Linux is one of the best free open-source operating systems. Its popularity has been growing ever since its creation in 1991 by Linus Torvaldo. Users with skills can even contribute to it. The OS is highly customizable and people find it tremendously easy to mold. Although all laptops will run Linux except a few that may require you to fix compatibility issues or install drivers. Here is a list of best Linux laptops to buy.
See Also: Top best laptops for home use of 2019
Windows and macOS are probably the most popular operating systems you will come across in laptops. Linux, an open-source software, is also preferred by many laptop users. Top laptop manufacturers like Dell and HP and others too cater to this demand and sell their Linux laptops. If you wish to buy one of these Linux laptops, give due consideration to some of the important specifications and features. On the face of it, the Linux laptops are not entirely different from your regular Windows laptops. In fact, many of them come preloaded with the Windows 10 OS. You can still load Linux and work on it. The most important advantage with Linux is it places no restrictions on the apps that you can download and work on. It’s a platform-neutral OS.
- Processor: You must be able to pick Linux laptops with the Intel Core i5 processor of the latest generation. You may find higher and lower-ranked processors too, like the Intel Core i7 and the Intel Pentium processor. It should remain your choice which processor you want to work with.
- Display Size: Just because you are buying a Linux laptop, there should be no compromise on the size. It should be purely your consideration. The size selection should be based on your level of comfort, whether you would be carrying it around too much or using it in your home or office. You will find Linux laptops in a range of display sizes. The most frequently preferred size is 15.6-inches.
- RAM & Storage: You should choose the best Linux laptop that has 8GB of RAM and 1TB of onboard storage. These are standard specs and you may find it easy to spot the model from the range on offer.
- Touchscreen: This is a useful feature to have. It speeds up your work and reduces the strain on your fingers. Having gotten used to working on large-screen mobile devices, you will feel comfortable with the touchscreen on the Linux laptop as well.
- Battery: Battery life is important for any laptop. You will be using the laptop outside of your home or workplace and you would want the battery to last at least 4-5 hours if not more. Check the specification before placing the order.
- OS: If the machine comes with the Windows OS also as a standby, you should take it. If you suddenly need to work on an app that is only compatible with Windows, you shouldn’t be left stranded.
Best Linux Laptops
A Sleek and Stylish Looking Linux-friendly Laptop from Dell
Dell XPS 9350-1340SLV 13.3-inch Laptop
The world of Linux laptops is rather a convoluting one because Linux is an open-source operating system and doesn’t cost money. You can actually purchase any Windows 10 laptop, use Linux as one of the operating systems or format it to install any version of the stable OS for your specific purpose. However, not all users are tech-savvy which is when pre-installed best Linux laptops come into the picture. The manufacturer installs a version of the OS which you can use right out of the box as you would do with any Mac or Windows product. The Dell XPS 9350-1340SLV is one such product which excels in terms of build quality, features and hardware specifications that justify its price tag.
The laptop does come with Windows 10 pre-installed, but you can easily get Linux running on it in an hour or so. The different versions of the OS are available for download from official websites. Under the solid steel body, the laptop is powered by an Intel Core i5-6200U processor, combined with 8 GB of DDR3 RAM and 128 GB of SSD storage. It also has Intel HD Graphics 520 which is not meant for gaming but will make it easier for you to watch movies, use some graphics-intensive apps without any lagging issues.
The aluminum casing on the Dell XPS Laptop makes it look extremely rigid and durable in the long run. When you are investing close to a thousand dollars, you would obviously want to use the product for a couple of years. After all, making the most out of your investment is what matters the most. The keypad is slick, makes no noise and is firm when pushed down. The rigidity is what makes this Dell branded laptop an easy recommendation for everyone who needs a laptop in which they could install the Linux operating system and get it going without being constrained by Windows 10 or macOS where manufacturer defines the kind of software or apps you could use on it.
What Makes the Dell XPS 9350-1340SLV the Best Laptop for Linux?
- The laptop has the sturdy build quality and should last you years without having to buy a new one.
- It provides great value for money with decent hardware specs that are more than required for Linux OS.
- The display has sleek bezels which give the laptop a futuristic look.
- Linux users who require a powerful laptop that would allow them to run a range of apps and do programming in a secure environment would find this Dell laptop a convenient choice
A Branded Laptop That Works Great with Linux OS
Acer Aspire E 15 15.6-inch Full HD Laptop
Finding a laptop which has Linux pre-installed in it should be a very difficult task because they are usually running Windows 10 out of the box. Besides, being an open-source operating system makes it readily available for anyone who is willing to understand the basics and install the OS on their own. It shouldn’t be a difficult process, because if you are planning to use Linux as your primary operating system, you should definitely be more tech-savvy than most other Windows or Mac users who are used to having their computers ready to run as soon as they open it.
