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Dell Inspiron 13


This is a guide to running Linux with the Dell Inspiron 13 laptop. The base hardware for this laptop is based on the Dell XPS M1330 so Linux compatibility will be roughly the same.

This guide is intended to provide you details on how well this laptop works with Linux and which modules you need to configure. For details on how to actually install and configure the required modules have a look at our guides section for distribution specific instructions.

This page is just for discussing using Linux on the Dell Inspiron 13. For a general discussion about this laptop you can visit the Dell Inspiron 13 page on LapWik.

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For full specifications see the Dell Inspiron 13 specifications page.

NameDell Inspiron 13
ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo T5750 2.0GHz
Screen13.3“ WXGA Widescreen
Optical DriveDVD+-RW
GraphicsIntel Graphics Media Accelerator X3100
NetworkEthernet, Intel 4965AGN 802.11abgn

Linux Compatibility

Optical DriveYes
WirelessYesSee notes
FirewireNot Tested
Card ReaderYes
ExpressCard SlotNot Tested



There are several options for wireless on the Inspiron 13. The Intel option (what Dell call the Intel Next-Gen Wireless-N Mini-card) is by far the best option as most Linux distributions support it as standard. The other options, the Dell 1395 and 1505, are Broadcom based wireless solutions who's drivers for Linux are of poor quality.


You can use the Linux UVC module to get the inbuilt webcam working with the Inspiron 13. Many, but not all, distributions include this module. See the guides section on site for installation instructions.


If you are looking to buy the Dell Inspiron 13 you should get it with the Intel wireless option. With that wireless solution, the Dell Inspiron 13 work very well with Linux.


Thom, 2019/03/12 17:50

I am unable to get ANY of the ten Linux distributions to start on reboot. i've tried Ubuntu, Fedora, Arch, Mandarin, and even Gentoo. The only thing that OCCASIONALLY works is if I wait about 20 minutes and it will to deign to work. Never again will use a Dell product.

Paul Carpenter, 2017/10/29 00:25

I have recently installed LinuxMint 18.2 on an Inspiron 13 5000

Everything appears to be working from the onset except for:

The screen doesn’t auto-rotate, but will do from the toggle within settings

When the screen is rotated the trackpad is very difficult to control

Things that I have checked that do work are:


Sound controls

Screen brightness controls

Keyboard backlight


The configuration is 4 GB RAM and a 128 GB SSD. Performance for normal stuff is excellent. I am extremely pleased with it.

Yo, Robot, 2010/03/17 13:51

Hi, I installed linux mint on it, everithing worked out of the box, including webcam, bluethooth and the multimedia keys, I'll never go back to xp/vista.

Bond, 2009/09/09 01:06

Hi! I am trying to install 64-bit red Hat linux. It looks like installation is OK, but them I cannot start X-server by “startx” or x-terminal by “xterm”. The errors are:

(EE) VESA(0): No valid modes
(EE) Screen(s) found, but none have a usable configuration.

Any suggestion?

Draco Chavez, 2009/07/03 17:01

Yes, definitely the Inspiron 1318 works wonders with Linux once you get the kinks out of the way. I tested Ubuntu 8.10, Sabayon 4.0 and #! CrunchBang with is now permanently residing and got rid of Vi$ta. The card reader works very well with SD cards, which I load to copy stuff and use it on the GP2X.

I have a few issues with the camera though, I would have to test the UVC driver as mentioned in this article.

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dell_inspiron_13.txt · Last modified: 2013/05/30 01:49 by nad
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