Until now. In May 2011 Google released Chromebooks as the first computer to operate entirely in the cloud. Chromebooks run entirely in the Google Chrome web browser and lack an internal hard drive. But don’t let this worry you, in the case of Chromebooks this new technology has countless advantages.
Starting from the time you press the power button on a Chromebook, the difference of this new computer will be obvious. For starters, it only takes eight seconds from the time you push the button until the Chromebook is up, running, and online. Chromebooks automatically connect to the internet via Wi-Fi, but users can purchase an optional 3G service (through the Verizon Wireless 3G network), to ensure that they never lose a connection no matter what they’re doing or where they’re going.
Because Chromebook’s lack an internal hard drive these computers have made the move completely to the cloud. Anything you do on a Chromebook will be stored on the Google cloud network, meaning your entire computer can be on any device you are.
Google Apps run perfectly on Chromebooks, and so do countless other web applications available from the Chrome Web Store. With these applications on your Chromebook, you can do everything you would on a traditional computer and more. Many of these applications are becoming available for offline use, as well. This feature allows you to access these applications even when you’re on the move if you haven’t purchased the 3G service.
Although your traditional computer is likely to become outdated in a couple years (if not sooner), your Chromebook will only improve as time goes on. Every time you turn on your Chromebook, it receives automatic updates to the operating system and all applications. This feature prevents your Chromebook from becoming obsolete while ensuring you’re always up to date with the latest technology.
Chromebooks also have security features unlike those of your traditional computer. The first part of these features protects your Chromebook from viruses and malware. Chromebooks employ a number of defenses against viruses including “sandboxing,” Verified Boot, Data Encryption, and a Recovery Function. The “sandbox” feature means that each tab you open on a Chromebook runs in its own, confined environment, or sandbox, so that any potential malware is contained within that tab and does not spread elsewhere on the Chromebook. If, somehow, a virus works its way out of the sandbox, the Verified Boot will kick in the next time you turn on your Chromebook. The Verified Boot will automatically detect the presence of this malware and repair any damage to the computer. With Data Encryption in place, you can rest assured knowing that all the files you open on your Chromebook are safe from outsiders. In the very rare instance when all of these security measures do not protect your Chromebook against a piece of malware, you can use the Recovery Function by pushing a button to restore your Chromebook’s operating system.
In addition to its security against viruses and malware, Chromebooks also offer defenses against other people. If you don’t like others using your computer because you’re concerned about the privacy and integrity of the data you have stored on it, that’s okay. And it’s no longer a concern with Chromebooks. Chromebooks make sharing easy, as others can sign into your Chromebook with a guest account to access the general web browser or with their own Google Apps account to access their personal files, settings, and applications. Guests signed into your Chromebook will never see any of your information, as it is stored in your Google cloud account, not on the Chromebook itself.
Yet another layer of security comes into play if your Chromebook is physically damaged or stolen. While the ordeal of a theft or a broken electronic device can be stressful, it doesn’t compare to the stress that ensues when all of your information is lost along with the device. But if something should happen to your Chromebook, your information will be spared since it is stored in the Google cloud network and not on the device itself.
When you’re ready to move fully to the cloud, there are currently two Chromebook models on the market. One is by Samsung and the other is by Acer. Although the two models have slight differences including size and price, they operate in the same way.This blog post is brought to you by Cloud Sherpas. Cloud Sherpas is a leading Google Apps cloud service provider. As a Google Apps Authorized Reseller and Google Enterprise partner, we have migrated over one million users across all major industries from legacy, on-premise messaging systems to Google Apps, helping organizations adopt cloud computing to innovate and dramatically reduce their IT expenses. Get to know our company by checking out our Google+ and Facebook pages. Photo source: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1360129.