chrishoffman at March 25th, 2014 06:40 — #1
Originally published at: http://www.howtogeek.com/185286/how-to-buy-a-laptop-for-linux/
If you’re buying a new laptop for Linux, you shouldn’t just buy the Windows laptop you like and hope for the best — you should plan your purchase to ensure it will work well with Linux. Thankfully, Linux hardware compatibility is better than ever.
robert_zanol at March 25th, 2014 08:07 — #2
Good info here. I have had only one laptop that I could not get linux to work on. It was a Sony Vaio. Sometimes it takes a little work. I have installed Ubuntu, Mint, Sabayon & Arch on 34 laptops. I just searched my invoices and counted.
If you already have a laptop that you want to add Linux to you can boot a Live CD/DVD/USB of a distro that has a live medium to see if your hardware works out of the box for linux. If all hardware does not work that does not mean you can't get it to work. You will have to do some work. Unfortunately most people are either unwilling to do that extra work or don't understand how to do so.
jeefberkey at March 25th, 2014 13:33 — #3
When I bought my laptop I also made sure that my wireless chip was supported by the kernel. Besides graphics, wireless is easily the most annoying driver to deal with.
jahpickney at March 25th, 2014 13:50 — #4
ASUS laptops are known to be Linux-friendly. I have two that work great with Bodhi on one and Gentoo on the other. The only things that don't want to work are the keyboard back light and blu-ray. Also, a good place to look for a Linux laptop is thinkpenguin.com, they have several offerings depending on your needs and price range.
nsdcars5 at March 25th, 2014 14:06 — #5
One more thing; if your laptop is the same model as mine, everything will work fine, but it will always overheat. Mine's an Acer Aspire V3-551G. It's an old model now, though - you might not find it now.
jahpickney at March 25th, 2014 14:35 — #6
My larger ASUS has a GPU that always runs hot. I started using a USB powered cooling tray and it's under control now.
horizonguy at March 25th, 2014 16:39 — #7
I have had the best success with Linux Mint on laptops. I recently installed it on an older Toshiba Satellite laptop and a waaaay old Dell laptop. Other distros either didn't install correctly or had an issue with the display or touchpad drivers.
jahpickney at March 25th, 2014 17:05 — #8
Generally, any distro in the *buntu family or based on Ubuntu is likely to just work "out of the box." They also have one of the easiest (if not THE easiest) installer to use, without any problems. Just a couple reasons they are so popular, especially among those who are new to Linux.
nsdcars5 at March 25th, 2014 17:12 — #9
Or Arch Linux works good too, but a lot of manual setup is involved. If you can do that, though, it'll be running perfect in less than an hour#.
# Time depends on Internet connection and computer speed. Results may vary.
techiegeekgirl at March 26th, 2014 10:51 — #10
+1 for Linux Mint- though I've had issues with sound that are still not perfect. There are microphone problems, as well & it does take a good bit of "tweaking" sometimes to get things working.
I think that it's the "not wanting to or being unwilling" to try to tune things that puts people off- but more that there are just so many dead-ends when trying to figure things out. You have to be determined to use Linux-- but I believe it's the best OS out there so I put the time in!
gregoryinshock1 at March 26th, 2014 12:31 — #11
My laptop freezes up on Linux. Even on the Live DVDs. I'm getting the hardware tested out for issues. (The laptop is 3 years old) But I'm just saying...
gregoryinshock1 at March 26th, 2014 12:35 — #12
I've tried 5 distros on my laptop and the Linux Mint acted the worse. I never seen an OS die so quickly ! Mint 14 died within an hour after installing it. Mint 16 waited 3 days before it went. Plus the updater in Mint is all messed up. Anything before Mint 15 you got to reconfigure it. Not very user friendly. Especially considering that Mint 13 is the current LTS release!
campbell2644 at March 26th, 2014 13:46 — #13
I've installed Ubuntu,Mint,PCLinux,Zorin and Open Suse on various laptops and never experienced any problems.
robert_zanol at March 26th, 2014 19:13 — #14
I have Arch running on a Toshiba Satellite. I have also installed it on 5 clients laptops. Arch is a total command line or terminal installation. No GUI at all on the installation. So if you are faint of heart when it comes to terminal don't even bother.
robert_zanol at March 26th, 2014 19:18 — #15
Laptops can sometimes be a wracking challenge. It is because of the hardware most of the time.
techiegeekgirl at March 26th, 2014 20:30 — #16
That's very odd Gregory. I've been running live CD's, of every distro that offered + installed many & the worst I've ever seen was the occasional vid/sound issue (but nothing that wasn't twweakable, for the most part).
