Ubuntu 10.10 New Features
Ubuntu 10.04, is well on its way towards its release date later this April (Update: It has already been released now). The developers at Canonical, who work in improving Ubuntu, have already started the process of planning for the up and coming Maveric Meercat. Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Ubuntu, revealed several days ago in his blog that Ubuntu 10.10, will be named not Mighty Manx, which some people rumored, but Maverick Meerkat.
Myth Debunked: Why Maveric Meercat while Mighty Manx sounds so much better?
The name given to Ubuntu 10.10 was chosen because the meercat represents Ubuntu's social and to-be even light characteristic.
Lucid Lynx, being a long-term LTS edition, was and is designed to not necessarily break new grounds with exciting new features, but rather fix and improve some problems in Ubuntu 9.10. Mark Shuttleworth says we can "expect to see a return to experimentation in the 10.10 release, with the potential for some radical changes." Some of the changes are so "radical," it may take a bit in getting used to it.
A new Radical Interface - Gnome 3.0
Not all planned changes will take place. But one of those changes are for certain, Gnome 3. Gnome 3 will bring in an overhaul to the user interface by removing Gnome altogether and creating the Gnome Shell. The GNOME Shell is currently in active development and while many planned features are not yet implemented it is stable enough for everyday use. atwww.live.gnome.org , you can see how to install Gnome 3 on your distribution of Linux,here. A more stable version is scheduled to be released in September 2010. Note that there are quite a few bugs in the current release and it may be choppy at times, but I think it's worth it. Here is a video of Gnome 3 in action. If you want simplicity, stick with Gnome 2.x. If you want the leading edge features and a serveral glitches, go for 3.0.
UPDATE: Due to delays in the development of Gnome 3.0, it will not be replacing Gnome 2.x come October. The new release is March 2011.
When you boot up, you see the purple background and the word Ubuntu. Several people think this should be changed to something like OpenSUSE's colorful splash screen.
A new Default Browser
Firefox is starting to lose it's luster and the people at Debian are taking a second look at Chrome. Chrome uses less resources than Firefox, is very fast, simple interface, and has a large database of plugins already. Like Firefox, you can customize the look of Chrome, but not to the extent of Firefox's customizable capabilities. Unlike Firefox, Chrome and Chromium (the true open source version of Chrome) comes in two flavors - 32-bit and 64-bit. This will make the browsing experience in Ubuntu even faster.
Speed...and lots of it.
A new kernel ( version 2.6.35) should speed up boot times considerably and the overall speed of Maverick Meerkat. The video below demonstrates how fast the early alpha version really is.
An Overview of the Alpha Release
It's not for certain, but the first beta release date according to Ubuntu's website is to be in September 2nd 2010. The final release according to Mark Shuttleworth, is to be October 28, 2010. This is exactly 6 months from Ubuntu 10.04's release in April, give or take a couple seconds.
Here's the list of all the release dates so far:
RELEASED - Daily builds can be found and downloaded here
June 03rd, 2010 – Alpha 1 released
July 1st , 2010 – Alpha 2 released
August 12th, 2010 – Alpha 3 released
September 2nd, 2010 – Alpha 4/Beta released
September 23th , 2010 – Beta 2 released
October 1st , 2010 – Release Candidate!
October 10th, 2010 – Final release of Ubuntu 10.10!
For more frequent updates of release dates, you can visit the official Wiki documentation.
Help out the Community
If you'd like to give back to the community, you can try out the Alpha (unstable) or the Beta (stable) versions of Ubuntu and report any bugs or rough edges that you may discover. You will help speed up the development of Ubuntu, and have a fuzzy feeling inside of you.
To upgrade to the latest release of Ubuntu 10.10 on a desktop system, press ALT+F2 and type in "update-manager-d". Update manager should open up and tell you: New distribution release 10.10 is available. Click "upgrade" and follow the on-screen instructions. As of now, Maverick Meerkat is rather stable and nearing the beta releases.
For new users who also want to help, you can browse through the threads and answer a few questions at ubuntuforums.org .