Ubuntu 19.04 is out
The final version of the Linux distribution Ubuntu 19.04 is now available. The new version is already available for download in all supported flavors.
Existing Ubuntu systems running Ubuntu 18.10 can be upgraded to the new version directly using the built-in Update Manager. All that is required for that is to go to Settings > Software & Updates > Updates, set "Notify me of a new Ubuntu version" to "for any new version" to get started. Use Alt-F2 and type update-manager -c into the command box that opens.
The Update Manager should pick up the Ubuntu 19.04 release and let you know that it is available. Just select upgrade at that point and follow the instructions to upgrade the existing Ubuntu installation to the latest version.
Systems with i386 hardware won't be able to upgrade to the new version as it is considered currently to drop support for the architecture; the team does not want users stranded on a release with a shorter support phase.
Ubuntu 19.04 will be supported for 9 months until January 2020. The latest long term support release is Ubuntu 18.04; it is supported until April 2023.
Ubuntu 19.04 features several important changes, new features and updates. The new version is based on the Linux release series 5.0 opposed to version 4.15 which shipped with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.
The new version introduces support for several new hardware devices including AMD Radeon RX Vega M graphic cards, Raspberry Pi 3B and 3B+, Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, Intel Cannonlake graphics, and "many USB 3.2 and Type-C improvements".
Built-in toolchains come in updated versions as well; this includes Python 3.7.3, glibc 2.29, rustc 1.31, ruby 2.5.5, php 7.2.15, or perl 5.28.1.
The Ubuntu desktop comes with the GNOME 3.32 interface which should feel faster and more responsive thanks to "numerous performance improvements". A quick test confirmed that it feels snappier indeed.
Other desktop improvements:
- Sound configuration panel updated which should make "it easier to select your input and output devices".
- New options during the initial setup to give users more configuration options.
- Tracker included by default to keep track of recently used files.
- Alt-Tab shortcut switches windows by default.
- The order of windows preview in the dock is static in the release. The order is based on the time windows were added.
- Open-vm-tools will be installed automatically if Ubuntu Desktop is installed in VMWare.
- Yaru theme has been updated.
- New Safe Graphics Mode option in Grub.
- Firefox and LibreOffice updated and installed by default.
The Ubuntu team lists two known desktop issues right now. The first describes a delay when selecting third-party drivers during install. It may take a couple of minutes as the Ubuntu Drivers tool is refreshing the cache. Installation should commence normally after the cache refresh.
The second issue affects secure-boot enabled systems with Broadcom wireless adapters. Modules may end up uninstalled after reboot so that Wifi is not available. Workaround is to reinstall the bcmwl-kernel-source package using sudo apt-get install --reinstall bcmwl-kernel-source
Ubuntu Server administrators can check out the release notes to find out what is new.
Now You: Do you use Ubuntu?
I just tried it in a VM on a competent machine and it feels more sluggish than Gnome ever felt before. The icons are updated, that’s it. And Ubuntu’s questions at first boot regarding “do you want to log in with …” (i.e. “do you want to help us correlate your behavior with other things you do online”) and “do you want to share your data…” makes me feel like I’m booting into Android or some other commercial crap-OS.
Thanks for the info. Even Ubuntu is going to start data mining people’s info by the sounds of it. That is a deal breaker for me. I’ll keep using Linux Mint until they start doing the same crap.
Opposite here performance here. Feels faster than any other Linux distro I have tried in VMware.
I completely disagree with Anders. My experience is the exact opposite. I tried it in a VM and it is faster and more responsive than 18.04 and 18.10. I can’t believe that Gnome managed to become usable in such a sort time after Ubuntu decided to switch to it. And I used to hate Gnome because of it was sluggish. Well done, this is a great release. The minimal installation option is awesome too.
“Do you use Ubuntu?”
No. A few years back I tried Ubuntu out, but I could never get it to work right due to weird driver issues. So I stayed with Debian, which has always worked perfectly for me. It’s weird, since Ubuntu is a Debian fork, but it is what it is.
The problems I had with Ubuntu are likely fixed now, but if I’m going to go to the effort to change distros (which I’m seriously considering because of SystemD), it won’t be to Ubuntu. I’m not a big fan of many of the choices the distro has made, such as focusing on Gnome (not a criticism of Gnome — it’s just not my cup of tea), so I’ll go with a distro that would need less modification to make me happy.
Devuan is probably your best bet. MX Linux might be at the very top on DistroWatch right now, but systemD can easily slip into it (as a dependency for a package). In Devuan it’s completely blocked.
I’ve evaluated Devuan. It’s a viable alternative, but I’m currently heavily leaning towards either Slackware or moving off of Linux and onto one of the BSDs.
