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Before I buy my next laptop, I'd like to make sure that it will work perfectly with Ubuntu. Is there a list of completely supported computers anywhere?

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    The way it stands, it's subjective, and it will lead to a "my-laptop-is-better-than-yours" question. :) – jrg Dec 3 '11 at 11:44
  • ok @jrg, but is there a place where I can find laptops that is supported? – Alvar Dec 3 '11 at 12:00
  • I think this question should be generalized so that it sounds like "how do I find laptops that is officially/fully supported by Ubuntu?" – Lie Ryan Dec 3 '11 at 12:16
  • I don't see this question as primarily opinion-based, though it depends on how you interpret the words "guaranteed", "perfectly", and "completely". – wjandrea Apr 6 '18 at 19:03
43

There is an ongoing QA effort for Laptops and Desktops in the Ubuntu Community - you can find that information here:

Old Ubuntu Laptop Reports and for everything 11.04 and onwards, Laptop Testing Site and more recently at Ubuntu Friendly

You can find the reports for Lucid tested Laptops tests here: 10.04 Lucid Laptop Tests. The best course of action is to find a handful of laptops you're interested in then check the Reports on each.

If you feel compelled to help you can find more information at the Laptop Testing page.

Finally there is a detailed list of compatible systems on the Ubuntu Certification page.

  • So.. when running a live CD (or after installation), I can run through a test suite. Is this the same test suite referred to at the laptop testing site? Are there plans to compile the results of those user tests into that database? I was initially expecting that they would be already integrated into it, but based on the very low number of test results, it seems that that is not (yet?) the case. – intuited Apr 1 '11 at 12:03
  • @intuited I don't know those details - I would recommend asking a new question on this site to get an expert with knowledge of the testing procedure to weigh in – Marco Ceppi Apr 1 '11 at 12:11
  • Done. – intuited Apr 1 '11 at 15:23
  • Well Ubuntu Friendly is not too promising - Three notebooks rated by one user each... – guntbert Jan 10 '13 at 21:48
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This page on ubuntu.com has the breakdown of certified machines by manufacturer and model type.

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If you get a computer with Ubuntu preinstalled, it's guaranteed to work with Ubuntu. Dell and System76 are the two most recommended companies from which to get Ubuntu computers.

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    A side benefit of this route is showing the computer manufacturers see that there is a demand for PCs with something other than Windows preinstalled. – David Z Jul 28 '10 at 21:14
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    Agree with David - that's Bug #1 for Ubuntu bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+bug/1 – Marco Ceppi Jul 28 '10 at 21:20
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    The problem is that there is a new ubuntu every 6 months. Just because it works with the version installed when you buy it, does not mean it will work on the next ubuntu release. – trampster Oct 6 '10 at 9:03
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    @trampster In my experience, hardware compatibility only improves with time (these days - the 2.4 to 2.6 kernel change did affect hardware compatibility). The exceptions are some things like the Synaptic touchpad configuration regression w/ Hal. – Michael Ekstrand Oct 30 '10 at 18:04
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    I've never owned a machine that came with ubuntu pre-installed, but I would not expect a guarantee of things working correctly after upgrades. Most problems seem to be caused by regression bugs in device drivers and such. Although vendors (Dell, Acer, etc.) could take the initiative to thoroughly test their supported models during ubuntu code freeze periods and to provide fixes for issues if necessary before official release, I would be somewhat surprised to learn that they actually do this. – intuited Apr 1 '11 at 4:59
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Another retailer for preinstalled Ubuntu systems is ZaReason.

9

It's too general a question to make one specific recommendation so your best solution is to look at the Ubuntu Certified Hardware page.

You can review which laptop best suits your requirements by the manufacturer of your choice.

It lists all the laptops certified for Ubuntu by release as well

  • This is problaby the best place to start looking. But is there a site that rates how much of a specific computer is supported? – Alvar Dec 3 '11 at 12:00
  • Not that I am aware of - the Ubuntu Wiki for hardware support has some further links for research. – Mark Rooney Dec 3 '11 at 12:09
5

There is a wiki page of supported hardware, but I don't think it's fully exhaustive. The motherboard I'm using works fine and doesn't appear anywhere on that list.

  • Perhaps you could add the details of your motherboard to the list? – Richard Holloway Oct 6 '10 at 12:34
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    @Richard: Sensible suggestion, but it's described as an "Immutable Page". Perhaps I don't have the required edit permissions. I'm using a Gigabyte GA-MA785GT-UD3H 785G Socket AM3 motherboard if you have edit access and would like to add it. I'll add the disclaimer though that I am far from an Ubuntu or Linux expert so all I can verify is that it appears to function acceptably. I cannot say for certain that every aspect of the motherboard is tested and functions correctly. – Simon P Stevens Oct 6 '10 at 13:12
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    Fair enough. On that basis I have added the category / sub category and page which is at wiki.ubuntu.com/Gigabyte_GA-MA785GT-UD3H. Please check you are happy with the content as I have quoted you and let me know if you want me to make any changes. – Richard Holloway Oct 6 '10 at 22:10
  • @Richard: Nice one. – Simon P Stevens Oct 7 '10 at 7:40
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Another way is get some flashdrive with ubuntu and test at the store

  • You can also use a LiveCD – DrKenobi Oct 13 '10 at 3:36
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    The stores often don't allow customers to test bootable media. – hexafraction Nov 1 '12 at 11:15
  • @hexafraction And I don't have a Lenovo store in my area. – Michael Jan 30 '15 at 2:50
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Laptop compatibility information here : http://www.linux-laptop.net/

Some details about DELL compatibility with Ubuntu here: http://www.linux-laptop.net/dell.html

But alas, no mention of the Inspiron 13z.

1

There is an open hardware validation programme for laptops, desktops, and netbooks called Ubuntu Friendly. It is still under works, and will probably will launched for 11.10.

The launchpad project is located here

The idea is to allow anyone to test any hardware, and report the results back. Multiple positive results for the same hardware will result in a Ubuntu Friendly certification.

  • Ubuntu Friendly was decommissioned in 2013. – Damian Yerrick Sep 3 '15 at 15:57

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