Google’s Chrome OS, used primarily on Chromebooks and other similar devices, offers a ‘Developer Mode’ – a special mode that unlocks additional features, giving users more control and the ability to deeply customize their experience.

This guide will teach you everything you need to know about enabling Chrome OS Developer Mode on various devices including Chromebooks, tablets, and even Android devices.

How To Turn On Chrome OS Developer Mode


Turning on Developer Mode on Chromebook

To enable Developer Mode on your Chromebook, follow these steps:

  1. Start by turning off your Chromebook.
  2. Press the ‘ESC + Refresh (F3)’ keys and, while holding these keys down, press the ‘Power’ button. This combination will boot your Chromebook into Recovery Mode.
  3. You’ll see a message saying, “Chrome OS is missing or damaged. Please insert a recovery USB stick or SD card.” Ignore this message, and press ‘CTRL + D’ to enable Developer Mode.
  4. Press ‘Enter’ to confirm.
  5. Your Chromebook will prepare for the transition, which will involve a Powerwash, erasing all local data.
  6. Once completed, your Chromebook will restart, and you’re now in Developer Mode.

Activating Developer Mode on Chrome OS Tablet

The steps to enable Developer Mode on a Chrome OS tablet are similar to a Chromebook:

  1. Power off your tablet.
  2. Hold the ‘Volume Up + Volume Down’ button and then press the ‘Power’ button. This will take you to the Recovery Mode.
  3. Ignore the recovery message and press ‘CTRL + D.’
  4. Confirm by pressing ‘Enter.’ Your tablet will then process the transition to Developer Mode.
  5. Post completion, your device will restart, and you’ll be in Developer Mode.

Chrome OS Developer Mode Commands

After you’ve entered Developer Mode, you’ll have access to the Chrome Shell (crosh), where you can run powerful commands. To access crosh, press ‘CTRL + ALT + T’ in Chrome browser.

Some of the common commands include:

  • shell: Starts a full bash shell where you can run a wide variety of Linux commands.
  • top: Shows the processes that are consuming the most system resources.
  • network_diag: Runs a network diagnostic test.

For a complete list of commands, type ‘help’ in the crosh.

Enabling Chrome OS Developer Mode on Android

As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, there is no Chrome OS Developer Mode available for Android devices.

Android has a separate Developer Options menu, which can be enabled through the device settings. However, remember, this is not the same as Chrome OS Developer Mode.

Chrome OS Developer Mode in Settings

Unlike Developer Options in Android, Chrome OS Developer Mode cannot be turned on directly from settings. You must follow the steps detailed above to enable Developer Mode.

Unlocking Chrome OS Developer Mode

The term “unlocking Developer Mode” refers to the process of enabling Developer Mode on your Chrome OS device.

Once you’ve activated Developer Mode, you unlock a higher level of control over your device, including access to a secure shell (SSH) for running Linux commands, the ability to install Linux for a dual OS environment, or the capability to write to the root file system.


While enabling Developer Mode on Chrome OS devices like Chromebooks and tablets opens a world of customization and control, remember that it comes with certain risks, including reduced security. Always ensure you understand these risks before proceeding.

Whether you’re an aspiring developer, a power user, or just a tech enthusiast looking to tinker with your device, Developer Mode is a valuable tool in your Chrome OS experience.

Always keep up-to-date with the latest information on Chrome OS Developer Mode by visiting the official Chrome OS development page or community forums.