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back to article Ubuntu 'Maverick Meerkat' erects own App Store

Ubuntu fans, fire up your virtual machines. The beta release of Ubuntu 10.10 is here. Maverick Meerkat, as this release is known, is actually several weeks ahead of the original schedule, and that means Ubuntu 10.10 is on track for its final release October 10. We wouldn't suggest using the beta in a production environment, but …

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Had to be said

Simples.

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Coat

Multiple versions

If I fire up the KVM and install 64 Bit Desktop, Kbuntu and a server version does that mean I can compare the meerkat?

Mines the one with "KVM for rodents" in the pocket

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Joke

No

This means that you compare to David Attenborough from life of Mammals. There is a wonderful shot there where he has several sitting on top of him.

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Coat

and...

Its not a bug, its just a fur wound.

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@Jason Yau

No, it most certainly didn't.

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FAIL

i wonder...

if compare the linux (.com) is available - and no, i cannot be arsed to look

need a cannot be arsed icon :D

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Thumb Up

Ubuntu has been constantly moving forward...

... the new "notification system", Ubuntu Netbook Remix, etc. These show how you can use open source, but still build customised solutions. In has grown from being a debian branch out to developing an identity all it's own.

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Coat

Meh, cats.

"Overall, Maverick's default theme makes for the sexiest Ubuntu yet"

I guess Ubuntu has finally made the grade, become 'a real OS' where form over function and endless tweaking of UI puts it comfortably alongside Windows, Mac and other OS's. I do wonder how many users see it as "Ubuntu" rather than as any flavour of Linux?

Not that it's such a bad thing per se, but I have visions of Linux command line coders seething as Linux becomes mainstream desktop, 'just another OS; choose the prettiest which takes your fancy'.

I'm still wondering what happens to the naming convention beyond Zeitgeist Zebra :-)

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Re: after Zeitgeist Zebra

Aarrgh aardvarks (obviously)

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and why not:

Another Animal

Antipodal Antelope

Appalling Ape

Antique Ant

... lots of option, really.

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Joke

Whoooooooooooosh

What's that sound, you say?

It's the joke in the previous post whizzing over your head.

Sorry.

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Will they ever learn...

...that 99% of people will not touch even this latest version because, quite obviously, it cannot seamlessly run Windows apps which most users do not (or cannot) let go of? Messing around with virtualbox or crossover is not something that the vast majority of people want to do.

Why Ubuntu cannot offer an version with VB installed and configed, or crossover configured, i dont know. I would just love to be able to install Ubuntu and then insert my MS Office 2003 disks, or even my 2010 disks, and it just goes off and installs without any inputs or hitches and then runs as well as on XP or 7, and that includes getting the printing to work without effing around.

Yes you purists will flame me, but i want Ubuntu or whatever linux flavour and i want it REALLY easy, as would many other people probably, even pay something for it.

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Boffin

VB cannot be included because

It's a proprietary development language by MS.

And including VB won't fix it anyway, it's a programming language, programs still need to be recompiled from source to run on Linux. And good luck with getting the source code for recompilation: most applications in Windows are closed sourced. The open source ones already have a Linux-native port.

What they need to do is sponsor the development of Wine (maybe even buy over Crossover and release whatever proprietary changes they made back into the Wine main branch) and Mono so that they're good enough to run Windows apps natively, and integrate it into the distro, perhaps modifying the HAL script and/or patch the Kernel to recognize PE and NET assemblies from ELF, and then launch PE apps using Wine and NET assemblies using Mono. Yes, it'll result in the entire distro being too big to fit on CD anymore (but it'll still fit on a DVD), but it will allow the distro to seamlessly launch Windows applications. For what it's worth, Office 2003 already runs very well in Crossover's Wine releases. Problem is, Crossover's products aren't cheap.

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@Will they ever learn

Do they care? They never will displace windows, but I would be chuffed to see them reach 20% (with Apple & MS battling out the remaining 80% vaguely equally).

My reasons for not wanting it come down to the rot that comes with being #1 by a big margin, not just the legacy Windows carp, but the underlying problem of not innovating and becoming hackers #1 target. So while Linus is small enough to skip the bad guy's attention, but big enough to get decent hardware support, I am happy :)

I would dearly like MS to pay fair and make the Windows API sufficiently transparent, and their products well designed, that Wine (or similar) would allow my to *buy* Office and have it safe on Linux, but I don;t see it happening.

So for now I will use OpenOffice as it is "good enough" and runs natively on Linux. MS, if you are listening, here is a Linux user who is not a complete freetard, and will pay for *good* software that does not piss me off with malware features (unwanted toolbars, etc).

