A couple of weeks ago, we unearthed work being done that will give users the ability to set a custom size for the allotted amount of disk space used by Crostini Linux on Chrome OS. Still disabled via a flag, the resizing feature was still just a placeholder at that time. Today, after an update to the Canary Channel, it looks like the resizing function is now live. It’s still behind a flag and disabled by default but enabling it and starting Crostini from scratch now gives you the option to pick the amount of disk space you want to use for Linux.
Another flag we’ve been watching closely is intended to let users set a custom username when installing Crostini. According to the bug report uncovered by Kevin Tofel, some users were having trouble using the Linux containers because the default username that’s based on the user’s login email was incompatible with Debian.
A user report indicates that usernames starting with a digit don’t work correctly; it looks like at least Debian’s version of useradd recommends that usernames start with a lowercase letter or underscore, but I’m not sure what the exact rules are or where they are enforced.
Another user reported that their ‘firstname.lastname@example.org‘ username didn’t work (presumably it conflicts with the standard ‘mail’ user).CRBug Tracker
The renaming feature, like the resizing one, was disabled behind a flag and wasn’t working as of yesterday. With the latest update to Canary, the custom username feature is now working when the flag is enabled and it appears right above the resizing option when you install Crostini for the first time. Some users may like this feature simply because they want to create a unique username for Linux but for others, this will be a crucial update when it hits the Stable Channel in the coming months.
If you’re daring enough to already be in the Canary Channel, you can try out the new features by heading to chrome://flags and looking for #crostini-disk-resizing and #crostini-username. If you already have Crostini installed, you’ll need to remove it and reinstall to see the new flow. Make sure you save anything you don’t want to lose from your Linux folder.