@John Fenderson: Slackware seems to be abandonware, considering the last version dates to July 2016. Doesn’t that pose a security risk?
The last ISO is from back then, but the packages in the repo still get changes frequently, as you can see here: https://packages.slackware.com/
Firefox is for example available in version 60.6.1-esr. That’s the latest Extended Support Release and definitely secure.
The Linux kernel version that they have, 4.4, is also a long-term-support release and I’m pretty sure is still supported.
@Klaas Vaak: It depends on how you approach it. If I go that route, I’ll be building the kernel and applications myself (it’s the Slackware way), so they’ll be the latest versions. It’s not an approach the casual user would be OK with, but something that isn’t a huge burden on me, as I can just add everything to my existing build servers.
@John Fenderson: OK, thanks for the explanation. As a noob I won’t go there then.
@Anonymous: what is so bad about systemD? And how does one notice that “badness” on one’s machine?
SystemD is highly controversial because (among many other things) it subverts so much of the operating system. Some people are OK with it, some are not. I am not. I think it takes Linux in a very bad direction.
The ongoing battle over SystemD is being fought very publicly on the internet, though, so if this is of interest to you, you’ll get a better picture of all sides of the debate by doing a web search.
@John Fenderson: what do you mean by “it subverts so much of the operating system”? What changes in the behaviour of the computer? How does one notice it? I have been using Mint for almost 3 months now and I have not noticed anything different during that period, but maybe I am not seeing it because I don’t know what to look for.
If it is so harmful, how come major distros like Mint, Ubuntu and others are sticking with it? Surely, if they had had a lot of complaints and serious issues because of SytemD, they would have ditched it by now.
The casual user would not notice any differences that matter. This is really the sort of thing that sysadmins and distro manufacturers care about. Distro manufacturers love SystemD because it makes their job a whole lot easier.
I’m not sure I can explain my “subvert the operating system” comment without getting boringly technical, but here goes: Linux is not a unified system like, for example, Windows is. Each Linux utility and system daemon is designed to be standalone and easy to replace with alternative implementations without risking breaking the system overall. SystemD replaces a huge swath of those utilities and daemons with its own implementation that is build into SystemD itself. This decreases the modular nature of the operating system (SystemD advocates will correct point out that you can build SystemD so that it omits a lot of that, but that requires a special build).
To make things worse, the SystemD replacements are new code that replaces old code that has had most of the problems shaken out through decades of real-world use. All new code has a higher number of problems than old, so SystemD can (and does) introduce new problems that did not have to exist.
There’s also (and this is getting too technical), the whole ring 0 problem. When Linux boots, the part of the OS that is responsible for getting everything up and running is running as the most privileged code that can exist, and no security restraints are placed on it. As such, traditionally the amount of code that executes in this state has been kept as tiny as possible. SystemD brings a whole lot of code that used to execute in a less privileged position into this highly privileged condition. This brings clear and obvious security and stability risks along with it.
At the heart of it, the SystemD debate is about whether or not the underlying architecture of Linux should change from traditional Linux to something that is more like Windows. Therefore, those of us who started using Linux to escape the problems of how Windows works are not happy with it. Those who feel more friendly toward the Windows way are not bothered by it. So, in a sense, it’s a culture clash.
“Surely, if they had had a lot of complaints and serious issues because of SytemD, they would have ditched it by now.”
Oh, they’ve got a lot of complaints, but there’s no real pressure to ditch it for two reasons:
First, almost all distros have adopted it, so there’s the idea that people might be upset by it, but they have nowhere to go.
Second, higher-level applications have started to make use of specialized SystemD facilities, which means that distros that want to be able to include those applications either have to adopt SystemD or engage in the additional work of ensuring that those applications can run without it (by either modifying/rebuilding the applications or supplying “shim” drivers that pretend that they’re SystemD to those applications).
Also, keep in mind that there is no real consensus about SystemD, either for or against. Some people love it, some people hate it, so no matter which way a distro goes they’re going to anger somebody. So they are tending to go the way that is easiest for them, which is to use it.
I’ve really only scratched the surface of this controversy. It’s very complex and has a lot of different facets.
@John Fenderson: thanks a lot for that. I belong to the group that switched to Linux to get away from Windows. My objective is to get to know Linux better, and, further down that path, to be able to select a distro that will not/unlikely to become more Windows-like. For now Mint suits me fine, as does antiX on my simple laptop; antiX is SystemD-less anyway, I believe.
@Klaas Vaak: “be able to select a distro that will not/unlikely to become more Windows-like.”
