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Ubuntu 13.04 released, boosts graphics performance


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Raring Ringtail for Ubuntu desktops and servers now ready to download.

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Ubuntu 13.04.

The stable release of Ubuntu 13.04 became available for download today, with Canonical promising performance and graphical improvements to help prepare the operating system for convergence across PCs, phones, and tablets.

"Performance on lightweight systems was a core focus for this cycle, as a prelude to Ubuntu’s release on a range of mobile form factors," Canonical said in an announcement today. "As a result 13.04 delivers significantly faster response times in casual use, and a reduced memory footprint that benefits all users."

Named "Raring Ringtail,"—the prelude to Saucy Salamander—Ubuntu 13.04 is the midway point in the OS' two-year development cycle. Ubuntu 12.04, the more stable, Long Term Support edition that is supported for five years, was released one year ago. Security updates are only promised for 9 months for interim releases like 13.04. Support windows for interim releases were recently cut from 18 months to 9 months to reduce the number of versions Ubuntu developers must support and let them focus on bigger and better things.

The 14.04 release planned for April 2014 will bring another Long Term Support edition and convergence across PCs and mobile devices. The plan is to let the same version of Ubuntu be installed both on traditional desktops and mobile devices but present different interfaces depending on which device it's being used on. Developer preview versions of Ubuntu Touch can be installed today on some Android devices, but the desktop and touch versions will remain separate code bases until 14.04.

13.04 contains a couple of goodies for developers who want to get ready for Ubuntu's converged future. There is a Developer Preview SDK for developers who want to build applications that can run across both desktops and mobile devices. There is also an option to install MIR, a new display server that will eventually replace the X window system in Ubuntu.

"MIR will enable the seamless convergence of Ubuntu across phone, tablet, and PCs in the next set of releases," Canonical said. "Having just one code base for all devices simplifies the lives of both developers and end-users, and makes possible a new generation of devices that combine the portability of the mobile phone with the productivity of a laptop."

Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth also described MIR this week in an interview with Datamation. X is still driving today's versions of Ubuntu, but "at some stage we'll slip MIR in underneath X and everything else," Shuttleworth said. "What MIR does is it gives us kind of unified wrapper around OpenGL drivers from all sorts of different places." MIR will make it easer to run Ubuntu across different types of chips, he said.

13.04 brings some changes to Ubuntu's Unity interface, including window snap animations, new preview animations in the Dash, a new Ubuntu One sync menu, a photo lens in the Dash for easier access to photos, and new window switching methods. OMG! Ubuntu! has a great roundup of these changes to Unity.

One recent change to Unity that might be disconcerting to users is the elimination of workspaces, or different desktops, in the default configuration.

"You will notice that only one workspace is available by default on any new installation," the Ubuntu release notes state. "If you want to bring back workspaces, you can find an option in the Appearance panel of System Settings under the Behavior tab. You can as well enable 'Show desktop' button on the Launcher."

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"Enable workspaces" and "Add show desktop icon" are left unchecked by default.

If Unity's not your thing, there are plenty of alternatives.

Ubuntu servers fly higher in the clouds

Beyond the desktop, Canonical released Ubuntu Server 13.04 today as well. The new server edition includes high availability capabilities for OpenStack, the open source cloud-building software. Canonical recently struck a deal with VMware to integrate OpenStack-based networks with VMware's server and network virtualization software. As a result, Canonical and VMware will provide joint support to customers.

Canonical has also upgraded its Juju DevOps platform, which helps deploy workloads to Amazon, OpenStack, and other clouds.

"Charms," or open source workloads, in the current release of Juju "now include all major Web development frameworks including Node.js, Django, and Ruby on Rails, enabling rapid orchestration of web applications using any of these frameworks on EC2 and OpenStack clouds," Canonical said in its Ubuntu Server announcement. "Charms are also available for the databases that underpin web applications, including MongoDB, MySQL, PostgreSQL and Cassandra, allowing a developer to select the best tools to build their application and reducing the risk of being tied to a prescribed, vendor-specific framework."

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stylemessiah

Despite all the claims of speed improvements, it will still be the slowest kludgiest linux, as it always has been.

As always, you have to wonder why it is, when Mint uses the same base and it is much much quicker

The only reason Ubuntu is even relevant is because it has groomed a generation of fanboys.

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Despite all the claims of speed improvements, it will still be the slowest kludgiest linux, as it always has been.

As always, you have to wonder why it is, when Mint uses the same base and it is much much quicker

The only reason Ubuntu is even relevant is because it has groomed a generation of fanboys.

Plus it's the only distro that markets itself.

However, Mint's existence is a lot depended on Ubuntu I think.

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stylemessiah

Why use a surrogate when you can have an original

GO UBUNTU !!!!!

Because the original is slow as mud and buggy.

Mint isnt...fact

Again, makes you wonder why, when its based on Ubuntu, how they can manage to mutilate their own implementation

Food for thought.

I havent even mentioned unity, the Metro of the linux world...oops there, i said it

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I havent even mentioned unity, the Metro of the linux world...oops there, i said it

I believe that it was "inspired" by the Metro. What a bad example to take the inspiration from. :P

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Why use a surrogate when you can have an original

GO UBUNTU !!!!!

Because the original is slow as mud and buggy.

Mint isnt...fact

Again, makes you wonder why, when its based on Ubuntu, how they can manage to mutilate their own implementation

Food for thought.

