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waffle iron
Jan 16, 2004


I use my MediaTek Lenovo Duet as a travel laptop when I fly to visit family and don't expect to do anything but light web browsing and media consuption.

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Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





waffle iron posted:

I use my MediaTek Lenovo Duet as a travel laptop when I fly to visit family and don't expect to do anything but light web browsing and media consuption.

Well yeah that's basically what I'd recommend it be used for, but the point of our discussion was the difference in CPU architectures (and not so much performance); that it's ARM isn't inherently bad, but it won't run x86-only software.

Dr. Video Games 0031
Jul 16, 2004



1080p HP Chromebook 14 for $200 at Costco: https://www.costco.com/hp-14%22-chromebook-bundle---intel-celeron---1080p---bonus-sleeve-%2526-wireless-mouse.product.100793916.html

Pretty alright deal for what's a perfectly good chromebook for posting garbage on the web and watching youtube while in bed. This one even has a slightly faster CPU than the one I have, with double the local storage (though I never use it anyway). and a free, terrible-looking mouse. bonus?

Toalpaz
Mar 20, 2012

Peace through overwhelming determination


How do you watch video files like MKV to play while being able to edit subtitle tracks. I'm having difficulty finding a player for chromebook.

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





Toalpaz posted:

How do you watch video files like MKV to play while being able to edit subtitle tracks. I'm having difficulty finding a player for chromebook.

There's the ancient VLC extension in the OP, give that a shot first. Beyond that, if your CB supports Android and/or Linux apps that opens up other possibilities.

If you run a Plex server you could host all your files there, the Web interface works great.

Dr. Video Games 0031
Jul 16, 2004



When did they remove the "search google for image" option from the context menu when right clicking on images? Is there some kind of flag or extension I can enable to get that back?

Google please stop removing useful features from your browser, I'm begging you.

edit: I misread the title as this being the chrome thread, oops lol

BRAKE FOR MOOSE
Jun 6, 2001

It Could Save Your Life
HUNDREDS OF COLLISIONS



Well, I'm a convert. I bought an Acer 314 ($179 at MicroCenter) solely for a cheap, light-ish laptop that I can take on running commutes and not worry about murdering it. My main intended usage was just for presentations, Google Docs, Office apps, Zoom, etc. but the thing has totally won me over and I'm impressed with what the little Celeron can handle. It has a meh display but I can do everything in my workflow except for Adobe CS stuff; I did not expect that it would instantly replace my Windows/Ubuntu laptop for coding once I got the Linux environment whirring (all my computationally-expensive code is executed remotely anyway) and it seems to even play 4K video fine as long as that's all it's doing. With cloud storage and remote desktop I can't see myself getting a power laptop again.

Yoked
Apr 3, 2007




My wife's ASUS C302 Flip has a broken keyboard. I wasn't sure if this is the right thread to check if there are good resources for repairing the keyboard or if I should just try to get her a new CB with similar features (she wants a touchscreen and liked the flip feature of the ASUS). If recommending new ones, price range would be $500 or less.

TITTIEKISSER69
Mar 19, 2005

I'M JUST HERE TO KISS TITTIESS AND WIN FOOTBALL GAMES!
(AND GET EVERYBODY FIRED)



My Chromebook died on me on the 1st (great start to the year), and I've had no luck with recovery. Seems like my old flash drive isn't cutting it.

While dusting off old laptops to use in the interim, I got to wondering what's the appropriate method for converting them into Chromebooks?

Cojawfee
May 31, 2006
I think the US is dumb for not using Celsius

Why so you want them to be chromebooks? Just install linux on them.

Nulldevice
Jun 16, 2006


Toilet Rascal

TITTIEKISSER69 posted:

My Chromebook died on me on the 1st (great start to the year), and I've had no luck with recovery. Seems like my old flash drive isn't cutting it.

While dusting off old laptops to use in the interim, I got to wondering what's the appropriate method for converting them into Chromebooks?

https://www.neverware.com/freedownload#intro-text - used their test VM and it's a lot like chromeos (same code base) all around. I didn't check to see if I could turn on linux functionality or if that was inherent to google's own software stack.

knobgobblin
Oct 28, 2010

got a bone to pick


I've got a Pixelbook Go question you guys might be able to help me with.

I'm looking at buying a Pixelbook Go, either the M3 8gb ram 64gb ssd or the i5 8gb ram 128gb ssd. I found the i5 version for sale by a 3rd party seller on Amazon for $130 less than retail (720 instead of 850), yet I'm pretty hesitant due to it being a third party and it does sound too good to be true. However, the m3 sold by Amazon themselves is going for $650.

