Here you can  see Chromebook capturing the screen.

How to create screencast in Chrome OS

An average PC user may never need to create screen-cast or take screen-shots, but tech journalists and Open Source advocates like me do need them often – most of the times we need them to demonstrate how things are done to a new users remotely. It’s a very important part of any tutorial. While taking screen-shots is extremely easy on Chromebooks, it was not that easy to create screen-casts.

It’s still not extremely easy but you can do it comfortably (if you are familiar with Gnu/Linux). It’s a bit of dirty hack but it works, thanks to Google developer Fran├žois Beaufort. We hope Google will soon make available the APIs so developers will be able to write apps for creating screencasts on Chrome OS powered devices.

First and foremost you must be running your device in the Developer mode. I have Samsung Series 5 Chromebook so I enabled the developer mode by flipping the switch. You should do the same for your device, check out this page for more info on how to do it on your device.

Now download two packages that we will need later – crouton and screencast. Download them from these links

Download crouton
Download screencast packages

Now open terminal in Chrome book by Ctrl+Alt+t and open shell

crosh> shell
chronos@localhost /

Chromebooks save all downloads in the Download directory, now run the below command to install crouton:

sudo sh -e ~/Downloads/crouton -t audio

It will take some time to install and would also ask you to create a user, so don’t leave your Chromebook and keep an eye on the terminal. Once it’s done you are ready to record the screen. Change directory to the ‘Downloads’ folder:

cd ~/Downloads

Then run the screencast package

sh -e

It will run some commands and then you will see it has started capturing the video and audio. Just hut Ctrl+C to stop recording. So next time when you want to capture screencast, just run the in a terminal.

Here you can  see Chromebook capturing the screen.
Here you can see Chromebook capturing the screen.

As I said above we hope that soon it will be easier to capture screencasts on Chromebooks.

Till then enjoy terminal on Chromebooks.

About Swapnil Bhartiya

A free software fund-a-mental-ist and Charles Bukowski fan, Swapnil also writes fiction and tries to find cracks in the paper armours of proprietary companies. Swapnil has been covering Linux and Free Software/Open Source since 2005.

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