Ubuntu 9.04, the next Linux operating system release due out by Canonical in April, will not be shipping with the Linux 2.6.29 kernel like many had hoped for. The feature freeze for the Jaunty Jackalope is not until next week and the Linux 2.6.29 kernel will certainly be released by April (right now it's at -rc4 stage), but Canonical's kernel team has decided to stick with using the current Linux 2.6.28 stable series.
Not only did Fedora 11 Alpha make it out the door today, but so did the fourth alpha release for Ubuntu 9.04 (the Jaunty Jackalope). Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha 4 continues to build upon a bleeding-edge set of Linux packages (though still tracking the Linux 2.6.28 kernel) and has installation support for the EXT4 file-system and new notification capabilities.
Ubuntu 8.04 was released nearly a year ago with Ubuntu 8.04.1 arriving a few months later. Now this afternoon as part of Canonical's commitment to offering Long-Term Support to the Hardy Heron we have Ubuntu 8.04.2 LTS.
The last Ubuntu 9.04 development update was in the middle of December (Alpha 2), but today Mark Shuttleworth's development posse has come out with a new update for the Jaunty Jackalope.
Ubuntu 7.10 had introduced support for install-time encryption to provide a fully encrypted LVM. However, this feature was only available through Ubuntu's alternate CD installer and not Ubiquity, Ubuntu's popular LiveCD installer. We had hoped the disk encryption support would be added in Ubuntu 8.04 and then later Ubuntu 8.10, but that never occurred.
On July 22nd of 2008 we shared that the source-code to Launchpad.net would be released by Canonical within the next twelve months. Mark Shuttleworth had made this announcement during OSCON 2008.
When checking out a recent daily LiveCD of Ubuntu 9.04 (the Jaunty Jackalope), the migration wizard found in the Ubiquity installer now supports migrating files from an Ubuntu installation.
It's coming a day late but Ubuntu 9.04 "Jaunty Jackalope" Alpha 2 is now available. The release announcement for this second test release can be read on ubuntu-devel-announce. This release carries a number of updates including the Linux kernel and X.Org. For more on the Ubuntu 9.04 features, check out this link.
Mark Shuttleworth, the space tourist and founder of Canonical, has made a special request: he wants to see your desktop. Mark is requesting that everyone send him screenshots of your desktop in action. He would like as many pictures of computer desktops as possible in order to study the desktop experience and design, which in turn will hopefully lead to some Ubuntu interface improvements down the road.
Late last month we shared that Plymouth may replace USplash in Ubuntu and that this matter was to be discussed further at the Jaunty UDS. With the Ubuntu Developer Summit now over, there are a few items to note from their Plymouth discussion.
Canonical's Rick Clark has announced today that the server build of Ubuntu is now available through Amazon's EC2 cloud computing service. Canonical has optimized a build of the Ubuntu Server edition for the EC2 environment and it's currently in a open beta program. Using Ubuntu in Amazon's cloud computing service is free, except for the normal costs incurred when using Amazon Web Services.
X Server 1.6 isn't being released until next month but the latest Git snapshot of it plus a slew of other updated X.Org packages have just made their way into the Jaunty repository for Ubuntu 9.04.
Scott Ritchie, an Ubuntu MOTU, has proposed that WINE be moved into Ubuntu's Main repository thereby making it shipping with Ubuntu by default in some form. This proposal is coming after he and several Ubuntu developers had discussed this idea last week at the Ubuntu Developer Summit. What he is proposing is that by default on new installations of Ubuntu, when clicking on an Windows executable file to come up with some prompt informing them of the possible actions, and then to setup WINE by default.
The Nouveau driver has been in development for several years now but with limited developers that are reverse-engineering NVIDIA's GPUs and there being no public documentation or support from NVIDIA, it has taken quite a while to come up with a reputable open-source driver that supports all of NVIDIA's hardware. Nouveau still doesn't have a stable released version of its 2D DDX or Mesa 3D driver, but development snapshots of it have appeared in Fedora and a few other distributions. With the release of Ubuntu 9.04 next April, a packaged version of Nouveau will finally appear in Ubuntu's repositories.
Launchpad, the web portal launched by Canonical for managing many different areas of Ubuntu work such as bug tracking, translation handling, and sharing of blueprints, now has a public API to expose its plug-in capabilities. Recently there were some official Launchpad plug-ins made available for integrating with Trac and Bugzilla, but now with this public API, anyone can write their own Launchpad plug-ins to provide for better integration with different bug tracking systems.
The first alpha build for Ubuntu 9.04 was released a week ago and there wasn't too much to take note of in this inaugural development release for the Jaunty Jackalope. Many of the packages were the same as what can be found in Ubuntu 8.10, there was the same theme, and the exciting Ubuntu 9.04 features have yet to be implemented. However, since that release several new packages have been accepted into Jaunty that begin to show change.