The Linux-heads who care about this that I know seem to have largely moved to Devuan or Gentoo. Personally, I’m still using Debian — Debian provides shims that allow you to run it without SystemD, but it takes a little extra work to set up. But, as I said, I’m going to change. My personal complication with this is that I run a lot of Linux machines, so migrating them (even though I can do it a machine at a time) is a serious amount of work. In the absence of a crisis, it’s very easy to procrastinate doing any of it. Inertia is a real thing!
@John Fenderson: Devuan to me seems like a distro for an advanced user. If, as a non-advanced user, I would want a user-friendly SystemD-free distro I would go for antiX or MX. I know MX has it, but has it diabled, which seems fair enough to me, esp. since the web site is upfront about it.
@Klaas Vaak: “Devuan to me seems like a distro for an advanced user.”
That very well could be. I realized a number years ago that I am not actually able to reliably judge what is suitable for non-advanced users, so I don’t even try to make those kinds of determinations. All I can do is report what I see my friends and colleagues doing, and what I myself do.
Whether that has any relevance for anyone else is up to them to decide.
I’m a Linux beginner and yours is the best explanation of the controversy that I’ve seen so far. Thanks for taking the time!
(Where higher-level applications are making direct calls to systemd, I wonder how systemd-free distros like Devuan are currently handling the problem.)
@Peterc: “I wonder how systemd-free distros like Devuan are currently handling the problem.”
Most (all? I’m not sure) of those applications provide compile-time switches that lets you compile them with the dependency. If an application doesn’t, it should be possible to fork them to remove the dependency, but that’s a solution that would bring a fair amount of work long-term to the distro.
Some distros, such as Debian for instance, provide packages you can install that look like SystemD to applications, but are really just translating everything to work without SystemD. I don’t know, but I will guess that this is likely to be the most common solution. Unfortunately, that solution encourages applications to not worry about including SystemD dependencies.
@Klaas Vaak & John Fenderson:
PCLinuxOS is a beginner-friendly Linux distro that doesn’t use systemd. It’s a rolling distro that’s been around for 15-plus years and it seems to have a fairly extensive repo. It used to be based on Mandrake/Mandriva but is now semi-independent, taking bits and pieces from multiple upstream distros.
I wasn’t able to keep it running for long when I tried it in VirtualBox a year or so ago — because of a window-manager conflict that I wasn’t knowledgeable enough to fix, I vaguely seem to recall — but that’s not necessarily a strike against it, since roughly half the distros I tried in VirtualBox had VB-compatibility problems ranging from damn annoying to show-stopping. I used it full-time in a bare-metal install on an old ThinkPad for a full year back in 2007/2008, and it was so trouble-free that I learned literally *nothing* about Linux. (Everything “just worked” from the GUI, and it never got borked by an update.) I don’t know whether that’s still the case, but I’m seriously considering doing a bare-metal install on an old Dell Latitude I recently acquired.
My main reservation is that the founder and lead developer is seriously ill, and I haven’t been able to determine whether PCLinuxOS has a leadership succession plan in place. Obviously, I hope he recovers and thrives for many years to come for his and his family’s own sake, but on a selfish level, I’m apprehensive about investing time and effort in potential abandonware. Being forced to switch from one fully configured/tweaked/personalized distro to another would be less traumatic than being forced to switch from Windows 7 to Linux, but it would still be unwelcome.
BTW, after seeing John’s mention of BSD, I did a little reading on BSD vs. Linux. A lot of things about BSD sound very appealing compared to Linux, but I get the impression that it might be too challenging for a lay home user working on laptops, like me. Moreover, if and when I get a new laptop, with recent hardware, it sounds like I could be in for a *very long wait* for BSD support to catch up.
@Peterc: I tried PCLOS in a VM when I was still in the testing phase, but could not get it set up properly – it did not scale to the screen correctly – so I discarded it. From your experience it seems to me it does perform perfectly when it is installed on bare metal. So it might be a good alternative to the user-friendly, almost hassle-free, SystemD-rich Mint; so might antiX and MX for that matter, and maybe others. I am not interested in a distro that requires constant/regular tinkering and/or one that requires expert knowledge.
I am interested to see what happens with PCLOS in view of the lead dev’s status.
BTW, do you know anything about the Puppy family? Seems to be minimal and easy too, don’t know about SystemD.
I don’t really “know” anything about Puppy, other than that it’s systemd-free and super-lightweight.
There’s a list of systemd-free distros here:
Just a reminder that PCLinuxOS worked flawlessly for me in a bare-metal install *over ten years ago*. I haven’t yet installed the most recent ISO (released in March 2019) on my old Dell Latitude. (I mentioned in another comment that I’m addicted to pointing sticks, and I’m worried that the Dell’s “Track Stick” is going to suck just as horribly in PCLinuxOS KDE as it does in Kubuntu 18.04.2. If I like everything *else* about PCLOS, however, I might swap the drive into the old ThinkPad I’m currently running Linux Mint 19.1 Cinnamon on and see whether the TrackPoint works as well in PCLOS as it does in Mint.)
