Repurposed an Asus Chromebox model CN60 / M004U that had gone EOL with NomadBSD 1.4 64-bit since it was EOL. Not any more!
TL;DR everything works, including wifi – except for headphone audio (I’ll fix later), and didn’t test bluetooth.
Objective is NOT to install to internal drive, but to simply boot and run from an external usb / flash, using the internal drive for random storage. Keeps things simple. No interest in in dual-booting, running from within ChromeOS itself - Nada, just simply boot from an external source.
Placed unit into “developer mode”. Pushbutton pinhole reset, CTRL-D for initial dev mode, and CTRL-L after reboot are your friend. More info on how to get into dev mode here:
- I like booting from an SD-Flash card, rather than usb on this machine. Keeps the usb ports free, although it sticks out from the side a little bit. As always, use a good card, not the one from your Dad’s old mavica camera!
Results: GREAT! Very snappy performance (for what it is) with NomadBSD.
Audio: It seems as though the only audio device picked up is the HDMI monitor audio, but since I don’t have speakers on my monitor, I couldn’t test it. In addition, the speaker jack audio is not presented as a choice to use, so I’ll have to dig in later to try and force it. I know it works, since my other fav live-usb is Knoppix and it works there.
I’m not interested in Bluetooth, so I can’t comment if that works or not.
Hardware notes: Seems like this Chromebox has a little quirk of it’s own when booting. Unlike other mainline machines, with this one, both the keyboard and mouse are not activated until after boot. Not a NomadBSD thing - it has the same issue with anything else presented to it.
So thank goodness the boot process has timeouts and progresses on, unlike some other bootloader setups that sit and wait for you to press a key. Fortunately, NomadBSD has no problem with the default boot settings and progresses nicely into the DE.
Love the fact that NomadBSD image is not in the iso9660 format. The internal Chromebox “SeaBios” recognizes my flash card as a “hard drive” rather than a CD-based format. Some modern machines these days will NOT boot from an iso9660 format - bit it a real mechanical cd-rom, or a flash/usb drive formatted like one - security reasons and so forth. Another topic perhaps…
Overall, I’m totally jazzed that NomadBSD 1.4 is usable on the Chromebox.