Inspecting Chrome release schedules

ChromeOS makes OS updates seamless and completely transparent to the users. There are no Patch-Tuesdays in ChromeOS world and certainly no service-packs either. However, if you have more than a few 100 Chromebooks in your network, understanding what releases are rolling out, and when is important. This can become very handy when you troubleshoot user-issues.

Chrome on all platforms

Most organizations which have ChromeOS devices, tend to also have other devices running Chrome. This could be a Windows device, a Macbook, an Android phone or even an iPhone. When users report issues with a website, its always good to check if there were any recent Chrome rollouts on that platform.

This view below shows all the current known Chrome versions across 6 different platforms. While ideally they should all move to the next version at the same time, the reality is slightly different and you can use this page to track them in realtime.

Six channels

I’ve published before why ChromeOS has six channels and how to pick the right ones for your users. To put that into context, take a look at this page which lists release dates for the device called “pompom” (Dynabook Chromebook C1) which shows how each of the channels differ in version and frequency.

You will also notice that some of the versions are red, which suggests that the ChromeOS team rolled back to a previous version. This typically happens when they know or investigate a potentially serious issue. This is rare and I’m glad they take this action.

You will also note how releases on the right side are more frequent than the ones on the left. Its because of those frequent releases that they identified that the release with Chrome 109.0.5399.0 had some issues because of which a rollback was triggered.

Libera-Merdeka is also an interesting device which shows some of the edge cases in ChromeOS rollouts. If you pay attention to the stable release column, you would notice that the version jumped from M104 to M107. This is because this board was having some serious issues for a while and it skipped two different ChromeOS versions. This again is rare and can explain why some users on your network may be seeing different behavior than others.

Chrome update changelog

Finally I’m launching a new feature to allow you to view all Chrome changes across the entire fleet in almost realtime. The Chrome update changelog page shows chronological changes which are updated on an hourly schedule.

Chrome changelog for webview

If you have used this tool, leave me a note of what you liked and didn’t like. And drop in recommendations on how I could make it better for you.





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