Realizing how this same question is being repeatedly asked I spent a few days reading before posting here… now to complete the homework before letting go some coins out of the wallet I lastly have to ask the most reliable source I have in mind - the qubes community itself…
I am looking for a laptop please:
as light as possible and as compact as possible 14" or 15"
to run qubes, not graphic-heavy at all, no gaming, no photo-video editing, so I assume gpu has no priority.
cpu and memory should should not be limiting though, smooth running all standard VMs at once is a must.
higher screen quality is greatly appreciated, touch screen doesn’t matter.
battery life is not crucial.
storage size does not matter, I assume storage speed does, right?
budget is limited only with common sense - don’t pay for unneeded stuff.
I consider myself below average educated in this, but here is what I have in mind, correct me where im wrong:
With the arrival of Windows 11, I guess a lot of people are going to want to switch laptops. So why not let yourself be tempted by a used Lenovo Thinkpad.
Personally, that’s what I’m doing at the moment.
For less than 500 $ / €, you can find i7s with 16gb of ram that work very well with Qubes.
Not sure if you have seen this: Community-recommended computers. You can simply choose the one with the largest RAM in it, ThinkPad P51 or Librem 14. The CPU in the latter is the fastest among all AFAIK.
Sorry, I forgot to list the “new condition” in requirements. I don’t want used for 2 reasons - it may have hidden technical ussies from ex-user and aiming to used limits choice in general. But mainly I don’t want an increased risk of having to deal with malfunctioning piece. Not an option, period, thx for idea though.
Librem 14 base price 1570, upgrade to 32 ram (enough?) brings price to 1858 which seems 20% above some competitors such as T14s G2. I assume Librem offers special security features that I’m not looking for and paying for them doesn’t feel right.
This year I ran qubes on i5 8gb surface pro - had to switch VMs on and off constantly due to lack of ram, headach all way long, I even started to avoid using the tablet imagine? According to that I won’t risk with 16gb, only 32(stock or upgradable machine)
By the way would an amd r7 or 9 instead of imtel be good and keep me away from such hussle like the one you mentioned with i7 11 gen? Lenovo T14s G2 with amd 5850U and 32ram seems to match all I want if amd if ok with qubes.
By the way since the Librem 14 was brought up, I went through it’s documentation and concluded that it’s main security advantage is superior data protection in case of physical access, am I correct? And the separate physical key to allow hard reset is a headshot feature, i wish it would be available for all digital devices, supercool.
Came across Dell Inspiron 15 amd 5700u 32 ram, 1T nvme, price $1080. A little heavier than I want - 1.6 kg but screen 15.6 so makes sense. Now please someone has tried qubes on this hardware? I’m about to buy it now, lmk folks!
Edit: first search here pops up thread with similar devices and there issues. Waiting for that poster to clarify, but looks like Inspiron with amd 5700U is not compatible at all. T14s G2 with amd 5850U might work but with restrictions so I’ll pass on it too.
So only smooth way is to pick from hcl or librem 14? Someone advised System76, but that device is not available now. Any word on Tuxedo? Starlab? Any other exotic toys? Staying light and compact makes this search so hard… but for on-the-go life style I have to be mobile.
Librem 14 is the best and possibly only choice given your criteria. The built-in kill switches for microphone, camera, wifi & bluetooth are more than just “physical access” protection. The Librem Key offers tamper detection. And dip switches inside the laptop will allow for tamper prevention. Very lightweight. Fast. And very Qubes friendly. I have run Qubes on 6 different machines over the past few years. Easily the best of them all.