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Just 5 steps to add Xfce to your HP Chromebook (via Crouton)

with 7 comments

1. Enable Developer Mode:

Note: wipes your Chromebook.

Start with the Chromebook off
Press hold esc and F3, then press the power button
Control + D
Turn off OS verification by pressing enter
This will then reformat the drive for you (takes about 15 minutes).

Note: Whenever you boot your Chromebook, you’ll see a warning screen.
You’ll need to press Ctrl+D or wait 30 seconds to continue booting.

2. Grab the latest release from

Download it, pop open a shell (Ctrl+Alt+T, type shell and hit enter).

3. sudo sh -e ~/Downloads/crouton -t xfce -r raring

4. Enter a user name and password when promoted.

5. sudo startxfce4


To switch from ChromeOS to Xfce and back use:

Ctrl+Alt+Back and Ctrl+Alt+Forward plus Ctrl+Alt+Refresh

Very detailed walk through and screen shots here:

How to Install Ubuntu Linux on Your Chromebook with Crouton


Written by SilverWav

August 23, 2013 at 6:13 pm

Posted in Feature

Tagged with , , , ,

7 Responses

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  1. Great instructions and everything works except switching between ChromeOS and Xfce, I’ve tried Ctrl+Alt+Back and Ctrl+Alt+Forward plus Ctrl+Alt+Refresh(f3) but nothing happens except it scrolls between the workspace screen?

    Any suggestions ?


    September 9, 2013 at 7:09 am

    • On my HP they are Ctrl+Alt+F1 or Ctrl+Alt+F2 then Ctrl+Alt+F3


      September 10, 2013 at 1:27 am

    • Try these:

      ARM (like the Samsung Series 3 Chromebook): Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Back and Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Forward

      Intel x86/AMD64 (like the Chromebook Pixel, HP or Acer Chromebook): Ctrl+Alt+Back and Ctrl+Alt+Forward plus Ctrl+Alt+Refresh


      September 10, 2013 at 1:31 am

      • um, he already said that he tried those exact commands and they didn’t work.

        also, what is the F1 key? What kind of chromebook do you have that has F keys?

        James Welbes

        December 30, 2013 at 10:39 pm

        • >Ctrl+Alt+Back

          There is a difference ;-)

          >What kind of chromebook do you have that has F keys?
          Heh I have a Saitek USB keyboard plugged in… and a Samsung 24 monitor.
          I use the HP Chromebook as a base unit really.


          December 30, 2013 at 11:25 pm

  2. I can do all this without opening up the machine and flipping the hardware switch (to unprotect the boot code). So is there really any need to flip the hardware switch? Any limitations on what I can do inside xfce / linux shell if I dont flip?

    Paul Newman

    December 6, 2013 at 11:40 pm

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