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Ben Halpern
Ben Halpern

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What computer do you use for software develpment?

What make/model do you use? Are you satisfied with it? Are you going to stay in the same operating system ecosystem when you upgrade?

Top comments (84)

katafrakt profile image
Paweł Świątkowski

Depends. When working for a company - what they give me. Unfortunately, they usually insist on Macs.

As for my private projects, Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air, 8GB, running Arch Linux is generally more than enough.

ben profile image
Ben Halpern

My details:

  • MacBook Pro (15-inch 2019)
  • Processor: 2.3 GHz 8-Core Intel Core i9
  • Memory: 32 GB 2400 MHz DDR4
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 630 1536 MB

This is basically among the more powerful Mac laptops before M1. I'm overall satisfied with it. There's more than enough beef here for everything I do. I got it refurbished so didn't pay absolute top dollar.

I'd be happy to lose the touch bar and definitely feel like M1 Chip was a step up I missed out on — though have enough power in this machine to not worry about it, realistically.

At this point I worry that I'm an old dog that can't be taught new tricks enough to really want to leave the Apple ecosystem at this point. Just the way it is despite the premium pricing and certain missed options.

moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I cannot stand typing or using the touchpad on Macs. I make so many mistakes, and it's not down to familiarity because sometimes the Mac's been the only computer I've used for weeks at a time. I connect an external keyboard and mouse if I can these days.

zwacky profile image
Simon Wicki

I'm also team MacBook, but I skipped the 15-inch 2019. I need a physical escape key.

That's why I immediately got the MacBook 16" (non-M1) when I saw the keyboard 🥰

jaredsiebert profile image
Jared Siebert

I have the same, yet I've still had the keyboard replaced twice thanks to the stupid butterfly key flaw. Now, unless I absolutely have to (like for travel), I always use an external mouse and keyboard

dannyengelman profile image
Danny Engelman

Model I

moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

I prefer to do my important mission-critical work on the coco.

dannyengelman profile image
Danny Engelman • Edited

Keeps us sharp. We learned every byte counts. I never deliver a Web Component over 16KB

Fun fact; the Z80 CPU was also used in the space shuttle; NASA bought a shitload of them to keep it flying.

fida1989 profile image
Fida Muntaseer

Model: HP Probook 450 G4
OS: Linux Mint 19.3 Tricia
Processor: Intel® Core™ i5-7200U
Ram: 16 GB
Storage: 256 GB SSD + 1 TB HD

dilutewater profile image
Rachit Khurana

Mine is very low end.

Intel Pentium 3rd Gen
4gb Ram
Linux - Ubuntu + KDE desktop environment
No graphics card

P.S. I'm just a student, I don't develop much software, I mostly run just python.

grahamthedev profile image
GrahamTheDev • Edited

Windows (laptop!)

  • I7 OC TO 4.5ghz
  • 32 GB RAM
  • M.2 1TB (3700mb/s read write)
  • 2 SSDs @2TB each (RAID 0)
  • GTX1080 (stripped down PC version, not maxQ)

Was a custom build from PC Specialist.

The only thing I was never happy with was that I couldn’t overclock the CPU and GPU at the same time as it is only a 300 watt power supply and so there isn’t enough power. To be fair it is a laptop so cooling is always fun when stressing it on both CPU and GPU (rendering videos etc) for an extended period.

So I just O/C the CPU and undervolted it slightly to minimise the max power draw and left the GPU stock speeds. Real shame as I won the silicon lottery on both!

The thing still munches through nearly anything and is 5 years old, but I have been eyeing up building a desktop instead as I want to get back into making videos and so a 1080 is now a little slow.

The m.2 was the biggest win, always invest in a fast HDD for Dev work, saves so much time!

sherrydays profile image
Sherry Day
mccurcio profile image
Matt Curcio

I have eyed the XPS-13 & 15 for quite some time. How do you like it? I worried that 13 would be too small.

jaredsiebert profile image
Jared Siebert

Screen size of any laptop dev setup all depends on how you use it... Are you always on the go and only working off the laptop screen? Then yes, screen size matters. My setup is a 16" MBP but it's plugged into a mouse, keyboard, and 2 external 32" monitors.

neoprint3d profile image
Drew Ronsman

It's really small I have a friend that has it. it would work, but not be practical using it for software development

tomasszz profile image

PC running Linux Mint 20.

AMD R5 1600 (af)
32GB ram
GTX 970Ti + GTX 660Ti

muzhawir profile image
Muzhawir Amri
  • Lenovo Thinkpad X260
  • Processor: Intel Core i5-6300U
  • Memory: 16 GB
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520
  • OS: Linux OpenSUSE Tumbleweed
thumbone profile image
Bernd Wechner

I'm a little less concerned about the "computer" per se than the workstation and the OS. So tackling those first and then the computer:


My main gig is a standing work desk with a tall saddle chair, a 43" 4K monitor and video and USB cables that plug into the wall, where they are connected a computer beneath the floor in the basement, where I hear no fan noise, and it's consistently cool, and it lives with a a few servers, switches, consoles and such as well. So all I have at my standing workstation is a 43" monitor keyboard and mouse and my desk clutter.

