Does the Dell XPS 13 Plus run Linux?

The Dell XPS 13 Plus is one of the most interesting laptops we’ve seen so far this year. It has a very modern design, a great display and top-notch performance. Like most laptops, the Dell XPS 13 Plus is primarily known as a Windows device, but what if you want to run Linux on it? Luckily, you can either buy it with Linux or install it yourself later.

The Dell XPS 13 Plus Developer Edition comes with Ubuntu

If you want to buy the Dell XPS 13 Plus with Linux right away, you should look for the Developer Edition. This isn’t new to Dell, and the regular Dell XPS 13 also comes in a Developer Edition running Linux. Notably, the Dell XPS 13 Plus comes with Ubuntu, one of the most popular Linux distributions. The installed version is 20.04, the latest version available as LTS (Long Term Support) version. You can always upgrade to Ubuntu 21.10 if you want.

Black laptop on brown table

That’s great to see considering so few premium laptops ship with Ubuntu. Since the Dell XPS 13 Plus is one of the best laptops out there, it’s great to have the option to run Linux and have it officially supported by the manufacturer. We don’t yet know what configuration options will be available as the laptop hasn’t launched yet, but the standard Dell XPS 13 didn’t skimp much with Linux compared to the Windows version.

Windows subsystem for Linux

Another option you might want to consider is using the Windows subsystem for Linux. It has been possible to run Linux on Windows for some time, with various distributions available in the Microsoft Store. These are mainly CLI-based versions of the operating system, but you can also run GUI apps.

Linux version of GIMP and xcalx on Windows 11

You can enable the Windows Subsystem for Linux by going to the Settings app and then to applications section and selection Optional Features -> More Windows features. Just scroll down the list, enable Windows Subsystem for Linux and reboot. Then you can search for a Linux distribution in the Microsoft Store and install it. Ubuntu, Kali Linux, openSUSE and others are available.

Installing Linux on the Dell XPS 13 Plus

If you want to run Linux natively on your PC, access a GUI version of it, or replace Windows entirely, you can install it using an ISO file or a bootable USB drive. It’s relatively easy to install Linux on a PC, and since most Linux distributions are free, you don’t have to worry about buying a license.

For example, if you want to install Ubuntu, you can download the latest ISO from the official Ubuntu website or you can search for one of the many Linux distributions that you can install. Only Ubuntu is officially supported, but if it runs well other Linux distributions should work just fine on the Dell XPS 13 Plus.

How you can install it depends on how much you invest in the switch. You can use virtualization software like VMware Workstation Player to create a virtual machine if you just want to test Linux. Or you can use Rufus to create a bootable USB drive to install Linux natively on the laptop. We have a guide on how to dual boot Linux and Windows 11 if you want to keep using them side-by-side.

The Dell XPS 13 Plus is not yet available. So if you really prefer Linux, you can still buy it with Ubuntu preinstalled. We will have a purchase link above once it is available. In the meantime, if you’d rather not wait, you can check out other Dell laptops that you might like. Technically, any Windows 11 laptop can run Linux in some form, specifically through the second and third options above. And if you’re looking to expand your laptop’s ports, check out the best docks for Dell XPS laptops.

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