Before installing LTSP, make sure that it fits your needs and that your hardware is appropriate.

When to use

The main reason to use LTSP is if you want to maintain a single installation, instead of many. It saves administration time.

The older LTSP5 targetted thin clients with reduced hardware specifications; this is no longer the case. The LTSP clients should be able to run the distribution with their own CPU/RAM; except with LTSP they'll be using a network disk instead of a local disk, so they can be diskless.


  • The server ⟺ switch connection should be gigabit; i.e. gigabit server NIC, switch port and 5e+ cabling.
  • The clients ⟺ switch connection may be 100 Mbps.
  • It's best if the LTSP clients are connected to the same switch as the server.

As network performance is very important for LTSP, after it's up and running do a LAN benchmark with epoptes, to make sure the server can send and receive data with at least 800 Mbps bandwidth.


Any recent PC will do with e.g. 4 GB RAM and 3000 score. An SSD disk for both rootfs and home will probably make client network disk access a bit faster.


Consult your distribution for client specifications. 1 GB RAM with 500 score could be the minimal specs, and 2 GB RAM / 2000+ score the recommended.