I have a device on which I would like to install Ubuntu. How do I find out if Ubuntu will work on it?


1 Answer 1


Try it out.

This is the only real answer — there is enough variation in hardware specifics (even in a given model), and software changes too often, for any specific answer to remain valid long enough. Conversely, the many different components involved can cause many, different and unrelated, problems, so a post about what will happen with a specific device doesn't fit well with the Stack Exchange Question & Answer format:

You should only ask practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face. Chatty, open-ended questions diminish the usefulness of our site and push other questions off the front page.

Help: What types of questions should I avoid asking?

We can't handle open-ended questions about what problems you could face, but questions about specific problems are much better.


You can make a bootable USB from the Ubuntu installation ISOs, and then try out a live session instead of installing. The live session doesn't make changes to your system by itself, so it's a safe way to test drive Ubuntu. However, even a successful run of the live session is not a certain indicator - there have been cases where the live session worked fine but the installed Ubuntu didn't.

Now, proceed to the first few steps of: How do I install Ubuntu? You should see an option to "Try Ubuntu":

  • UEFI boot:


  • BIOS/UEFI legacy boot:

Try Ubuntu BIOS

Once the live session starts, play around a bit with Ubuntu to see how much of your hardware works and how well it works. Try to narrow down any problems that you faced, and post individual questions with relevant details. Then we can help you with the specifics.

What follows is a set of links, both to posts here on Ask Ubuntu, and elsewhere, that can help you in your quest. I'll try to avoid passing judgement on any particular manufacturer, but instead try to link to canonical posts that's likely to be kept updated. The major tag for each section is also given next to heading, use them when asking questions. So, for example, a WiFi problem with a Qualcomm Atheros chip would be tagged and include the output of the wireless info script.

Common problem points

Hardware support can be hit and miss. It is helpful if you can lookup the exact hardware configuration of your system (i.e., not "3GB graphics" or "Killer WiFi", but "NVidia GTX 670MX" or "Qualcomm Atheros QCA6174 802.11ac" - the exact model number is important).



Recent releases of Ubuntu tend to play well with UEFI. See How do I install Ubuntu alongside a pre-installed Windows with UEFI?



Post a question with the information from My wireless/WiFi connection does not work. What information is needed to diagnose the issue?

Broadcom Qualcomm Intel









If you have an ARM device, these might be informative:

Fingerprint reader





  • Might be worthwhile to note devices known to be troublesome out of the box. such as nVidia discrete graphics, and broadcom wifi.
    – ravery
    Commented Dec 16, 2017 at 17:05
  • @ravery (not trying to argue here, but) There's a reason I said I'd try to avoid passing judgement on manufacturers. That sort of thing becomes extremely hard to correct once it becomes "received wisdom". I have been using nVidia for ~5 years now, and the two cards I have work fine, but I also know people who have never managed to get nVidia cards working. Which experience would I include?
    – muru
    Commented Dec 16, 2017 at 17:10
  • agreeably true. performance for a particular device can vary depending on the manufacturer of the computer, especially in laptops.
    – ravery
    Commented Dec 16, 2017 at 17:17
  • 2
    A dual-boot note: I just bought a new laptop a few days ago with Windows 10, and it had bitlocker enabled. I couldn't resize the Windows partition without going into Windows and disabling bitlocker.
    – Izkata
    Commented Dec 16, 2017 at 22:24
  • I think "try it out" is correct but dang, that's a tough one in terms of cost. Time and money. It's easy for us privileged folk but not fair to assume this strategy will work for people with less free time and spare money. We need known good hardware configurations. There is stuff like wiki.debian.org/WiFi , but ugh, I just want to be able to plug in hardware and use it. Commented Jan 6, 2021 at 19:13

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