Does anyone have any experience with the m3 processor in the Pixelbook Go? Am I looking at something too good to be true from the third party i5 version? I'd love to get the more powerful processor to keep it strong as websites become more resource intensive over the next few years but I'm reluctant to drop some money on a possible scam/return nightmare if there is an issue or I am sent a refurbished/defective unit.

Can you guys offer up some insight into this?

E: for more clarity I'll be using this for school, web browsing, and YouTube mostly and maybe the occasional browser or Android game

knobgobblin fucked around with this message at 04:28 on Jan 13, 2022

Humerus
Jul 7, 2009

Rule of acquisition #111:
Treat people in your debt like family...exploit them.




I have the m3 and it's been a champ. I used it for school heavily, so weird publisher websites with quizzes and poo poo and a ton of Microsoft Office stuff, mostly web apps. Using Chrome for whatever feels no different than on my PC which has a Ryzen 3700x and 16GB of RAM. The closest I've come to playing games though has been using the Steam Android app to in-home stream games. It seemed fine. Netflix and other streaming services are fine too, I just use the website not apps.

I'm sure there's a use case for the i5 but I have never felt like I needed more.

waffle iron
Jan 16, 2004


My Asus C434 is an m3-8100Y and it suites me fine. It's having at least 8gb that is the real difference. For what I do, I would increase the amount of storage before processor.

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





Yoked posted:

My wife's ASUS C302 Flip has a broken keyboard. I wasn't sure if this is the right thread to check if there are good resources for repairing the keyboard or if I should just try to get her a new CB with similar features (she wants a touchscreen and liked the flip feature of the ASUS). If recommending new ones, price range would be $500 or less.

Sorry about the delay; I think I was originally going to respond with "I typically suggest looking for repair guides on iFixit" but then couldn't find one. There might be video guides on Youtube though, or elsewhere, as the C302 is a popular model. Regardless, because it's such a recommended model, I'd suggest trying to repair it even without a guide; try opening it up and see how it looks, but you might have to search for used parts on eBay.

Beyond that, if I were to recommend a new purchase I'd suggest going with the current (or a recent revision) of the same Asus Flip, especially since she likes the C302 so much. Chromebooks all essentially do the same thing, so it's just a matter of finding the features you like (e.g. the convertible design) within your price range; I don't have any specific model recommendations at the moment because the bulk of them are good enough for most people.

knobgobblin posted:

I've got a Pixelbook Go question you guys might be able to help me with.

I'm looking at buying a Pixelbook Go, either the M3 8gb ram 64gb ssd or the i5 8gb ram 128gb ssd. I found the i5 version for sale by a 3rd party seller on Amazon for $130 less than retail (720 instead of 850), yet I'm pretty hesitant due to it being a third party and it does sound too good to be true. However, the m3 sold by Amazon themselves is going for $650.

Does anyone have any experience with the m3 processor in the Pixelbook Go? Am I looking at something too good to be true from the third party i5 version? I'd love to get the more powerful processor to keep it strong as websites become more resource intensive over the next few years but I'm reluctant to drop some money on a possible scam/return nightmare if there is an issue or I am sent a refurbished/defective unit.

Can you guys offer up some insight into this?

E: for more clarity I'll be using this for school, web browsing, and YouTube mostly and maybe the occasional browser or Android game

I wouldn't doubt the 3rd party i5 version, both due to Amazon's (and your CC's) purchase protections and because that's not an unreasonable price for what I'm assuming is a used device.

I don't think the performance difference between the 2 CPUs is going to be too meaningful, plus the RAM is the same, and the difference in local storage may not matter to you. That being said, as a CB enthusiast and power user I'd pay the extra $70 for the i5 model.

For reference, I still use the 2016 HP CB 13 with the m7 as my daily driver, and it's still got enough performance, although I can tell when it's struggling, partially because I can see the CPU maxed out in the settings extension's widget thing. That's partially because it's passively cooled and it throttles when overheated, but it performs noticeably better when on a cooling pad with fans. So I'd nevertheless be reasonably confident that a more recent m3 will still offer decent performance, especially if it's actively cooled.

knobgobblin
Oct 28, 2010

got a bone to pick


Thank you all for the replies! A few hours after I posted my op I found an i5 pixelbook go in open box excellent - certified condition on Best Buy for $644 and jumped on it. It's even cheaper than the Amazon one and I feel comfortable knowing that if I'm dissatisfied or if it's not functioning as advertised I can return it in store no questions asked and without any claim or mail-in hassle.

