Elementary OS is an Ubuntu-based Linux distribution with an emphasis on speed, privacy, and ease-of-use. It also happens to have a user interface that’s reminiscent of macOS and a slightly controversial history of  trying to guilt people into paying for free software.

Like most GNU/Linux distributions, you can download elementary OS for free (or make a small donation) and install it on pretty much any computer released in the past decade.

But now the developers of the operating system have announced you can also buy select laptops with Elementary OS pre-installed.

Rather than build a new computer from scratch, the developers partnered with two companies that already sell Linux laptops.

All told, more than a dozen laptops are now available with elementary OS from two different PC vendors:

Netherlands-based Laptop With Linux sells computers manufactured by Taiwanese manufacturer Clevo with screen sizes ranging from 14 inches to 17.3 inches and prices starting at €529 ($595).

Each system is available with a wide choice of Linux-based operating systems including Ubuntu, Linux Mint, Debian, Manjaro, Kali, and Zorin. Now the company has added Elementary OS to the list.

Star Labs is a UK-based company that offers a smaller selection of notebooks. Right now the 13 inch Star LabTop MK IV with an Intel Core i3-10110U processor, 16GB of RAM, and a 240GB SSD is up for pre-order for $749, while there’s a waiting list for the $429 Star Lite MK III 11.6 inch notebook with a Pentium Silver N5000 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a 240GB SSD. That model is coming the third quarter of 2020.

According to post on the elementary OS blog, we could see the operating system show up as an option for additional laptops in the future. Elementary OS now has an official partner/retailer program, and the developers are in active discussions with other OEMs about potential partnerships.

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  1. I applaud Elementary OS for offering a “pay what you can/like” model where the money goes directly to the developers to sustain their work. It is “controversial” only because of the whining of an entitled minority who seem to believe that developers who ask for compensation for their work are “guilt tripping.”

    Elementary is exploring a market-based way to sustain free (as in libre and beer) open source software development apart from the traditional non-profit model with all its limitations. The more diverse ways we have to support FLOSS, the more that FLOSS can flourish. The fact is, if we don’t support it, it will disappear or at least struggle to survive, let alone perform competitively.

    Google and Facebook are free, except the cost is they spy on and track and model and anticipate your every move. There is always a cost. The question is: what do you want that cost to be? Do you want it to be simple, minimal, direct and transparent (the E OS model)? Or covert, complex with many unintended consequences (Google/Facebook)?

  2. slightly controversial? Shaming people is “slightly” controversial.

    I wouldn’t go near this nonsense.

    The only project I donate to any more is mx linux.

    1. I don’t think it’s a bad thing that we contribute to projects we like. Again, you don’t have to pay anything to download it.

  3. Interesting to see more companies offering Linux factory installed in computers… Endless OS in Acer and Asus, Ubuntu in Dells, Ubuntu and Redhat in Lenovo.

    Curious to see if besides Chrome and Android we will ever see Linux / Open source operaring systems (again) in the mainstream market…

    Still remember the EEE PC with its Xandros Linux that got me excited so long ago… in a way Chromebooks are a follow up from those days!