back to article Shuttleworth spears Natty Narwhal for Ubuntu 11.04

Ubuntu daddy Mark Shuttleworth has selected a codename for Ubuntu 11.04, due in April. Natty Narwhal will follow Maverick Meerkat, due in October, as Shuttleworth continues his sequential progress through an alphabet of alliterative animals. Natty Narwhal will join a Saint-Saëns-like precession of Lucid Lynxes, Karmic Koalas, …

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Bronze badge
Dead Vulture

I really must protest

"The Narwhal is considerably less-huggable than the animals Shuttleworth has used with prior releases."

Let's dig into that assertion with a review of previous names, shall we?

# 2 Ubuntu 4.10 (Warty Warthog) - Tusks. No thanks.

# 3 Ubuntu 5.04 (Hoary Hedgehog) - Probably not a fighter, but don at least two parkas before attempting to hug.

# 4 Ubuntu 5.10 (Breezy Badger) - The UK's most hostile land mammal. Taxi!

# 5 Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (Dapper Drake) - OK, probably do-able but hard to catch.

# 6 Ubuntu 6.10 (Edgy Eft) - Easy catch, but a bit slippery.

# 7 Ubuntu 7.04 (Feisty Fawn) - Even Bambi could deliver a pretty humbling kick in the nuts. No.

# 8 Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) - It'll be up a tree before you can say "Why won't you let me IN?". If you do manage to grab one, beware powerful bite and twitchy sphincter.

# 9 Ubuntu 8.04 LTS (Hardy Heron) - See #5, plus dagger-like bill.

# 10 Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex) - Horns to the solar plexus, pushed off a mountaintop. Next!

# 11 Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) - Doesn't appear to exist. Possibly therefore hardest on the list.

# 12 Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala) - worth a crack if it's sleepy (most of the time), but still a fair risk of near-fatal laceration.

# 13 Ubuntu 10.04 LTS (Lucid Lynx) - It's a big cat. I've seen small cats put grown men in hospital for less than a hug.

# 15 Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) - Liable to bore you to death about car insurance before you get close.

I rest m'case, m'lud...

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Silver badge

Been bitten by a meerkat

I'll hug the narwal any day.

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Linux

How much time was spent on this?

When they should be concentrating on the Quality of the release.

10.04 was worse than 9.10 which was worse than 9.04.

Downhill since 8.04.

Think of the early intro of Grub-2? Pah.

After sticking with Canonical since Warty, I have thrown in the towel. I've gone back to RH and after wiping 10.04 I installed Fedora 13.

Wow. It actually worked in many places where Ubuntu just failed miserably.

Ok, Anaconda still sucks but there is no doubt that Fedora now beats Ubuntu IMHO hands down.

IF most of what is in F13 goes into RHEL 6 then it will really rock.

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Silver badge

I agree

I still like Ubuntu and will continue to use it, but the latest release is definitely a step backwards in reliability. Took a while to get wireless working, and found out last night that cron wasn't starting up correctly (or indeeed at all). Both worked fine with the previous release, and no changes to the HW.

Both reported on launchpad, but will they fix them? Dunno. Still, I learn more about Linux because of the faults, than despite them!

More time spent on testing and less on new features please.

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Really?

Maybe you're using Ubuntu in a different way to me.

I use it as a desktop, C++, Java (Android) development environment and a little light web work. I also use it to recover data from other peoples dead laptops via various HD enclosures and a "I'll read any damn card in existence" front panel... and it works well. It plays me tunes, runs QtCreator, Eclipse et al and I've yet to find an HD it can't read and recover.

10 has proved itself to be better than 9 (compiz runs better, wifi works even better and the email/IM integration is very nice). The UI feels improved to me especially with stuff like Desktop Cube turned on.

I was actually pretty impressed when I updated from 9 oh 4 to 10 oh 4. That takes some doing!

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Thumb Up

10.04 good for me

After the disastrous (for me) 9.10, 10.04 was fine. I had a few problems upgrading, and in the end did a fresh install on my server and upgrade on my laptop. Since then it just works. I recently booted my laptop into Vista for the first time in months; I had forgotten how unresponsive it made the same hardware and quickly (well as quickly as Vista would let me) rebooted into Ubuntu. It does 99% of what I want, Wine takes care of .9% and about twice a year I boot into Vista.

However I won't upgrade to 10.10 unless there is something pretty amazing in there as i don't have much luck with .10 releases. 11.04 looks more interesting.

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Anonymous Coward

I'm in the same boat.

I switched from Ubuntu 10.04 to F13, and everything just works, and I mean *everything*! I find that the chaps at Canonical are too quick to incorporate the bleeding edge technologies. There is nothing inherently wrong with this approach I suppose, but it does sacrifice stability. Take the Plymouth boot loader that works like a charm in F13 but is abhorrent on Ubuntu unless you use the OSS drivers, in which case you can't get the benefits of the hardware accelerated desktop features. It seems to me when Openistas at Canonical harp on about choice they actually mean that you have the choice between a broken bootloader and a HW accelerated desktop *or* a working bootloader and no support for HW acceleration on your desktop. And let's not begin to talk about sound...

