Hi, I am trying to find a replacement for my old broken laptop, and I am wondering if there is any reasonable way of assuming that a certain notebook/ piece of hardware will probably be compatible with Zorin OS 16.3?
I am asking, since I ran into a multitude of problems with an HP Elitebook G10 using Intel i7-1355U processor, Intel Iris Xe graphics and Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX211 card.
In another topic, I was informed that, for example, Iris Xe cards are known for having compatibility issues. On my mentioned notebook I had problems with HDMI, Wi-Fi, sound output, certain keyboard keys, brightness adjustment of built-in screen, and so on...
What I am looking for now are some rules of thumb, like e.g. "Iris Xe is problematic, AMD is better" or "Avoid HP and look for ACER".
Do you have any recommendation in that sense apart from "You need to give it a try"?
And very specifically: Is an AMD Radeon 680M graphics card more promising to be compatible than Intel Iris Xe?
99% of the time Zorin OS has you covered, be it AMD or Intel.
Try browsing through the recommend computers & their spec's, As you will see Zorin OS has a wide verity of pc's to choose from, which reflects the ability to cover most hardware configurations.
The newer the hardware, the higher the likelihood that more components will have compatibility problems.
For example you mentioned issues with Iris XE but I've been using it for a couple of years on a bunch of distributions without issues. From what I've seen, it's graphics cards that are the more common problem. I also had issues with Nvidia before on a previous PC, but only on certain circumstances...
In short, you have to try. If it really were that simple to predict which makes and models are problematic then those issues would also be addressed sooner.
From personal experience, I think that HP notebooks run Linux quite well. I would also recommend avoiding Nvidia GPU in notebooks, unless you are buying a notebook meant to run Linux in which case the manufacturer probably tested the drivers on the distro that they are shipping it with. I think that if you pick and AMD GPU you're going to be fine. All other hardware (except for the GPU) is pretty much universal.
This is an Opinion Thread where Anecdote does not equal evidence.
Many of us have different observations and experiences.
This is singly the most accurate statement in the whole thread.
Zorin OS has millions of downloads, yet this helpdesk is not tripping over its own feet trying to handle the load of help requests. That so few people visit the forum trying to get things working is a testament to Ockas statement above.
I do not disagree with either of the above opinions.
However... given the last few years on this forum, a certain bit of pattern recognition kicks in.
How often do I see certain things come up by different members in different threads over time?
Intel Iris Xe
There are certain repeat offenders that come up again and again.
As Ocka said... 99% of the time... And I point out what I have seen here - which may fall into that 1% of the time. The above list is a short list of things I see in that 1% more frequently than I would like.
I have installed Zorin OS on probably ten different ACER notebooks and never had any problems.
And it is rare that I see a help request from a user on this forum saying that they use Acer Aspire.
In fact, in the last couple of years, I do not remember ANY Acer Aspires ever being mentioned. Lenovo? YES. All the time. Acer? Nope.
Not a GNU/Linux issue but I once had to recover a lot of data from an Aspire notebook (a long time ago). The guy's Apire I went to fix was identical to his twin Sister's, hers did not have a problem but his had a hard disk issue which Acer refused to sort out, even within warranty. I am a bit wary of Acer notebooks following this one example, a case of "once bitten, twice shy" comes to mind.
But the same could be said for any other manufacturer. In the end, if you want something that is going to work, it is going to cost more, but at least you will be supporting GNU/Linux hardware manufacturers, as you know it is just going to work, right out of the box. After a kernel update however, this might change!
Pick a few computers (narrow it down to about 3) and look up their specifications.
Particularly, wifi card: make (Intel, Realtek) , model (ax211, r8811); video card: make (nvidia, amd) and model (1660ti, rx350) as well as the cpu.
Then search the web... use searches similar to "nvidia 1660ti Ubuntu 20". I realize it's not too descriptive, but you will see a lot come out of it. Maybe add "compatibility" or "issues" between the model and Ubuntu to narrow it down. You could also use the make and model of the computer as well in those searches.
When you see an issue, read it! There may be a solution. If not, mark it as problematic. Just cause you don't find a solution for a potential card doesn't mean there isn't one.
Then it comes down to your preference and price.
Beyond that, don't just buy a laptop that has the latest everything. You will be stuck in windows or a rolling release for a time.