Ubuntu 18.04 runs great on on the Alienware 17 R5, but not out of the box.

  1. Touchpad
  2. Wi-Fi
  3. Video Driver


Following the instructions found here for 16.04 also works for 18.04:

sudo su
echo 'blacklist i2c_hid' >> /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf
depmod -a
update-initramfs -u
sudo reboot

Upon reboot, the touchpad should now work.


These instructions work for the Killer NIC. It might work for the regular NIC as well, but I can’t test it. The use of sudo was required as building without it created many permission denied errors. Before proceeding you need to decide which path will work for you:

  1. Plug into a network to clone the repo
  2. Clone the repo on another computer, then archive it onto a thumb drive for transfer
sudo apt update
sudo apt install gcc make git -y
clone backport-iwlwifi
cd backport-iwlwifi
sudo make defconfig-iwlwifi-public
sudo make -j$($nproc - 1)
sudo make install

Video Driver

  1. Open the Software & Updates application.
  2. Select the Additional Drivers tab.
  3. Select the radio button Using NVIDIA driver metapackage from nvidia-driver-410 (open source)
  4. Click Apply Changes


Once these steps have been followed, the laptop should be ready for your workloads. I was able to install Ubuntu with and without secure boot enabled, but I am not dual booting.