Os for laptop [VCV Rack]

Hi there, I need some suggestions.

because of my job, I have bought a refurbished laptop:

dell precision 7710 - intel i7-6920HQ 2.9GHz - 256Gb M2 drive + 512Gb SSD - 48Gb ram - nvidia M5000M (8Gb) - win10 pro 64 bit

all my experience with VCV Rack and some easy music related stuff (jack, audacity, ecc) is on Linux, my tower pc is still perfect after almost 4 years (ryzen7 1700 - two SSDs - 16Gb ram - nvidia 1050ti 4Gb on Ubuntu 16.04).

Now I want to have VCV Rack on the laptop as well, how would you go?

VCV Rack running on win OR would you install a Linux distro only for playing? I’m quite good at windows, since I use it from the times you had to write “win” on MS-DOS to run it…but I have no experience with music on it…

my goal is to set up everything ready to “play” live, finally my brand new ES-9 is getting here in two days :yum:

cheers :broccoli:


Might I suggest you’ve answered your own question?

in any case, the main issue it going to be the thermals of the laptop. But, yeah, Linux sounds like a fine idea.

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I don’t know why you would bother with windows if you don’t need it. Linux is lighter, quicker, more hassle free and more customisable.

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The important question is, are you gonna depend on hardware that requires Windows? For example, for a sound card. That laptop is a beast for sure, but no matter how good the number crunching, you bet its sound card remains entry-grade gear, so you might want an USB sound card, and you know how Linux drivers for prosumer gear tends to be a painful experience. Same if you want a master keyboard with advanced bidirectional features via USB rather than MIDI only.


Exactly a great reason to always buy class-compliant USB devices, when at all possible.


tnx for the replies!

@contemporaryinsanity @Squinky @TroubledMind

I forgot to say that I (unfortunately) need win on this pc because the softwares I work with run on win only…that’s the reason for buying such a beast…because of my job…I do reverse engineering/CAD/CAM

I love Linux and it’s been years that I live without wine too…

@Aria_Salvatrice I have chosen the ES-9 as my sound card for the reason @LarsBjerregaard has just posted…I have never had a sound card, maybe a sound blaster on my 386 when I was 14 :smiley: …actually I use an immortal behringer xenyx 802 usb mixer as a sound card, and it’s class compliant as well

so…my question can be different:

should I make a partition and install a Linux distro (I think ubuntu studio LTS) on my working pc just to play with VCV Rack? what would you do?

Yes. Why not? My laptop(s) run FreeBSD, my workstation Windows & FreeBSD dual boot.


dual boot of course

I my experience Xcf desktop is the best (but ugly), and gnome the worst since it use lot of graphic in my desktop computer I use kde, in my laptop Xubuntu

prehaps this can help https://coroto.gitbook.io/linux-audio-survival-kit/

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I’m using VCV Rack on Windows with an ES-9. Making a video about it, just waiting on a loan of the ES-5 expansion module so I can show it too.

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The dual boot seems like a good idea. Honestly if my favorite vsts were in Linux too, i’d go full Linux now that i’m switching to Bitwig DAW. I know there are ways to get Win vsts working on linux, but meh i don’t understand enough of carla/wine/jack yet to get that running well.

since vcv rack I miss less and less the vst, btw the jack thing is not complicated, is very similar to all the modular software



I work on a Lenovo X230, dual boot win10 and linux-ubuntu (setup needed for my job). So I’m very positive that overheating might be a minor issue with your setup.

I haven’t used Linux on the dekstop for years, but my experience is that many devices are more or less standardized with a proprietary enhancement layer.

You can get the core functionality working just fine, but some bells and whistles like LEDs or advanced features are not implemented by the community driver, and the general attitude is “You don’t need these features actually, they’re bloat”.

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well, I don’t disagree with the others, but you can of course consider just running VCV rack natively in windows. There are some things you can’t do, but it certainly runs fine in windows. One small plus for windows is that sometimes new plugins / test plugins / not in plugin manager are only available on windows.

Such as? Haven’t used doze in years and no intention to but curious.

I think some of the things that let you route audio like Jack?

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that’s what (somehow) I was looking for. Not a fan of win, but I could give it a try…

I also have analog lab 4 of arturia that is not running on linux…

If I find myself in a kind of trouble because of win’s drivers I’ll go for a dual boot…

tnx all! :broccoli:


it’s the vst i was thinking about when i said i can’t switch to linux yet :stuck_out_tongue: (That and pigments too, no way i’m giving up on them, even with all bitwig offers)

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  • real time and freewheel render
  • transport sync
  • the jack routhing

some of the things that you do with rewire

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