“I am not interested in a distro that requires constant/regular tinkering and/or one that requires expert knowledge.”
Ditto, on steroids! Throw in a huge repo full of up-to-date packages, and we’re getting there! Basically, I want it *all*: total beginner-friendliness; bulletproof stability; top-notch security and privacy; no reinstalls, clean upgrades, or borked in-place upgrades, ever; prompt and complete support for every hardware device and peripheral ever made; and the latest version of every application I could possibly want. Is that *really* to much to ask for? (Short answer: Yes. Yes it is. Next question. ;-)
@Peterc: thanks for that link ;-)
After 4-5 months of testing various Linux distros in a Windows hosted VM, I installed Linux Mint in February, and have been happy ever since. I will definitely not go back to Windows.
In March I installed antiX on another machine and am happy with that too.
Word, Mint 19 was a bit soso, especially nemo, but Mint 19.1 with the new revamped cinnamon and nemo is tight.
i run lubuntu on my laptop, so now you know :)
only one comment. anyway, i’m good with kde – neon. the ubuntu – hwe – stack provides a rock-solid system – even for new hardware – and the always up-to-date kde (5x) ist a beauty. everything is fast & ressource – friendly. yep, ubuntu _itself_ was always questionable (except in their beginnings).
but – and i had to learn that the last months – that’s nothing compared to:
big blue / ibm = redhat = (unfortunately) fedora.
this is a whataboutism – argument. and i’m sorry about that.
history : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_and_the_Holocaust
current dangerous projects :
nonsense a.i. : https://www.ibm.com/watson
commercial – universal – quantum – computer – promises : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LAA0-vjTaNY
– imho everything against humanity (and much more) itself – again. and everything in the false hands.
redhat partners : https://www.redhat.com/en/technologies/industries/government
yep. remember snowden. us – citizens have already completely forgotten him. shame.
this is about a nasty backdoor against the will of the “normal end – user” :
.. and therefore unfortunately : fedora.
here it was announced that some sort of “telemetry” will be introduced, starting with v30. the beta is out there. but no public information at all.
and linux-communitys are still a collection of too many (not all) bad people.
+ anyway : windows world or linux world – both worlds are merged together – more than one would think (“the linux foundation” platinum members, “ms – snaps .. . further contexts in keywords: github owner, linux is a cancer -> we love linux -> suspicious? of course). it’s disgusting. everything. but i don’t care anymore. not really.
luckily, one don’t have to live with all the microsoft – horror that is reported here day by day. one stays (still) untouched from this mess called “windows 10”. a little bit of advantage.
if you take the step, don’t think it would be a step into a much better world. it’s just a slightly better world = still a really bad world. from an ethical point of view. at present.
Aaah Ubuntu, my favorite Sheldon Cooper based operating system. My views while testing the live usb: it’s filled with software I do not agree with, why I do not know. Mom made me wear weird sweaters to school too, I am obviously traumatized. I would prefer it superclean and minimal without others opinions of what I should use down my throat. Moving on: I hate the theme, I hate the icons. Yes, I realize maybe there’s another distro for me since I am obviously a grumpy old man. I fire up Firefox, which I hate, just to access Gnome extensions. Out of the box, this of course does not work, which I hate. But Firefox wants to show me all kinds of things, while looking like crap while doing so. It’s 2019, Firefox: DIE. Everybody hates you. I want Gnome extensions to install Dash To Panel, which I love, and Arc menu: Because I hate everything about default Gnome. Many many many maaaaaaaany clicks later, which include enabling sources in software repos etc etc I finally can install Dash To Panel and Arc Menu. Finally we can test this thing without wanting to vomit because of the UI. Noobfriendliness: zero. Ok, good. I have a somewhat large music collection, 6k albums: Rhythmbox does not understand what a big music collection is. Actually I was happy about this, because Rhythmbox looks worse than WinAmp did 20 years ago, Rhythmbox is a complete supergarbage buttugly musicplayer. The only player that handles large collections well is YAROCK and thats only on KDE. Yup, lollypop looks nice but is useless as a musicplayer. Kinda like a woman without all the lady parts. I want to watch a video, GNOME videos doesnt know what a flv file is and wants to download half the internet to play this file. I want to look at a picture, before I can I must click a hundred billion times and then I’m greeted with something that wants to be a mix of Photoshop and something that has no clue wtf it is, which I hate. I click on a picture: show me the picture RIGHT NOW. This goes on and on and on.. I’m sure I can set this thing up how I want in a matter of days/weeks and be happy.. But do I want to do that? Nope. Also, when I remove things I HATE, things that need to be in the system also get removed leaving me with my own customized Ubuntu that explodes every time I use it. That, and the fact that Ubuntu serves me ANCIENT software leaves me absolutely zero reason to use this LINUX FLAGSHIP, the one everyone recommends. It’s complete garbage. Scary that spaceships use this Potato OS. Kernel 5 cant save this old way of thinking. ALL software and OS MUST be the latest in 2019. Yeah arch guys sharraaaaap, I’m bashing Ubuntu here ok? Bottom line: zero reason to use Ubuntu when you can have equally old crap and user-hostile garbage that is Debian. Having tested/used numerous linux distros over the years, the only one I recommend today is KDE Neon. Based on Ubuntu yes, I know… Linux is shooting itself in the foot every year, be it fragmentation, be it lack of funding or fat developers wanting to slim down and leaving their teams.. fact is: Windows 10 today, as horrible as it is, kicks EVERY LINUX DISTROS A**. I rest my case.
