Recommended laptop for FreeBSD 10.2 Xfce workstation?

Brandon J. Wandersee brandon.wandersee at
Wed Mar 30 21:04:10 UTC 2016

Felix Friedlander writes:

> I think what might be helpful would be a list of what *not* to buy. Here’s what I’ve found:
> * Broadcom wireless cards are a no-go. (Broadcom Ethernet is fine though.)
> * Stay away from Skylake at the moment if you want maximal hardware support. Most issues will probably be fixed over time, but right now it’s not quite perfect.
> * Several laptops have EFI implementations known to cause problems - look before you buy.
> Other than this, FreeBSD has played fairly OK with most laptop hardware I’ve tried.
> Anyone want to add to this?

Is Broadwell graphics support coming along, or should that be avoided as well?

Avoid anything cheap. Just about anything you'll find for less than $500
USD will be designed only with the latest version of Windows in mind.

As far as laptops go, the risk may potentially greater for anything *not*
based primarily on Intel hardware. Intel's official drivers are
open-source, making *BSD/Linux support much more comprehensive. That's
not to say that non-Intel hardware won't work, and some newer Intel
hardware can be problematic. But it's much easier for the devs to make
working drivers for Intel than anything else, so you're likely to see
better support for it sooner.

I'd also add that no matter what hardware you get, there are some things
for which there just can't be any guarantee. Suspend-to-RAM will may or may
not work, for instance, since damn near nobody follows the ACPI standard
to the letter. That tends to be worse with low-end, consumer-grade
laptops, though.


::  Brandon J. Wandersee
::  brandon.wandersee at
::  --------------------------------------------------
::  'The best design is as little design as possible.'
::  --- Dieter Rams ----------------------------------

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