The Acer Aspire E 15 is a perfect laptop because it falls in the affordable category, easy to use and you can just uninstall the existing Windows 10 Home installed on it before using a new Linux OS on top of it. The process should take an hour or so and it is obviously the only way to get things running as major manufacturers don’t sell the best Linux laptops. They expect users to customize their computers as they want it to and there is also a practical issue because there are so many different versions of the OS available. Companies can’t determine which one you would require which is why they are not being sold.
The laptop sports a large 15.6-inch display with a resolution 1920 x 1080 pixels. The full HD resolution ensures great clarity when you are using your laptop for viewing pictures, videos and other content. It is powered by an 8th generation Intel Core i3 8130U processor which can be clocked up to 3.4 GHz. It also has 6 GB of RAM and has a massive 1 TB of hard disk. A surprising addition is the DVD drive which is quite rare to come across. The battery life of the laptop is quite impressive as it delivers about 13 hours on a full charge and not many products in this range can make this claim.
What Makes the Acer Aspire E 15 15.6-inch Full HD Laptop a Good Choice?
- While it doesn’t come bundled with Linux, it does support the OS if you can install it manually.
- The affordable price tag makes it great value for the money you spend as it has powerful hardware specifications for a Linux machine.
- The build quality is decent.
- It excels in battery life and can run for 13 hours making it one of the longest times for any laptop.
- Acer product that has great storage space, easy to install Linux and has a good display with full HD resolution making it a media, creator’s laptop as well as developers who need long battery life
Ultra-Thin Laptop with Slim Bezels
Asus VivoBook S Ultra Thin and Portable Laptop
The Asus VivoBook S Ultra Thin laptop stands proof to its name because it has very thin bezels that make the product look more futuristic and can be comfortably used for years to come. The device sports a large 15.6-inch display which is ideal for people who do a lot of graphical work in the Linux interface. Once again, it is important to know that you have to manually install the operating system and Asus or any other top manufacturer doesn’t ship their laptops with the Linux OS already installed. Make sure to get your Windows 10 code so that you can reinstall it when required, but use it primarily for coding purposes or any other scenario that requires the particular OS version.
The Asus product is powered by an 8th generation Intel Core i5 8250U processor clocked at 1.8 GHz but it can always be overclocked up to 4 GHz if you have demanding applications. Considering a common fact that most Linux users are usually tech-savvy people, it shouldn’t be difficult to make use of the overclocking capabilities provided by the laptop if you have such a requirement. The display is full HD, which ensures you get the maximum screen area to work with word documents, excel sheets or similar software programs. It also uses the latest connectivity options including 802.11 AC, Bluetooth and battery life is expected to last a couple of hours on a full charge.
In terms of hardware specifications, the laptop is powered by 8 GB of DDR4 RAM which is fast enough for most applications and it also uses 256 GB SSD for faster storage options. SSDs are easily the best way for installing your operating system such as Linux and also keep all your files for quick access. The Nano Edge Bezel is an exclusive design from Asus which allows them to provide a new-age design on the laptop. It has a cream finish on the keyboard, weighs just 3.7 lbs and has a couple of connectivity ports including USB Type C, HDMI, USB 3.0 and SD card reader which is useful for media professionals.
What Makes the Asus VivoBook S Ultra Thin Laptop a Great Choice for Linux Users?
- Before you make a purchase, it is mandatory to know that you should install Linux and it shouldn’t be a big issue for power users.
- The hardware specifications are excellent as the laptop can be overclocked up to 4 GHz.
- SSD storage, SD card reader, Wi-Fi AC and other features make it future proof.
- Linux users who want a powerful piece of hardware to work within a light and the compact package will find the Asus VivoBook S an ideal solution
Touchscreen Limit to Improve Your Productivity
HP 15.6-inch HD Touchscreen Laptop
Most users wouldn’t think of owning a touchscreen laptop to install Linux operating system. The OS is strongly geared towards developers, coders and people who are hardcore coding lovers rather than the common user who loves to have a touchscreen app for all their requirements. However, if you are developing content or software on Linux for future generation and newest hardware, a touchscreen to test them out would be a mandatory requirement. The HP 15.6-inch product solves the requirement without being tough on your wallet. It is priced in an affordable range so that most buyers would be able to own one.