PS: All you linux guys butthurt by this: don’t bother with the standard “with linux you can do whatever you want” and “distro X can do this” or “here’s how to minimal install Ubuntu” blaaa blaaa blaaaaaa! I want a distro that’s amazingly fast, gorgeous, has ZERO programs and after installing is ready to go and doesn’t bother me with anything. KDE Neon is NOT that OS, but it requires the least amount of effort on my part to set things up. Having said that, KDE Neon boys: stop feeling good, there’s plenty of retarded defaults in your system too.
You do realize that no one’s gonna read that wall of text… right?
lol +1, my exact thought; your comment was solid though ;)
You did. Thanks for chipping in.
@Anonymous: +1. In addition, if what he/she writes would be interesting, it would be something, but this is just verbal diarrhoea that no one is interested in. Oh well …
I read it Anomymous haha. Gorgar, you should try to install it and not rely to the live usb. There is a minimal option during installation that installs only Firefox, not even LibreOffice. Itâ€™s not filled with software you do not agree with, at least not anymore. I mean come on, they should at least install a browser haha.
Nope. I don’t want a browser someone else thinks I should have. In windows it makes sense because you need a browser to download and install another one, in linux you do not. I would love it if minimal install actually meant minimal install, but in Ubuntu that’s definitely not the case. Minimal install is soiled with, to me, completely useless and wrong software. An ideal solution for stubborn, grumpy old geezers like myself would be more options during install: “What browser would you like to use?” you pick one. “What mediaplayer would you like to use?” you pick one, OR choose the option “None” in case you never ever play any media on your computer or if it is not on the list. “What icons do you like?” etc etc etc.. These options would cover all software/theming/tweaking needs and one would be greeted with a system that feels right and personal from the start. Yeah, that would increase the time and effort required during install, but I do not care if my system installs in 60 minutes instead of 30 since I am not reinstalling my system every day. Oh well, Ubuntu is definitely not for me =)
Gorgar, it just installs Firefox. What wrong software are how talking about, it doesn’t even install a media player. That’s minimal install. If it starts to ask â€œWhat browser would you like to use?â€, â€œWhat mediaplayer would you like to use?â€, â€œWhat video editor would you like to use?â€, â€œWhat office software would you like to use?â€ that’s not minimal install. I don’t understand why it should ask about which software to install instead of not installating any or asking about every possible setting during instalation, why would something like that make things easier. It would just confuse most people. You can do what you want at the end of installation with Software and Settings. And even better create a script to install your favourite programs and to apply your settings of choice and save it once and for all. I do agree, Ubuntu is definately not for you, it’s for the majority of people who don’t like to answer to questions and questions alll the time and want a simple and fast installation.
Go for Sheldon Cooper approved Ubuntu Server without any desktop GUI, icon themes, office or multimedia software packages, which could be added later on your own.
I haven’t installed linux mint or linux lite on my old laptop that is still on storage. I may not use Ubuntu since majority of the brains behind the OS were flush out, due to political correctness and affirmative action given to folks who are not sharp.
I suspect that back doors were added into Ubuntu. Damn shame too, and according to a friend of mine, she said, it was good a few years ago until recent times.
Ubuntu wasn’t my style. I was a Mint fan for years, recently I gave Manjaro a spin to check out its gaming potential and I’m really enjoying it.
I read that Gnome 3.32 introduced fractional scaling but I did not see it eneabled by default. Said Xorg and Wayland both compatible with it. I guess maybe still have to run command to enable it? Otherwise, I didn’t feel the love that 19.1 really sold me on anything new. Wasn’t disappointed but more just meh.