It's arriving today and I'm pretty stoked!

E: brand spanking new with 0 cycles of battery, couldn't have asked for anything better

knobgobblin fucked around with this message at 02:24 on Jan 15, 2022

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





The Lenovo 10e is currently on sale for $100. It's the EDU version of the Duet; the former's a little chunkier but more rugged, with less internal storage and no keyboard case (which is available separately for under $50, but is a version without the tiny touchpad like the Duet's included one has.)

Otherwise, it's got the same CPU, RAM, probably display, and possibly speakers. Probably worth it for almost anyone for $100!

Private Speech
Mar 30, 2011

I HAVE EVEN MORE WORTHLESS BEANIE BABIES IN MY COLLECTION THAN I HAVE WORTHLESS POSTS IN THE BEANIE BABY THREAD YET I STILL HAVE THE TEMERITY TO CRITICIZE OTHERS' COLLECTIONS

IF YOU SEE ME TALKING ABOUT BEANIE BABIES, PLEASE TELL ME TO

EAT. SHIT.




How hard is it to work around the security of a locked-down educational chromebook?

I'm well over a decade removed from education now but I loved to mess around with these kind of things when I was a teenager, taking over the cs classroom nanny software on our win2k machines was the highlight of that year for me (I kept messing around with focus on computers of other students and installed quake).

As a thought exercise I thought about what I would need to do to run Dwarf Fortress on it in class. What I've managed to come up with so far is hosting a VNC server on some innocuous domain name, if there is a domain whitelist maybe using mobile tethering to an android phone which would do DNS spoofing on some boring school website to point to my server.

I've also considered just having 2 SSDs and swapping them about, but I think most of the chromebooks come with BGA eMMCs so I'm guessing that wouldn't be an option.

I imagine there must be a fair few exploits to get root/boot/admin access without triggering an alert with the school IT, but it's pretty hard to find any information online as every question seem to be swamped by teachers and kids saying things along the lines of "actually hacking your chromebook is grand theft, you don't want a criminal record do you" or the like.

e: I guess it depends on how the school wipe them before they hand it back to kids? It might be possible to put on a hacked bootloader with a boot menu or something, though that wouldn't necessarily fix everything depending on how the monitoring software works (i.e. detecting being booted in a manged mode in class or something). I don't actually have a chromebook to test on, it's just something I've randomly wandered about.

Private Speech fucked around with this message at 21:42 on Jan 17, 2022

Yoked
Apr 3, 2007




Atomizer posted:

Sorry about the delay; I think I was originally going to respond with "I typically suggest looking for repair guides on iFixit" but then couldn't find one. There might be video guides on Youtube though, or elsewhere, as the C302 is a popular model. Regardless, because it's such a recommended model, I'd suggest trying to repair it even without a guide; try opening it up and see how it looks, but you might have to search for used parts on eBay.

Beyond that, if I were to recommend a new purchase I'd suggest going with the current (or a recent revision) of the same Asus Flip, especially since she likes the C302 so much. Chromebooks all essentially do the same thing, so it's just a matter of finding the features you like (e.g. the convertible design) within your price range; I don't have any specific model recommendations at the moment because the bulk of them are good enough for most people.

Thanks for the recommendations. I ended up watching a bunch of YT videos that showed taking the ribbon out and putting back in that connects between the keyboard and motherboard. It turns out that fixed it!

codo27
Apr 21, 2008



Yo I'm the rural/local IT guy and someone brought me their chromebook and they cant remember their password. Do these have any phone/tablet-esque lockdowns where if I try and wipe it it wont let me set up again without the original account?

Ham Equity
Apr 16, 2013

Angrier, Bitterer Man


Grimey Drawer

codo27 posted:

Yo I'm the rural/local IT guy and someone brought me their chromebook and they cant remember their password. Do these have any phone/tablet-esque lockdowns where if I try and wipe it it wont let me set up again without the original account?
Authentication in a Chromebook is done by Gmail account. If they can't remember their Gmail password, they should be able to reset it from any computer with an internet connection.

codo27
Apr 21, 2008



Yeah luckily the son had set it up and I was able to reset by reaching out to him and using his email. Had to delete all local info because I didn't have the previous password though which seems odd to me, but moot on a chromebook anyhow, especially this lady's

waffle iron
Jan 16, 2004


The only exception is that Chromebooks enrolled into MDM with Education or Business accounts can be locked.

MikeJF
Dec 20, 2003






Any decent low-cost chromebooks with a 15 inch screen to use as a ZoomPC?

