Research Center for Digital Sustainability


From time to time there is hardware that is incompatible with the "Lernstick"-system, hence we compiled some recommendations for "Lernstick"-users:

Symbolbild Lernstick


In principle, the "Lernstick"-software should run on any standard USB stick. For the open learning environment USB sticks with at least 8 GB storage capacity are required, for the examination environment at least 4 GB.

Note: In order to protect the USB ports of the computers, it can be helpful under heavy use to leave a USB extension cable permanently plugged into the computer and insert the USB sticks there.

At the moment we recommend the following models, which we have also tested successfully:

  • SanDisk Extreme Go USB 3.1
    + very fast
    + very good locking
    - expensive
  • SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive USB 3.1
    + supports both type A and type C
    + favourable
    * average speed
  • SanDisk Ultra Fit USB 3.1
    +relatively fast
    + very cheap
    * very small
  • Samsung Fit Plus 3.1
    + relatively fast
    + favourable
    + does not get as warm as other models
    + very small
  • Samsung Duo Plus 3.1
    +supports both type A and type C
    + relatively fast
    + does not get as warm as other models
  • SanDisk Ultra
    + good locking
    - slow

If there are increased security requirements for the "Lernstick Examination Environment", sticks should be used which can be write-protected via a PIN and thus protected against unauthorised manipulation:

  • iStorage datAshur
    +  relatively cheap
    - slow
  • Kingston DataTraveler 2000
    + very fast
    + simple operation
    + high quality materials
    - quite expensive
  • Corsair Flash Padlock 3
    + relativ schnell
    - unhandliche PIN-Eingabe
    - umständliche PIN-Verwaltung

Unfortunately we also have to issue WARNINGS. The following USB-Sticks showed to  be unsuitable to be used for the "Lernstick":

  • Corsair Flash Voyager Mini (erroneous bootsectors)
  • DELOCK USB 2.0 Nano (file system error)
  • disk2go nano (low tranfer speed: Booting takes about three minutes)
  • disk2go gyro (extremely low transfer speed: Booting takes about four minutes)
  • Kingston DataTraveler (very low transfer speed: Booting takes bout three minutes)
  • Super Talent Pico USB Drive (extremely low transfer speed: Booting takes about four minutes)
  • Transcend JetFlash (built-in "SecureDrive"-function denies the system to be started from the stick)

Memory cards

An interesting alternative to USB-sticks are memory cards as using them means neither the computer nor the "Lernstick"-storage medium is under physical stress. However, there are fewer computers that can boot from memory cards..

The folllwing memory cards have been tested by us and were found to be suitable:
Kingston SDHC 16 GB


The Laptops from why! open computing are built for good compatibilities with free software and a long life and therefore greatly recommended. We tested the following models:
why! W650SZ

Dell sells notebooks, wehre Linux is preinstalled. The likelihood is very high that the "Lernstick" will be working without any problems with those models:
Dell XPS 13

To make recommendations for models of other manufacturers is difficult as the models change very quickly. In the Wiki, there is a list that is taken care of by the community and where tested notebooks and tablets (also older models) can be found:

We tested the follwing models and can recommend them:
Lenovo ThinkPad L480
Lenovo ThinkPad T480


The "Lernstick" works on Intel-based tablets, e.g.:
Lenovo ThinkPad L380 Yoga
Lenovo ThinkPad X380 Yoga
+ excellent performance and quality

HP Spectre x360
+ excellent performance and quality
- relatively expensive

Acer Aspire R11
- complete shut-down only by pressing the hardware-button

Microsoft Surface Pro 3
- only available scond-hand

HP Elite x2 1012 G1
- 3D graphics not accelerated
- Volume can only be changed via software
- only front webcam supported


Barebones are small inexpensive desktop computers. We have successfully tested the following barebones ourselves:
Shuttle XS35V2
+ fanless
- low to medium performance
- RAM must be purchased separately, e.g. PNY SOD104GBN/10660/3-SB

If you want to buy a hard disk for the barebone (not really necessary when using the "Lernstick"), please make sure it is a hard disk with a SATA-II 2.5' connector and a maximum height of 9.5 mm. Larger hard disks are usually higher and cannot be installed in the Shuttle XS35V2! We have successfully tested the following hard disk:
Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000BPVT, 500GB

Intel NUC D34010WYK
+ good performance
- Cooling by fan
- no Ethernet (only WLAN or Ethernet adapter via Thunderbolt)
- No VGA (HDMI only)

If you have successfully tested other available computers with the Lernstick, we would be very happy to receive feedback from you. Please send us an e-mail to

In general, we recommend the purchase of Hewlett-Packard printers, since HP provides very good printer drivers, see here:
supported printers from HP

The HP printer database shows for each device which minimum driver version is necessary for the operation of the device ("Minimum HPLIP version"). The driver version 3.16.11 is currently installed on the learning stick. We therefore recommend that you obtain printers that work with driver version 3.16.11 (or lower).

We have tested the following devices ourselves and can recommend them:

Black/white laser printer: HP LaserJet P2055dn

Attention: Please read the notes in the HP printer database carefully. Some HP printers require an additional proprietary driver. We explicitly do not recommend these printers!

Digital Photo Cameras

Digital photo cameras are addressed on the "Lernstick" using the driver collection "gPhoto". We therefore recommend the purchase of digital photo cameras that are supported by gPhoto. A list of digital photo cameras supported by gPhoto can be found here:

The version 2.5 of gPhoto is currently installed on the learning stick.


Unfortunately there are still some WLAN adapters for which no free drivers are available. If you want to use a flash drive on such a system, you should buy a compatible USB WLAN adapter. This will ensure that you have a working WLAN connection on every computer on which you use the flash drive. At the moment we recommend the following devices, which we have also tested:
Edimax EW-7811Un
TP-LINK TL-WN722N (very good connection through external antenna)
Zyxel NWD-2105


We have successfully tested the following WLAN router with the"Lernstick":
Netgear WNR3500L


For easy duplication of the "Lernstick", we recommend using a USB hub with numerous connections and sufficient space in between. The following hubs have been tested by us and found to be good:
Logilink UA0229 (10-Port)
Raidsonic IcyBox (7-Port) (ports have pleasently large distances, thermally very stable)
Raidsonic IcyBox (7-Port) (simpler version)
TP-LINK UH700 (7-Port) (ports are very close)
Raidsonic IcyBox (10-Port) (very fast, but gets quite hot on some USB-models)
DeLock USB-2.0 Hub (10-Port)


A very performant but also cost-intensive solution for duplication are special USB copy stations: