Ubuntu 8.04

I’m using the latest Ubuntu release for a while now. It has many nice improvements, resume and suspend seem to work perfectly now, even suspend-to-ram. The browser is slimmer and integrates better with Gnome (GTK widgets for forms, yay!) There has been some polish here and there.

But still, overall I’m a little disappointed. I have the feeling that there are many small regressions. For example, there’s no notification anymore after I unmounted my camera that it’s ready to unmounted (I thought that was a nice feature in one of the previous releases). I cannot access the data part of a hybrid audio/data CD (and thus can’t see the video that’s hidden there). The gnome-volume-manager settings don’t know about CDs/DVDs anymore and I can’t choose my favorite player for those. The default for ripping CDs is now Rhythmbox, which just can’t replace Sound-Juicer yet (cannot replace special chars in filenames with ‘_’). The browser locks up in some complicated situations with certificates. I think there’s many more.

My feeling is that it boils down to two unfortunate decisions: To include Firefox3 Beta and the brand new gio from Gnome. That just doesn’t feel right for an LTS release. I don’t envy the poor developers at Canonical that have to support that release for 3(5) years. From my point of view, the last series of non-LTS releases all appeared to be more stable and mature than this release. This is pretty sad. Luckily I don’t care much about LTS myself and happily await the Intrepid Ibex.

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About Roman Kennke
JVM Hacker, Principal Software Engineer at Red Hat's OpenJDK team, Shenandoah GC project lead, Java Champion

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