. My preconception was that it would be too locked-down and limiting by design.

But as it turned out, I was pleasantly surprised. It can run Debian! Moreover, I didn’t need to pave over ChromeOS or resort to any particularly hacky solution; the Chromebook came with the built-in capacity to run Debian. I’m a bit hazy on this, because ChromeOS explains itself very poorly, but it is definitely Linux running on some kind of container or virtual machine. Very useful!

For now, it’s just a terminal (no GUI), but that’s really sufficient for me. I can run git and vim, and do bashy stuff. I am mostly placated and, for the most part, can keep up my usual workflows. It’s a better outcome than I expected!

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