The MightywombleFeb 27, 2019 · 6 min read

Update History

  • 01/03/2019 : Added Gnome-Terminal instructions
  • 01/03/2019 : Setup TMux
  • 02/03/2019 : Enabling SSH Server

What is this?

This is a working page, I’ll be adding things as I find them, it’s things I found out about the ChromeOS Linux shell (Crostini).

The Linux shell is an amazing thing and I’m just starting to learn what can be one using it in Crostini.

What am I running on?

I’m running on a UK HP Chromebook X2 in the Beta Channel

As was pointed out you don’t need to be in the beta channel of ChromeOS if you are running 71 or above, at the time of writing however some of the features like mounting the SD card in the Linux container were only available in Beta.

What version of ChromeOS?

I’m running in the Beta Channel on 73.0.3683.48 (Official Build) beta (64-bit)

Enable Linux Shell

  1. Open Settings
  2. Click on Help
  3. Click on About Chrome OS
  4. Click on Detailed Build Information
  5. Change the channel to Beta
  6. Wait for Chromebook to finish install and update
  7. Go back to Settings and scroll down
  8. Click on Linux(Beta) — Turn On
  9. Wait for installation of the Linux
  10. New icon is place in your apps
  11. Click the Terminal icon
  12. You are in your Linux console

Install Core Apps

A few useful tools to get you going

apt -y install apt-file bc bash-completion cron gnupg2 jq whois zip tree python-boto gnome-terminal tmux file autossh dnsutils elinks netcat nautilus build-essential awscli nautilus wget curl git-all gdebi-core

Installing Services

Accessing Crostini Web Services from the Chrome Browser

A question I had early on was how to access web services installed in Crostini in the Chrome Browser.

The command

ip a

will show

4: eth0@if5: <BROADCAST,MULTICAST,UP,LOWER_UP> mtu 1500 qdisc noqueue state UP group default qlen 1000
link/ether nn:nn:nn:nn:nn:nn brd ff:ff:ff:ff:ff:ff link-netnsid 0
inet brd scope global eth0
valid_lft forever preferred_lft forever

the external IP address


in the browser would access a webserver installed using crostini

If you want to use DNS names as the IP will change Crostini has some baked in DNS which can be used

Within the Crostini shell

ping penguin

Will ping localhost

ping penguin.lxd

Will ping the hostname address (in this case

From the Chrome browser opening


will open

Install Docker

Docker is an amazing tool, at the time of writing installing it however from the local repository didn’t work

Head over to

Use git clone to clone the repo

git clone

cd to the crostini-docker folder



This will install a working docker session

service status docker <- will show if docker is running

systemctl enable docker <- Enable docker on Crostini start.

docker ps

Install Portainer on Docker

Portainer is a good web interface for Docker

docker volume create portainer_data

docker run -d -p 9000:9000 -v /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock -v portainer_data:/data portainer/portainer

Open Portainer at


Install Cockpit

Cockpit makes GNU/Linux discoverable. See your server in a web browser and perform system tasks with a mouse. It’s easy to start containers, administer storage, configure networks, and inspect logs.

echo ‘deb stretch-backports main’ > \
apt-get update
sudo apt-get install cockpit



Enable SD card under Linux

From version 73 of ChromeOS its possible to mount an External SD car in Read/Write mode within Crostini

Open Files

Right Click on the SD Card

Click on Manage Linux Sharing

Shared folders are available in Linux at /mnt/chromeos. To share, right-click on a folder in Files app, then select ‘Share with Linux’. Removing folders from here will stop sharing but will not delete files.

My SD Card is mounted as Data

ls /mnt/chromeos/removable/Data/


Android Download OpenVPN Photos uac00091.pfx
ASR problems.jpg docker HomeCerts Payslip squid.bak wallpaper

Setting up gnome-terminal icon

Earlier gnome-terminal was installed however the gnome terminal icon doesn’t appear.

nano /usr/share/applications/gnome-terminal.desktop


[Desktop Entry]


Comment=Use the command line





Type=Application X-GNOME-DocPath=gnome-terminal/index.html








Note: Copy an paste might not work here

Setup TMux

Tmux should have been installed earlier if not:

sudo apt -t stretch-backports install tmux

Start tmux by typing tmux, then press ctrl+b to enter command mode. " splits the window horizontally and % splits it vertically. To move around, press ctrl-b arrow-key

For more customization, make a .tmux.conf in the home directory and add:

# Enable mouse mode (tmux 2.1 and above)
set -g mouse on

Installing some Devops Apps

Install VSCode

This can either be one by downloading the VSCode Deb file from

and running

gdebi code_1.31.1–1549938243_amd64.deb


sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgradesudo wget dpkg -i code*-1536736588.deb# It will fail so need to re-run
sudo apt -f install
sudo apt-get update
sudo dpkg -i code*-1536736588.deb

Install Ansible

As someone learning Ansible this was quite useful

# Install Ansible
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install ansible
ansible –version

Install Powershell

There may be a reason you want to test some powershell code, this can be done

sudo apt install curl gnupg apt-transport-https liblttng-ust-ctl2 liblttng-ust0 libunwind8 liburcu4 wgetcurl | sudo apt-key add -sudo sh -c ‘echo “deb [arch=amd64] stretch main” > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/microsoft.list’sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install -y powershell
sudo apt-get install -f

Install Terraform

# Install and configure Terraform
# Check for latest release apt-get install wget git unzip gnupg python3 python3-pip -y
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgradesudo wget unzip terraform_0.11.18_linux_amd64.zipsudo mv terraform /usr/local/bin/terraform –version


From this point on i take no responsibility of you start getting any problems this is me experimenting..

Enable SSH Server

The service sshd is enabled on the chromeOS Linux container, however, by default, it’s listening to Port 2222 which seems to be something used to enable the files app to mount the SD card on the Crostini app. (conjecture based on some posts).

I wanted to do this to get Jenkins working in docker with a Jenkins Agent running on the container.

There is a file which exists will stop sshd running in /etc/ssh/sshd_not_to_be_run

We can, however, run sshd as expected on port 22

rm -v /etc/ssh/sshd_not_to_be_runservice sshd restart

Check SSHD is now running

service sshd status
● ssh.service – OpenBSD Secure Shell server
Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/ssh.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
Active: active (running) since Sat 2019-03-02 13:51:22 UTC; 7min ago
Process: 2424 ExecStartPre=/usr/sbin/sshd -t (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)

I strongly suggest setting up an ssh user at this point, as assigning a password to your username might cause issues

adduser sshuser

ssh sshuser@penguin.lxd

By davidfield

Tech Entusiast