I don't agree with all of Ubuntu's moves, some things are backward/dumb, but overall they deserve support for making Linux a bit friendlier to Joe/Jane public, and providing competition to MS that is not in Apple's price range (or restriction policy).

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Gates Horns

Redmond syndrome?

"Why Ubuntu cannot offer an version with VB installed and configed, or crossover configured, i dont know. I would just love to be able to install Ubuntu and then insert my MS Office 2003 disks, or even my 2010 disks, and it just goes off and installs without any inputs or hitches and then runs as well as on XP or 7, and that includes getting the printing to work without effing around.

Yes you purists will flame me, but i want Ubuntu or whatever linux flavour and i want it REALLY easy, as would many other people probably, even pay something for it."

You want Linux but you want it compatible with Microsoft's latest secretions? Beyond the cost of licensing things from Microsoft, the problem with what you seem to want is that Linux would of necessity become what you are trying to escape. Microsoft has been selling snake oil for a long time; it's (past) time to start retooling.

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Anonymous Coward

@ Frank 14

You like Gentoo, don't you? /waves hand

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Anonymous Coward

Right...

"Will they ever learn that 99% of people will not touch even this latest version because, quite obviously, it cannot seamlessly run Windows apps which most users do not (or cannot) let go of?"

Jeeze, by the logic alone no one would be buying Macs right now.

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Alert

Didn't he mean...

...VirtualBox?

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@frank, say what now?

Having an installer for MS Office has got nothing whatsoever to do with anyone other than Microsoft. And again, VB is Microsoft's baby and nothing to do with Ubuntu. You're really barking up the wrong tree here.

Why the hell would you want to code is VB anyway (puke)

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It Don't Do Games, Though

"You want Linux but you want it compatible with Microsoft's latest secretions?"

Not me. I want Linux, but I want it to do what I want a computer to do: play games. There are some pretty decent titles on Linux, at least by shareware standards; but whatever else can be said in its favour, Linux (and the Mac, for that matter) simply doesn't (don't) do proper games like Windows does.

But still, I realise the age of the flashy, blockbuster, costs-millions-to-develop Windows game is fast coming to an end as developers switch to the more lucrative consoles; so I fully expect that we lowly players of simulation and strategy titles (i.e. the stuff that console companies tend not to be all that interested in) will soon have to look to what few indy games the remaining PC hobbyists come up with. In fact, that's already starting to happen as Windows gaming dies. And maybe at that point maybe Linux will catch up, at which point I'll do without my dual-boot.

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Games

Companies would write Linux games if there was enough of a market. And more people would use Linux if there were more games...

Ditto for RTS and strategy games for consoles. I expect that as more older people buy consoles there will be more RTS and other such titles for consoles.

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@ Games:

It's too bad RTSs and pretty much all other point and click games are absolute garbage when using a controller over mouse & keyboard. First person shooters, too.

I wonder what the market truly is, though, for Linux gaming beyond the small/casual stuff.

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Heart

They keep refining the UI...

...and yet it still looks like it time-traveled from 15 years ago.

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Pint

That would be just about right - if it were true

"They keep refining the UI, and yet it still looks like it time-traveled from 15 years ago."

Actually, there are many aspects of a GUI from 15 years ago that would be very welcome. That was about the time that the GUI "vocabulary" had standardized and frameworks had matured but had not yet been bloated beyond recognition. Do you buy a computer to do the work you want to do, or just to run a hideously efficient operating system at a near crawl? Clearly things need to be recompiled every so often to take advantage of advancing hardware, but at some point the business of what a window manager does should be just about decided.

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ScamStore

I'll list F-Spot for $20. I'm not the author, but nothing in the GPL stops me from re-selling it. Money for jam from the people that go to the "appstore" first rather than to the "software centre".

Unlike Apple, I can't see the Ubuntu appstore blacklisting GPLed programs.

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Of course, to comply with the GPL..

..would mean making the source code available. How much does it cost for a server these days? At least, one with enough bandwidth for a few thousand people to be snarfing source code every month?

Even clubbing together with a few of your mates and using their cablemodems to seed the source via torrent could end up being a pointlessly complex exercise, once word gets around that you're selling software that is available for free.

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Oh YAY

Yet another release of a secure software that no one except the expert will use ... I mean who can be bothered when it's near fuckin impossible to even change the desktop resolution...

You know the one in windows thats right click on desktop and select properties.. In Linux it's hidden or maybe it's stuck at 1024x768

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@Deadly_NZ

"You know the one in windows thats right click on desktop and select properties.. In Linux it's hidden or maybe it's stuck at 1024x768"

Does System->Preferences->Display count as hidden then, or are you just trolling?