As always, it runs on Windows 10 Home Edition out of the box, but there is no better and easier laptop to install the latest version of Linux that you need. It has some reliable internal hardware specifications. The laptop is powered by an Intel Quad-Core Pentium processor N5000, which is clocked at 1.1 GHz and can go all the way up to 2.7 GHz. As you are most probably not going to use graphically intensive applications or have tens of Chrome tabs open at the same time, this hardware specification should be ideal for your purpose. It also has 4 GB of DDR4 RAM and a large 1 TB of hard disk space to store all your files without any space constraints.
The HP laptop sports a 15.6-inch display which has a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels and is powered by Intel UHD Graphics 605. In terms of easy connectivity, the laptop is equipped with Wi-Fi AC, HDMI port, supports DTS Studio Sound, but it doesn’t have a DVD optical drive. Most users have moved to the internet as their primary source to download files and store the majority of their personal documents. There are hardly any who still rely on DVDs and this shouldn’t be much of a problem if this laptop doesn’t have the drive. The touch screen capability is an added advantage on Linux OS.
What Makes the HP 15.6-inch Touchscreen Laptop Unique?
- The touch screen capability makes it a useful addition if you are developing applications that are meant for touch-friendly devices.
- It is adequately powered to support both Linux and Windows operating systems, whichever that you require.
- The laptop has 1 TB of hard disk space which comes in handy to store lots of files.
- Linux users who require touchscreen capabilities on a laptop can get this one which is affordable and easy to customize to your coding needs
See also: Best computer for AutoCAD
Best Linux Laptops with a Dedicated Graphics Card
Asus TUF FX504 15.6-inch Full HD GTX 1050 Laptop
When choosing a laptop to install Linux, it would be difficult to imagine something with a graphics card. But, the operating system has been consistently growing in terms of GUI and it wouldn’t hurt to have a dedicated GeForce card on board for intensive applications. Asus excels in making gaming laptops and it is one among the few series where you will be able to come across a product with the graphics card installed in them. The Asus TUF series delivers durable laptops that are rather bulky in size but it helps dissipate heat and improves the overall battery life, performance of the product.
The model sports a 15.6-inch full HD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. Under the hood, the laptop is powered by an 8th generation Intel Core i5 8300H processor. The chipset is duly supported by 8 GB of DDR4 which is ideal for Photoshop, gaming and other graphics-intensive applications that you might use. Your requirement may vary when you use an open-source OS as Linux but it will be powerful enough to meet all the needs. The storage aspect is taken care of by the 256 GB M.2 SSD. For those who are new to this, it is one of the fastest and most responsive storage solutions that you could rely upon.
Considering the components inside including a dedicated GeForce GTX 1050 2 GB graphics card from Nvidia, the laptop weighs just 5.7 lbs and can be considered to be a portable solution for people who need power on the go. It can support Gigabit internet speeds, has Wi-Fi AC and a slew of connectivity ports including HDMI, USB, Ethernet among the most essential ones. It is a complete package that runs on Windows 10 out of the box. The keyboards are tactile with red backlight and you get a very durable product. Just change the OS to Linux, which should be an easy job after which you can make use of all the features Asus TUF gaming product has to offer.
What Makes the Asus TUF FX504 a Solid and Powerful Laptop?
- The heat spreading mechanism on the product is excellent with dual fan cooling.
- It has SSD storage for fast response time.
- The dedicated GTX 1050 graphics card makes it amazing for graphics-intensive applications on Linux OS.
- A laptop with a dedicated graphics card for any Linux user who might need to work on graphical software programs and need a strong cooling system for long-lasting durability
The Most Expensive Yet Best Linux Laptops
Razer Blade Stealth 13.3-inch Model
The Razer Blade Stealth is one of the visually stunning laptops that you would come across any day. Razer has been a prominent manufacturer of gaming peripherals for many years now and they soon ventured into the world of laptops. They created the most powerful, slim and compact devices that you would love to use on the go. While this is not ready to use Linux laptop, it can easily be the best Linux laptop because of its build quality, design, ports and the overall premium experience it offers for over a thousand dollars. Not everyone will be willing to spend so much money on Linux programming, but you can do so if you aren’t constrained by cash and want the very best experience.
The Razer Blade Stealth sports a 13.3-inch display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. The laptop is powered by an 8th generation Intel Core Quad-core processor i7-8565U. Using an i7 processor for the Linux operating system obviously sounds like overkill but it once again depends on your budget and the type of software applications you plan to use on a regular basis. The device also has an exponential 16 GB of RAM to keep memory hungry processes running smoothly on the Linux OS. The keyboard is backlit with RGB colors and it includes an array of connectivity ports.
