Chrome OS: Behind the curtain

Behind the curtainSome guys from the german open source magazine heise open analyzed components that are used in Chrome OS. We now know which standard applications are running in the background managing the system. I’m giving you an overview in this article.

First of all, as with “Chromium” and “Chrome”, the name “Chromium OS” is just for the open source project. There’s no doubt the finished product will be called “Chrome OS”. At the first glimpse, Chrome OS looks like there’s only the Chrome browser and that is what is stressed by Google, but in the background there are a lot of standard linux applications managing the system.

As a kernel, a standard linux kernel version 2.6.30 is used. Ethernet and wireless connections are managed by Connection Manager along with WPA Supplicant for secured connections. As an interface between applications (mainly the Chrome bowser) and the system, D-Bus is used. The graphical user interface is created using X.org in combination with the Clutter toolkit.

But there are also Chrome OS-exclusive applications. The window manager chromeos-wm e.g. was developed by Google and is only capable of displaying windows in a maximized manner. That means you cannot have multiple windows side by side. By pressing Ctrl+Alt+T you get a full screen terminal window (as long as you are not using a virtual machine, because somehow it doesn’t work) with standard command-line tools.

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