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How to Turn On Chromebook Developer Mode

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What is Chromebook Developer Mode?

Chromebook Developer Mode

Chromebook Developer Mode is a mode that allows users to access the Chromebook’s deeper system functions. This mode can be helpful if you’re a developer or an advanced user who wants to modify your Chromebook’s software beyond the capabilities of the standard user mode. By turning on Developer Mode on your Chromebook, you will gain greater access to features that are usually locked down in regular mode, such as the ability to install alternative operating systems, run Linux apps, and use a command line interface. However, before enabling Developer Mode, it’s vital to know that doing so can void your Chromebook’s warranty and may lead to various security risks.

To get started, it’s essential to have an understanding of your Chromebook’s operating system. Chromebooks have a unique operating system called Chrome OS, which is designed to function mainly with online resources such as web applications and cloud storage. This streamlined operating system is efficient, and it enables you to perform most regular computing tasks easily. However, for advanced users and developers, it can be limiting. Developer Mode opens the door to greater customization and functionality that are not accessible in regular mode.

If you want to make changes to your Chromebook’s system files or install software that isn’t available through the Chrome Web Store, you’ll need to enable Developer Mode. Once you activate Developer Mode, your Chromebook will reboot, and you’ll see a warning screen at startup, indicating that the system’s security has been compromised. This screen also reminds you that Developer Mode is only for advanced users and developers and should be used at your risk.

The main benefit of Developer Mode is that it grants access to a command line interface that allows you to perform more complex tasks with your Chromebook. You’ll also have access to more advanced features like running Linux applications natively on your Chromebook. When in Developer Mode, you’ll also have the option to flash your Chromebook’s BIOS, which is a crucial component that manages the hardware and system software of your Chromebook. With BIOS flashing, you can install alternative operating systems like Ubuntu or Gentoo and further expand your Chromebook’s capabilities.

Although Developer Mode can be a powerful tool for tinkering with your Chromebook’s software, it comes with a few drawbacks. First, you sacrifice some of the security features Chrome OS provides, which can enable root access to the system to potential attackers. Secondly, if you enable Developer Mode, Google may revoke some of its automatic software updates to your device. This means that you’ll have to rely more on manual updates and security patches to keep your device protected. Finally, you may lose your Chromebook’s warranty if you modify its software beyond the standard user mode. Nevertheless, if you’re comfortable with these risks and want to experiment with your Chromebook, Developer Mode can be an excellent option.

In conclusion, if you’re an advanced user or a developer looking to push the limits of your Chromebook’s functionality, then Developer Mode is worth considering. However, if you’re not sure of your ability to manage your Chromebook’s security correctly, it may be better to stick with the standard user mode. Additionally, if you’re looking to customize your Chromebook software with greater functionality, you can explore Linux applications or review the Linux Beta feature, which allows you to run a full Linux desktop environment directly on your Chromebook without resorting to the risks of Developer Mode. Ultimately, the decision whether or not to enable Developer Mode rests with your comfort level with the risks and rewards it offers.

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Benefits of Turning on Developer Mode

Chromebook Developer Mode

Chromebooks are designed to be a secure, stable and easy-to-use operating system (OS) for everyone. But for users who want to go a step further, Chromebooks offer a developer mode that unlocks the computer’s full potential. Turning on developer mode can offer a lot of benefits to Chromebook users.

Access to Advanced Features

Advanced Features in Chromebook

When developer mode is enabled, users can install both Android and Linux apps on their Chromebook. This enables them to have access to a wide range of software, including those that might not be available through the Chrome Web Store. They can even use tools like Android Studio and Eclipse for app development. With developer mode, users can also customize their Chromebook’s hardware, such as setting a custom boot screen and using an external mouse.

Another major advantage of developer mode is that it grants users shell access to their computer. This means they can use command lines to run scripts, execute advanced administrative tasks, and even switch back and forth between Chrome OS and other operating systems. Users can also access the system log and view detailed information about their device’s hardware specifications.

With these advanced features, users can personalize their Chromebooks and improve their productivity by accessing a wider range of tools and utilities. They can also enjoy the computing experience offered by different operating systems and enhance their troubleshooting skills by managing complex technical tasks.

Shifting to the Future: Latest Updates and Features

Updates and Features in Chromebook

Chromebook developer mode can help to improve the user experience by providing early access to cutting-edge technology. Users can choose to join the Chrome OS beta channel to test new features before they are released to the general public. This gives them the opportunity to provide feedback and contribute to the development of the OS. Users can also opt to enable experimental features, including those that allow them to run Android apps in resizable windows on the desktop, which is especially beneficial for touchscreen Chromebooks.

Chrome OS is continually updating to provide users with new features, bug fixes, and security updates. With developer mode, users can manually check for the latest OS updates and install them even if they have not yet been fully tested by Google. This means that users can benefit from the latest features and improvements, as well as the enhanced security offered by the updates.

By enabling developer mode, users can gain more control over their Chromebooks. They can benefit from access to advanced features, broader software compatibility, and early access to latest updates and features. However, it’s important to note that enabling developer mode removes some of the security features that protect Chromebooks from malicious attacks and infections. Therefore, it is recommended that only users with a clear understanding of the risks and the technical expertise necessary to manage them turn on developer mode.

