Linux Gets a Makeover

One of the long-standing problems with Linux is that even the varieties that aim for accessibility often look like something ordinary people wouldn’t want to use. This has been true of even the most populist free flavor—Ubuntu, which visually seemed like an afterthought even though its innards and interface were smartly conceived and constructed. But with Ubuntu’s newest long-term support (LTS) release, 10.04 (nicknamed “Lucid Lynx”), developer Canonical seems to be changing for the better. Gone are the muddy look and questionable color scheme that have defined Ubuntu’s default appearance for a long time. Instead, you now get a Gnome KDE desktop that’s both smooth and striking. Of course, Ubuntu also needs substance behind its good looks, which it has in the form of ease of use, relatively unfettered features, and a strong software selection. For example, you can now access the Ubuntu One cloudbased music store. Similarly, the new “Me” menu coordinates popular social-networking features by putting all your accounts in one convenient place—you don’t even need to open your browser. And access to the vast library of free, open-source apps available on the Internet has improved with an updated version of the Software Center app. On our tests, this version took only 32 seconds to boot to the desktop screen. Ubuntu 10.04 achieves this with the help of Upstart, which uses events to start and stop tasks—a better solution than the traditional System V. And although this release is still not about to unseat the far more popular—and expensive— Microsoft and Apple OSs, it finally seems to be making significant strides toward attracting and keeping a wider audience.

PROs - User-friendly redesign. Integrated chat and social-networking capabilities. Good preinstalled software selection. Fast boot times.

CONs - Ubuntu One music store is limited compared to Apple and Microsoft offerings. Finding and choosing new software may intimidate less-experienced users.

Source of Information : PC Magazine July 2010


Subscribe to Developer Techno ?
Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner