Mar 31, 2009

Non-free-codecs for Jaunty

The non-free-codecs from the Medibuntu repositories package provides codecs that are not distributed by Ubuntu.

* Please first install the ubuntu-restricted-extras package from the multiverse ubuntu repository.
* Add the Medibuntu repositories to your sources.list:

## Medibuntu.
deb jaunty free non-free

* Add the key to your keyring, reload the sources.list file and install the package:

wget -q -O- | sudo apt-key add - && sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install non-free-codecs


Source: Isabelle Duchatelle

Mar 27, 2009

Fridge Website Needs a Theme, Can You Help?

The Fridge has been neglected for a while and is coming nowhere close to achieving it's full potential. Tons of people visit this site regularly to get Ubuntu related news. It needs a theme, can you help?

MockUp - DUE Thursday April 2nd
The Ubuntu News team will select a mockup and provide feedback needed for final polish. You do NOT need to create a full-blown design here, just enough to sell your idea.

This is purely a *graphic design* job, submit your mockups and post them as attachments in the Phase 1 section of

Following phases will create HTML/CSS and a Drupal theme. I realize that some people who are great at making designs may not know how to make drupal themes and those who can do drupal stuff may not be great at design. Lets make this a team effort (because I know we've got talent in all the necessary areas).

The goal is to GO LIVE in time for Jaunty release.

Here are the requirements:
== Design ==
- A new visual appearance, harmonious with the ubuntu website but not *just another ubuntu knock off*

- My suggestions would be to stick with the colours and fonts of the ubuntu site but not feel constrained to using the rounded borders with the top right drop down nav

- Attractive, people will feel the site is credible

- A layout that looks like a news website

- Possibly include a special layout for Ubuntu Weekly News, since it is a regular item and has a different format than the other news stories

== Content Types ==
This is the types of content people will view on the site:

News stories

== Blocks ==
These side-bar items will be shown on the site, this may change over time

Popular content
Video podcast

Discussion will take place on the Web Presence Team mailing list but I'll subscribe to this thread so you can ask questions here and I'll reply.


Ubuntu Countdown Banners Available

I remember when I was running Feisty Fawn and visited for the first time. I never imagined seeing any of my own work on the page, but that changed today.
From today you can grab the code for my countdown calendar (Option 2). Thorsten Wilms (thorwil) has done amazing work on the official/default countdown banner.

Mar 24, 2009

Google launches Summer of Code 09

Google's annual Summer of Code (SoC) program, which pays small grants to students who make substantial contributions to open source software projects during their Summer break from school, has officially launched. Google announced Monday that students can begin submitting their project proposals.

Originally established in 2005, SoC was conceived as a way to boost volunteerism and introduce students to the open source software development process. Almost a thousand students will be allowed to participate this year, and each will receive $4,500 if they complete their tasks. Google has paid out over $15 million since the program began. Major open source projects, ranging from Apache to Xorg, participate by coordinating development efforts and by providing mentors for students.

SoC offers significant benefits for students and for the open source projects that are involved in the program. Through SoC, Google has funded the development of millions of lines of code and has facilitated the implementation of many important new features in popular open source software programs. A more significant advantage is that some of the students who are introduced to open source software through SoC continue to participate after the program ends. In this manner, SoC has helped to grow the open software community.

For students, it offers a valuable learning experience, the opportunity to get a guided hands-on introduction to the open source software development process, and a way to make a little extra cash over the summer.

Although the program has generally been very beneficial, it's not entirely without controversy. In some cases, students abandon their projects immediately after the program ends and the code bitrots without anyone to maintain or integrate it properly. In some cases, the necessarily exclusive nature of SoC has generated a bit of angst among small open source projects that aren't given an opportunity to participate. Despite the inevitable conflicts, the program has become an important part of the open source community ethos and Google has always done everything in its power to make the program successful.

Google has accepted an impressive list of mentoring organizations this year, including EFF and Tor,, Creative Commons, and GNU. There are some exciting newcomers on the list this year, including some of Google's own projects, such as Chromium—the open source effort behind Google's Chrome web browser.

