This post was last updated on July 13th, 2017 at 07:24 pm
If you’re one of those who wants to use a Linux laptop over Windows PC, then you have surely reached the right place. Of course, there are many advantages of using a laptop with Linux OS, and honestly, plenty of people around me are switching to Linux machines. When it comes to Linux, you’re completely on your own without any interference. It has a lot better security compared to Windows, and it’s usually far ahead than any malware or virus. Also when it comes to stability, Linux has no competition. However, when it comes to starting off with it, there are hundreds of issues for an ordinary person who doesn’t have much knowledge about the new OS installation and configuration. Anyways, there are lots of guides online on Linux installation, and we recommend that you read this one from Lifehacker.
Anyways, the sad news is that not all laptop brands provide machines that are compatible with Linux and it becomes hard to find drivers and programs for their inbuilt features. That’s where our research will be helpful for you to find the best Linux laptops. Also remember, most of the listed below machines do not have Linux pre-installed, but you or your computer engineer will have to do it for you. We have made sure that these laptops are very compatible with the OS and you won’t face any major issues while using it. Some Linux certified laptops are manufactured by Dell, Lenovo, ASUS, and HP. However, there are two more brands known as System76 and ZaReason that are only focused at Linux notebooks. We only recommend going with them if you’re super serious about Linux OS and would never want to use Windows or any other OS. Moreover, always look for specifications because that’s all that matters while you want the performance out of your laptop.
As you already know, Linux is a very different OS, and it requires plenty of specifications that are not focused at Windows or Mac OS. It doesn’t matter if it’s a Linux laptop or not, you should always look for good battery life, powerful processor and enough storage for all your needs. Also, it would be great if you have already picked a distro for yourself. If you’re very new to such OS, then we highly recommend that you start off with Solus and later try openSUSE as well as Arch Linux to learn what suits you best. When it comes to specifications, it’s no different than choosing a Windows laptop, and one can surely opt for Intel’s processor and NVIDIA’s GPU.
If budget is not an issue for your new Linux laptop, then we highly recommend the Dell XPS 15. It will cost you almost $2000, but it’s surely a great investment for a long term and is full value for money. It’s a good combination of power, portability as well as high-end graphics. Internally, it’s powered by 6th generation Skylake Core i7-6700HQ processor, 4k Ultra HD display, 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD. It’s also equipped with a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M GPU, and one can quickly run high-end games and programs on it. Sporting a 15-inch touchscreen display with a resolution of 3840 by 2160, it’s surely one of the best Linux laptops for developers. It comes with a solid quality body with matte finishing making it look extremely premium and richer. In fact, it even feels fantastic while using and three of our experts totally fell in love with it. It’s fully packed with the latest and high-end specifications including an amazing battery life and its lightweight design.
Here comes another one of the expensive options for Linux laptop. The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon is an all-time favorite business laptop that runs pretty well with OS such as Linux. It comes with a super slim design that makes it look very professional and sleek. It uses Windows 7 Professional as its primary OS and also comes with Windows 10 Professional’s DVD that one can easily install. Its storage is handled by 256 GB of SSD, and its other hardware includes 6th generation Intel Skylake i5-6200U processor, Intel HD 520 graphics and 8 GB DDR3 RAM. It also comes with plenty of remarkable features like spill resistance, fingerprint reader, backlit keyboard and an HD webcam. While many laptops at such price include a GPU by NVIDIA or AMD, this one is not focused on graphics since Lenovo has focused on making it among the best business laptops. Although, it’s an excellent choice for business users, it’s also a great choice for those who want to use fingerprint reader as well as a distro with Linux.
Almost all of the ASUS Zenbooks are very compatible with Linux, and of course, The UX303UA is not an exception. It’s available in two different variants where you can choose between a medium-end model and high-end model for a difference of $500. Looking at its specifications and design, I’d say it’s a budget-friendly machine and is a complete value for the money. It surely is a dream machine for many Linux users, and it comes with 6th generation Intel Core i5-6200U processor and 8 GB RAM. We tested it all in and out on Linux OS for like two weeks, and it passed 90% of the tests and even surprised us with its battery life which is even better than what ASUS claims to be. It boasts a 13-inch full HD touchscreen display, backlit keyboard, 256 GB SSD, 1.2 MP HD webcam and Intel HD graphics. When it comes to audio quality, it’s powered by ASUS SonicMaster technology which can efficiently deliver natural and higher sound. Overall, it has a premium looking design, amazing hardware, great battery life and all that for an average budget.
If you’re looking for a powerful laptop that comes with an Intel Core i7 processor, then take a look at HP Envy 13. This particular model is a signature edition, and we highly recommend it to Linux users. It’s mostly preferred by business users as well as law college students. It certainly is one of the best laptops for Linux and can outperform many high-end machines. Other than its i7 processor, it includes 8 GB LPDDR3 RAM, 256 GB SSD and Intel HD 520 graphics. Its 13-inch 4k display is surely worth praising and comes with a resolution of 3200 x 1800. It packs plenty of power and can easily run all your applications and programs. Despite its thin design, it’s very light, powerful and quiet. It includes all the usual ports, and it provides everything that a Linux user might expect from a computer. The device comes in a full silver color design and also boasts features like Bang and Olufsen speakers as well as a backlit keyboard. Moreover, it’s entirely a maintenance free machine and should last for more than 3 to 4 years even with rough usage.