Working fine in a VM for me; 18.04 had some problem with VBox Guest Additions that needed some CL work. Still flustered because there’s no fractional scaling. Odd. Gnome Tweak Tool is a workaround, but . . . . Linux Mint has serious font rendering problems in VBox. Unusable. But no problems on a USB with Mint. Keep it on a stick and use Ubuntu on VBox.
I updated to the new version by running the “update-manager -c”. Best Ubuntu release in a while. CPU and GPU load is reduced a lot, finally fractional scaling is back like we had it on Unity. It works in X.Org, but you need to enable it.
Must mean you updated from 18.10; since Linux isn’t immune to the same MS clutter/leftovers problems, you have have loads of garbage. Canonical even recommends a fresh install. As for “fractional scaling,” it isn’t really working. One can read about how to enable it here:
I found that in VBox with plenty of RAM and dedicated video, the system became unstable, erratic, and unpredictable. So, “fractional scaling” still isn’t working as in working–which means MS is far ahead in that game.
My system is super clean and no garbage, I know how to.. clean it . I updated from 18.10 and it works perfect. â€œfractional scalingâ€ is working perectly in xorg, I enabled it with the terminal and it works for me. I don’t care if this linuxuprising guy has issues, it works for me with no increased CPU and GPU usage. Maybe for once he should try to make tests in “real action” and not VMs. I don’t care if I am lucky and it works only for me with no issues, it works:)
Remember, upgrading from Ubuntu 18.10 to Ubuntu 19.04 is optional, whereas upgrading from Win 10 1809 to Win 10 1903 is forced by M$.
Those who choose to run Ubuntu 19.04 are usually volunteer beta-testers, trend-followers and experimenters, whereas those who have been or will be forced by M$ to run Win 10 Home 1903 are forced unpaid beta-testers.
Personally, I only run the LTS editions that are released every 2 years and supported for 5 years, eg Ubuntu 16.04 and Ubuntu 18.04. They also come with LTS Linux kernels, eg kernel 4.4 and 4.15.
……. Those who buy new computers may need to run the LTS 6-monthly Point Releases, eg Ubuntu 18.04.2 LTS, or the Ubuntu Rolling Releases, eg Ubuntu 19.04, which has a newer Linux kernel.
I have never understood why to release LTS distros every two years that are supported for five years. Mostly while some of their packages are not supported ever until those five years have expired. Obviously, users can install new upgraded packages with some new official or unofficial repositories, but they must be uninstalled to upgrade from one LTS to another new LTS version. IMHO one LTS version should be allowed to install all new repo packages by itself for these five years. The only option to get recent packages in Ubuntu LTS is to install LTS every two years (e.g. LibreOffice).
There are other options now to get recent packages/software on LTS distros. Snaps, flatpaks and appimages. This way you get a LTS distro (it has many advantages for non tech savvy people and especially for IoT, servers etc) and have updated software (e.g. LibreOffice) at the same time. That’s why Canonical is pushing for Snaps and IBM is pushing for flatpaks. Btw, IBM and Canonical don’t care if a desktop linux user moans about them, they don’t make money from them, they make money from IoT, servers etc.
“I have never understood why [Ubuntu] release[s] LTS distros every two years that are supported for five years. ”
IANALM (“I am not a Linux maven”), but Is it maybe so that people who get a new computer with recent hardware can install an LTS release that has at least around three years until end of life? Most hardware support is in the kernel and I believe LTS releases are based on given kernel series. If you get a brand-spanking-new computer and the only available LTS release is four and a half years old, there’s apparently an excellent chance that at least some of its hardware won’t be supported.
“Remember, upgrading from Ubuntu 18.10 to Ubuntu 19.04 is optional, whereas upgrading from Win 10 1809 to Win 10 1903 is forced by M$.”
Read through Ghacks or any tech blog. One can easily dismiss upgrades and updates and install per need, time available, and comfort level–like what are the updates/upgrades doing to other computers.
Unh-hunh. In theory, sure. And then you keep coming across anecdotes like this one. (I’ve cued up the relevant segment. It isn’t long and it’s on point.):
Why I stopped using Windows 10 | 8 Major Reasons [Chris Titus Tech]
And that’s coming from a professional tech/sysadmin. If *he* can’t control Windows 10 updates, how’s your grandma going to fare?
If you are referring to the ability of Win 10 Pro & Ent to defer M$’s forced auto-upgrades by a maximum of 365 days, it still means the upgrades in Win 10 are not optional.
Win 10 Pro & Ent users cannot refuse to be forced auto-upgraded by M$. They can only choose to be forced auto-upgraded now or be forced auto-upgraded later by M$ = M$ will inevitably force auto-upgrade all Win 10 computers sooner or later.