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WTF?

Look harder

Umm did you even try to change it?

In Ubuntu, it's System > Preferences > Display.

How difficult is that?

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Conversely

Why is changing the desktop resolution, an operation usually only done once when you set up the monitor, on a common R-click menu?

FYI, its not a difficult job the change the resolution. Not as easy as windows, but its doesn't need to be.

And another FYI, my father, one of the most unexpert linux users in the world (In fact, I dont think he even knows he is running a Linux distro) , gets on fine with Ubuntu.

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Can it use

Can it use the Window key I have on all my keyboards?

Am I the only person to assign a shortcut key sequence to calculator in Windows? (CTRL+SHIFT+C) also iTunes (CTRL+ALT+I)

As someone said the best thing is for the OS to get out of the way and let you do your thing

Linux was always about mucking around inside a big complex place to get even the GUI to startx, editing huge config files in cryptic code using that hairshirt Vi

The very last thing Linux did was get out of the way

Do I miss those days becuase of a fond memory or is it that my brain is too old for shit like that ?

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FAIL

Oh dear...

...you've not used Linux for a while, have you? I've not typed 'startx' for at least five years... if you're going to have such a strongly biased opinion against something, at least try a modern version of it first.

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..conversations at a closed mind

> Can it use the Window key I have on all my keyboards?

Yes

> Am I the only person to assign a shortcut key sequence to calculator in Windows? (CTRL+SHIFT+C) also iTunes (CTRL+ALT+I)

No - probably not, on Windows, Mac, Linux, Solaris or whatever. Pretty much everything has key mapping and all the majors have had it for years.

> As someone said the best thing is for the OS to get out of the way and let you do your thing

Linux, and to an extent OSX, allows you the choice to have the OS pretty much out of the way, e.g. Ubuntu or to be able to dive right into the bowels of it and rummage, e.g. Gentoo - and much in between.

> Linux was always about mucking around inside a big complex place to get even the GUI to startx,

> editing huge config files in cryptic code using that hairshirt Vi

Rubbish. It used to be that way, more often than not, 10 years ago. Not now. If you're going to troll, at least try and be vaguely correct

> The very last thing Linux did was get out of the way

> Do I miss those days becuase of a fond memory or is it that my brain is too old for shit like that ?

Probably the latter by the sound of it.

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Megaphone

Do a deal...

Bring Steam to Linux and Valve can have the "for purchase" portal.

Ahem.

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Why?

"Not that it's such a bad thing per se, but I have visions of Linux command line coders seething as Linux becomes mainstream desktop, 'just another OS; choose the prettiest which takes your fancy'."

I don't know that it makes anyone seethe (although there may be the odd flame war) but people already have a bunch of Linux OSes to choose from. Personally my big concern was distros pandering to make their distro more mainstream, letting it get bloated and inflexible to make it easier to use, or even worse, just to make it more like Windows. This has not been a problem. Ubuntu for one has actually sped up a little in recent releases despite having more eye candy in every release, if a user wants to turn that eye candy all off they can, and they can still even install a different window manager. No problems that I can see.

"Why Ubuntu cannot offer an version with VB installed and configed"

Licensing.

"or crossover configured"

WIne in general, I think it's a bit big to fit on the Ubuntu CD. Wine works very well with a lot of apps -- why nobody has either invested in Crossover or wine development directly, to get it working better with the rest, is a big mystery to me.

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Flame

The 1990s called...

They want their interface back.

Flame, because you know when you want one.

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There's always one isn't there.

How about you download and actually try it before posting. Saves us all seeing outdated and tiring nonsense.

Still waiting for the meaningless car analogy though.

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Linux

@Frank14

Let go of your windows apps, you don't need them.

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What exactly is the problem here?

"They" don't need to "learn" to bloat out Ubuntu with support for non-Linux programs which a minority of /Ubuntu/ users need.

If you want to or have to use Windows programs, there's already a suitable operating system, it's called Microsoft Windows.

Otherwise use a Linux.

Simples.

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Anonymous Coward

tinkering

but how is its driver library?

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drivers?

Driver support is better than Windows 7, that's for sure.

I just install both on my new laptop. Ubuntu booted up with everything working, and I mean everything. When I plugged in my USB stick, it worked seamlessly. Phone? Same. Webcam? No problem. Wifi? Uh-huh. Printer? No worries. My old machine had a Broadcom wireless card, which doesn't have Free drivers. I had to make two whole clicks to install the non-free drivers.

When I installed windows, I had to go and find (on my own!) a driver for my wifi. My Intel wifi - no weirdy cheapo hardware. Then the same for my video, audio, trackpad and webcam (rebooting for each install, of course). Plugging in a USB stick lead to five minutes of disk access while Windows "Prepared a driver for my device."

