Google Chrome . . . for Linux?!

As some of you know, Google released a new browser recently, something called Chrome. The idea is/was to fix everything that is wrong with browsers and make the Web browsers a tool to run applications. As opposed to just viewing Web pages. I'm being a bit silly here, but Chrome is built to be more like an operating system than a plain old browser. There's more but it's all only for Windows users since a Linux version doesn't yet exist. Wait . . . What? Check out this screenshost (click it for a full screen view).

Does that browser look unusual? If you run Windows as well as Linux, does it look familiar? Take a look at the drop down menu over on the far right if you need more of a hint. Yes, you are right. That's Google Chrome running on Linux, with a little help from the folk at CodeWeavers Inc. Renamed CrossOver Chromium, it borrows its name from the Google open source project behind Chrome itself. If you want to check out Chromium on Linux, head on over to yon friendly URL.

CodeWeavers is the company that produces the CrossOver suite, a package that allows you to run many popular Windows applications under Linux, without the need for a Windows license.

CodeWeavers makes packages available for DEB based distributions like Debian and Ubuntu as well as RPM based distributions like Mandriva, RedHat, and SUSE. An shell-based installer is also available to cover other distributions that might not fall into these two camps.

Download it, run it, then come back and discuss it here. Are you impressed with Chromium? Do you really think it has the power to change how we view/use Web browsers?


Marcel (Writer and Free Thinker at Large) Gagné AND


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chrome, linux and pdf

Anonymous's picture

I'm running Chrome on Ubuntu. Any idea how to get pdf files to open directly, like they do in FireFox or IE, without having to download them?

chrome, linux and pd

Anonymous's picture

In Chrome, you have to download them under Windows as well, if that can be of any consolation.

I am writing this on Google

Anonymous's picture

I am writing this on Google Chrome for Linux. Its called unstable, but it seems very stable to me. Flash plugin works, no java plugins working yet, it is very very fast but need more functionality. Check it out at
This is from the google chrome "Early release access channels"
This DEB also installs the google repository so it gets updated automatically which is quite cool.

Well, it seems somewhat

Anonymous's picture

Well, it seems somewhat doubtful to me, what this multibilliondollarfirm GOO** has in mind when providing opensource software... (and some people doubt that it really is open source). Since GOO**s general behavior in terms of flooding the net with ads and collecting data on users, I will not use any of their products at all, even if it is for free. I don't like giants...

a year has gone by and not a

Anonymous's picture

a year has gone by and not a single stable release of google chrome for linux... :(

What about good OS?

Anonymous's picture

I thought good OS used a Linux version of Chrome?

true linux build available

ruby gem rdocs's picture

You can download a "real" linux build in

Chrome is decent, but kind of Basic.

frog's picture

Chrome is a good basic browse, but I wish it had a few extra button like a stop button.

Can't wait for chrome to come to Linux.

Refresh button Becomes a

Paggosgeek's picture

Refresh button Becomes a stop button when a web page is loading ^^

it's there...

ruby gem rdocs's picture

the stop button is the "go" button during the load--it changes to an x, then back again to an arrow once the page is loaded.

You can get a "real linux" version at
sudo dpkg -i google-chrome-unstable_current_i386.deb

Its nice to see people believe whatever they read.

Anonymous's picture

It's sad to see any mention of Code Weavers in here, ummm hello? Can we say Wine, because thats what it is. And I'd like to point out how diluted it is running an "Open Source" Program through a compatability layer (Wine or its rip off Crossover) in a true Open Source operating system (Why do you stupid people think it runs so slow???). This article may as well be a shameless plug for CrossOver. I will thought agree with the simple fact that a linux version should have been released at the exact time as a Windows release was for the simple fact of Android. Their flagship OSS touted about as their pledge to make everything open source and available to everyone yet they turn around a windows only program just like the went with T-Mobile instead of all wireless carriers with the G1.

Well, its a good thing

Anonymous's picture

Well, its a good thing Chrome is opensource, cause now the people a firefox can check it and make there's faster. Then we can a faster firefox, with all the add-ons. That'll be cool.


