Google Chrome OS open source version was released on Thursday and already programmers have turned the code into a test version of the new OS that is set to officially debut at the end of 2010.

The working Chrome OS has already appeared on several peer-to-peer BitTorrent tracking sites, including and Pirate Bay.

(See also Why people won't use Google Chrome OS)

The operating system, which Google boasted will be faster and more secure than Microsoft and Apple, can be run in a virtual environment using a desktop application, such as those available from VMware or Sun Microsystems.

Programmers made the Chrome OS using instructions from Google which was posted up on the Chromium Projects site.

To run the Chrome OS, users must launch a virtual machine client, such as VMware's Workstation, or for the Mac, Fusion, then install Chrome in a new virtual machine. VMware offers free 30-day trials of both VMware's Workstation 7 and Fusion 3 on its site. The full version of the software will cost you $79.99. Another way is to use the free VirtualBox, a Sun-hosted open-source virtual machine, users on the file-sharing sites said it also works well.

For instructions on how to prepare your virtual machine using Virtual Box, TechCrunch has a step-by-step guide. VMware users on Windows can follow the instructions found on this blog. These are not Chrome OS specific, but the instructions should work for your purposes.

Watch a concept video of Google Chrome OS in action:

Good luck and tell us what you think in the comments below.

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