As usual, project suggestions from the Linux desktop ecosystem is well represented. The KDE and GNOME projects are both going to be involved again this year and have published lists with suggested tasks for students.

Students have until April 3 to submit their proposals to Google. For more information about the project or details about how to register, you can visit the official Summer of Code website and the recent blog entry about SoC at the official Google blog.


Ubuntu 9.04 Free Culture Showcase Winners!

Jono Bacon announced the winners of the Ubuntu 9.04 Free Culture Showcase today. Although my contribution (The Mark Shuttleworth beat) wasn't selected, I think the community judging panel has done a great job (much better than last time!) picking the winners.

Audio: Jean Francois Marais - WINNING ENTRY: Invocation

Video Category: Robbie Ferguson - WINNING ENTRY: Spirit Of Ubuntu

Graphic/Photo: William J McKee Jr - WINNING ENTRY: Canadian Clouds

Jono wrote:
Ladies and Gents, I am pleased to announce the results of the Ubuntu 9.04 Ubuntu Free Culture Showcase. This is the competition in which creative types can submit their work for inclusion in the Examples/ folder of the next edition of Ubuntu. In this competition we expanded the Audio and Video categories to also include a Graphic/Photo category too. We netted a fantastic range of entries and many great submissions!

Our submissions list was then assessed by our esteemed community judging panel and they made selections from each category. This final set of selections was then voted on by the Ubuntu Community Council to find our winners. I would like to thank everyone for participating and congratulate each of the winners for having their work about to be delivered to millions of Jaunty desktops.

Read more at:

Mar 23, 2009

Karmic Koala Timeline - Update

Let me start off by ensureing you that I won't create a new blogpost every time I update my artwork :-)
Anyway, I updated the Karmic Koala Timeline adding roots, earth, sky, moved the Debian snail (so it is placed where the DebianImportFreeze occures) and other minor details.

MP3 without quality loss: MP3HD

Since Fraunhofer developed the MP3 compression method for audio, it has achieved extremely widespread. The format is now many years old and several variants, including mp3PRO, has been developed since, just as there are different formats that are better, eg. AAC and Ogg Vorbis.

Now the company Thomson is presenting a new variant of MP3, which compresses without quality loss. Usually, the high compression in MP3 is obtained by remove audio that is very difficult to hear for the human ear. The new format, which Thomson has baptized MP3HD, can compress audio 30-70% which isn’t as efficiency as MP3, but it does so without compromising the quality.

MP3HD files consist of two layers of data. One layer is an ordinary MP3 file with a quality loss, and a layer with the additional data needed to make sound complete. This means that MP3HD files are compatible with all MP3 players, but only one layer; wants to hear the sound loss-free, so you need a MP3HD player.

You can read more about MP3HD on where you can also download software to create its own MP3HD files.


Mar 22, 2009

Tombuntu is still alive!

One of my favorite bloggers Tom Dryer haven’t had much time to keep up to date with Ubuntu and blogging, but now Tom has announced that Tombuntu is still alive!

Great news! He's already catching up, and as usual very interesting/useful posts:
How-to Install Google Earth 5 on Ubuntu
Adding a dzen2 Statusbar to xmonad
Hedgewars Turn-Based Strategy Game
Introduction to the xmonad Tiling Window Manager
Pre-Alpha Chromium Browser Now Available

Gnome Deskbar-Applet Maintainer Wanted

As you might have guessed from the GNOME 2.26 release notes there where no big improvements for Deskbar-Applet during the last release cycle. In addition, most items on the roadmap for 2.26 remained unresolved.

Sebastian Pölsterl (sebp) has nearly been the only active developer for the last two release cycles and the time he spend working on Deskbar-Applet was decreasing steadily. Therefore, he is now searching for someone who is willing to take over maintainership and who brings new energy to the project.

If you are interested or want to know more please send an e-mail to the deskbar-applet mailing list.


Mar 20, 2009

Compiz 0.8.2 Fully Released

This is the first stable release of Compiz 0.8 series. This release is the first merged release of both (former) Compiz and Compiz Fusion projects, and what is newly released here is what previously was the -fusion part ; the core part was released on Sunday, March 1st. This release is the result of the 0.7 development series and is mostly a bugfix release. A fully detailed changelog is available here.

