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I am a developer, I mostly develop web applications (full stack JavaScript) and websites (mainly WordPress). I use tools like Git, Vagrant (and other kinds of virtualizations), Photoshop, and have a browser open with lots of tabs. Most often lightweight IDEs like Atom, but it happens that I use more heavy IDEs like Webstorm.

I am now looking after a new laptop to buy. I don't want a MacBook and I have been thinking about some of the Laptops from Lenovo's Yoga (2016) Series. But I am not entirely sure about this, mainly because I will dual-boot Windows with Ubuntu (Linux) and I will probably spend more time in Ubuntu then Windows. So a computer that has touch screen does not feel that optimal.

So I would like some recommendations/advice on laptops that are good for my purpose. I am looking for something around the 800-1400 USD price range with SSD and good amount of RAM and a 14" screen. But most importantly I want something that "just works"; in other words, I want a laptop that I can be happy with and that does not come with 102 different bugs and issues.

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I currently own a Dell XPS 13 (Developer edition) 16GB RAM, 256 GB SSD. I ran Windows 10 on it for a year, switched to Ubuntu 18.04 for 4 months, and switched back to Windows 10.

Pros:

  • It is very lightweight and low-profile
  • It can do common tasks with ease such as browsing, word-processing, etc. I normally have around 40-50 tabs open in Google Chrome.

Cons:

  • Because it is such a small profile, the case is the cooling system. When running CPU-intensive programs, I can burn my legs from the heat of the aluminum case.
  • In Ubuntu, I could not work on the laptop while it was charging because Ubuntu thought the laptop was overheating and the CPU would throttle.

If I could go back and buy another laptop, I would look for something slightly bigger with a better cooling system. Also, the Dell XPS 13 has a CPU that is intended for mobile products. Even though it says Intel core i7, it's not your normal core i7. Lookup i7-8550u for specs. Here is a current link : https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/products/processors/core/i7-processors/i7-8550u.html

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Last time I checked, Photoshop is not available on Linux, but I am assuming you're planning to use it on your Windows OS. I would recommend the following, based on my experience:

  1. System76 laptops pre-configured OR design-your-own (e.g. Serval WS, Oryx Pro, Galago Pro...)
  2. Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition
  3. ASUS ZenBook 13 Ultra-Slim Laptop
  4. Dell Precision 5520
  5. HP ZBook 15u G3 Mobile Workstation

For more choices:

  1. The latest official list of Ubuntu compatible laptops
  2. Ubuntu laptops on Amazon

Related question: https://askubuntu.com/q/919794/490067

Source:

I am a Full Stack developer (.NET, Java &, Python), Photographer, Microsoft Certified Professional, a decade-long Linux user and a decade-long WordPress blogger. I have used all the technologies you have listed. I am using Lenovo V570 for last 7 yrs, which I have upgraded on my own. Plus, I've built me a desktop recently.

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