The ASUS ZenBook Flip is yet another one of the good options for Linux laptops from ZenBook series. ASUS and Dell are very reliable brands when it comes to Ubuntu and Linux OS. This device is extremely light and small but delivers a performance like a beast, and it’s one of the affordable laptops. With its 13-inch Full HD touch display, one can enjoy HD movies and videos. Its insides include 8 GB of RAM, 6th generation Intel Core M processor, 512 GB SSD and Intel HD 515 Graphics. It has been designed very carefully, and as its name suggests, it can be flipped over at the 360-degree rotation. However, it can’t be used for playing latest titles and might have some heating issues while playing games. You should also know that most of the portable and lightweight machines these days do not include CD/DVD drive including this one. Its full black body is built using the robust quality material and also comes with a long-lasting battery life.
If you’re looking for a super-budget machine, then the HP Chromebook 11 might just be an ideal option. It’s very efficient and decent device that comes with Intel Celeron N2840 processor, 16 GB Flash SSD and 2 GB of RAM. Since Linux is fully customizable OS, one can quickly set it up accordingly and use it smoothly for some different tasks. However, we do not recommend it to new users since they won’t be able to match the settings on it due to its low-end specifications. While we were testing it with Chrome OS, its battery life lasted around 9 hours which I believe should perform same with the Linux. Whether you’re using it for browsing or watching movies, it’s able to carry out all kinds of programs smoothly and quietly. It sports an 11-inch display with anti-glare feature and resolution of 1366 x 768 which is fair according to its price and size. It surely can be considered as the best Linux laptop under $200 for those looking for a budget-friendly machine.
The ASUS ZenBook Pro is yet another one of the expensive Linux laptops, and it’s highly focused at gamers. From display to GPU, it has everything that any player dreams of. The 6th generation powerful Intel Skylake i7-6700HQ processor along with NVIDIA GTX 960M GPU, 16 GB DDR4 RAM and 512 GB SSD are more than enough to handle just about any game available. It surely is the best gaming laptop under $1500 and is extremely compatible with OS like Linux. Most of the everyday users might not be able to afford it but if you can, then look no more. It also comes with all the required ports including Thunderbolt 3 and USB 3.1 ports. ASUS ZenBook is evidently popular among Linux users due to the compatibility as well as the features it offers. If we look at its old model, this one is a lot thinner, compact, sturdy and well-designed. One of my closest friends is using it for more than two years now and looking at its condition I can tell you that it will easily last for three more years. So if you’re looking to play games on your Linux machine, then we highly recommend this laptop for those who don’t want to spend all of their money on a gaming machine.
The HP ENVY 13-ab016nr delivers excellent performance while using the Linux and it’s available for under $700. So if you’re looking for a laptop that’s able to perform smoothly on just about any OS, then this one is surely your best bet. It also comes with a backlit keyboard which can be comfortable while working in a room without any lights. It has 256 GB SSD which might be less for many third world country users in but in the United States almost everyone is a cloud user, and that really shouldn’t be an issue. Under the hood, it’s powered by Intel Core i5-7200U processor along with Intel HD 620 graphics and 8 GB of LPDDR3 SDRAM. Its 13-inch full HD display comes with BrightView technology and resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. If you want to upgrade the device, then you might face some issues while removing its back panel since it’s sealed tightly but if you’re getting it done by professional then there won’t be a problem. Overall, it’s a good all-purpose Linux laptop that is powerful and affordable.
If you’re looking for a 15-inch budget Linux Chromebook, then this is exactly what you need. Since its launch in March 2015, it has been one of the best-selling laptops, and it’s a highly recommended laptop under $250. Although it features less powerful specifications, it’s a lot better than other Chromebooks available on the market. It packs Intel Celeron 3205U processor, 4 GB DDR3L SDRAM, and 16 GB SSD. Its battery life is yet another reason to consider this device, and it sports a 15-inch Full HD IPS display. While buying it off Amazon, one can easily customize its specifications according to their needs. If you compare it with other Chromebooks or laptops in such price range, you won’t find a display and battery such as this one includes. It comes in full white color body with black keys, and overall, it’s a nicely built device even for rough users. While it’s not the best Linux laptop, it surely is a great option for users on a budget.
Now you must be wondering how many more laptops from ASUS ZenBook series we have chosen here. Well, this one is a last one, and it comes with a 13-inch full HD IPS display. We have also listed it in best Windows 10 laptops, and it’s equipped with Intel Core i5-6200U processor, 256 GB SSD, 8 GB of RAM and a battery that can last up to 10 hours. Although we do not recommend it for playing games, its Intel HD GPU can run most of the latest games with acceptable settings. While running Linux on it, we suggest that you run programs that are primarily built for your OS and it packs all the essential ports for better connectivity. Its Titanium Gold body is extremely eye-catching, and it looks very much like Apple MacBook Air. When it comes to weight, we can count on it as the best lightweight laptop of 2017. All in all, it’s a very portable and light device that comes with all the latest hardware such as SSD and 6th generation processor.
So these are the best Linux laptops according to us, and we have personally tested all of them. In case you are on a very tight budget then we suggest that you go with one of the above-listed Chromebooks or else you can choose any other you like. Also if you any doubts regarding the best Linux laptops then feel free to let us know. For Linux installation, we recommend that you look for some guides or you can directly go to YouTube and look up some videos for better understanding.
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