Anonymous's picture

It amazes me how many "technical" people out there believe Chrome is an operating system...ugh!


Nathaniel's picture

I think you misunderstood this point. The author did not call Google Chrome an operating system. It was said that Chrome was designed to be _more like_ an operating system than a singular application.

My interpretation of this is that Chrome was designed as an Internet operating environment, whose interface is that of a web-browser.

My two pennies worth. :)


Anonymous's picture

if they release chrome natively for linux at all, I'm happy

Working Snapshot Versions Of Chrome For Linux

Anonymous's picture


myzonez's picture

Its a pity chrome has not yet been released for linux. I use chrome on windows and I must admit that it surpasses Firefox in terms of speed. But when it comes to added features like extensions and plugins, firefox ruleeeez.........(IE 7 is already beaten down to the ground. Microsoft always releases the crappiest web browsers!)

Google Chrome is cloned

CodeFighters's picture

Hey folks
Linux users can now use Google chrome as it has been cloned by crossover, see this link below:
Google Chrome For Linux- a cloned version by crossover


thanks for this link

Anonymous's picture

thanks for this link

The usual crap

Lopo's picture

This Chrome for Linux stuff is starting to remind me about Sk*crap*ype for Linux. A no go.

The guys from CrossOver try to solve the issue but it is a hog. It managed to freeze my Linux box over and over until I quit and removed it. Although, I must say, it is fast on MS Windows XP.

Coming soon on linux

RedBen's picture

Chromium a good try, but . . .

Anonymous's picture

For 111 MB, Chromium leaves a lot to be desired for.

While I am not a Google basher (nor a Google hyper), I say that Google really should work harder on getting a Linux native version out. In fact, it should have been released the same time as the Windows version, or pretty dang close to it (matter of days or weeks, NOT months). Writing a web browser in Python or Java is unacceptable (someone above mentioned that), since such a browser would be far too slow.

On Windows boxes, Chromium beats IE, hands down. Faster, snappier, more secure, seperate processes for each tab . . . I prefer it to FF3 on faster internet connections (for some reason, Chrome on 28.8K dialup is slower than FF3).

Chrome is a huge step towards what a (graphical) browser *should* be. However, I'm sticking with my console environment and w3m until someone releases a browser, IRC client, screen-style WM, etc. for an X environment.

Good job on the Windows platform, Google . . . now, get moving and realize that Linux is almost as important, since OSS is the future of software, IMO.


Anonymous's picture

Screen-style WM:Ratpoison.
IRC client: use ircii in terminal emulator
Keyboard-based Browser: Conkeror

Hope those are enough to get you started. I only use Google Chrome on Windows, however the lack of a linux build disappoints me, since there are few quality webkit-based browsers on Linux.


GreyPro's picture

The design criteria behind Chrome:
are perfectly sound from a technical point of view. We have reached
a stage where some open source or free products are as bloated as
Microsoft software. Examples: KDE, Firefox etc.

Notably, the unhealthy habit of every programmer squeezing in his/her own
thread into each application (i.e., browser) leads to viscous performance,
even on the most powerful hardware platforms.

Therefore, Chrome fullfills a need.

However, much can be improved. With all the good efforts (as evidence from
low system lood in the Task Manager under Windows), some plugins do not perform
smoothly yet. For example: video-plugins from CNN or YouTube stutter frequently.
If time-sharing economics is the selling point, this better be solved in future

I am eagerly waiting for the Linux version. For quick internet checking,
Chrome has become the browser of choice at my home, esp. due to its superfast
startup time.

Is it Chrome or is it Flash?

Echo's picture

I've seen how well Chrome runs on the Windows platform (which is actually impressive). I downloaded this crossover version to try out on Ubuntu Linux and I was surprised at how laggy it was. It took forever to load any page containing any flash, and although the flash ran fine afterward, it completely hogged every ounce of my processor while on screen. Every page scrolled very slow, any text input had a 2 to 3 second typing delay, and page/tab transitions did as well.

