How to RESTORE ChromeBook C7 to Stock

RESTORE ChromeBook

ChromeBook RecoveryThis article describes the process of creating a boot device that will restore ChromeBook C7 to the original Stock  Factory configuration.

Why would you restore Chromebook? This may be necessary if you are having errors on the device – or, if you have installed Ubuntu and now wish to remove it for some reason.

-BEWARE-

This process will erase everything on the ChromeBook’s hard drive and restore the Chrome OS to factory default. If you have any data on the device, be sure to back up that data to another device before you proceed!

Here is a video of the process:

 

This guide was developed from the process that Google provides. However, I have tried to simplify it and and add relevant comments where appropriate. Also, some of the original steps on the Google site are for older versions of the ChromeBook. Consequently, the data is incorrect for the C7. If you want to use the actual Google page, please visit: http://support.google.com/chromeos/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1080595

What you’ll need

Before starting this process, you’ll need the following:

  • Your ChromeBook.
  • A Windows, Mac, or Linux computer with administrative rights.

Note: You CAN use the ChromeBook (without a computer) to complete the process.  However, I have not tried this method. If you wish to try it, please visit the original Google Support article here: http://support.google.com/chromeos/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1080595

  • An 8 GB or larger USB flash drive or SD card that you don’t mind clearing. You MAY be able to use a 4GB but the image was too large for the 4GB card that I had.

Step 1: Check for the “Chrome OS is missing or damaged” message

If you see this message when starting your computer, please proceed to Step 2.

If you don’t see the message above but still want to recover your Chrome device, trigger the screen:

To trigger recovery mode,

  1. Turn on your ChromeBook
  2. Sign on to your WiFi (if you have not previously signed in)- but do not log in to Chrome Desktop
  3. Press the <esc> <F3> & <power> buttons at the same time.
  4. Release the power button when the device goes black – but continue to hold the other buttons until the chrome error screen (“Chrome OS is missing or damaged”) appears and then release them also. This is the “Recovery Mode” screen. 

Note: There is a BIG difference between “Recovery mode” and “RECOVER.” You must enter “Recovery Mode” before you can RECOVER your ChromeBook. Although you will use “Recovery Mode”, it is NOT necessary to RECOVER your ChromeBook prior to installing Ubuntu on the device. You WILL be required to RECOVER, if you decide to remove Ubuntu after installation.

Step 2: Create the recovery USB flash drive or SD card

Insert a USB flash drive or SD card into your computer and follow the instructions below:

Regardless of which computer OS you have, after you recover your Chrome device, you must format your USB flash drive or SD card using the Recovery Tool if you want to use the USB device for other purposes. Otherwise, you won’t be able to use all the storage space on the USB device. Additionally, your USB flash drive or SD card may not be recognizable by Windows. See instructions for reformatting your USB flash drive or SD card.

Windows instructions

Create a recovery flash drive by using the Recovery Tool. The tool may not be available in all languages.

  1. Click this link to download the Recovery Toolhttps://dl.google.com/dl/chromeos/recovery/chromeosimagecreatorV2.exe
  2. Run the tool and follow the instructions that appear on your screen.

Mac instructions

Create a recovery flash drive by using the Recovery Tool. The tool may not be available in all languages.

  1. Click this link to download the Recovery Toolhttps://dl.google.com/dl/chromeos/recovery/chromeosimagecreator.dmg
  2. Run the tool and follow the instructions that appear on your screen.

After the process is complete, you might see an alert saying your USB drive or SD card is unreadable. If this fails, try removing and reinserting your USB drive or SD card. Your USB drive or SD card should now be ready to use for recovery.

Linux instructions

Create a recovery flash drive by using the Recovery Tool. The tool may not be available in all languages.

  1. Click this link to download the Recovery Toolhttps://dl.google.com/dl/edgedl/chromeos/recovery/linux_recovery.sh
  2. Modify the script permissions to allow execution with the following command: $ sudo chmod 755 linux_recovery.sh
  3. Run the script with root privileges with the following command: $ sudo bash linux_recovery.sh
  4. Follow the prompts from the tool to complete building the operating system image.

Step 3: Reinstall the Chrome operating system

  1. Power on your Chrome device.
  2. When the “Chrome OS is missing or damaged” screen appears, insert the USB flash drive or SD card you created into the USB port or SD card slot on your Chrome device.
  3. Wait for the Chrome device to boot up from the flash drive.
  4. Follow the instructions that appear on the screen.
  5. On successful installation of the Chrome operating system, you will be prompted to remove the USB flash drive or SD card.
  6. Remove the USB flash drive or SD card when prompted, and your Chrome device will automatically restart.

You should now be able to start your Chrome device as normal. Because the data stored on your Chrome device has been cleared, you’ll need to go through the initial setup again. Make sure you sign in with your primary Google Account, because this account will be set as the owner account.

Troubleshooting tips

(Links will lead to the relevant Google Support pages.)

If you see the error message “An unexpected error has occurred.”

Try the following steps:

  1. Confirm that you successfully completed all instructions exactly as specified in step 2.
  2. Try using a different USB stick or SD card.

If you see the error message “You are using an out-of-date Chrome OS recovery image.”

You should download an up-to date recovery image. Simply follow all the instructions exactly as specified in Step 2 above.

If you successfully recovered your Chrome device but now you can’t use your USB or SD card with Windows.

After you’ve completed recovery, you need to format your USB or SD card using the recovery tool. See instructions for reformatting your USB flash drive or SD card.

If you have successfully recovered your Chrome device but now Windows doesn’t recognize the whole size of the USB or SD card used for recovery.

After you’ve completed recovery, you need to format your USB or SD card using the recovery tool. See instructions for reformatting your USB flash drive or SD card.

 

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41 Responses to How to RESTORE ChromeBook C7 to Stock

  1. Ethan Jaggars says:

    If this article is even still alive, I need help. My acer c7 chromebook is stuck in recovery mode. It allows me to hit ctrl+D but when I try to hit enter, the screen won’t do anything. I even tried doing esc… Nothing is working and every time I boot my computer up, it goes into recovery and I can’t get out of this endless loop. Please help

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