Chrome OS on the Chromebook is very reliable. If a Chromebook doesn’t work normally or there are issues, we can install a fresh copy of the Chrome operating system. The Chrome OS can be reinstalled using a Flash Drive in a few minutes.
If the Chromebook isn’t having issues, it’s usually a good idea to have a flash drive with the Chrome OS installer. You might never need it but it’s better to have it and not need it. We can create a recovery USB using any Chromebook or Chrome browser on Mac or Windows.
To create the installer we need a Chromebook or a computer with the Chrome browser installed. We also need an SD card or a USB drive. Try to use a newer SD card or USB drive, it will help the process go much faster. Older SD cards or Flash drives could produce errors. The process will erase everything on the SD card or Flash drive.
On a Chromebook or Chrome browser, go to the Chrome Web Store. To access the web store we can click on the Launcher icon on our Chromebook Shelf or we can go to “http://chrome.google.com/web store” on Mac or Windows.
Click on the Web Store icon.
Search for Chromebook recovery.
The Chromebook Recovery Utility will appear in the search results.
Click on the Add to Chrome button.
Click the “add app” button.
The recovery tool will be installed and added to the Launcher. Insert an SD Card or USB drive into the Chromebook. Click the Recovery tool to begin the process. We follow the same process when using a Mac or Windows machine to create the Installer.
A dialogue box will open with information about the SD card or Flash drive needed to create the recovery media. The SD card or Flash drive must have at least 4 gigabytes of storage. Remember that the card or flash drive will be erased. Click on the “Get started” button.
We will be prompted to provide the model number of the Chromebook. There is a link to select from a list of models if we don’t know the model.
The recovery tool is very helpful. It provides the model number for the Chromebook we are using to create the Installer. If we are using a different Chromebook or a Chrome browser on Mac or Windows, we will need to enter the model number directly or use the list selector to help us find the model number.
If you’re working on a different Chromebook or a Chrome browser on Mac or Windows, click on the “select a model from a list” option.
To identify the Chromebook from a list we will need to know the manufacturer. This information is usually displayed prominently on the Chromebook.
In this example, the Chromebook is a Toshiba.
Select the model from the list.
When creating the recovery media on the device it will be used to restore, click the recommended model number and it will be placed in the model number box.
Click the “Continue” button.
Insert the USB drive or SD card if isn’t already inserted.
A selector will open when the SD Card or Flash drive is inserted.
Click on the selector and select the SD card or the flash drive.
Click the “Continue” button.
A warning message will inform us that all the contents of the Flash Drive or SD Card will be erased.
Click the “Create now” button.
The tool will download the recovery media and begin copying it onto the Flash Drive or SD Card. The process can take several minutes.
A message will appear when the media creation process is complete.
An option to create another media recovery disk will be presented. Click “Done” to finish the process.
The process will go back to the beginning if we choose to create another installer.
With the recovery drive, we can restore a Chromebook that matches the model we used to create the Installer. Insert the Flash drive or SD card into a Chromebook. Press and hold three keys on the keyboard all at once to begin the installation process. The keys are the “esc” key, the Refresh key and the power button. The “esc” and Refresh keys are shown in the image below. Release the buttons when the Chromebook restarts and the recovery screen appears.
The recovery process is automatic. We don’t need to do anything during the process. At the end of the process, we will be prompted to remove the SD card or Flash drive. This will restart the Chromebook. We will be prompted to provide the keyboard language and information about the wireless access when the Chromebook restarts. Log in to your account and the process is complete.