ChromeOS Flex Tool now available to everyone - Makes Any Laptop a Chromebook

A Chromebook conversion tool was announced by Google in early 2022 that allowed its customers to convert their old Windows or Mac laptops into Chromebooks. Google says ChromeOS Flex is ready for a wider release to Mac and Windows PC owners after being in early access for the past few months.

Engadget reports that the tool's basic features remain the same. ChromeOS Flex can be installed on a USB drive and tested before being installed on a computer. The user can then completely replace the operating system on their old computer with Chrome OS if everything goes smoothly.

Over 400 different devices have been tested by Google for compatibility with the tool. In this way, Google will get a lot of user feedback and can fix 600 bugs that have been identified over the past few months as part of the tool's early access program.

ChromeOS Flex is available to anyone, but Google is positioning it for businesses and schools as a way to extend the usefulness of older hardware. Instead of updating every computer with a USB drive, IT departments can deploy ChromeOS Flex across their networks.

Moreover, Google noted Flex devices can be managed through Chrome Enterprise Upgrade, which allows departments to manage apps and policies across multiple computers. Google acquired Neverware in 2021, a company that first came up with the idea of turning old computers into Chromebooks.

After CloudReady is widely deployed, Neverware's CloudReady software will be replaced with Flex in the coming weeks, and CloudReady will be discontinued. Because ChromeOS Flex is now stable and has features that CloudReady lacked, such as Google Assistant support, users shouldn't have any problems making the transition.

Despite Chrome being the only feasible way to browse the web on them, Chromebooks are more resource efficient than other computers equipped with Intel chips. The latest Chromebook with Chrome OS 105, however, will have an updated version of Chrome OS.

The Chrome OS 105 Dev flag throttles and de-prioritizes JavaScript activities from non-active websites, according to About Chromebooks. Websites are restricted from running their JavaScript code in the background for a certain period of time.

The time code is allowed to be executed can be reduced if you limit the amount of time JavaScript activities are allowed to be executed on your computer. Optimal circumstances could lead to improvements of up to 10% in battery life, according to Android Police.

However, not all websites make heavy use of JavaScript, so you may not see the 10% increase. Variables are too numerous.

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