How To Enable Microphone And GPU Acceleration In Linux On Chromebook


Chromebooks provide a convenient and lightweight option for users looking for a reliable and portable device. While Chrome OS offers a smooth and user-friendly experience, some users might want to enhance its functionality by enabling features like microphone and GPU acceleration on Linux. Enabling the microphone on Linux allows for voice commands, audio recordings, and video conferencing, while enabling GPU acceleration enhances graphics performance for tasks like gaming and video editing. In this article, we will explore step-by-step instructions on how to enable microphone and GPU acceleration in Linux on your Chromebook, unlocking a whole new level of capabilities and possibilities for your device.


Inside This Article

  1. Overview of Linux on Chromebook
  2. Enabling Microphone in Linux on Chromebook
  3. Enabling GPU Acceleration in Linux on Chromebook
  4. Conclusion
  5. FAQs

Overview of Linux on Chromebook

Linux on Chromebook offers users the ability to bring the power of Linux to their Chromebook device. Chromebooks are known for their simplicity and ease of use, but with Linux, users can unlock a whole new level of versatility and functionality. By installing Linux on a Chromebook, users gain access to a vast ecosystem of open-source software, development tools, and customization options.

Linux on Chromebook is based on Chrome OS, which is a lightweight operating system developed by Google. Chrome OS is designed to be fast, secure, and highly optimized for web-based tasks. However, it does have some limitations when it comes to running traditional desktop applications and accessing certain hardware features.

With Linux installed, Chromebook users can run a full-fledged Linux distribution alongside Chrome OS. This allows for a seamless dual-boot experience, where users can switch between Chrome OS and Linux with ease. This flexibility offers users the best of both worlds – the simplicity and convenience of Chrome OS and the power and capabilities of Linux.

Linux on Chromebook also provides access to a wide range of software packages through package managers like apt or yum. Users can install popular applications, programming languages, and development tools directly from the Linux repositories. This opens up a world of possibilities for developers, students, and anyone who needs to perform advanced computing tasks on their Chromebook.

Another major advantage of Linux on Chromebook is the ability to enable advanced hardware features like the microphone and GPU acceleration. By default, these features may not be fully functional in Chrome OS, but with Linux, users can take advantage of these features for tasks like video editing, gaming, or using voice-based applications.

Overall, Linux on Chromebook brings an incredible level of customization and functionality to Chromebooks. From running specialized software to accessing advanced hardware features, Linux empowers Chromebook users to create, innovate, and explore new possibilities.

Enabling Microphone in Linux on Chromebook

If you are using Linux on your Chromebook and find yourself in need of using the microphone, you’ll be pleased to know that it is possible. Enabling the microphone in Linux on a Chromebook requires a few simple steps, which we will outline below.

1. Open your Linux terminal on your Chromebook by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T. This will bring up the Crosh shell.

2. In the Crosh shell, type the command: `shell`, and press Enter. This will switch you to the Linux command line interface.

3. Next, enter the following command to load the necessary sound drivers: `sudo modprobe snd-dummy`, and press Enter. This will load the dummy sound driver, which is required for the microphone to work.

4. Now, we need to install the PulseAudio control panel by running the following command: `sudo apt-get install pavucontrol`, and press Enter. This will install the necessary utility to control the microphone settings.

5. After the installation is complete, launch the PulseAudio control panel by typing `pavucontrol` in the Linux terminal and pressing Enter.

6. In the PulseAudio control panel, navigate to the “Input Devices” tab. Here, you will see a list of available input devices, including your microphone.

7. Select your microphone from the list and ensure that the volume is not muted or turned down too low. You can adjust the volume by using the slider provided.

8. Once you have made the necessary adjustments, close the PulseAudio control panel.

9. Congratulations! You have successfully enabled the microphone in Linux on your Chromebook. You can now use the microphone for various applications and activities.

It’s important to note that these steps may vary slightly depending on the Linux distribution you are using on your Chromebook. However, the overall process should be similar.

With the microphone enabled, you can now enjoy voice chats, video calls, voice recordings, and any other activities that require the use of the microphone in Linux on your Chromebook!

Enabling GPU Acceleration in Linux on Chromebook

Chromebooks have gained immense popularity for their lightweight design and seamless integration with the Chrome OS. However, for users looking to unlock the full potential of their Chromebook, running Linux on their device can provide a more robust computing experience. One key feature that users often want to enable in Linux on their Chromebook is GPU acceleration.

GPU acceleration is crucial for tasks that require intensive graphics processing, such as gaming, video editing, and 3D modeling. By enabling GPU acceleration, you can harness the power of your Chromebook’s graphics card and significantly enhance the performance of applications that rely on graphical processing.

