If you want to try Chromebook but do not want to shell out $300 for the hardware, you can actually transform your old laptop to a Chromebook for free. All you need is a 4GB USB drive and a laptop capable of booting from a USB drive.
Sound interesting? Let’s get started. The following instructions are for a Windows PC.
- Download Image Writer for Windows from this link. There are two files to choose from. Click on the second one for the binary.
- Create a folder on your desktop and extract the zip file you downloaded from step one to this folder.
- Download the Chrome OS image from this link. Click on the USB icon to download the image for USB drive.
- Extract the image file from this zip file, and place it in the folder created in step 2.
- Insert the USB drive to your computer, and make a note of the drive letter of it.
- Double click on Win32DiskImager.exe to run the program.
- Click on the folder icon to select the Chrome OS image file. The file is usually called ChromeOS-Vanilla-version-number.img .
- Make sure the Device refer to the USB flash drive you just inserted. If not, just click on the drive letter and select the correct one. Note that everything will be erased on the flash drive. Backup everything if you still have files on it.
- Click on Write to write the image to the USB drive. This will take several minutes.
- Take the USB drive to the computer you want to try and boot from the USB drive.
I tried this on an old Dell Latitude D630. The boot-up time is less than 30 seconds, which is fast for an old computer.
What’s your experience with Chromebook? Tell us in the comments section.
For most Android 3 tablets, the screen resolution is over 1024×768, which is more like a desktop computer. However, when you visit mobile enhanced sites, you can only browse the mobile site, not the full site. Some sites offer you the option to switch to the full site, but some do not.
You can follow these steps to change the user agent string on Chrome to view the full site:
- Tap on the top right icon and then tap on Settings.
- Tap on Advanced and scroll down to find User Agent String.
- Change it to Desktop.
- Refresh the page and you’ll see the site is now the full site instead of the simplified mobile site.
Crackle, a free streaming movie site, has come out with a new app for the iPad and the iPhone. This free app contains many free full-length movies along with various trailers and movie clips. Movies and TV series range from the Ghostbusters, The Da Vinci Code, and Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children to Seinfeld, Charlie’s Angels, and Married with Children, to name a few. Note that not all the shows on site are available on the app.
Crackle – App Store Link
iPad reviews are popping out. Here is a list of reviews available:
The reviews are all very positive. The reviewers praise the performance of iPad in general and the 10+ hrs battery life is exceptional. The onscreen keyboard leaves something to be desired, but a keyboard dock is available if you need it. The biggest drawback for the device is the lack of Flash support. It’s not that the device is not powerful enough to support Flash, it’s Apple who doesn’t want to do it. Apple even has a site up to promote HTML5 video.
Apple iPad-ready Websites
The jury is still out on the success of iPad. However, these reviews indicate that Apple might have a winner once again.