10 Best Free Operating System for Laptops & Netbooks

Do you want to install a free operating system on your laptop? Well, check this list of the best free operating for laptops and netbooks.

The world of Linux is a prosperous world and full of free operating systems or distros. There are almost 1000 distros with Linux kernel, an unusually high number that will undoubtedly make us doubt which is the best distro for laptops and netbooks.

Today I will show you the best free operating system for laptops and netbooks in 2019, so you can dispel your doubts when choosing which distro you should install on your laptop or netbook.

1. Ubuntu

ubuntu best free operating system for laptop

I will start this list with the most popular Linux distro, the famous Ubuntu. This distribution was created by Canonical as a bifurcation of the Debian project in 2004 and quickly became the leading Linux distribution in downloads. It is a recommended free operating system for laptops thanks to its stability, its ease of use for new people and its vast repository of apps.

There are several versions of Ubuntu depending on what desktop environment they use. I have in the first place the original Ubuntu with the Unity desktop, Ubuntu Gnome with the Gnome desktop and Ubuntu MATE with the MATE desktop as the most important ones. Each version of Ubuntu is oriented to a type of user since some prefer the lightness of MATE and others prefer the power of Unity.

I recommend this distro to practically all people who want to use Linux, since having so many variants, it adapts to almost any type of need, making the requirements of any user fully satisfied.

2. Linux Mint

linux mint

Linux Mint is one of the Linux operating systems with better reviews and better functioning. Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu and is a widely used free operating system on laptops, as it has excellent performance, a suitable repository and good compatibility with most apps. Also, its developers have shown a quick response to the unexpected, as they have been able to recompose themselves against the attack suffered on their website in 2016.

Linux Mint has three different versions, one with the powerful Cinnamon desktop, the second with the lightweight MATE desktop and the third with Xfce. As in the case of Ubuntu, you should choose the version that best corresponds to what you want and what you need. The three versions are available for 32 and 64 bit systems.

Choose the desktop you choose, this distribution is ideal for beginners, mainly for its ease of use and for being a speedy distribution in the eyes of users.

3. Debian

debian free operating system

Debian is one of the first Linux distributions that had relative success and one of the most active ones. Founded in 1993, this distribution has been evolving and growing thanks to the commitment of its large community, which does a great job to improve Debian charitably.

The result is a broad distribution that stands out for its stability, serving as a source of inspiration for many developers. This goes so far that there are more than 120 Linux distributions based on Debian. It also has the best support of all Linux distros.

Although the default desktop distribution is Gnome, you can also install other desktops with different features, such as KDE Plasma (for its aesthetics) or Xfce (for its low consumption of resources), which work perfectly in this OS.

Debian a free operating system for laptops suitable for all kinds of people since it is a distribution that is friendly and powerful in equal parts. In this way, a beginner will be able to handle it without problems, and an expert will be able to squeeze its powerfully. It is also one of the best free operating systems to run on servers, due to the great support and power it has.

4. Arch Linux

arch linux

Arch Linux is considered the most customizable Linux operating system and one of the favorites by users since it is a distribution designed for people who want a custom free operating system. As a result, you have a free operating system that can be found on almost any computer, since it can be configured for computers and laptops with low resources, high-resource PCs or even for computers with ARM architecture such as the Raspberry Pi.

Arch Linux has a peculiar system of updates called Rolling Release. This system consists of launching small updates every month, which are dedicated to improving the operating system and correcting bugs that may have been detected. The best thing about this distribution is that it allows you always to have your computer updated to the latest without having to format it.

This free operating system is recommended for experts since its installation and operation is more complicated than in the previously mentioned operating systems, however, once it is known to be used correctly, it is one of the best in its field by 2019.

5. Tails


Tails is the best Linux anonymous browsing operating system that exists. This free operating system has everything you need to navigate anonymously, such as the Tor browser and all kinds of apps to keep you hidden, such as apps to create virtual private networks (VPN). Also, this free operating system for laptops starts from Live CD without installation and is loaded into RAM, since this way they will not be able to touch our hard drive and steal essential data from there.