Bizarro Kanyon
Jan 3, 2007

Something Awful, so easy even a spaceman can do it!




waffle iron posted:

The only exception is that Chromebooks enrolled into MDM with Education or Business accounts can be locked.

Yep, I work in a school and was essentially the IT guy. We had a kid say that someone stole his Chromebook so he should not have to pay. I locked the Chromebook and suddenly it was found.

I am guessing he tried to sell it and the person tested the Chromebook only to find that it was completely locked out.

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





https://sellout.woot.com/offers/hp-x360-11-6-touchscreen-2-in-1-chromebook?ref=w_gw_dd_7

Here's another low-cost option, a $110 convertible CB. Ruggedized, 11", 4 GB RAM.

Humerus
Jul 7, 2009

Rule of acquisition #111:
Treat people in your debt like family...exploit them.




Any recommendations for a comic reader for a Chromebook? I have a Pixelbook Go so I can install Android apps but I figured I should check for one that scales onto a big(ish) screen well. File format is CBZ, from Humble Bundle (if it matters).

RichterIX
Apr 11, 2003

I'm going to kill myself tomorrow.

Perfect Viewer on the Play Store has been good for me on my Duet, other than trying to view comics from a LAN folder doesn't work great. If they're stored locally it's great.

Terminus
May 5, 2008


Humerus posted:

Any recommendations for a comic reader for a Chromebook? I have a Pixelbook Go so I can install Android apps but I figured I should check for one that scales onto a big(ish) screen well. File format is CBZ, from Humble Bundle (if it matters).

Just jumping in with another vote for Perfect Viewer. Using it for the same file types from Humble Bundle and it works great on my Slate.

Humerus
Jul 7, 2009

Rule of acquisition #111:
Treat people in your debt like family...exploit them.




Terminus posted:

Just jumping in with another vote for Perfect Viewer. Using it for the same file types from Humble Bundle and it works great on my Slate.

Yeah thanks, seems pretty good! Time to finally read Spawn.

Mustache Ride
Sep 11, 2001







Have any other Slate havers had issues with the Android version of Kindle showing a "This device is not compatible" after the most recent update?

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





Atomizer posted:

The Lenovo 10e is currently on sale for $100. It's the EDU version of the Duet; the former's a little chunkier but more rugged, with less internal storage and no keyboard case (which is available separately for under $50, but is a version without the tiny touchpad like the Duet's included one has.)

Otherwise, it's got the same CPU, RAM, probably display, and possibly speakers. Probably worth it for almost anyone for $100!

So I got this, and I finally received the keyboard folio case thing like 2 weeks later. I'm thinking of doing a comparison to the Duet if there's interest.

Also I got the Lenovo Ideapad Duet 5 Chromebook; it's currently on sale for $400 although I bought an open-box one for about $300. It's unsurprisingly a bigger brother to the original 10" Duet, this one having a 13" OLED display, double the RAM, a newer CPU, but otherwise it's pretty similar.

ExcessBLarg!
Aug 31, 2001


Private Speech posted:

How hard is it to work around the security of a locked-down educational chromebook?
Pre-2018 Chromebooks "root of trust" lies in the write-protected portion of the firmware stored on an external flash chip. These can be reflashed using a SPI programmer, and either their serial number altered to bypass enrollment checks or their firmware replaced entirely (e.g., UEFI to run Linux). Non-enrolled Chromebooks can be booted into developer mode, and all pre-2018 Chromebooks have a write-protect switch or screw that if flipped/removed, allow for the firmware to be completely reflashed in developer mode too.

Modern Chromebooks all have a security microcontroller that features a TPM and serves as the root of trust. Short of any vulnerabilities in the controller firmware ("Cr50") there's no way to bypass enrollment blocks on these models. For non-enrolled devices though there's a special USB-C cable ("Suzy-Q") that you can use to interact with Cr50 to remotely flash the device. If you don't have one of these cables you can still reflash them by opening up the device and disconnecting the battery (power off AC).

The thing about Chromebooks that makes them different from late 90s PC is that Google has very tight control over the hardware and the firwmare stack that runs on them. The good news is that they've used this control to require manufacturers to make all non-enrolled Chromebooks hackable, but also means that with Cr50 they have a very tight lock on enrolled devices too.