We've talked about Plymouth now a number of times at Phoronix, which is Red Hat's RHGB replacement starting with Fedora 10 and uses newer Linux technologies like kernel mode-setting to drive this graphical boot screen. As we shared in our detailed analysis of Plymouth it also offers a number of plug-ins and APIs for creating some fairly unique visuals. Now it looks like Plymouth may make its way into Ubuntu.
One of the planned development changes for Ubuntu 9.04 (the Jaunty Jackalope) is transitioning all Ubuntu source packages to having their own Bazaar repositories. From there, anyone can then clone these source-code repositories and do whatever they wish.
Canonical and ARM have jointly announced today that they are porting Ubuntu to the ARMv7 processor architecture in time for the release of Ubuntu 9.04 (the Jaunty Jackalope). Ubuntu is coming to the ARM platform for emerging netbooks and hybrid computers using this architecture.
Ubuntu 8.10 hasn't even been out for a week, but the release schedule for the next version of Ubuntu, 9.04 (the Jaunty Jackalope), has been published. The first alpha release of Ubuntu 9.04 will come in just seventeen days and a second alpha release will be out in time for Christmas. There will be a total of six alpha releases for Ubuntu Jaunty until the beta release at the end of March. Following that release, there will be a release candidate and then the final release of Ubuntu 9.04 on April 23, 2009. The release schedule for Ubuntu 9.04 can be read on the Ubuntu Wiki.
With the final release of Ubuntu 8.10 (the Intrepid Ibex) coming out next Thursday, it's time for the one and only release candidate in the 8.10 series. Canonical's Steve Langasek has announced the 8.10 release candidates this afternoon for the Ubuntu Desktop, Ubuntu Server, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Ubuntu Studio, and Mythbuntu editions.
As expected, the beta release of the forthcoming Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" has been released this afternoon. In addition to the desktop spin, the server release of the Ubuntu 8.10 Beta had also occurred. Likewise, the 8.10 Beta releases for Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Ubuntu Studio, and Mythbuntu are all available.
Ubuntu users were promised a radical new desktop theme with Ubuntu 8.04 and then that ended up getting postponed to the upcoming 8.10 release (a.k.a. the Intrepid Ibex). There was a new brown theme that had appeared early on in Intrepid but many users were dissatisfied with this work and Canonical ended up reverting the theme to that of Ubuntu 8.04 and earlier. Though with the Intrepid artwork final deadline passing last week, what does the desktop look like in the Ubuntu 8.10 Beta release due out this week? Here are some screenshots.
Early this morning we published an article on Ubuntu's BulletProofX taking a simpler approach for its fail-safe mode when the X Server fails to properly start. No longer is the user bound to displayconfig-gtk but there is a menu system with options for diagnosing the problem and reconfiguring the xorg.conf. However, since that article went live we have a few more details on this revision to BulletProofX.
Gerry Carr has announced on the Canonical Blog that Fluendo and CyberLink will now be selling their multimedia wares through the Canonical Store. Fluendo is the company supporting the development of GStreamer and they sell several proprietary codecs for providing a legal media playback experience on Linux. Among these codecs are Windows Media, MPEG2, and MPEG4. CyberLink on the other hand is selling their PowerDVD software for Ubuntu.
Firefox, what's not to love about this open-source web browser? Well, a number of users following the development work on Ubuntu 8.10 (the Intrepid Ibex) are feeling rather outraged over Mozilla Firefox 3.0.2 and later. In the latest Ubuntu packages, Firefox requires an EULA (End-User License Agreement) be accepted the first time you launch the browser. The EULA mostly deals with agreeing to Mozilla's trademark policies for Firefox.
There's still a month left until the Intrepid Ibex is released (or perhaps better known as Ubuntu 8.10), but Mark Shuttleworth has begun outlining the plans for the next Ubuntu release. Following Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" will be... the Jaunty Jackalope!
With almost a month having went by since Ubuntu 8.10 Alpha 4 was released, the fifth alpha release is now available for testing. This release most significantly swaps out the Linux 2.6.26 kernel for 2.6.27 for reasons we shared in a previous article. We are very happy to see the Linux 2.6.27 kernel being used. In addition, this release is shipping with the latest GNOME 2.24 bits which also bring some interesting features for the Linux desktop.
Generating buzz this morning with the release of the Linux 2.6.27-rc4 kernel is word that Ubuntu may switch to the Linux 2.6.27 kernel for their forthcoming 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" release. Canonical's Ben Collins has proposed on the Ubuntu development mailing list that Intrepid be switched to using the Linux 2.6.27 kernel instead of using 2.6.26.
For those of you interested in open-source Java and are Ubuntu users, you'll be pleased to know that OpenJDK 6 was promoted to Ubuntu main and has now become the default Java Run-Time Environment (JRE) and Java Development Kit (JDK) starting with Ubuntu 8.10. OpenJDK is the open-source version of Java and is compliant with version 6 of Java. With Ubuntu 8.10 on x86 and x86_64 architectures, the Hotspot VM with its JIT (Just In Time) compiler is used as the default virtual machine. More information on these Java changes for Ubuntu can be found on ubuntu-devel-announce.
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