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Windows dual-booting on Chromebooks is probably not happening now

Windows dual-booting on Chromebooks is probably not happening now


The dream is dead

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Photo by James Bareham / The Verge

Rumors of Google working on adding an option to dual-boot Windows 10 on its Chromebooks have been around for almost a year, but it appears that the dream may be dead. Google is reportedly deprecating all of its “Alt OS” code for the dual-booting feature, as spotted by Reddit user crosfrog (via Android Police).

Chromebooks are sticking to Chrome OS for now

Word of the dual-boot feature — said to be called “Project Campfire” internally — was reported by XDA Developers back in 2018, and an August report indicated that the feature was actually fairly far along and was headed toward a public release. While it’s unclear why exactly Google killed the project, it seems that storage size was a factor: Windows would have taken at least 40GB of space on a Chromebook, which is larger than the entire internal storage drive of plenty of Chromebooks. (It can top out at just 32GB or even 16GB of storage, due to the largely web-focused nature of Chrome OS.)

It seems that Google moved away from Project Campfire a while ago, too. According to About Chromebooks’ Kevin C. Tofel, there’s been little to no development on Project Campfire since December of last year, so the official deprecation of the Alt OS code today is likely just the final nail in the coffin for what was already internally abandoned.

It’s hard to mourn too much for an internal Google project that never really seems to have gotten off the ground, but given the potential of a dual-booting Chrome OS / Windows 10 device, it’s still a bit of a shame that Project Campfire didn’t work out.