December 8, 2009

Google Chrome for Linux Browser Now in Beta Release

For Linux users wondering when they would get a chance to use Google's Chrome browser instead of the open source Chromium version, the wait is over: today the Google team has announced the beta release of Google Chrome for Linux.

Chrome for Linux Beta

According to The Chromium Blog, "Google Chrome works well with both Gnome and KDE, and is updated via the normal system package manager. It has also been developed as a true open source project, using public mailing lists, IRC channels, bug tracker, code repository, and continuous build and test farm--following in large part the trail blazed by Mozilla."

Also made available today is the Chrome for Mac beta, but more importantly, Google has also announced the beta release of Google Chrome Extensions for both the Windows and Linux platforms.

The announcement comes as little surprise to those paying attention during last month's Chrome OS press event, when Google VP of Product Management Sundar Pichai informed the media that the Linux and Mac versions of the Chrome browser would be coming out before the end of the year. Today's extension gallery release is an added bonus. While it was known that Google had opened the extensions to developers, the timing of their collective release was not as well known outside the Mountain View, CA company.

Installing the Linux version of Chrome is straightforword. 32- and 64-bit packages are available for Debian GNU/Linux, Ubuntu, openSUSE, and Fedora. Users who installed the dev channel version of Chrome prior to the release of this beta are encouraged to uninstall the unstable version before installing the beta.

The Chrome extensions gallery currently features 300-plus extensions for Linux and Windows machine. The Google team reports that these "aren't quite beta-quality on Mac yet, but you will be able to preview them on a developer channel soon."

Linux users are also encouraged to provide feedback for this beta release.

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