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Every Chromebook comes with a built in expiration date. In this blog post you will learn what this means and what to do about a Chromebook expiring. We will cover how to check the expiration date on a Chromebook, and what the options are after it happens.

What does it mean a Chromebook is expiring?

In the computer industry, each new version of an operating system will work on many older computers. Backward compatibility is this ability to run current software on old computers. All operating systems, Windows, MacOS or ChromeOS, offer some backward compatibility. Eventually, the creator of the operating system determines that some hardware will not be supported with further updates. ChromeOS is unique in explicitly stating an end date for backward compatibility. This expiration is generally 4 – 6 years from the creation date of the computer, and indicates when the device will receive no additional updates of the Chrome OS.

How do I determine when my Chromebook is expiring?

To find your Chromebook’s expiration date:

  • Click on the lower right corner of the screen to bring up the …..
  • Open the settings menu by clicking on the cog icon
  • Click on About Chrome OS,
  • Click on Additional details.
  • The expiration date is under the heading Update Schedule.

What are my options once the expiration date has occurred?

Continue to use the Chromebook

Once a Chromebook has passed its expiration date, it will no longer receive security or feature updates. Over time, this will make the computer more vulnerable to security issues when browsing on the web. Since it does not run the more up to date ChromeOS, it will eventually also not be able to run the most current versions of the Chrome browser, and eventually some websites will either not work or will block their use.

Replace the operating system with a Unix OS

Unix is an open source operating system that is freely available for anyone to install on their computer. There are several variations of Unix, such as Mint, Linux or Ubuntu.

On a Chromebook, most work will be accomplished using a browser and cloud storage. Most Chromebooks have relatively small internal storage devices. This is true regardless of the operating system you are using on your Chromebook.

This article from How-to Geek, Four Things to Keep in Mind, covers some of the things you will need to know and consider before replacing the operating system on your Chromebook.

Replace the operating system with ChromeOS via CloudReady

If you want to keep this computer looking and acting as close to what you are used to as possible, then CloudReady might be your best choice. CloudReady is an operating system developed by Neverware. It is a version of ChromeOS, so it will look and act in a way that you are used to. And even more importantly it will continue to receive security and feature updates.

The Chromebook must have 8 GB of free space to create the CloudReady OS drive, but you can create that on another computer if needed.

Here are the instructions for installing CloudReady on a Chromebook directly from Neverware.

Where to go from here?

There are many options for you when your Chromebook is expiring. If you want to talk about these choices, or have trouble implementing any of them, please give us a call and we can help you remotely or in person.

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