I won't say that this is Chrome being slow, because from what I've realized, every single program I've ever used through wine has lagged exactly like this. Therefore, I can't make any legitimate thesis on this take of Chrome. All I can really do is wait for them to finish the official developing of Chrome to really see for sure.

Don't care!'s picture

When I heard that there was now a "Linux version" of Chrome, I went to check it out. I downloaded a copy of Crossover Chromium and installed it. I'm sticking with SeaMonkey! There was nothing compelling enough about Chromium to make me want to keep using it.

When Google releases a native Linux version of Chrome, I may check it out again--after all, I LIKE trying new browsers [I currently have 12 or 14 other browsers besides SeaMonkey, although it's what I use 99% of the time]--but for right now, no.

Don't care either!'s picture

I am fine with good, robust, stable w3m, I am not going to upgrade to one of those overhyped browsers like Seamonkey, Firefox or Chrome.

how *bleeping* hard can it be?

Anonymous's picture

What I don't understand is why they don't just write the thing in python or java (write once, run anywhere, with anything) and release the source tree for us all to compile on our own? that would make life SO much simpler...

jawa based web browser

Anonymous's picture

O my... just what the world needs... a Java based web browser.

ya this almost sounds

Anonymous's picture

ya this almost sounds like
"O my... just what the world needs... another FAT Linux Distro."

ya... that would be very

Anonymous's picture

ya... that would be very slow..

Chromium is latin for processs hog

Jake's picture

Tried Chromium out on both OpenSuSE 11 on my Thinkpad R61i and my eeepc 700 series running Ubuntu eee. The browser was noticeably slower opening sites and opening new tabs then either Firefox 3 or Opera 9 on the Thinkpad and actually hung for a bit trying to open locally stored files. As you might guess, it was God-awful on the eeepc.

I'm attributing this to the usual crap Crossover needs to run getting Windows apps to work in Linux. Although I am surprised as the notion I got from reading the Crossover website was that this was a port of the Chrome code not so much the Windows app.

I'll just hold my breath and wait for the Linux version of the Maxthon browser.

POS, don't care.

vm's picture

And I am tired of all the cheer leading every time google does a PR geared toward OSS zealots who don't mind imbibing their concoction of sewage fluids as wine. It is about time people stopped acting like a bunch of school girls and let the mofos know what will run and what won't.

Tell it to FSF, RH, novell, canonical, ibm, sun, google and whoever wants to piggy back on OSS to palm off their latest crap.

Crossover Chromium

Anonymous's picture

CrossOver Chromium is worthless, it is slower than... than I don't know what. It's slow.

Dear Google: Thanks for all the herring...

G David Lewis's picture

I'm kinda torn here. On the one hand I can understand Google targeting the majority of users with their products. Unfortunately that's Windows, and if you want people to really adopt your products, you go for the largest install base. I get it and I don't fault Google for this.

What I just don't get is that Google was able to become the company it is today largely in part due to Linux and Open Source Software. So they kind of owe it to this platform to "keep it real" and make their products at least a close second available for it. However to date, they have mostly failed to do so. There have been many promises that whatever they do for Windows will be done for Linux, but so far most of what we have is either just a copy of the Windows version running in a container (ie Picasa), or else a limited version with half the functionality of the Windows version (Google Earth), or else just a lot of "pretty soon now" with no actual release date in sight.

I know Google is not responsible for this Chrome container for Linux, Codeweaver is. But I just can't help feeling more than a little bit slighted that native Linux, and yes Mac, versions weren't made available as well. Google either needs to remember its roots or else they should stick to what they are best at and concentrate on web based apps so everyone can play.