From here on Compiz will maintain the 0.8 branch, but no new features will be applied. Instead, most of work will go into the 0.9.x branch, which features a complete rewrite of core. It is not recommend that users use the 0.9.x branch as it is unstable, has a lot of regressions and is only half-complete. Compiz aim to make a 0.9.0 release once we feel that the functionality most users use is there.

The Compiz 0.8.2 tarballs are available at

Bugs/enhancement requests as always goes here.

Mar 19, 2009

New Default Wallpaper In Jaunty

Just one hour ago, there's finally a new wallpaper in Jaunty. So far the Alpha releases have been using the Intrepid wallpaper.

ubuntu-wallpapers (0.28.2) jaunty; urgency=low

[ Kenneth Wimer ]
* New wallpapers for Jaunty release. (LP: #34492

[ Daniel Holbach ]
* debian/control:
- update description,
- add ${miscepends},
- updated Standards-Version,
- move python-distutils-extra, xsltproc to Build-Depends-Indep,
- use Vcs-Bzr instead of XS-*.
* debian/copyright: updated.

Date: Thu, 19 Mar 2009 07:31:54 +0100
Changed-By: Daniel Holbach
Maintainer: Ubuntu Artwork Team

Personally I feel that this is a step down from the two previous wallpaper (Intrepid, Hardy) - let's hope Koala will be beautiful. You'll also notice that the GDM changed today too. The Ubuntu logo is bigger and there are lines above and below the login box. Jaunty is still a work in progress.

Introducing Jokosher Audio Editor

If Audacity, Ardour, or ReZound are too muddled for your taste, try the easy and powerful Jokosher audio editor.

Jokosher is a simple and powerful multi-track studio. Jokosher provides a complete application for recording, editing, mixing and exporting audio, and has been specifically designed with usability in mind. The developers behind Jokosher have re-thought audio production at every level, and created something devilishly simple to use.

Like many open source programs, Jokosher owes its existence to user dissatisfaction: Early in 2006, the project’s founder, Jono Bacon, was looking for an open source alternative to mixers such as Cubase to produce his “LugRadio” podcast. He wanted the new program to be easy to use – and easy to learn for people without expert knowledge of audio editing. Something like Garageband for Linux. Bacon originally launched the project under the name Jonoedit. He announced the launch in his podcast and asked for developers to join the fun. The result is Jokosher

You can download Jokosher 0.11.1 for Ubuntu 9.04 or 8.10. Previous versions of Ubuntu or Debian are untested but may work if they have a recent version of GStreamer installed. Older versions of Ubuntu aren’t supported without a recent version of GStreamer.

There's also a Jokosher for Windows which is available for testing.

Mar 18, 2009

Jaunty’s New Usplash Theme

If you somehow managed to miss todays hot topic, here it is: Jaunty’s new Usplash theme

Pushed into the Jaunty repository this morning for Ubuntu 9.04 was a new theme for USplash. This Canonical project for providing a splash screen at boot-up on Ubuntu is being replaced by Plymouth with Ubuntu 9.10 (the Karmic Koala release), but there is a new Ubuntu theme as one last hurrah. This new USplash theme has a fixed-size Ubuntu logo centered in the middle of the display and a new progress bar. From our feelings at least, this new theme looks more professional than its predecessor, but it's not exactly a complete overhaul. Below is a video of this newly-pushed theme.

A new theme should then come in the next Ubuntu development cycle once Plymouth is pushed into the Karmic repository. Plymouth is a Red Hat created project that leverages kernel mode-setting and newer Linux technologies to provide a clean, flicker-free boot experience. A few new features were also recently introduced in Plymouth.

This new theme to mark the retirement of USplash can be found in the forthcoming release of Ubuntu 9.04. For those interested in living on the bleeding edge of software, there are Plymouth packages for Ubuntu available that will work with Ubuntu 9.04 but without Intel kernel mode-setting support and with no Ubuntu theme being available.