I'm still running 9 (I know, I need to upgrade- lol) and it's been chugging along for years now without issue.
I installed 13 to an Acer mini-tower (an original quad-core) to use as a media PC with Plex & even that runs fine. I even plugged in a Belkin wireless USB dongle & it picked it up instantly.
You've had some terrible luck there!
gregoryinshock1 at March 29th, 2014 12:41 — #17
I started experimenting with Linux back in 1999. I've never been able to make it work for me - (on any of the computers I've owned.) The biggest three issues I ran into were 1 I couldn't mount my floppy drive. 2 I couldn't get online (had this problem with two different internet service providers) and 3 It's been hit and miss to get it to run a printer properly. Lately my biggest and worse issue yet is a combination of 1 I can't get my desktop to go online with it, and 2ndly it doesn't seem to get along with my laptop. I currently have my laptop in the shop, the professionals are trouble shooting the hardware for me. I'm trying to cover all my basis just in case something in the laptop is actually going out on me.
I've been looking at some system 76 computers and freaked out when I saw the prices. I don't mind paying that much for a professional computer locally but I feel really funny about ordering one that costs that much.
I'm no longer a computer builder. I lost my confidence in computer building back in 2001. Because the machine I built turned out to be a bit flaky. It's good to have someone in your life to help you learn things before you make a big mistake with lots of money. I don't have anyone like that in my life anymore.
I've been trying to weigh the advantages of Linux verses Windows. I've gotten serious about learning Linux for a year now. Due to all the problems I've ran into with it. (more then I can write here. I'm writing about my Linux experiences, and I've already filled a page of bad luck and I haven't even gotten into talking about the recent junk I've been through) I'm starting to feel that perhaps putting up with Microsoft isn't so bad after all.
Some say "Linux isn't for everyone" somehow I think Ubuntu would disagree with that statement Ubuntu (philosophy) and that came from a person in a Linux Chat Room where they are supposed to be helping each other.
In my personal opinion, I think with the way things are heading. Soon computers will be divided. If you want a Windows Computer You'll haft to buy it that way. If you want a Linux computer you'll haft to buy it that way.
robert_zanol at March 29th, 2014 22:40 — #18
That is very rare today. The days of anyone but a super geek getting a usable linux install on a computer are long gone. Which leads to the next point below:
Maybe you can put out some feelers for a linux user who lives near you that would be willing to help you set up one of your machines and share some experience in doing so.
robert_zanol at March 29th, 2014 22:45 — #19
The masses can not and will not be controlled completely ever. As nice as the majority is you will always find a few at the other end of the spectrum. You will always have some who make statements like that because they think they are superior to others, it is a veiled putdown. To give it any airtime in your head is a waste of time and effort.
gregoryinshock1 at March 30th, 2014 19:38 — #20
It might be rare but it's happened to me every time.
I've been trying to find someone locally. It's not going well at all. The closest Linux group (for an example) is a 3 hour drive away from me, and they won't even let me join their forums! I've asked a woman at work, who says she knows someone that runs Linux. She said she doesn't even know if He's still running it. I asked her to talk to him for me (find out) It's been weeks since I've heard anything so I talked to her last week again. She said she hasn't talked to him about it yet.
I have a really sick feeling that I'm not going to get into Linux, because there is too many road blocks in my way. You can't knock down these kinds of Road blocks. There is either someone around here or there isn't. Linux will either work on the hardware or it won't. Through my research I learned that you need to buy your hardware with Linux in mind. Even then your not guaranteed; that everything will work. Anyways that is basically what this guy says in this Youtube Video. And He posted this only 5 months ago.
- If I remember correctly He said a printer he has won't work right, and He's got some kind of hardware in his computer that doesn't work right with Linux. But it doesn't sound like it's been a big deal with him.
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