Fedora/RHEL FTW!

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Linux

Natty

No doubt , but when I do a fresh install of 10.4.1 it will be what I will have for the next 3 years.

Will do that later today.

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Gates Horns

Will power

9.10 was (and still is) great for my laptop, but nearly bricked my machine at home. The latter is happily running 10.4, and I promised myself that I would stick with it. Maybe I can satisify my curiosity by trying the new toys on machines that I don't use every day.

There is something to be said for being excited about new releases; Microsoft ruined that for me a long time ago, but Linux has me looking again.

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Natty

"Ubuntu 11.04 will take advantage of "modern" graphics to improve the look-and-feel."

As long as the distro doesn't start getting a little more middle-aged spread. With each upgrade my machines get slower and slower. I though that linux was supposed to be good for lesser hardware but if it's just going to follow the Windows model of development albeit with better multi-user model then it's wasting everyone's time.

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Boffin

Ubuntu is NOT Linux

Ubuntu is merely a Linux distro.

If you need to use lesser hardware, then this isn't the distro for you.

May I suggest a Linux distro that uses XFCE or a lesser Desktop Environment? Say, Puppy Linux or Zenwalk?

(To be truthful, I find that it's not even the distro for me. It's just too dumbed down.)

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Go

Lightweight graphics

A distro that uses XFCE, like... Xubuntu perhaps?

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Anonymous Coward

Intel graphics support

I hope the "modern" graphics will work on Intel 845/855 chipsets. Lucid doesn't, even with a clean fresh install onto a Dell Optiplex or a good quality 3rd party board - it black-screens. Intel 8xx graphics haven't worked properly since the Heron was in town. Shameful really.

Not a troll by the way, I don't use Windows except at work and Ubuntu is still my default OS - just.

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Linux

Old hardware

"I though that linux was supposed to be good for lesser hardware but if it's just going to follow the Windows model of development albeit with better multi-user model then it's wasting everyone's time."

The threshold for a Gnome live CD is high enough that I still encounter junkers that don't have the RAM for it; other specs are usually fine. I recently rescued a 3GHz machine that with extra RAM from peers (a modest 750MB, IIRC), and it **FLIES** with Ubuntu 10.4 (I am thinking of pressing it into service on a regular basis).

Bottom line: I had long heard about Linux's being faster than Windows, and I never really saw it. However, I think I never saw it because I was using junk machines. Given enough hardware to run a Linux desktop, Linux will beat Windows on the same hardware. But in fairness, Win2k will run happily on systems with too little RAM for Gnome to be useful.

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Silver badge

@AC

Thanks, but I am well aware that Linux is the kernel not the distro. To the average man on the street Linux is what you install and it comes in different distro flavours, but to them it's all "Linux". It may not be technically correct but that's life.

With regards lightweight distros, this kind of ignores the point I was making and that is that people often accuse Windows of bloat but the various distros all seem to be going the same way. It should also be noted that some of the other desktops can be much more of a pain in the arse to use than Gnome or KDE. I certainly found XCFE not to my liking after using Gnome. The "lesser hardware" of which I speak is a 3GHz P4. That is not really a low-spec machine but the slowdown has been noticeable and extra memory required.

The question is not "can I find a distro to work on this box" but rather "why won't the next version of my current distro work or why does it run like shit?"

As I said - and I stand by this statement as a user of Win7, OSX and 10.04LTS - if Linux distros are merely going to emulate the feature bloat of Windows (albeit a step or two behind size-wise) then users may as well just carry on using what they are familiar with. It holds little attraction in this regard especially given the bundling of <latest windows> with new hardware.

It seems that in order to try and attract new users they are treading the fine line of trying to feature match the system they target to attract its users without becoming a mirror of it. Maybe not all distros do this but the more popular ones certainly do.

I believe the Linux ecosystem is fine and doesn't need to mirror the bloat and empty wow-graphics arena as it has it's own unique selling points: the community; the security; the price; the freedom. With the update to 10.04LTS I think the Ubuntu desktop look-and-feel is pretty much there when compared to previous releases. It just needs a more coordinated marketing perhaps - see how eager MS were to keep XP alive when Linux distros were shipped with netbooks? They soon killed off that worthy proposal.

All said, I think Canonical are doing a fine job.

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Bronze badge
WTF?

Sounds like whalesong to me !

boom ! tish !

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Coat

still thought they missed out

On licentious lemur

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FAIL

More stupid names

If they chose more sensible names then I might take them a bit more seriously.

I installed Ubuntu 10.4 the other day on my old Vostro 1700, works a treat. But it's embarrassing having to explain to people what it's running. And it makes me feel like I'm running a toy OS.

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Anonymous Coward

Vostro 1700

Switch to Fedora 13. It works like a charm on the Vostro, where I have found Ubuntu to be getting progressively worse, and has a less stupid name. Or you could just tell people it's Ubuntu 10.04; Lucid Lynx is the development codename after all...

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Paris Hilton

What's so embarrassing about...

just saying "It's Ubuntu Linux"?

Do you use the internal version codenames to refer to all OS?