Enabling GPU acceleration in Linux on a Chromebook involves a few simple steps:

  1. Check Hardware Compatibility: Before proceeding with GPU acceleration, it’s essential to ensure that your Chromebook’s hardware is compatible. Not all Chromebooks have a dedicated graphics card, so you need to check if your device supports GPU acceleration. You can usually find this information in your Chromebook’s specifications or by doing a quick online search.
  2. Install Graphics Drivers: Once you have confirmed that your Chromebook supports GPU acceleration, the next step is to install the necessary graphics drivers. Different graphics cards require specific drivers, so you will need to identify the model of your graphics card and download the appropriate drivers from the manufacturer’s website. Follow the installation instructions provided to ensure proper setup.
  3. Configure Linux: After installing the graphics drivers, you need to configure Linux to recognize and utilize the GPU. This can be done by modifying the Linux kernel parameters. Open the terminal in Linux and edit the grub configuration file (usually located at /etc/default/grub) using a text editor like Nano or Vim. Add the following line to the GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT section: i915.enable_guc=1 i915.enable_fbc=1 i915.enable_psr=0. Save the file and update the grub configuration by running the command: sudo update-grub.
  4. Reboot: Once you have made the necessary changes to the grub configuration file, reboot your Chromebook to apply the changes. Upon reboot, Linux should recognize and activate the GPU acceleration.
  5. Test GPU Acceleration: To ensure that GPU acceleration is working correctly, you can run a benchmark or test application that relies on graphical processing. This will help you verify that the GPU acceleration is indeed enabled and functioning as expected.

Enabling GPU acceleration in Linux on a Chromebook can greatly enhance your computing experience by unlocking the full potential of your device’s graphics card. Whether you’re a gamer, a content creator, or someone who needs powerful graphics processing, enabling GPU acceleration will provide a significant boost in performance.

However, it’s important to note that enabling GPU acceleration may come with some caveats. It can consume more power, potentially reducing your Chromebook’s battery life. Additionally, specific applications or Linux distributions may require additional configuration or adjustments to maximize the benefits of GPU acceleration.


Enabling microphone and GPU acceleration in Linux on Chromebook opens up a new world of possibilities for users. By having access to these features, you can enhance your productivity, enjoy a better multimedia experience, and even explore demanding applications and games.

Through the step-by-step guide mentioned earlier, we have seen how to enable microphone access in Linux on Chromebook by adjusting the audio settings. Additionally, we also walked through the process of enabling GPU acceleration, which is crucial for running graphics-intensive applications smoothly.

With these optimizations, you can unleash the full potential of your Chromebook and enjoy a seamless Linux experience. So go ahead, follow the instructions, and unlock the power of your Chromebook’s microphone and GPU acceleration capabilities in Linux!


1. How can I enable the microphone in Linux on a Chromebook?
To enable the microphone in Linux on your Chromebook, you can follow these steps:

  1. Open the Terminal on your Chromebook.
  2. Type the command pulseaudio -D and press Enter to start the PulseAudio sound server.
  3. Next, enter the command pavucontrol and press Enter to launch the PulseAudio Volume Control.
  4. In the PulseAudio Volume Control window, click on the “Input Devices” tab.
  5. Find the microphone device and ensure it is not muted. If it is muted, click on the mute button to unmute it.

By following these steps, you should be able to enable the microphone in Linux on your Chromebook.

2. How can I enable GPU acceleration in Linux on a Chromebook?
Enabling GPU acceleration in Linux on a Chromebook involves installing the necessary drivers and configuring the system. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Install the required GPU drivers for your specific Chromebook model. This can be done through the Linux package manager or by manually downloading and installing the drivers.
  2. Edit the “Grub” configuration file by opening the Terminal and running the command sudo nano /etc/default/grub.
  3. Within the file, locate the line that starts with GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT and add amdgpu.dc=1 or nouveau.modeset=0 for AMD or NVIDIA GPUs respectively.
  4. Save the changes to the file and exit the editor.
  5. Update the system configuration by running the command sudo update-grub in the Terminal.
  6. Reboot your Chromebook, and GPU acceleration should now be enabled.

3. Are there any risks associated with enabling GPU acceleration in Linux on a Chromebook?
Enabling GPU acceleration on a Chromebook can potentially have certain risks, such as instability, compatibility issues, and reduced battery life. It is important to ensure that you have installed the correct drivers for your specific Chromebook model and to follow the steps carefully to minimize any potential risks. Additionally, it is recommended to create a backup of your data before making any system changes.

4. Can I use external GPUs with Linux on a Chromebook?
Using external GPUs with Linux on a Chromebook is not officially supported by all Chromebook models. While some newer Chromebooks offer support for external GPUs via USB-C or Thunderbolt ports, not all models have this capability. It is important to check the specifications of your specific Chromebook model to determine if it supports external GPU usage with Linux.

5. Can I use GPU-intensive applications or games on Linux with GPU acceleration on a Chromebook?
While GPU acceleration enables better performance in Linux on a Chromebook, the compatibility of GPU-intensive applications and games may vary. It is advisable to check the requirements and compatibility of the specific applications or games with Linux on your Chromebook before attempting to use them. Additionally, it is worth noting that Chromebooks are generally not designed for high-end gaming or resource-intensive tasks, so performance may be limited compared to traditional gaming laptops or desktops.