Enabling Developer Mode on Chromebook

Chromebook dev mode

If you own a Chromebook, it’s entirely understandable if you want to get deeper into the computer’s system and gain more control over it. One way to do this is by enabling the developer mode. Doing so allows you to perform things like booting from external media and installing a different operating system. However, it’s essential to note that this comes with a price: Chromebook security is compromised, so proceed with caution. In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps on how to turn on Chromebook developer mode and the subsequent effects.

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Step 1: Back up any vital data.

The moment you turn on developer mode on your Chromebook, your computer will undergo a process called Powerwash, which erases everything stored on your device. Therefore, it’s necessary to create a backup of any essential data and files that you don’t want to lose. In the event that you proceed without a backup, you can kiss all your data goodbye.

Steps 2: Boot into Recovery Mode.

To start the process of enabling developer mode on your Chromebook, you’ll first need to boot into recovery mode. To do this, turn off your computer and press the Esc + Refresh + Power buttons simultaneously. If your Chromebook has a designated recovery button, press that instead of Power + Refresh. Wait for the recovery screen to load.

Chromebook Recovery Screen

Step 3: Access the Chromebook crosh shell.

Once you’re in the recovery screen, press Ctrl + D to get to the developer screen. This will prompt an information screen to show up, telling you that your system will be reset, but it will also provide you with the option to enable developer mode. To proceed, press Enter and wait for your computer to reboot. Pressing Ctrl + D takes you to the Chromebook crosh shell, which is where you can manually enter commands and interact with the Chromebook’s operating system.

Extra Tips:

If you want to disable developer mode, perform these steps:

  1. Boot into recovery mode again > press Ctrl + D > wait for the “OS verification is OFF” screen to appear > press space bar > press Enter > wait for the reboot process to complete.
  2. Upon re-entry into the Chromebook system, press Ctrl + Alt + T to pull up the crosh shell > enter “shell” > type “sudo su” to enter the command prompt > type “sudo disable_dev_mode” to disable developer mode > type “reboot” to reboot the Chromebook.


Enabling developer mode on a Chromebook is a relatively simple process that requires a few steps. However, it’s essential to note that this comes with consequences, like disabling essential security protocols. So if you’re going to proceed with developer mode, it’s highly recommended that your data is backed up before proceeding. Once enabled, you can do a lot more with your Chromebook and have greater control over your device.

Disabling Developer Mode on Chromebook

Disabling Developer Mode on Chromebook

If you’ve been using your Chromebook in Developer Mode and want to disable it, it’s easy to do and doesn’t require any technical knowledge. It’s important to note that disabling Developer Mode will reset your device to factory settings, meaning your data will be erased. So, make sure you back up any important information you want to keep before proceeding.

To disable Developer Mode:

  1. Turn off your Chromebook.
  2. Press the Esc + Refresh + Power buttons at the same time.
  3. When the “OS verification is off” message appears, press Ctrl + D.
  4. The Chromebook will now transition from Developer Mode to normal mode, and all your data will be erased.
  5. Follow the instructions on the screen to set up your Chromebook again.
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Once you’ve disabled Developer Mode, you’ll be back to using your Chromebook in normal mode. This means you won’t be able to make any changes to the underlying operating system, but your device will be much more secure and less prone to errors. If you need to get back into Developer Mode in the future, you can follow the steps outlined in the previous section of this article.

Precautions and Warnings When Using Developer Mode

Chromebook Developer Mode Caution

Developer mode in Chromebook allows users to modify the system settings of their device, which can make it powerful and customizable. However, it also comes with certain risks and concerns, which users must keep in mind before enabling it. In this article, we will list down some precautions and warnings that you must know about when using developer mode.

1. Risk of data loss

Chromebook Data Loss

Enabling developer mode can potentially wipe out all the data present on your Chromebook, including files, photos, and settings. Therefore, it is crucial to create a backup of all your essential data before enabling it. You can use external drives or cloud storage services such as Google Drive to save your data and restore it later if required.

2. Security risks

Chromebook Security Risks

Developer mode turns off several default security features on your device, which can make it vulnerable to malware and other security threats. As a result, you must avoid installing any untrusted or unauthorized apps or extensions after enabling developer mode. Also, make sure to turn off developer mode when not in use to reduce any potential risks or vulnerabilities.

3. Warranty concerns

Chromebook Warranty

Enabling developer mode can cause your Chromebook’s warranty to become void, which means that the manufacturer will not be responsible for any damages or defects caused by the modifications made in this mode. Therefore, before enabling developer mode, make sure to read your device’s warranty terms and conditions, and understand its implications.

4. Technical skills required

Chromebook Technical Skills

Developer mode is recommended only for advanced users who have technical skills and knowledge about the Chrome OS. If you are not well-versed in System Administration, you may end up causing irreversible damage to your device or lose all your data. Hence, it is advisable to proceed with caution and seek professional help if required.

5. No official support from Google

Chromebook No Official Support

Google does not provide any official support or assistance for the devices running in developer mode. This means that you have to rely on your technical expertise or community forums to seek help if any issues arise. Therefore, make sure to research extensively and join online communities or forums that can assist you in case of any problems.

In conclusion, Chromebook developer mode can add functionality and flexibility to your device. It is essential to remember that it also comes with several precautions and warnings, including the risk of data loss, security concerns, warranty implications, technical skills required, and no official support from Google. By understanding these considerations and proceeding with caution, you can safely and confidently enable developer mode on your Chromebook.