I am trying to understand what purpose/function of CHROOT and how using it with Crouton will allow you to use certain Linux distros and libs.

Does CHROOT essentially create some kind of a "pseudo-symlink" between the actual root directory and [specified path]?

P.S. If someone could explain this to me like I am "a 3rd grader". I would appreciate it


Chroot runs a program and, to this program only (and any child process that it launches), pretends that a certain directory (and the whole tree rooted at that directory) is all there is.

For example, suppose you're running Ubuntu, and you've installed Arch Linux on another partition which is currently mounted at /media/arch. (It doesn't have to be a separate partition, that's just an example.) If you run chroot /media/arch bash, this starts the version of bash from Arch Linux; if you run ls / in that shell, this calls the ls from Arch Linux and lists the / from the subtree, i.e. what is called /media/arch in the rest of the running system. The kernel, the TCP/UDP ports, etc. are shared with the Ubuntu system: chroot only affects the view of the directory tree.

Chromium OS runs on a Linux kernel. Crouton is an installation of Chromium OS that's suitable for running on another Linux system. It provides all of Chromium OS except a kernel (because the kernel will be the one of the host system), plus some scripts to set things up and get things running.

  • So what does Arch Linux, need from (/) root, in order to emulate Arch Linux CLI. Also, how is chroot able to use GUI in Chromium OS? – Joseph Mar 4 '14 at 2:33
  • @Joe I don't understand your comment. What do you mean by Arch Linux emulating Arch Linux? And what do you mean by chroot using a GUI? Arch Linux and Chromium OS are both running on the same Arch Linux kernel, but the files are separate. – Gilles Mar 4 '14 at 10:05
  • Apologies for the confusion. I am asking, if you installed Debian on a separate partition, what you CHROOT what is root functions are being used by Debian. Sorry I'm still trying to wrap my head around the concept of chroot – Joseph Mar 4 '14 at 16:13

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