OS and Dev tools

I use Linux Mint. Moved to that some years ago in the Windows 7 days and never looked back. I use a Windows VM very very rarely so rarely I can't remember how to do it when i need to and have notes, ha, ha. Nor do ever envisage looking back ...

And for development, I use mostly Eclipse for my work in Python, JavaScript, bash , PHP - being the primary languages I use I guess. I use the Atom Editor a lot, Joplin for keeping a journal and notes. Git for source control and Github as a remote.


Easiest to inxi tell us that:

$ inxi -Fz
System:    Kernel: 5.4.0-92-generic x86_64 bits: 64 Desktop: Cinnamon 5.2.7 Distro: Linux Mint 20.3 Una 
Machine:   Type: Desktop System: ASUS product: All Series v: N/A serial: <filter> 
           Mobo: ASUSTeK model: MAXIMUS VII HERO v: Rev 1.xx serial: <filter> UEFI [Legacy]: American Megatrends v: 2401 
           date: 02/24/2015 
CPU:       Topology: Quad Core model: Intel Core i7-4790 bits: 64 type: MT MCP L2 cache: 8192 KiB 
           Speed: 1736 MHz min/max: 800/4000 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 1249 2: 1220 3: 1289 4: 1250 5: 1286 6: 1216 7: 1219 
           8: 1242 
Graphics:  Device-1: NVIDIA GP108 [GeForce GT 1030] driver: nvidia v: 460.91.03 
           Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.20.13 driver: nvidia unloaded: fbdev,modesetting,nouveau,vesa 
           resolution: 3840x2160~60Hz 
           OpenGL: renderer: GeForce GT 1030/PCIe/SSE2 v: 4.6.0 NVIDIA 460.91.03 
Audio:     Device-1: Intel 9 Series Family HD Audio driver: snd_hda_intel 
           Device-2: NVIDIA GP108 High Definition Audio driver: snd_hda_intel 
           Device-3: Logitech G930 type: USB driver: hid-generic,snd-usb-audio,usbhid 
           Sound Server: ALSA v: k5.4.0-92-generic 
Network:   Device-1: Intel Ethernet I218-V driver: e1000e 
           IF: eno1 state: up speed: 100 Mbps duplex: full mac: <filter> 
Drives:    Local Storage: total: 5.17 TiB used: 3.21 TiB (62.0%) 
           ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: Western Digital model: WD20EZRZ-00Z5HB0 size: 1.82 TiB 
           ID-2: /dev/sdb vendor: Western Digital model: WD20EARX-00PASB0 size: 1.82 TiB 
           ID-3: /dev/sdc vendor: Western Digital model: WD10EACS-00D6B1 size: 931.51 GiB 
           ID-4: /dev/sdd vendor: Maxtor model: 6V320F0 size: 298.09 GiB 
           ID-5: /dev/sde vendor: Samsung model: SSD 830 Series size: 119.24 GiB 
           ID-6: /dev/sdf vendor: Kingston model: SV300S37A240G size: 223.57 GiB 
Partition: ID-1: / size: 116.38 GiB used: 35.67 GiB (30.6%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sde5 
           ID-2: /home size: 293.29 GiB used: 94.08 GiB (32.1%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sdd1 
Sensors:   System Temperatures: cpu: 29.8 C mobo: 27.8 C gpu: nvidia temp: 45 C 
           Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A gpu: nvidia fan: 0% 
Info:      Processes: 382 Uptime: 23h 09m Memory: 31.30 GiB used: 9.66 GiB (30.9%) Shell: bash inxi: 3.0.38 
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raddevus profile image

Cool, learned a new command. Thanks for posting.

adhirajbhatia profile image

My laptop ‘s details :
• HP EliteBook 745 G4
• Processor : AMD Pro A12-8830B
• Memory : 216 GB SSD & 500 GB HDD
• Graphics : AMD ATI Radeon R5/R6/R7
• Operating System : Pop! OS
This Laptop is perfect for me !

jankapunkt profile image
Jan Küster

Desktop PC, i5, 32G RAM, nvme SSD, Nvidia GPU, 32" monitor, Logitech MX keys (wireless plus backlight and superbe typing feeling) and Logitech trackball mouse.

Os: Xubuntu 20.04 LTS

I will upgrade to a larger SSD but I will keep Xubuntu since it's lightweight and xfce is such a clean, yet customizable desktop and Ubuntu is just great in terms of compatibility

baenencalin profile image
Calin Baenen

One that has 0% of its root partition space left!

roneo profile image

Thinkpad x230 i7 16Go
OS: Debian + Gnome

lil5 profile image
Lucian I. Last


  • Thinkpad X230
  • LinuxMint Xfce


  • Custom build i5 GTX 1050
  • EndeavourOS
  • Runs as my Linux gaming machine as well