"Oh, yes, it's Windows 2008 Longhorn" or "Windows 7 which used to be Blackcomb then later Vienna before going all boring and just calling it Windows 7"?

Just because Ubuntu releases slightly more than three products a decade, meaning the codenames are a little more visible...

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Headmaster

Pendant Alert!

Bearing in mind your disty of choice is named after a hat I'd tread carefully ;-)

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Joke

Longhorn?

I thought it was long-shot.

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Natty Narwhal = Nackered Network

Ubuntu seems to be like Star Trek films: every second release sucks.

8.04 and 9.10 were rock solid for me, 9.04 and 10.04 (Long Term Shagged) came with knackered network and graphics drivers. Based on that pattern, I confidently predict that 10.10 will fix them again, then 11.04 will set fire to my crotch and poison the cat.

Ubuntu is so very nearly ready for Your Mother's Desktop (the big test), but Canonical do seem to be obsessed with upgrading drivers from stable versions to borked ones, just for the sake of surfing the bleeding edge.

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Silver badge

Already passed the Dad test

He' s been using it on his Revo for a year, no problems (Karmic).

But I agree re: drivers - last upgrade broke wireless and cron (!) as mentioned above. Fixed now (well, not cron yet - doesnt restart on boot), and the machine runs very well once its going. Compared to Vista on the other half's machine - she is constantly swearing at something or other - it's great!

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Thumb Up

Like Manchester you've got strange ways

When I started reading this I was momentarily baffled because I had managed to confuse Mark Shuttleworth of Ubuntu, with musician, songwriter and all round legend John Shuttleworth. I'm not sure what he would make of a Natty Narwhal I don't know. Probably he's written a song about one already, some to think of it.

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You don't hug Narwals, you eat them.

I tend to agree with those posting above about Ubuntu seeming to break something new with each upgrade. Kubuntu was what got me started using only Linux (I was dual booting before that) on my own machines -- and the ease of installation and use made it a great introduction to Linux.

However, on each release another piece of hardware stopped working, or a previous workaround (ndiswrapper, for example) was broken. The last straw was when the restricted NVIDIA drivers didn't support my cards but some changes meant that NVIDIA's own binary installer didn't work either (I have had other problems, and hate KDE4).

I am now a happy Debian user and was surprised that, after adding some multimedia repo's, it actually seems to be easier to live with than Kubuntu.

No, back to the Glutton Club...

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10.4 Works for me

10.4 Works for me. I use the 32bit VPS Server on Xen, the kubuntu 64 bit vesion on Del Vostro 1500 and a i7 Desktop. When the kernel is updated I reinstall the nvidia driver manauly and it just seems to work well.

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Improving the user experience

I really don't understand Mark Shuttleworth when it is stated that he says that Canonical is concentrating on improving the user's experience. Canonical should realise that their prime market are Windows end users. Otherwise, how could someone in Canonical have thought up the idea of left hand side positioned window minimise/maximise/close buttons with the changed icons for minimise & maximise.

When bugs are reported on Launchpad, there is often no proper response (often there is isn't one at all except for agreeing that it's a valid bug) : there should be an indication of when the bug will be fixed & released into the standard repositories as opposed to some developer gobbledygook. It seems to me that Launchpad (for Ubuntu) is trying to do 2 conflicting jobs: reporting bugs (mainly from end users) and intra-developer communication.

Ubuntu is acquiring a bad reputation for ignoring users: is it trying to compete with MS for the title of being the most user unfriendly software provider? I suggest that Ubuntu should publicise (on their web site) the bug fixes incorporated into the standard repository for the latest LTS release. It might also be a good idea to scrap STS releases and concentrate resources on bug fixing.

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Joke

Obligatory Ox

Pampered Poodle

Q?

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The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

Quizzical Quail?

Queer Queen Bee?

Questionable Quahog?

My fav..

Quirky Quetzal.

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Linux

Like so many...

for me, 9.10 was a bag of fertiliser. 10.04 just worked, straight away. Fingers crossed for 10.10 and onwards.

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Linux

Debian Squeeze

As I'm sure you all know, ubuntu is derived from Debian. The next Debian release "squeeze" has now been frozen and is well worth a look. It's by and large got more recent packages in it than ubuntu 10.04 and I am very impressed with it.

I got fed up with ubuntu around 9.04 (or was it 8.10) and have been using debian ever since. I've tried out the odd ubuntu every so often on a test machine but it just seems so bloated and never really works as well as a debian machine.

I suspect that the 11.04 release may have gnome-shell in it (aka gnome 3) which requires hardware acceleration - maybe that's Shuttleworths "modern graphics". Gnome-shell has a black theme which you currently can't change, I suspect that this was behind the drop of the poo-brown theme and the new dark theme in ubuntu 10.04....getting everyone ready.

Try gnome-shell on ubuntu (or debian squeeze) with

sudo aptitude install gnome-shell

gnome-shell --replace

Ubuntu will be an early adopter of this. OK, what's in the repos it's still far from release quality, but this may be gnome's KDE4 moment of crapness.

I agree with the other posters, I'm looking forward to RHEL6, it should be real nice (just don't plug a monitor into it - stack the machines in as many racks as you can buy)

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