What to Look for When Buying a Laptop for Linux

Linux, while popular, is one of the lesser-known operating systems out there. The software is completely open-source, which allows it to run quickly.

It is also customizable, versatile, and incredibly user-friendly. For those reasons, many people pick it over Windows and macOS. However, some computers run it better than others.

When choosing a laptop for installing Linux, it’s important to consider hardware compatibility, CPU, RAM, storage, battery life, and a few other additional features.

We will break down the things that you should consider when buying a Linux laptop. If you enjoy the operating system, the following guide is for you.

Choosing a Laptop to Install Linux: Things to Consider

When choosing a laptop for installing Linux, there are several things to consider.

1. Compatibility

Most laptops can run Linux, but that doesn’t mean they can all run it well.

While the operating system is incredibly flexible in terms of the necessary hardware, you still want a machine that can easily run it with little to no hiccups.

Always think about any issues you’ve had with other operating systems in the past and get a machine that has the power to overcome them. Pay special attention to storage and RAM.

2. Processor

For running Linux, a recent processor such as Intel’s 10th or 11th generation or AMD Ryzen 4000 or 5000 is recommended.

These processors offer better performance and power efficiency compared to older models.

3. RAM & Storage

A laptop with at least 8GB of RAM is recommended for running Linux.

However, if you plan to run resource-intensive applications, such as virtual machines or development environments, 16GB or more of RAM is recommended.

SSD storage is recommended for Linux, as it offers faster boot and application load times compared to traditional hard drives.

A minimum of 256GB of storage is recommended for most use cases, but for storing large files or multiple projects, 512GB or more may be necessary.

4. Additional Features

When picking a laptop for Linux, pay attention to the additional features that go beyond specs and storage. That includes handy add-ons like touch screens, fingerprint readers, high-quality speakers, and webcams.

Not only do you want your laptop to fit your personal preferences, but some upgrades may not work with Linux.

5. Battery Life

While not Linux-specific like the two above aspects, it is also important to get a laptop with a good battery life.

Long-lasting models won’t just make your life easier, they also allow you to work or relax on your machine without constantly moving.

This may seem like a small detail, but there doesn’t seem to be a lot of difference between 10 and 12 hours, but it goes a long way when you’re in the middle of a movie or lying down in bed.

Useful Tips

While Linux is great, it is not always easy to install. In fact, you have to be quite careful when putting it onto a computer. Though you can try to do it on your own, that’s not usually a good idea.

Rather, following a guide is a much easier (and safer) path. This video will help you get it onto a Windows computer, while this guide tells you how to install it onto a Mac.

Final Words

Linux is a great operating system, but it’s one that not many people know about.

While you can always get a laptop that comes with Linux installed on it, getting an already-great machine that can run Linux typically gets you better results in the long run.

Do you have a favorite Linux laptop? Are there any we missed? Let us know below!

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