The ports list includes HDMI, USB C, USB A and even Thunderbolt 3 so that you can connect an additional external graphics card if needed. The product is solid in terms of build quality, uses dual array mics, Wi-Fi AC and promises a solid 11 hours of battery life. It is one of the longest periods such a powerful laptop can promise and Razer delivers on every front without difficulty. It is made using aluminum frame providing the much needed robust finish to the product and features Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics card to handle demanding applications.
What Makes the Razer Blade Stealth a Powerful Laptop?
- It is powered by an Intel i7 processor.
- The laptop uses a dedicated MX150 graphics card.
- There is 16 GB of RAM and a solid keyboard that is useful for people who type a lot.
- Developers and hardcore Linux users who need a powerful beast on a bigger budget can confidently get the Razer Blade Stealth
Other models worth buying
The Linux Laptop with the Most Lightweight Design
Lenovo ThinkPad 11e Carbon 5th Gen
The laptop features an 11.6-inch display and has LED-backlit CineCrystal. There are integrated HD speakers for exclusively clear audio. You get a 16 GB eMMC flash memory. It has the powerful Intel Celeron N2930 Quad-Core processor. The HD graphics are from Intel and you also get a microphone, webcam, and a memory card reader. The company also includes a 90-day warranty with the laptop. The computer is lightweight and portable. The anti-reflective finish of the screen keeps your eyes safe. The screen has a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels and a 720 pixel HD video runs without you having to upscale. You also get a 16:9 ratio when you are watching videos on it. It comes with Google Chrome OS which is a Linux based OS.
What Makes Lenovo ThinkPad 11e Carbon 5th Gen a Reliable Laptop?
- It is a very powerful laptop that is easy to carry around owing to its slim and lightweight design.
- The surface of the device has a rubber-like texture to it which lends a lot of comfort to the palms.
- It has enough connectivity ports to help you connect it to multiple peripherals at once.
- Linux users who need a well-performing and comfortable device that would be quite easy to carry around
Linux Laptop with the Best Battery Life
Acer Aspire NX.M89AA.003; V5-131-2887
This is a small and portable laptop and comes pre-installed with Linux. There is no separate mouse that comes with it. The track-pad does the job of a mouse too. The battery life you get is good making it perfect to work or browse when traveling. It has a 4GB RAM and once connected to the WiFi, the connection is quite stable. The 11.6-inch screen is perfect for its size. The screen is bright and the videos look good when played on it.
What Makes Lenovo Acer Aspire NX.M89AA.003; V5-131-2887 Laptop a Good Choice For Everyday Use?
- It is good at performing basic functions and should serve you well on a regular basis
- The laptop has a compact size and can be easily carried along in a bag anywhere
- It offers some very good configurations at a modest budget
- Linux users who wish to own a laptop that would offer good battery backup
Best Linux Laptop for Multi-Purpose Use
Acer TravelMate B117-M TMB117-M-C37N 11.6″ LED (ComfyView) Notebook
This is a highly versatile laptop and the connectivity that you get with it is amazing. It features an Intel Celeron N3060 Dual-core. It has a 4GB RAM and the speed of the processor is 1.6 GHz. It features Intel HD Graphics 400. With an 11.6 inch HD screen, the laptop also offers a battery life of 7 hours. It is a compact yet powerful laptop and is best for those who are looking for budgeted laptops without compromising on features.
What Makes Acer TravelMate B117-M TMB117-M-C37N 11.6″ LED a Good Multi-Purpose Laptop?
- It is a versatile laptop that does not disappoint when it comes to performing a variety of diverse functions.
- The laptop features an excellent keyboard that is suitable for users who type very frequently.
- The processor ensures overall smooth performance.
- Linux users who need a well-rounded laptop that can perform multiple functions effortlessly
Best High-Utility Linux Laptop
Toshiba Satellite C855-s5108 I3-3120m
Next in the list of best Linux laptops is the Toshiba Satellite. This is a 15.6-inch screen with a nice design. It has an embossed textured look so you don’t have to worry about the cover getting stained with your fingerprints. It has the standard weight of a laptop and is best used at a desk or workstation. The keys and the trackpad have a high-friction tooled texture so you can move your fingers along comfortably. There are two speakers just above the keyboard which play fairly well. It has an Intel Core i3-2350M CPU and a 6GB DDR3 RAM.
What Makes Acer Toshiba Satellite C855-s5108 I3-3120m a High-Utility Laptop?
- Apart from having a good number of connectivity ports, the device also features a DVD drive which would be of good value to those who still use discs.
- The high-definition webcam is apt for those who use video chat services like Skype frequently.