Anonymous's picture

Let us remember that, after all, Google had to address their financial interests first. I say patience for now.

chromium is a winner!

eMBee's picture

i have to admit, i was already sold on chromium when i read about the part where each tab or site runs in a separate process.

this is the most prevailing issue with other browsers.

as aconsequence i have not been so excited about a new browser release ever since expecting a new netscape release in early 2000.

actually running crossover chromium could then only confirm my expectations.

using tabs feels snappy. pages load quickly. opening links in a new tab does what i expect. and the whole interface feels lean and spaceefficient.

even killing tabs is fun because it is so easy to get them restarted.

the only real interface design problem is the lack of a minimum tab-size. it is just the way i work: when i read a page i click dozends of links to be opened in new tabs while i continue reading the page. and then i keep tabs open until i am done with the page (which can take a few days or even weeks). on a good day i can get more than 100 tabs open. and that just doesn't go well with chromium because at the smallest tabsize the tabs are indistinguishable you just can't navigate them.

as a minimum, a menu with a list of all tabs (with full titles, like a history or bookmark list) would really be helpful.

if it weren't for the wine quirks like lack of X11 style copy-paste and inability to run a pdf-viewer i'd almost consider dropping firefox right away.

firefox has the dubious honor to be the only major free software application that manages to make me angry every time something bad happens. (like when i keep loosing tabs every time ff3 crashes, which is something that worked well in ff2. why the regression?)

greetings, eMBee.

Tab overload

b's picture

Glad to hear I'm not the only one who opens millions of tabs at a time. :-D Since FF3 is behaving fairly well for me, I'll stick with it until native Chrome is available (hopefully).

Wow - someone who gets it

Anonymous's picture

"i have to admit, i was already sold on chromium when i read about the part where each tab or site runs in a separate process."

I could not get Chromium to run on Ubuntu but have had a look on Windows. I tried it on a TiddlyWiki that is a wiki that runs entirely on the client using JavaScript, and it was fast.

I am amazed that nobody seems to get what Google is doing. half the people writing columns seem to think it is an operating system, and everybody else makes complaints like ïts the wrong color", "Can it be nasally fitted".

I expect Google don't really care if there is ever a consumer version of Chrome, but do care that browsers are unstable and slow. Google apps can only be as fast and usable as the browser.

Just showing how to build a better browser offers a challenge to Mozilla and MS. If they do not take up the challenge, Google will probably develop Chrome if it has to. But I doubt they really *want* to.

Time for a Wine

Anonymous's picture

We shouldn't have to wait for an open source browser to become natively available for Linux, it should have been released for all platforms together...using the windows version through Wine seems totally the wrong thing to do...

As much as I like google and most things they stand for, I feel that in their eagerness to beat MS in the browser wars they are totally neglecting the open source community here.

Where is the install for Linux? Or better still where is the source? How long will it be before we see a Linux install for this?

"We shouldn't have to wait

Anonymous's picture

"We shouldn't have to wait for an open source browser to become natively available for Linux, it should have been released for all platforms together...."

The thing is, the vast majority of the people out there are using Windows. Google finished the Windows version and got it out there for nearly everyone to enjoy. They're still working on the Linux and OS X ports, but those are much smaller markets. Why wait the however many months to release a *beta* of an existing program just because the ports to other platforms aren't usable yet? Does not compute.

Hi Windows honey i am home, how are your kids? ohh hello linux!

Anonymous's picture

When will people stop repeating this? There is no good reason why a company with resources like Google, developing an application from scratch can not do a simultaneous multi platform release or that doing so would detract from the objective of capturing the large Windows base, we must understand the eagerness of all users to try interesting new technologies whether you are on Windows, Mac or Linux. They are disappointed and feel left out, that is all,much the same way same way a wife would feel if her husband just got home and planted a heavy kiss on a visiting girlfriend and ignores the wife, it is an understandable feeling, but they can take heart Google is still doing a lot for Linux just look at Google Summer Of Code.

Still Feels like wine

GliderMike's picture

OK for checking it out, but for any real use I'll wait for native version. Still feels like wine and has the inherent drawbacks of an app running in wine. I do like Chrome though so I hope they hurry.

its good to know that it

Matt's picture

its good to know that it supports linux too ...I am using linux in my notebook ...So this really helps me to get chrome in my Notebook


Chrome runs OK under plain old wine

Barton L. Phillips's picture

I was able to install Chrome under wine. There are a few good tutorials on doing this. Chrome runs pretty well, no secure web pages but that is OK.