The Most Viewed Ubuntu & Mir News Of 2016

Written by Michael Larabel in Ubuntu on 26 December 2016 at 08:00 AM EST. Add A Comment
With the end of 2016 in sight, here's a look back at the most popular Ubuntu news for the year.

This week will be more of our various recaps and most viewed/popular lists for different Linux/open-source accomplishments this year. For kicking off this week, here's a look at the twelve most viewed Ubuntu stories on Phoronix for 2016 followed by the most popular stories about their Mir display server.

Ubuntu Is Deprecating fglrx (Catalyst) In 16.04 LTS
Ubuntu developers have deprecated the fglrx / Catalyst Linux display stack for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. Users of this upcoming Ubuntu release are now encouraged to use the open-source Radeon display stack.

Early Ubuntu 14.04 vs. Ubuntu 16.04 Intel Xeon E5 Benchmarks
This morning I posted some Ubuntu 14.04 vs. 16.04 LTS Radeon graphics benchmarks while if open-source AMD graphics driver evolution doesn't get you excited, in this article are results from other non-graphics benchmarks in comparing the Ubuntu 14.04 vs. 16.04 performance for these long-term support releases in their current form.

The Speed Of Ubuntu 16.10 Currently Versus Ubuntu 16.04, Clear Linux
Being mid-way through Ubuntu 16.10's development cycle, here are some fresh benchmarks showing how its performance has changed (if at all) compared to Ubuntu 16.04 LTS as well as compared to Intel's high-performance Clear Linux distribution as a reference point.

SFC Considers Combining ZFS With Linux A GPL Violation
The Software Freedom Conservancy has opined today that Canonical's inclusion of the ZFS file-system module into their Linux kernel for Ubuntu 16.04 is a violation of the GPL.

Enabling DRI3 Is Still An Easy Performance Hack Relevant For Ubuntu 16.04 Systems
While some distributions like Fedora have opted to enable DRI3 by default with their (mostly Intel) X.Org driver packages, Ubuntu 16.04 didn't pursue such behavior. But that just means with an easy xorg.conf tweak you can generally get better performance unless you happen to hit one of the few remaining DRI3-related issues.

Ubuntu Snap's Security Is Easily Circumvented Due To X11
Matthew Garrett has taken time away from working on his new SATA power management patches for the Linux kernel to share his thoughts on Ubuntu's Snap packaging format and its security.

Ubuntu Developers Discuss Again About Dropping Support For 32-bit x86
Ubuntu developers are once again pondering the possibility of dropping support for i386 (32-bit x86) as installation media for their Linux distribution.

Trying Out Ubuntu GNOME 16.10, Wayland Session Not So Great
With today's Ubuntu 16.10 release one of the exciting spins we've been looking forward to is Ubuntu GNOME 16.10, which has an experimental Wayland session available but is not the default. I spent a few minutes trying out Ubuntu GNOME 16.10 this morning.

Testing Ubuntu's User-Space/Bash On Windows Is Going Well, Benchmarks Incoming
While many were commenting on my article this week about being burned out and frustrated with ads that I should take the weekend off, I did not, but I've been having a surprisingly stress-free time playing with Ubuntu Bash on Windows.

Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS Released
The first point release to the Ubuntu 16.04 Long Term Support (LTS) release is now available.

Ubuntu 16.04 "Xenial Xerus" Beta 1 Released
Opt-in flavors of Ubuntu have today issued their first beta of the "Xenial Xerus" release.

Using 64-bit Linux Software To Reduce Power Consumption?
With Ubuntu 16.04 LTS due for release next month, I found it time to do my occasional 32-bit vs. 64-bit Linux OS comparison for showcasing the performance difference of using the 64-bit software on supported hardware. This time around, at a premium member's request, I also did some power consumption monitoring between the 32-bit and 64-bit builds of Ubuntu 16.04 on an Intel laptop/ultrabook.

Or for those wanting the most popular Ubuntu Mir news of the year:

NVIDIA 364.12 Arrives With Wayland & Mir Support
NVIDIA's 364 Linux driver series is now available and it's pretty darn exciting!

NVIDIA 364.19 Linux Driver Stabilizes The Wayland & Mir Support
The NVIDIA 364.19 Linux graphics driver was released today as the first stable release in the NVIDIA 364 driver series.

SDL 2.0.4 Was Quietly Released Last Week With Wayland & Mir By Default
Released last weekend to not much fanfare was SDL 2.0.4, a significant update to the Simple DirectMedia Library, which is commonly used by cross-platform games.

The Latest Changes For Ubuntu's Mir
It's been a while since last having any major news to report out of the Mir camp for Ubuntu's alternative to Wayland.

Arcan Open-Source Display Server Continues Progressing As Alternative To Wayland, Mir
A few months back I wrote about Arcan: A New Open-Source Display Server Built Atop A Game Engine. Sadly with most niche and ambitious open-source projects along these lines, they tend to disappear over time, but Arcan on the other hand continues moving forward so far.

Ubuntu 16.10 Isn't Going To Use Mir / Unity 8 By Default
Well, another setback for Unity 8 and Mir. Kicking off the Ubuntu Online Summit for Ubuntu 16.10, it's been confirmed that the Unity 8 desktop and Mir display server will not be the default for the desktop spin.

A Video Of X11 Apps Running On Mir With Ubuntu 16.10 Using Libertine
Libertine is the new Ubuntu/Canonical project for running X11 Debian packages on the next-gen Ubuntu desktop powered by Mir and Unity 8. There's now a video of showing off their new tech for running X11 apps under Unity 8.

Ubuntu's Mir Display System Is Thinking About "Version 1"
Ubuntu/Canonical developers have been discussing plans and requirements for Mir Version 1 including stable ABIs and licenses.

Canonical Is Planning For Vulkan Support In Mir By Ubuntu 16.04
With Vulkan now being public, Canonical developer Stephen Webb has confirmed they are planning to have Vulkan platform support ready for Mir by Ubuntu 16.04.

Vulkan Support Still Isn't Ready For Ubuntu's Mir
Back in February when Vulkan launched as the new Khronos graphics API, Ubuntu developers planned to have Vulkan support in Mir by Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. That didn't happen and since then it has kept getting pushed back.
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About The Author
Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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