ubuntu system requirements

The required system specs for Ubuntu depend on what you plan to do with the system.  Resource-intensive tasks like editing or development will call for higher specs, whereas the requirements for general usage are very reasonable.

Your system might match these ‘reasonable’ requirements but does that mean Ubuntu will run smoothly or just barely get by?

Additionally, there are lightweight Ubuntu versions like Xubuntu and Lubuntu if you want to use Ubuntu on a low-end system. We’ll cover Ubuntu’s recommended and minimum requirements keeping all these things in mind.

Recommended System Requirements

The recommended minimum requirements for Ubuntu 22.04 LTS are as follows:

  • 2 GHz dual-core processor or better 
  • 4 GB system memory 
  • 25 GB of free hard drive space

‘Recommended minimum’ may sound like an oxymoron, but hear me out. Depending on what processes are or aren’t running (e.g., the desktop environment), Ubuntu can run on extremely low specs. Think 512 MB RAM, 8 GB total drive space, and so on.

For instance, a barebones Ubuntu server installation can run on even lower specs. But if you install a desktop environment like Xfce, the memory requirement grows larger. You’ll need more memory for KDE Plasma, and even more for GNOME. 

GUI apps like browsers also tend to be resource hungry. And if you plan to store a lot of personal files, 8 GB of disk space obviously won’t be enough. My point here is that the actual system requirements depend on your exact installation and use cases.

It’s not easy to accurately estimate resource usage without actually installing and trying out Ubuntu. So, we recommend viewing the official recommendations from earlier as sort of a baseline minimum.

Lightweight flavors like Lubuntu and Xubuntu will work great with those specs. Standard Ubuntu won’t be as smooth, but it’ll still work decently. If you plan to store files or perform resource-intensive tasks, you’ll need to adjust the specs accordingly. 

Minimum System Requirements

If you want to run Ubuntu on a low-end system, you have a few options – Xubuntu, Lubuntu, and Ubuntu Server. These are intended to be lightweight, so the official requirements are a bit vague. But it’s more or less,

  • 1 GHz or better CPU
  • 512 MB – 1 GB RAM
  • 2.5 GB – 8.6 GB space

Ubuntu Server is the most barebones option with no desktop installed by default. So, if you want Ubuntu with the lowest requirements, go for Ubuntu server.

Anup Thapa

Senior Writer

Anup Thapa is a Linux enthusiast with an extensive background in computer hardware and networking. His goal is to effectively communicate technical concepts in a simplified form understandable by new Linux users. To this end, he mainly writes beginner-friendly tutorials and troubleshooting guides. Outside of work, he enjoys reading up on a range of topics, traveling, working out, and MOBAs.