I havent even mentioned unity, the Metro of the linux world...oops there, i said it

Part of the instability is of course caused by unity but part also because mint is more free to distribute certain encumbered thechnologies (ie codecs and non free drivers). In Mandriva you can rebuild the srpm's with the plf flag which enables the build of patent encumbered parts of some programs, see how much a difference that makes. The ubuntu people are no fools but have their hands tied legally.

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indeed it is a software that has many bugs for more news releases

is the one that keeps the flag up

Please do not kill the messenger!!!!!!!

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chlorophyll

windows 7 vs ubuntu latest???

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windows 7 vs ubuntu latest???

It'd better to compare Ubuntu (Unity stuff) with Windows 8 than Windows 7.

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Windows 8 is Fast Responsive, and more effective
Ubuntu is each time slower and more buggey with each update

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smallhagrid

I agree that some of the recent distros have gone in a really stupid direction trying to 'compete' with windows.

They've done a terrible job of it and will push away long-time devoted users with what they've done.

Maybe by the time Ubuntu 12.04 LTS is getting done they will have reversed away from their cranial-rectal inversions...

There is this ridiculous idea for the OS to be an exciting, cartoony, colourful video game, and THAT is what is just plain stupid.

An OS is the foundation, best made of solid stuff so you can get on with what you have to do and forget it is there at all.

Linux OSes can be very good, solid, reliable and worth using - but to get there you have to ditch the cartoony rubbish that they have changed to using.

Changing the DE to get rid of it is very easy.

Using an Ubuntu LTS release as a starting point works quite well.

Linux is missing some of the nice stuff that windows has, and it's also very easy to run windows inside of Linux.

In a VM using a multi-core PC with 4GB of RAM windows runs incredibly fast and smooth.

Linux is also very, very stable.

Put the best of both together and you can have a very nice system indeed.

But for those who DEMAND an exciting, pictorial, colourful OS - that is not the way to go.

If that is what someone wants, I say great=> go for it !!

(But no need to bash other alternatives...just don't use 'em.)

If you know what you like to use best, it's best to just stick with it.

There's always a way to do that.

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Ubuntu distro is pretty stable and fast comparing to Windows vista, 7, and 8. I switch some of my home PCs to Lubuntu already because after Windows XP, I do not want to upgrade to Vista, 7, or 8. So I switch to Lubuntu. So far, the only complain that I have with Lubuntu is that they do not support some of the softwares such as turbotax desktop version. I know they have online version, but I need desktop version. If they can work with intuit to allow turbotax run in linux distro, I am completely switch to Ubuntu distro.

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being a newbie to Ubuntu which I never tried; does it run IBM software which runs on a windows OS and what support does it provide to third party software which are designed to run on windows by manufacturers?

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smallhagrid

Mjall, there is a wonderful little page someplace which explains that Linux is NOT windows.

But...you can still have your cake and eat it too...it just takes a bit of adjustment & learning.

I want to keep XP - permanently, if possible - and I want my h/w to all work, and I want stability - and DO NOT want any of the newer windows versions AT ALL.

So, I have a PC with a dual-core CPU, 4gb of RAM, installed Ubuntu 12.04, and LXDE - which makes it more windows-like AND speeds it up.

Then I installed VMWare Player, which lets you use virtual machines very easily.

Made a VM of my existing, very clean/fast/stable XP - copied it into the Linux installation - made sure it was set up right - and presto=> XP running INSIDE Ubuntu.

This has loads of advantages - and inside a VM I find that XP even runs faster than it does natively.

I hope this helps in explaining how this can be done.

The process of going from an existing installed OS to a VM is usually called 'P2V' and there are quite a few tools which do this quickly and easily.

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Mjall, there is a wonderful little page someplace which explains that Linux is NOT windows.

But...you can still have your cake and eat it too...it just takes a bit of adjustment & learning.

I want to keep XP - permanently, if possible - and I want my h/w to all work, and I want stability - and DO NOT want any of the newer windows versions AT ALL.

So, I have a PC with a dual-core CPU, 4gb of RAM, installed Ubuntu 12.04, and LXDE - which makes it more windows-like AND speeds it up.

Then I installed VMWare Player, which lets you use virtual machines very easily.

Made a VM of my existing, very clean/fast/stable XP - copied it into the Linux installation - made sure it was set up right - and presto=> XP running INSIDE Ubuntu.

This has loads of advantages - and inside a VM I find that XP even runs faster than it does natively.

I hope this helps in explaining how this can be done.

The process of going from an existing installed OS to a VM is usually called 'P2V' and there are quite a few tools which do this quickly and easily.

thanks for the above; is there restrictions to installing the 64 bit of windows on Ubuntu? what I like about what you wrote above is the fact you still would want to use MS windows despite being inside a Linux platform which only tells me the difference between the two systems from a functionality perspective at least ;-)

I am proud of a native MS windows installing and would stick to that without the presto ;-)

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smallhagrid

Just adding to what I posted before...I am sticking with Ubuntu 12.04 as there is no reason to change to 13.04 for me.

Mjall, I do not use any 64-bit software or OS because there is no valid reason to do so which applies to anything that I do at all, so I cannot comment about it.

What seems likely is that since there's 64-bit variations of most things it should be possible, but that's just a guess.

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