Experimental Update Viewer In GNOME PackageKit

Richard Hughes blogs about a new experimental update viewer in GNOME PackageKit. It looks something like this:

It’s currently called gpk-update-viewer2, and isn’t the default yet. Richard Hughes has patched Fedora rawhide to use it by default so the update can receive some early feedback and testing.

UI feedback is welcome! Some of those strings are mighty difficult to understand, for instance, my fiancée didn’t know what a production system was and Richard Hughes don’t like how the URL’s look - ideas please.


Mar 17, 2009

QtCurve GTK Style

All of the GTK apps now match KDE4's Qt because QtCurve GTK style has been updated to have a more KDE4/Oxygen-ish look and feel. True, it doesn't fit in perfectly with Oxygen, but even though it fits a lot better than the pixmaps gtk-qt-engine would output.
QT apps are also looking very nice under Gnome in Jaunty. Good work to the developers on this :-)


Mar 16, 2009

Want To Help "Patch The Universe" To Use Notify-Osd?

Earlier I posted news about the wiki page Mirco Müller (SlowMac) setup about notification development guidelines. In the "Development & Programming > Jaunty Jackalope Testing and Discussion" forum at, Mirco Müller today posted information for adapting the software of your choice to correctly use the new notification system.

Do you like the new notifications? Do you like hacking? Do you want to help out with the jaunty jackalope?

Here's your kickstart for adapting the software of your choice to correctly use the new notification system:
* notification development guidelines

If that isn't enough and you want to dive even deeper into the subject, reading these here will help:
* notification design guidelines
* notify-osd - the spec

Happy hacking!

Best regards ...
Mirco "MacSlow" Müller

Mar 15, 2009

Tired Of Sudo Asking For Your Password?

Tired of sudo asking for your password? Yes! This gets kind of annoying when I'm the only user of this computer - Antonino Arcud provided help.

I am tired of sudo asking for my password everytime I need to install a package with apt or aptitude. Someone could say this is the B-side of security, but not enough for me to justify it (and I’m the only user of this pc). So, even if someone could define this insane or unsafe, here there is a way to avoid that epic question.

Keep your eyes open and your fingers ready, you can make a disaster if don’t!

Now that I’ve washed my hands, let’s keep going with the stuff. The configuration’s file we need to modify is /etc/sudoers , and no, we can’t do it with gedit/kate/nano… We need to use visudo, as written in the first line of that file. So we need to open a terminal and launch sudo visudo (and, obviously, insert the password when asked). Now scroll until the line:

# User privilege specification
root ALL=(ALL) ALL
elwood ALL=(ALL) ALL
and add a new line like this: you-user localhost = command you need . For me it’s as follow

elwood localhost = NOPASSWD: /usr/bin/aptitude /usr/bin/apt-get

Save and exit with ctrl+x and from next login sudo will stop prompting for the password. Other commands, if needed, can be addedd at the end of the line without writing a new rule. For other uses and more about setting this permissions just read man sudoers


Midori: Extremely Fast and Standards-Compliant

Tom Dryer blogs about Midori. Midori is a lightweight GTK web browser which uses the popular WebKit rendering engine.

Midori seems to be stable. Because Midori uses a similar WebKit rendering engine to Apple Safari and Google Chrome, it has few problems with website compatibility. I tried a few web applications, and all of them worked fine with the exception of Google Talk in Gmail, which seems to have a layout issue with Midori.

Not only does Midori score a perfect 100/100 the acid 3 test web standards test, it beats Firefox by a significant margin in the SunSpider Javascript benchmark. Midori scored 2.8 times faster than Firefox 3 and 1.7 times faster than Firefox 3.1 Beta 3 on my system:

1914.6ms +/- 6.2% --> Firefox 3.1 Beta 3
3082.8ms +/- 0.2% --> Firefox 3
1111.4ms +/- 1.2% --> Midori 0.1.4

A missing feature that would be nice to have on netbooks is a fullscreen mode which, like Firefox, autohides the toolbar and tabs.

