How to Speed Up a $129 Lenovo Laptop Bought During 2023 Black Friday at Best Buy

It was 2023 Black Friday and I was in the market for a low powered laptop that I could use to start writing my first book. I did not want to spend a lot of money for it because I know the main purpose of this laptop was only for me to write comfortably anywhere.

I was going to buy an NVMe SSD to fix a broken laptop. When I was at Best Buy, the cheapest NVMe SSD was about $60.00.

It was Black Friday and I wanted to see what other options I had. At first I was looking at a Chromebook. The price for the cheapest Chromebooks ranged around $150.00. I really did not want a Chromebook even though it would give me fast performance and a decent battery life. I had a Chromebook before but it just did not give me the flexibility that I need. I found a Lenovo laptop for $129.

The Best Buy associate said it ran on a Windows system. I knew it would be a problem because Windows was a beast in terms of using system resources and the code is just too bloated to work efficiently with a low powered device. But it was the lowest laptop I could find. $129 was not bad for a new laptop. But I had to decide if the risk was worth it. I knew that if I limited my work on that laptop to just using a browser, it would be ok.

So I decided to go with the $129 Lenovo laptop. The original price was $249.99. When I finally got to setting it up, it was not what I expected. The system was just bit too slow for me even for basic internet browsing. I could not return the laptop because the price point was really good and the keyboard was not bad for the price. The size of the laptop was also not bad. It was just too slow. I tried to use it for a week to try to make it work but I was getting a little impatient with the laptop. I needed something that would be responsive when I did basic things like opening and operating a browser.

So I finally decided it was time for a change. I decided to replace the Windows operating system with an Ubuntu Linux Desktop operating system.

I got my USB where I had an image of the Ubuntu Desktop. I went to the BIOS and updated the Boot settings so I could install Ubuntu. After the install it did not recognize the WiFi module. I went and got my Ethernet to USB-C adapter. I connected it to my router using a Cat5e cable and it got online. I updated the Laptop and it loaded the driver for the WiFi module.

I made some basic changes to the Ubuntu Desktop and now it is performing at an optimal speed.

The only thing I was worried about was Evernote. Evernote did not have a Linux package. I needed a reason to look for an Evernote alternative anyway because they increased their fees to $12 from $7 per month. $7 was even too expensive for me. So I did some research and found Joplin.

It worked on both my Linux and Windows computers. I used my windows account to sync Joplin using OneDrive. Joplin is free. I still have to try Joplin in my iPhone and Android app but it should work as well in those devices.

For $129 I now have a laptop that I can use to write my first book. I also have a laptop to write blogs like this one.

So if you are in the market for a new laptop to do basic things like browsing the internet, you can get something like this Lenovo laptop and replace the Windows OS with an Ubuntu Desktop OS and you’ll have an amazing tool to get the job done at a very low price.

If you don’t have a lot of experience working with Linux, you can get in touch with us and we can help you with your IT needs. Email us at or send us a message