This is my first post on the forum and i would like to ask you some advice regarding Purism Hardware and PureOS.
I really like the philosphy of Purism and the fact that they provide secured laptop (i wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t the case).
I want to learn game development and i will in the coming year start a school. I have a desktop at home for all the heavy workload and i am searching for a new laptop to bring to school and to use when i make trip.
I think you know were this is heading but will UE4 or other game development tool work on PureOS ? and if they do will they run good enough for light use while i am at school ?
Also It’s been years since i am interested in Unix OS and to learn how to use it so do you think you can learn how to use it as you learn coding or is it not friendly user ?
Thank you in advance for the answers.
From Unreal Engine’s FAQ page at https://www.unrealengine.com/en-US/faq:
What are Unreal Engine 4’s system requirements?
For developing with UE4, we recommend a desktop PC with Windows 7 64-bit or a Mac with Mac OS X 10.9.2 or later, 8 GB RAM and a quad-core Intel or AMD processor, and a DX11 compatible video card. UE4 will run on desktops and laptops below these recommendations, but performance may be limited.
What platforms are supported?
Unreal Engine 4 enables you to deploy projects to Windows PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Mac OS X, iOS, Android, AR, VR, Linux, SteamOS, and HTML5. You can run the Unreal Editor on Windows, OS X and Linux.
So it seems like the answer could be yes, especially if you choose the beefier options when you purchase. Please note that Unreal is proprietary albeit less restrictive than most proprietary software (https://www.unrealengine.com/en-US/faq#source) so it is not in the same spirit as PureOS’ commitment to software freedom, but if this does not bother you it may cause you no problem.
Aside from UE there are many programs in the PureOS repositories that can be used for game development (and many free games made with such tools!). Good luck in your academic pursuits!
Your kilometreage may vary, but I have found it the most accommodating of any operating system I have used.
I do suggest seeing if there is a GNU/Linux user group in your area, as having a social group to ask questions in person to can at times be much less frustrating than reading through many manual pages or wiki articles to figure out how to do something. Of course, one should not expect things to be done for them, but with this in mind it is quite possible to learn and configure your system.
Thank you for your answer.
It seems like UE4 is proprietary and i would really like to work on an open sourced program (which i’ll try for my own convenance) but i still need to use what the school and the industry will want me to know.
I was afraid that for security mesure even if PureOS is a Linux OS it could prevent some software to work properly.
If you’re interested in exploring alternatives to UE4, you could check out Godot, which is free and open source
Thank you !
I’ll look into it !
While I am absolutely certain that it is possible to develop for UE4 on a Librem laptop, I would advise you not to do so.
First of all, as @ArloJamesBarnes pointed out, Linux is not a supported platform for developing with UE4. That leaves you with two options.
- You can develop for UE4 on Linux anyways, but you’ll lose the benefit of support. It’s an extremely uncommon practice, so when you encounter bugs or problems (and you will) there will be fewer people with the experience to help you, and it will likely take longer to resolve the problems. This will distract from your objective, which is to follow along with the rest of your class and learn about building games.
- You can install Windows on your Librem laptop, probably in a dual-boot configuration. But doing so will undermine some of the security advantages of the Librem hardware, as well as requiring you to disable some of the security features that Windows would normally enable by default. So you’ll end up with less security in either OS as a result.
Second, while Librem’s laptops are fairly high quality, the parts are exotic and the support is still a bit undeveloped. If you encounter any problems with your Librem laptop, you’ll have to contend with the following challenges.
- Almost nobody wants to support Linux, at all. Even for something as mundane as connecting to a Wi-Fi network, you’ll be completely on your own.
- The hardware is exotic. If you need a replacement part, there’s essentially only one vendor (Purism) who stocks some of the parts. And the shipping can sometimes take a long time.
- The support model is pretty DIY. When I had an issue with my battery, the solution was they shipped me a new battery module and I performed the replacement myself. It wasn’t a problem for me, because I had the tools and skills to do the job. To their credit, Purism designed the Librem laptops to not require special tools. However, there were no instructions included. To contrast that experience, with Dell or Lenovo they would over-night you a pre-addressed/labeled box, you overnight the laptop back to them, they repair it, and then they overnight it back to you. Within one business week, you would have a working laptop again. It took a little longer than that just for the replacement battery module to reach my doorstep from Purism.
I absolutely support learning Linux/Unix while you’re in school. I even support using it as your desktop OS. However, the last thing you want is for exotic hardware or software to get in the way of keeping up with your classes.
So you should ONLY consider the Librem laptop if you are 100% confident that you can solve any problems you encounter on your own without jeopardizing your course work. If you’re not 100% confident (if you were, you wouldn’t have needed to ask us), then you should follow the recommendations of your professors or department regarding which laptop to purchase. Sometimes you might even get a discount by ordering it through the school, along with the safety net that your department will be familiar with the hardware/software and able to help you, and that the school’s IT resources will be familiar with it and might even have spare parts on-hand if anything needs to be replaced in a hurry.