Users may now enjoy more apps in their Chromebooks than ever before thanks to the introduction of Android Apps on Chrome OS.3e
Although most Chromebooks only have a 64-bit architecture by default and some Android apps need a 32-bit architecture to function properly, there is a simple solution to activate 32-bit architecture on Chromebooks so you can use your favourite 32-bit Android apps!
What is the 32-bit architecture?
A form of computer architecture known as 32-bit architecture employs 32 bits to store data. Today, the majority of PCs utilise it. Most software is incompatible with Chromebooks’ unique ARM architecture, which they employ. Thankfully, there are workarounds for this restriction.
You can execute applications made for the 32-bit architecture with the help of Chrome extensions that are offered in the Chrome Web Store. The VirtualBox Extension Pack is one illustration. To install it, stick to these steps: Additionally, entire virtual machines like WineBottler or Oracle VM VirtualBox are accessible online and may be loaded on your Chromebook (link).
How do I enable 32-bit on my Chromebook?
If you want to enable the 32-bit architecture on your Chromebook, you’ll need to do a few things first. Follow these steps and you’ll be up and running in no time.
- Open Chrome’s shell (Ctrl+Alt+T).
- Now type or paste shell (no quotes) into that window and hit Enter. This will give you access to all of Chrome OS’ underlying system files.
- In order for support for legacy apps (32-bit ones) to work correctly, there are some additional settings we have to turn on by default.
- You can use this command to set them: crossystem dev_boot_legacy=1
- Change it so it looks like this: crossystem dev_boot_legacy=1
- Press enter and then Ctrl+D to log out. Once logged out, restart your device using CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + R key combo. Your device should now boot in Legacy mode!
You’re one step closer to being able to run those old school games from the 90s on your Chromebook. Yay!
Does Chromebook Support 32-bit?
Yes, Chromebook support for 32-bit apps is coming in Chrome OS 73. This will allow you to run more legacy apps and games on your Chromebook.
Here’s how to enable it.
First, you need to be running the developer channel of Chrome OS. You can do this by going to Settings > About Chrome OS > More info > Change channel.
Once you’re on the developer channel, you need to enable a flag in chrome://flags/#enable-nexus-armv7.
Now, reboot your device and when it starts up again, you’ll have the option to select either 64-bit or 32-bit under powerwash options.
Selecting 32-bit will turn off auto updates and set your device back to factory defaults (i.e., deleting all local data).
Reboot your Chromebook and wait 10 minutes before logging back in to complete the process. After 10 minutes, log back into your account and open any app that crashes with a not-compatible error message.
It should now work properly! Some older programs may not work as well due to being designed for 32-bit architecture but most should still function as expected.
Note: there is no way to revert the change if you decide you don’t want it later on. If you plan on switching back to 64-bit then please backup any files/data you might want first.
There are also risks involved with switching between architectures so make sure you are aware of what they are before proceeding. Switching from 64-bit to 32-bit puts your device at risk for software errors because there are some applications that require the use of new hardware features available only in the newer architecture.
And vice versa, switching from 32-bit to 64-bit may lead to incompatibility errors because these devices cannot access certain features required by newer apps. Be sure you know which one best suits your needs before continuing with the change.
How do you tell if my Chromebook is 32 or 64-bit?
To check if your Chromebook is 32 or 64-bit, follow these steps:
- Open Chrome and go to chrome://help.
- Under About Google Chrome, look for the Bit field. If it says 64, you have a 64-bit device; if it says 32, you have a 32-bit device.
- Close the About Google Chrome tab.
- On your keyboard, press Ctrl + Alt + T.
- In the box that pops up, type shell.
- In the next box that pops up, type sudo dpkg –add-architecture i386.
- In the next box that pops up, type sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade && sudo apt dist-upgrade.
- Restart your Chromebook by pressing Ctrl + D and wait until the reboot is complete.
- Reboot again by pressing Ctrl + D.
- Check if your Chromebook is now 64-bit using the same process outlined in step one of this tutorial!
Now you’re able to install some of those hard-to-find Linux apps that just don’t work well on the ARM processor found in most modern Chromebooks.
Plus, since many Chromebooks are only made with an x86 chip, this will make it easier to develop Android apps and other programs without relying on an expensive emulator.
Have fun exploring your new hardware!
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Q. How do I enable 32-bit architecture on my Chromebook?
To enable 32-bit packages on Chrome OS, run the dpkg –add-architecture i386 command.
Q. Is Chrome OS Flex 32-bit or 64-bit?
The main limitations are that Chrome OS Flex requires a 64-bit processor and 4 Gigabytes of RAM; this leaves 32-bit only systems hanging. Google maintains a certified models list, which you may access here.
Q. How do I enable 32-bit applications?
To enable IIS to run applications in the 32-bit mode: Go to Websites & Domains > Dedicated IIS Application Pool for Website. Select the “Enable 32-bit applications” checkbox and then click OK.
Q. How do I force an old Chromebook to update?
- Turn on your Chromebook.
- Connect your Chromebook to Wi-Fi.
- At the bottom right, select the time. …
- At the bottom left, select About ChromeOS.
- Under “Google ChromeOS,” find which version of the Chrome operating system your Chromebook uses.
- Select Check for updates.