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I want to make my Raspberry Pi to boot directly to an instance of the Google Chrome web browser.

What's the best distribution to use for this and method of putting it together? Is there a way to open Chrome as a full screen app as soon the system is up?

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What have you tried so far? –  Alex L Dec 20 '12 at 2:04
    
Hi Guys. Like Caleb said, I have some limited experience in Linux, but I'm a self quick learner. I wanted to have a "standalone Chrome Browser" to run the web-browser based app in the company where I work. I have my RaspberyPi and I was going for Caleb answer, but since it hasn't any score, I got confused. I just need a light to follow, and I will do the rest and post my experience. Right now I am just looking for the right path :D –  Tiagozap Jan 2 '13 at 23:53
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3 Answers

Doable, but if chromium is minimised, you will still see a window manager/background.

I would recommend using a lightweight window manager, like openbox with an empty menu file ~/.openbox/config/menu.xml, so a user cannot active any programs.


Steps

  • Install a window manager
  • Configure window manager settings (blank config so no other programs can be activated)
  • Configure auto login at boot
  • Configure X server to start on login (add exec startx to ~/.bash_profile)
  • Add window manager to ~/.xinitrc
  • Add chromium to ~/.xinitrc

If you need to update the Pi, you can Ctrl+Alt+Backspace to get back to the terminal, su to root, update etc.

Be sure that xorg is configured to allow Ctrl+Alt+Backspace with

 Option "XkbOptions" "terminate:ctrl_alt_bksp"    

in /etc/X11/xorg.conf.d/10-evdev.conf.

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Ensure that you start X directly on boot, Then use a LXDE autostart setting as here superuser.stackexchange.

Update (or create if not there) ~/.config/autostart/chromium.desktop:

[Desktop Entry] 
Type=Application
Exec=chromium --kiosk www.bbc.co.uk

To ensure that you start with X directly after boot, run raspi-config link

For older versions of Raspbian you might need chromium-browser in the Exec line.

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This is certainly doable. However it sounds like you have a limited knowledge of how normal Linux GUI systems go together. I'm not going to write the code for you but basically you'll want something along the lines of the following.

  1. A simple distro (probably starting with ArchLinux is the way to go)
  2. A bare-bones Xorg install.
    • Make sure the option to terminate it with CtrlAltBackspace is enabled (or disabled if you know what you are doing.
  3. A window manager that either tiles (awesome, xmonad, etc) or that at least handles very simple configuration with full screen windows such as openbox.
    • A configuration for said window manager that removes all the chrome and auto-displays Chrome at full screen.
  4. A trigger to fire up Xorg on boot as your user.
  5. An .xinitrc script for your user that launches your window manager and a script of your own
  6. In said script of your own, you want an infinite loop that launches Chrome (In case a user closes it or it crashes. With no other user interface there would be no way to re-launch it.)
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