This distro is the favorite of people obsessed with security and who want to be away from the surveillance of governments. The best example is Edward Snowden, a former CIA worker, and computer security expert, famous for revealing secrets about espionage by agencies like the NSA.

I recommend installing this free operating system on your laptop to people who want anonymous browsing and have a strong emphasis on privacy, such as investigative journalists who do not want to reveal their identity.

6. Kubuntu

kubuntu best free operating system for laptops

Kubuntu is one more of the multiple versions of Ubuntu. However, Kubuntu has something special, as it comes with one of the best desktop environments on the market, the famous KDE Plasma. KDE is one of the best desktop environments that combines performance and aesthetics in a single desktop.

Thanks to Kubuntu you will be able to have the best of Ubuntu and KDE in one place, having the best distribution and one of the best desks from my point of view in one place.

As desktops are usually more powerful than laptops, desktops are the ideal type of PC for Kubuntu, since you will have a free operating system with impeccable aesthetics and unparalleled performance, taking full advantage of the power of your computer. But if you own a powerful laptop, you can also install this beautiful free operating system.

7. Manjaro


Manjaro is a distribution based on the Arch mentioned above, but aimed at teams a little lighter and is more friendly. This distro maintains the goodness of Arch Linux (Rolling Release system), but it is a much more manageable distribution for less experienced users, making things easier when it comes to installing and configuring it. It also brings the Xfce and Openbox desktops, very livable desktops that barely consume system resources.

This makes it ideal for laptops, as it is a more accessible system to use and a system that consumes fewer resources than others, making it work at full power on our laptops.

8. SteamOS

steam os

SteamOS is a free operating system for laptops based on Debian focused exclusively on video games. The peculiarity of this operating system is that it has pre-installed the Steam software for Linux, which today has more than 2000 games (and uploading) available to play on Linux. It also has pre-installed most existing graphics drivers, allowing you to play you have the equipment you have.

This free operating system can be installed on all computers that meet the minimum requirements. However, it is an operating system designed for the Steam Machines, that is, for the official Valve console/PC. The Steam Machine was created to offer a cheap PC Gamer, capable of competing with Windows computers and desktop consoles.

This operating system is recommended for most gamers since Steam is the most popular games with a catalog that is getting bigger.

9. Puppy Linux

puppy linux

Puppy Linux is a classic in the Linux world since it is a distro that will allow you to resuscitate any old computer since it is one of the least resource consuming. To give you an idea, this distro has minimum requirements similar to those of Windows XP, so you can keep those old computers that you have at home working without losing updated support. Puppy Linux manages to work with few requirements using lightweight desktops, such as LXDE.

Puppy Linux occupies only 100 megabytes, a size that will allow you to put it on any CD or any Pendrive no matter how small. Thanks to all these features, Puppy Linux has become a benchmark to imitate, making many developers have created distributions based on Puppy Linux.

I recommend this free operating system if you have an old laptop that you want to continue using since Puppy can boot on a computer with only 64 megabytes of Ram (average Ram size at the end of the 90s).

10. Deepin


Deepin is a free operating system for laptops is possibly the most beautiful Linux distro and with the best design for the eyes of the users. Besides, it is not only good for its design but also its power and ease of use.

Based on Debian, it uses Nautilus as a window manager, and it has many installed apps, such as WPS Office and Google Chrome, among others. The most remarkable thing is its colorful design, friendly and straightforward at the same time, being from my point of view the most beautiful distribution that exists — recommended for users who need to work in a pleasant environment and who seek aesthetics without losing performance.

Wrapping Up: Best Free Operating System for Laptops

So far those were the best free operating system for laptops that you can install on your old or new laptops. Just pick the one that best suits your needs. You have free operating that uses more resources like Kubuntu or Puppy Linux that uses fewer resources.

Read: How To Install PostgreSQL 9.6 on Ubuntu & Debian

Do you install another free operating system on your laptop? Let me know in the comments section to add it to the list.

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