TITTIEKISSER69
Mar 19, 2005

I'M JUST HERE TO KISS TITTIESS AND WIN FOOTBALL GAMES!
(AND GET EVERYBODY FIRED)



Acer Chromebook 311 $109 shipped - down from $249

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007






Even though it looks like it went up to $130, this is still a solid choice for a cheap, but new CB. It's an alternative to the Duet, with the Acer being easier to use (bigger keyboard & display) although the larger display has a lower resolution; the CPUs and RAM are more or less identical.

Private Speech
Mar 30, 2011

I HAVE EVEN MORE WORTHLESS BEANIE BABIES IN MY COLLECTION THAN I HAVE WORTHLESS POSTS IN THE BEANIE BABY THREAD YET I STILL HAVE THE TEMERITY TO CRITICIZE OTHERS' COLLECTIONS

IF YOU SEE ME TALKING ABOUT BEANIE BABIES, PLEASE TELL ME TO

EAT. SHIT.




ExcessBLarg! posted:

Pre-2018 Chromebooks "root of trust" lies in the write-protected portion of the firmware stored on an external flash chip. These can be reflashed using a SPI programmer, and either their serial number altered to bypass enrollment checks or their firmware replaced entirely (e.g., UEFI to run Linux). Non-enrolled Chromebooks can be booted into developer mode, and all pre-2018 Chromebooks have a write-protect switch or screw that if flipped/removed, allow for the firmware to be completely reflashed in developer mode too.

Modern Chromebooks all have a security microcontroller that features a TPM and serves as the root of trust. Short of any vulnerabilities in the controller firmware ("Cr50") there's no way to bypass enrollment blocks on these models. For non-enrolled devices though there's a special USB-C cable ("Suzy-Q") that you can use to interact with Cr50 to remotely flash the device. If you don't have one of these cables you can still reflash them by opening up the device and disconnecting the battery (power off AC).

The thing about Chromebooks that makes them different from late 90s PC is that Google has very tight control over the hardware and the firwmare stack that runs on them. The good news is that they've used this control to require manufacturers to make all non-enrolled Chromebooks hackable, but also means that with Cr50 they have a very tight lock on enrolled devices too.

Thank you! Exactly what I was looking for.

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





https://9to5google.com/2022/02/15/chrome-os-flex-cloudready/

So we've covered Neverware Cloudready before, and that it basically lets you turn other PCs into Chrome[ium]books, plus the fact that Google bought the company outright a couple years ago. Well they're eventually going to rebrand it as "Chrome OS Flex" and I guess it'll basically be the same thing, i.e. an OS that you can install on your own hardware, but even more closely resembling ChromeOS proper. The only other thing to note, from that article is: "However, there are no plans at the moment to add the Play Store and support for Android apps to Chrome OS Flex, but newer hardware might allow for Linux." So that's a little disappointing that we might not get Android app support, but then on the other hand if you wanted proper support for Linux apps you could install any other Linux distro.

ExcessBLarg!
Aug 31, 2001


Are they just dancing around "old PCs ... no longer getting official updates" meaning old Chromebooks? My wife has a Windows 8-something laptop that still gets updates, while my Haswell hardware hasn't for nearly two years now. Of course, you could install UEFI on a Haswell machine and then this would probably work too, but still seems to be ignoring the elephant in the room.

Atomizer
Jun 24, 2007





ExcessBLarg! posted:

Are they just dancing around "old PCs ... no longer getting official updates" meaning old Chromebooks? My wife has a Windows 8-something laptop that still gets updates, while my Haswell hardware hasn't for nearly two years now. Of course, you could install UEFI on a Haswell machine and then this would probably work too, but still seems to be ignoring the elephant in the room.

No I think it's a genuine attempt to get ChromeOS on more devices; the bulk of the work was done by Neverware already, but now it's becoming an official Google product. Google wants you to use their software, for the resulting marketing/advertising opportunities, regardless of the hardware you're running.

But yeah if this breathes new life into old Chromebooks (e.g. see the ancient list I have in like the 2nd post) consider that a bonus.

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mdxi
Mar 13, 2006

to JERK OFF is to be close to GOD... only with SPURTING



ExcessBLarg! posted:

Are they just dancing around "old PCs ... no longer getting official updates" meaning old Chromebooks? My wife has a Windows 8-something laptop that still gets updates, while my Haswell hardware hasn't for nearly two years now. Of course, you could install UEFI on a Haswell machine and then this would probably work too, but still seems to be ignoring the elephant in the room.

Ars also has coverage, and they're focusing on (and testing) PCs which are EOL'd for Win10 and not up to spec for Win11.
https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2022/02/chromeos-flex-is-an-ideal-off-ramp-for-millions-of-pcs-that-cant-run-windows-11/

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