Midori is available from the WebKit Team PPA for Ubuntu 9.04, 8.10, and 8.04. Follow the directions on the PPA page to add the repository, and then install Midori from the package midori (click the link to install), or by running the command below in your terminal:
sudo apt-get install midori

Midori isn’t as polished or have as many features as Firefox, but it is very fast and standards-compliant. I wouldn’t use Midori as my main desktop browser yet, but it is definitely very well suited for use on a netbook.

I’m looking forward to more WebKit-based browsers becoming available and stable on Linux!


SSD Awesomeness

So the Gizmo title actually reads "24 Solid State Drives Open ALL of Microsoft Office In .5 Seconds" and sadly this test only uses Vista and Microsoft software.

Warning: This clip is a piece of Samsung marketing material.

Samsung techies linked 24 of the company's 256GB SSD drives together in a RAID with the hopes of making the fast SSD drives even faster. The system actually reaches transfer speeds of 2GBps. What's that much speed mean to you?

• All of Microsoft Office opens in .5 seconds.
• 53 programs from the test rig's Start menu open in 18 seconds.
• The complete system defrags in about 3 seconds.

Basically, we all know that hard drives are holding other components in computers back, slowing down our day to day usage. But I'll be honest in saying that I didn't things were this bad. While almost no mortal could afford to build this amazing rig, suddenly that SATA3 technology isn't looking so impressive. I wonder how fast Jaunty would boot?


DIY Paper Tux (vector)

I just came across this post titled "DIY paper Tux" by Geri (Gary) Druckman.
Unfortunately the image he provided in this post was in very low .jpg resolution (for printing that is), so I converted it to vector using (which is fantistic!). The numbers are a little hard to read, but you can always use the original .jpg as reference. Grab the .SVG version here:

Just print it out, cut it out, glue following the numbers and VOILA! You have your own hand made cute as a button Tux!

Mar 14, 2009

Microsoft - Just For Fun

Normally I am opposed to Microsoft bashing, but I just couldn't resist - this poster is simply too funny.

A poster advertising Windows Vista in the Czech Republic with an error message on it, but when you get closer the error message says "Error. The installation was completed successfully"

I guess Microsoft's new slogan for Windows 7 will be "The WOW is now... no, wait a minute... NOW!"

Here's another funny one:

Anyway, to elaborate on why I am against Microsoft bashing (I know this is a dangerous topic), it all comes down to:
- If you don't like their products, don't use them.
- Any publicity is good publicity.
- Why not spent your time promoting Linux instead?

Poster source:

Jaunty Plymouth PPA Plugin Development Tutorial

Last November we learned that Plymouth would replace USplash in Ubuntu, but the official graphical boot splash screen change wouldn't come until Ubuntu 9.10 (a.k.a. the Karmic Koala). However, for those not interested in trying out Fedora to see Red Hat's Plymouth, there is a">Jaunty Plymouth PPA plugin development tutorial on the"> posted byred_team316.

The Phoronix recently reported that new work has entered Plymouth, includes various fixes, an improved layout of the help output, and command line parsing support for the Plymouth daemon. Support was also added to Plymouth for a one-time animation helper and a simple progress sequence helper, both of which will help designers and developers construct new Plymouth boot plug-ins. In fact, Plymouth has now gained a glow plug-in. This plug-in flips through a series of images until the progress reaches 90% completion, and then at that point it runs through the series of images as an animation.

This new Plymouth work -- plus more work we anticipate ahead -- will find its way into Fedora 11 and Ubuntu 9.10, but it has now yet landed in this PPA for Jaunty.

Tutorial here:

Karmic Koala Timeline

I got so inspired by Andreas Nilssons graphical representation of the GNOME Release Process that I wanted to create one for Ubuntu.
The image represents the 6 months cycle, like a timeline. I've only added actual releases and left out freezes and deadlines (perhaps I'll add that later).
I started out using Andreas Nilssons .svg image as skeleton in Inkscape (which I'm just learning), but I ended up finishing it in Adobe Illustrator.

As you can see, I tried to do more of a natur theme, opposed to Andreas Nilsson. You can see his image of the GNOME release process here...

