Google Chrome For Mac Is Available (Sort Of) - InformationWeek

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12/12/2008
07:13 PM
Thomas Claburn
Thomas Claburn
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Google Chrome For Mac Is Available (Sort Of)

If you use Mac OS X and are dying to try Google's Chrome browser, you can, provided you have the technical chops to compile your own applications and the patience to deal with programs that crash a lot. The partially completed code is available at the Chromium Web site.

If you use Mac OS X and are dying to try Google's Chrome browser, you can, provided you have the technical chops to compile your own applications and the patience to deal with programs that crash a lot. The partially completed code is available at the Chromium Web site.Chromium is the open-source project upon which Chrome is based.

Here's how a developer describes the current Mac build, which is called TestShell:

As of mid-December, TestShell now runs and renders webpages!!! We are building WebCore using PLATFORM(CHROMIUM), and that works surprisingly well. Typing, mouse, and wheel events are all fully working, though we've punted on drag & drop.

You will need: an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X 10.5+ ("Leopard") -- V8, Google's JavaScript engine, does not currently support the PowerPC chips found in older Macs; XCode 3.1, which is available online at Apple's developer Web site for free, once you've signed up for an account; and gclient, a part of the depot_tools package, which contains scripts for interacting with the Chromium source code repository.

Follow the Mac build instructions on the Chromium site.

But really, only bother to try this if you absolutely must. It won't be pretty or fun, unless you're approaching the exercise from a software testing perspective.

The Mac Detailed Status page says that TestShell "will grow into something more like a browser in Q1 09, but not before."

That probably means well after the Macworld Conference in early January. However, optimists might point to Google's recently announced plan to host a booth at Macworld as a sign that the company has something substantive to announce then.

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