……. It’s just a matter of when. If you pay more money to M$ for the Win 10 Pro & Ent editions, M$/Nadella will only force himself onto you a bit later, if you so choose to defer the forcing by M$/Nadella. Win 10 Home users are first in line to be forced auto-upgraded by M$.
I’m playing around with Kubuntu 18.04.2 “Bionic Beaver” on an eight-year-old Dell Latitude. As a Windows refugee, I like KDE Plasma a *lot* better than Gnome 3.x. It’s pretty, it’s highly customizable out of the box, it’s no longer a RAM hog, and it’s *familiar*. Anyway, I don’t think I’ve run into any really *major* problems with Kubuntu so far.
The KDE System Settings panel is still on the complex and confusing side, although maybe less so than in the recent past. I added one of Pale Moon’s two officially approved PPA repos and am using Pale Moon as my default browser. Google’s Web-initiated install routine for Google Chrome (which I use almost exclusively for Netflix) worked without a hitch. I imported my user profiles for Pale Moon, Firefox, Waterfox, Google Chrome, and LibreOffice from Linux Mint Cinnamon 19.1, and they seem to be working fine, by and large. I did a manual install of FreeFileSync and made launchers for FreeFileSync and RealTimeSync using pretty much the same procedure I’d used for Linux Mint Cinnamon, without a hitch. I also did a manual install of YouTube-DL-GUI, with launcher, and that seems to work fine, too.
* Kubuntu LTS seems to have only a three-year lifespan, whereas Ubuntu LTS (on which Kubuntu LTS is based) has a *five*-year lifespan. (So far as I can make out, as of 18.04, Ubuntu LTS actually has a *ten*-year lifespan … for enterprise customers who pay for extended support.) Anyway, that’s a major strike against Kubuntu compared to Linux Mint, which like Ubuntu LTS is supported for five years. The less often I have to even *possibly* be put in the position of having to do a clean upgrade, reinstall all of my apps, and redo all of my configurations, the better. If Texstar weren’t seriously ill and if Solus were a bit further along in its development, PCLinuxOS and Solus would be serious contenders for my next primary OS, as rolling distros that you “install once and update forever.”
* Discover, Ubuntu/Kubuntu’s GUI software manager, isn’t as good or helpful as Linux Mint’s Software Manager. And a lot of distro reviewers seem to agree with me on that point. End of complaint.
* This problem may well be specific to Dell laptops with Track Stick pointing sticks, although it’s one that I have NOT been able to minimize using Kubuntu’s bundled input-device settings so far: I’m *addicted* to the pointing stick for mousing and scrolling, and Dell Track Sticks are simply not as smooth and accurate as Lenovo TrackPoints, in either Windows or Linux. I intend to search for tips and special utilities for configuring pointing sticks in Kubuntu sometime soon. (By the way, Kubuntu seems to come with a hot corner in the upper right of the screen that’s activated by default. It switches between displaying the active window to displaying a preview of all open windows on the desktop. Thanks to the wonky Track Stick, I regularly overshoot titlebar close buttons and trigger the hot corner. If I can’t improve how the Track Point behaves, I’m going to have to deactivate the hot corner.)
* This next complaint actually applies to every Linux distro I’ve tried: the US International (with dead keys) keyboard layout doesn’t work as well as the equivalent Windows layout does. So far as I’ve been able to surmise, the Windows layout sends dead keys’ nominal characters (e.g, an actual ‘, “, ^, ~, etc.) as soon as it registers an immediately-following spacebar *press*, whereas the Linux layout doesn’t do that until it registers a spacebar *press-and-release*. Either that, or the spacebar press-and-release simply doesn’t register a lot of the time. Regardless, the end result is that if I don’t type more slowly and deliberately in Linux than I do in Windows, I end up with a lot of garbage like IÇ˜e, Iá¸¿, and thatÅ› instead of the I’m, I’ve, and that’s I intended to type. (Some of the characters, like Ã§ and Ã‡ are composed differently, too, but a completely identical layout may be too much to ask for.) I intend to try to research the spacebar issue at some point and maybe bring the matter before the shadowy High Council for Linux Keyboard Layouts. ;-)
Major Plus (pertaining to KDE specifically): My eyesight isn’t the greatest, and I appreciate windows decorations (minimize button, maximize/restore button, close/quit button, etc.) that I can see and accurately target and click on. KDE Plasma is highly customizable and I’ve been able to choose windows decorations that work for me. I generally find Linux Mint and Cinnamon to be more consistently well-thought-out, more user-friendly, and less glitchy than Kubuntu and KDE Plasma, but I’ve been having vision-related problems with the version of Cinnamon in Mint 19.1. Apparently, in order to improve scalability on HiDPI displays, the Cinnamon team radically reduced window customization options, at least for now. My problem is that the remaining options all have tiny, super-subtle windows decorations that can be a *sumbitch* for Mr. Magoos like me to click on — even on a ThinkPad with an accurate TrackPoint. If they give me some big, boldly colored squares instead of tiny, quasi-camouflaged balls in the next release, I’ll be a lot happier!