Mar 12, 2009

Wallpaper update

Just made some minor changes to the wallpaper background. There's now a dark 1920x1200 version with a discreet incorporated jackalope on the wiki.

Can you spot the jackalope(s)? here...

Jaunty Countdown Banners - Again...

I've created the first set (32 images) of countdown banners for Jaunty. Everything should be working and ready. You can grab them and the JavaScript here:
JavaScript is all new to me, but I've written a new script - which I think works better than the one I grabed of

Stéphane Vergeylen and Wolter Jolan have used javascript to dynamically modify the texte which is displayed on the banner. There is thus infinite possibility of updating the welcome text, or to animated the displayed text. See what it looks like here...
You can also grab a version of my countdown banner using this script:

There is no official Ubuntu countdown banner yet (I really like Thorsten Wilms suggestion), but Matthew Nuzum will soon meet with Kat Kinnie who is in charge of "corporate identity" to pick out the ones that are most promising.

LTSP LDM theme for Jaunty

As I mentioned earlier I've created a shiny new LDM login screen for Jaunty (LTSP). Kenneth Wimer forwarded the request from Stéphane Graber in this post on the Ubuntu-art mailinglist.

As you can see from the email, there's a lot of limitations when working with LDM rather than GDM:

- Positioning of all widgets is static.
- Text is black and can't be changed to another color. Careful with dark backgrounds
- Most thin clients are limited to 16bit for speed reason so be careful with gradients.
- LDM doesn't crop the background but scale it down.

I came up with a theme which I think meets all the requirements mentioned above. I'll have to emphazise that this is a re-mix of the Greenome wallpaper found at Here is what my version looks like:

Personally, I really think this works great while still fulfilling all the requirements. However I have two concerns.

1. The theme is not matching with the Jaunty desktop wallpaper - because
there is no wallpaper atm. (and I don't think there's any white/light artwork used in Ubuntu, so perhaps it stands out?)

2. As you can see on, the author of Greenome wallpaper has written “by me “ under license. I’ve already contacted to author to ask permission to used, edit and publish his artwork, which has agreed to.

I really hope this will make it into Jaunty, although this is only for the thin client version and regular desktop users won't see it. Desktop users will however be looking at the new black GDM artwork.

Mar 6, 2009

Creating Artwork

It's been a while since I've created any artwork (wallpapers from 2008!!), but this week I've actually been very productive. Besides creating countdown banners and a shiny new LDM login screen for Jaunty (more about this later), I've been creating a desktop wallpaper.

As you can see there's a light and a dark version. Available in 1920x1200 (16:9) and 1280x1024 (4:3). Licensed under CC BY AS

Grab all four images here:

Mar 5, 2009

Red Hat's Plymouth Sees New Work

Not a lot of work has gone into Red Hat's Plymouth project since the release of Fedora 10, but now in the middle of the development cycle of Fedora 11 we are seeing some new work emerge. Plymouth is a boot splash program that leverages kernel mode-setting to provide a rich, flicker-free boot experience. In the past week there have been a fair number of commits to the Plymouth Git repository, which is the first time it has seen new work since early January.

The recent work to Plymouth includes various fixes, an improved layout of the help output, and command line parsing support for the Plymouth daemon. Yesterday afternoon support was added to Plymouth for a one-time animation helper and a simple progress sequence helper, both of which will help designers and developers construct new Plymouth boot plug-ins. In fact, Plymouth has now gained a glow plug-in. This plug-in flips through a series of images until the progress reaches 90% completion, and then at that point it runs through the series of images as an animation.

This new Plymouth work -- plus more work we anticipate ahead -- will find its way into Fedora 11. Canonical will also be using Plymouth as a USplash replacement starting with Ubuntu 9.10.


I guess Joey was right when he called me "obsessed with Plymouth" in an earlier blogpost.

Linux based MSI's Winki

MSI formally announced at CeBIT the creation of a new internet interactive device without an operating system named Winki.

It is a small device with a large array of functions: built in web browsing, immediate communication, VOIP calls, photo searching and more common PC functions.

