It’s possible to purchase Lenovo’s high-performance ThinkPad systems with Ubuntu shipped from the factory, starting with 2019 models.
Lenovo’s newly-announced 2019 ThinkPad P-series mobile workstations can be purchased with Ubuntu, according to the ordering page on Lenovo’s website. ThinkPads have often been the laptop of choice for Linux users, as Lenovo historically does certify ThinkPad models for Linux use, though prior to this change, buyers were stuck paying the Windows tax for the unwanted bundled license of Windows.
Applicable models can be configured with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, and will be available this month. Though not offered as a preloadable option, the P-series is also certified for Red Hat Enterprise Linux.
Lenovo announced 2019 models of the ThinkPad P73, ThinkPad P53, ThinkPad P53s, and P43s, as well as the ThinkPad P1 Gen 2 last week, powered by 9th Generation Intel Core CPUs. The new models introduce OLED displays on certain units, as well as X-Rite Pantone factory color calibration, which is a substantive benefit for content creators.
SEE: 16 top laptops for business users in 2019 (free PDF) (TechRepublic)
The P-series ThinkPads are closer to a desktop replacement than anything else, as these units come with more expandability options than the T or X-series, and higher-performance NVIDIA graphics. Buyers can also upgrade to Intel Xeon Mobile CPUs on the P-series.
It is yet to be seen if this option will be extended to other ThinkPad models. Jerry Paradise, Lenovo’s vice president of global commercial portfolio and product management, told TechRepublic in May that having Linux installed from the factory “comes up over and over with some of our very important customers, and it is taken very seriously,” Paradise noted, adding that Lenovo “provides drivers and a BIOS that is compatible,” reiterating that “we get that request a lot.”
For more, check out “Linux-powered System76 Gazelle laptop allows users to avoid the Windows Tax” and “Huawei’s laptop division cancelling orders amid rumors of exiting PC market” on TechRepublic.