All in all, I would at least *consider* Kubuntu as my primary OS over Linux Mint Cinnamon if it weren’t for the shorter lifespan. I understand why Linux Mint KDE users were upset when Mint stopped offering official KDE releases after 18.3. Cinnamon is a great DE and it’s constantly improving (well … for twenty- and thirty-somethings with 20/10 vision ;-), but KDE still outshines it in many areas, admittedly at the cost of some glitchiness.
PS: Someone mentioned Manjaro. I tried out Manjaro KDE in a bare-metal install for a few weeks and concluded that while it might be a *great* distro for intermediate-level Linux users and above, it doesn’t make the cut as a beginner-friendly distro. There were a few packages that I really wanted or needed. In many other distros, they required manual installs, but in Manjaro, they were available in AUR. I was so excited! One install script (for TuxGuitar) ran to conclusion and reported a successful install … and then TuxGuitar wouldn’t run. Another (for FreeFileSync) took repeated (six or more?) attempts, spaced out over time, to install … and ditto for the subsequently released version, except that I never *got* it to install. The software update GUI (either Octopi or Pamac, I forget which) began flagging a bunch of library conflicts, but provided no information beyond that. My fault for installing packages from AUR? Maybe. But the thing is, I haven’t gotten library conflicts in distros where I installed the same apps manually. Anyway, Manjaro is obvsiouly *dramatically* more user-friendly than stock Arch, but to my mind, it’s still not *remotely* user-friendly enough for Linux beginners like me.
PPS: I think it’s *very* smart of the Mint team to be maintaining a parallel Linux Mint Debian Edition, in case Canonical turns to the Dark Side of the Force or just does something incredibly boneheaded with Ubuntu. Linux Mint and Cinnamon are still the most hassle-free distro and desktop environment I’ve used (recent Mr. Magoo problems notwithstanding), and I hope the team sticks it out and keeps developing these projects for a long time to come. To *consistently* release products that are as stable and well-functioning as theirs in an environment as complex and chaotic as the GNU/Linux world is quite an accomplishment.
Can we have flatpak support by default please? When I tried cosmic cuttlefish I had to jump a bunch of hoops to get it, and when I almost succeded, it gave error. Followed the official instructions several times, no dice. Back to Mint, GNOME looks like crap anyway, and I hear Plasma has a bunch of performance issues.
I can’t speak to Ubuntu with Gnome — the last time I tried Ubuntu proper, it still used Unity — or to any flavor of Cosmic Cuttlefish, but in Kubuntu 18.04.2 LTS Bionic Beaver it was so trivial to install Flatpak support and Discover integration, and then enable Flathub as a software source, that I’ve actually forgotten how I did it, only a little over a month ago. I’m guessing I followed a tip in one of those “X Things to Do After Installing ‘Buntu” articles. But I agree that it was typically thoughtful of Mint to have provided full Flatpak support out of the box.
In this connection, I discovered just yesterday that the only “safe and easy” way to get a current-release-family version of HandBrake in my two Bionic-Beaver-based distros (Kubuntu 18.04.2 and Mint 19.1 Cinnamon) is to install the Flatpak version. Clearly, Flatpak support *can* come in handy. In fact, I’m wondering whether it would be worthwhile to learn how to roll my own Flatpak packages of recent app releases that I *really* want, as an alternative to doing potentially destabilizing manual installs. (I mean, how hard can it be, right? ;-)
By the way, I’m running a batch of transcoding jobs using the HandBrake Flatpak app in Kubuntu right now, and it seems to be working just fine.
Plasma now uses considerably less RAM than Cinnamon does. I’ve read, however, that it taxes the CPU more heavily, not that I’ve noticed. Plasma does have odd glitches here and there, but I don’t think I’ve run into anything horrible so far — more like inconsistencies when you customize it. But I’ve run into that in Cinnamon, too, when adding new mouse-pointer “themes.” (Half of the new themes showed up as options in the settings panel and half of them didn’t. The weird thing is that some of the themes that showed up were *exactly the same* as some the themes that didn’t, except that they were a different color. Go figure.)
I still prefer Windows, but on my older boxes I’ll keep using Linux LTS with Zorin Lite and Mint, as I never liked Ubuntu that much.