Winki leverages a Linux base, although MSI has simplified all installations and settings by simply connecting an onboard USB Pin-header and going through a brief set of system settings. More importantly, Winki's greatest ability is how it compares to other OS supported devices: it starts up faster, uses less electricity, will not have problems caused by virus and, best of all, and does not cost customers a penny more.

Winki also optimizes functionality by grouping together various software solutions. This suite includes Mozilla's Firefox handles web browsing, while Skype takes care VOIP phone call and other common applications so users won't have to spend a lot of time learning whole new programs. It also comes with an instant messaging (IM) software called "Pidgin", which supports up to 15 different kinds of IM accounts at the same time.

Find pictures here:


Mar 4, 2009

What Does Plymouth Currently Look Like?

If you are wondering what the current Plymouth (available through PPA) boot experience looks like in Ubuntu, here's a short video:

Note that no artwork has yet been added to the project, so everything looks very much like Fedora.

New Set Of Default Themes In Ubuntu

Did you ever wonder who actually uses themes like: Crux, Glider, Glossy or Mist? For Jaunty these themes will be removed in order to make room for New Wave and Dust.

Source: Launchpad

Mar 3, 2009

Ubuntu 9.10 Release Schedule Is Now Available

Ubuntu 9.04 will not even be out for another month and a half, but Ubuntu enthusiasts can already start getting excited for its successor, Ubuntu 9.10. Ubuntu 9.10 has been codenamed the Karmic Koala and this release from Canonical will integrate Plymouth to provide a rich kernel mode-setting experience, feature performance improvements, and contain enhancements for Ubuntu cloud computing. In time for Ubuntu 9.10 we may see the latest innovations in the Linux stack as of the Linux 2.6.31 kernel or thereabouts.

While it's a given that Ubuntu 9.10 will be released in October of 2009, the release schedule for the Karmic Koala has just been published by Canonical. The first alpha release of Ubuntu 9.10 is planned for May 14 with a total of six alpha releases before a beta release on the first of October. The final release of Ubuntu 9.10 is then planned for October 29, 2009.

The Ubuntu 9.10 release schedule with all of the important dates can be found on the Ubuntu Wiki.

Source: Michael Larabel (Phoronix)

Mar 2, 2009

Feature Packed Fedora

Fedora 11 is reaching an impressive number of accepted features. Beyond introducing Intel and NVIDIA kernel mode-setting, Nouveau becoming the default NVIDIA driver, and a new volume control interface, there will be a plethora of package updates. Fedora 11 will have available Xfce 4.6, GNOME 2.26, and KDE 4.2 for the desktops.

Underneath these updated desktops will be X Server 1.6, EXT4 file-system (or optionally Btrfs), the Linux 2.6.29 kernel, and GCC 4.4.

The Fedora 11 BETA should be out by the end of this month.

More feature info on:


Mar 1, 2009

Stracciatella GNOME session

Martin Pitt blogged about the availability of the "Stracciatella GNOME session", which allows users and developers to easily access an environment that is closer to the one from upstream GNOME. It still contains the Ubuntu patches, as providing packages without them is not currently feasible, but it does remove Ubuntu added components, initially the new notification system. So you will be able to choose between the “Ubuntuized” and a more “upstream-like” GNOME experience. Martin Pitt wrote a beautiful metaphor for this in his blogpost:

...I called that “stracciatella GNOME session”, after the favorite kind of ice cream which is mostly vanilla (GNOME), but with some brown chocolate chips (Ubuntu modifications) in it.

Sounds delicious Martin.

PPA For Testing Plymouth In Ubuntu

Plymouth will not be arriving in time for Jaunty, but it is currently planned to replace the Usplash in Karmic Koala (Ubuntu 9.10). However Plymouth is now available for testing in Jaunty though PPA:

You'll need kernel 2.6.29 which you can get from here:

There should be a PPA for the kernel you can add to your software sources soon, but for now this should work for testing purposes. Plymouth seems to be more CPU consuming than Usplash however, the boot time is unchanged.

Some people are hoping the Ubuntu Usplash Smooth will make it into Jaunty, but there hasn't been any sources confirming that. With Jaunty in feature-freeze, this now seems highly unlikely.