- It is the most suitable device for light computing tasks like web browsing, photo editing and using social media.
- Linux users who are looking to get a good laptop for personal use or using it in school or college
The Best Portable and Sturdy Linux Laptop
HP Mini 5102 10.1-Inch Netbook
Designed to be portable and easy to carry around, this Mini Notebook from HP has Linux based OS. It has a screen size of 10 inches and runs on 1.66 GHz Intel Atom N450. It features a RAM of 1 GB DDR2 SDRAM. It has a metal composite build and the speakers are clear and loud. Besides a USB port, you also get an SD multi-slot on this laptop.
What Makes HP Mini 5102 10.1-Inch Netbook a Solid Device?
- Featuring a 10-inch widescreen, this is a small and compact device that is extremely convenient to carry around.
- While it works well as a laptop, it can be configured to be used as a tablet too.
- It offers good storage capacity and there is a scope to expand the memory using the media card slot.
- Linux users who are wary of using large-sized devices and need a well-performing and portable laptop
Best Linux Laptop for Beginners
HP Mini 1104 C6Y78UT 10.1″ LED Netbook
This is one of the best laptops for beginners and Linux works seamlessly on this device. The design of the laptop makes it very lightweight and easy to carry around. The mini educator has been enhanced with a unique feature that makes it spill resistant. The 10.1-inch display is comfortable to watch and the pictures displayed are clear. It also offers a long battery life and has a 2 GB RAM.
What Makes HP Mini 1104 C6Y78UT 10.1″ LED Netbook the Most Suitable Laptop for Beginners?
- It is very simple to use and apt for people who are about to use a laptop or a Linux device for the first time.
- It features a bunch of good pre-installed software that would add value to your experience of using this device.
- The solid battery life makes it ideal for people who need a laptop which they can work on for long hours.
A Great Linux Laptop with the Best Processing Unit
Lenovo ThinkPad T480
This 14-inch display laptop is a revolutionary laptop that offers powerful processing and an amazing battery life of 30 hours. Power Bridge feature and two batteries give the laptop the ability to work for a long time without using up much energy. It is light and has a slim look. Expect the visuals to be bright, vibrant and sharp. The touchscreen gives you the ease of work and you also get a fingerprint reader with this model.
The Infrared camera helps in logging in securely without having the need to physically type your ID and Password. To add to the security, there is is the ThinkShutter which is a physical cover that can be used to cover the camera. It features the 8th generation Intel Core i7 processor. This is one of the best Linux laptops to buy.
What Makes Lenovo ThinkPad T480 a Device That Offers Good Value For Money?
- It is a very good device for people who use their laptop for several hours at a stretch.
- The laptop offers a vast number of configuration options that would appeal to most users.
- It features a super-durable keyboard which would be a delight for people who type extensively.
- Linux users who expect a laptop with a very good processor and outstanding battery life
See Also: Top best laptops for teachers of 2019
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you play games on Linux laptops?
Of course, yes. You can play games on Linux laptops. The only aspect to be checked is if the game is compatible with the Linux platform. Game developers are conscious of the fact that there are Linux users out there and make the games compatible.
Do Linux laptops come with features like backlit keyboards and fingerprint sensor?
Linux laptops are no different in any way than the regular Windows laptops. Yes, you will surely find all those features like fingerprint sensor and backlit keyboard within the Linux laptops range. If it’s a pureplay Linux laptop, some of the apps you are familiar with on a Windows laptop will be missing.
Can Linux laptops be connected to external devices?
It depends on the connectivity ports and options in the particular Linux laptop you have chosen to buy. The connectivity has nothing to do with the laptop being a Linux one. It’s more of a hardware spec and needs to be looked at from that perspective.
Is there clarity on the international warranty for laptops?
There is no standard or fixed warranty clause. It changes with the laptop manufacturer. There are cases where people place orders for laptops online and they are delivered to them in other countries. If you are outside the US and wish to buy a laptop in the US, check the international warranty clause carefully before ordering.
How important is the screen refresh rate on laptops?
The screen refresh rate is not a critical specification. It has gained popularity after some mobile phone brands started touting higher refresh rates as the USP of their smartphones. Most laptops are supplied with a 60Hz refresh rate. The refresh rate is relevant only when you play high-end games. If you invest in a gaming laptop, possibly you may get the display with a higher refresh rate.
There is generally a misconception that a Linux laptop is somehow inferior to the other regular Windows and macOS run devices. That is not true. Linux is an open-source platform and is largely used by the developer community when they are trying to work on new applications. In terms of specifications and features, Linux laptops need not be considered inferior to any other laptop. Just go ahead and order one now.