The Ubuntu install took maybe fifteen minutes, during which time I browsed the web. There was another fifteen minutes post-install while it updated itself. It took up 3GB of disk space and installed with a full set of useful apps - including an Office-compatible office suite. A clean boot uses a hefty 350MB of my 3GB of ram.

The Win7 install took three hours (including patching, drivers, rebooting) and installed with almost nothing. It takes up 10GB of my disk before I've installed any actual software, and uses an entire GB of ram once I've logged in. The disk constantly (and I mean constantly) accesses even if I'm not doing anything.

I know which I prefer.

The only app I've never been able to replace with OSS or make work under Wine is Ableton Live. That's the single reason I have Windows on my machine.

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Nice Post!

Some interesting figures there.

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Linux

Yup

"Driver support is better than Windows 7, that's for sure... Ubuntu booted up with everything working, and I mean everything... When I installed windows, I had to go and find (on my own!) a driver for ...(rebooting for each install, of course). "

That has been my experience for a while now. There was a time when Linux was hard to install and Windows just worked. The situation has reversed.

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Anonymous Coward

Ableton live?

I don't know this app, and beyond asking the vendor (and a good vendor will take note, tally up the requests, and draw his conclusions eventually), I recall at least another commercial outfit that I thought had a linux version but can't check* so I won't recount their name**.

But, what I'd really like to ask: There are some FOSS music software offerings. How and why aren't they up to snuff? Or for that matter, what is it that you do with it?

* Because they insist on flash and adobe refuses to support my not-entirely-obscure choice of platform AND refuses to let anybody else come up with a player. So much for "open standards on the web".

** Also because they seemed clueful right up until the "we won't hire you" bit. Oh well.

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asdf

QUOTE

* Because they insist on flash and adobe refuses to support my not-entirely-obscure choice of platform AND refuses to let anybody else come up with a player. So much for "open standards on the web".

ENDQUOTE

Refuse how? They've released specs, and there's at least one player based on those, Lightspark ( http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=ODQ4NA ), and then there's always gnash as fallback ( http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=ODUzOQ ).

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Flame

Really, Who cares about the underlying OS?

For email and browsing and anything your granny needs to do on a PC Linux, and especially Ubuntu, is a far better choice these days than Windows, and that UI from the 90s looks far better than the interface designed by a 6 year old after a day of E numbers playing Simon* that Windows 7 comes with.

As for Macs? If they were crap why does a 5 year old iBook G4 still fetch as much on ebay as a new Windows laptop? They're only expensive ion the short term. Over a lifetime I would suggest that they turn out cheaper, especially as so much software and functionality that costs extra on Windows is built into a Mac. And Linux for that matter.

* For anyone under twenty... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simon_(game)

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Linux

Re: Really, Who cares about the underlying OS?

"[Linux] especially Ubuntu, is a far better choice these days than Windows, and that UI from the 90s looks far better than the interface designed by a 6 year old after a day of E numbers playing Simon* that Windows 7 comes with."

Let's be fair: Windows XP was **UGLY** out of the box; damn, it was in poor taste. The problem with Vista and 7 is not the look (which is actually pretty good), but the all-important "feel" (response to user input), not to mention the system requirements chewed up by the OS. The demands of the look no doubt contribute to the bloat.

My biggest surprise with Vista (which was pretty much the last straw for me), was the absence of horizontal scroll bars in what passes for the folder lists in Explorer. The strong (but not complete) resistance to opening new browser windows is another thing that mystifies me. I am mystified not that Microsoft would create such a poor interface (when the marching orders are to be be different for its own sake, things will sometimes regress), but that people still line up to use the thing.

You are completely correct that the OS matters precious little when all that is required is to browse the web and respond to some email.

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I call BS

"that 99% of people will not touch even this latest version because, quite obviously, it cannot seamlessly run Windows apps which most users do not (or cannot) let go of?"

99 percent of users? Where did you pull that utter bollocks from? I would wager that more than 50% of users have no requirement for a particular app at all and only need to surf the web, read emails and edit the occasional document or spreadsheet.

Once you take a away the "I need the blue e for the internet right?" idiocy factor then you quite easily argue that the majority of people don't in fact need Windows at all and are only using because it came "free with their computer".

Yes I am fully aware of the fact that Windows does not come free, but by manipulating the market into the state where just about nearly *every* computer sold *must* be sold with Windows Microsoft have cleverly managed to hide the fact from Joe Public that he is actually paying a considerable proportion of the purchase price for the Windows OS on his cheap new plastic laptop while at the same time pushing all of their idiot OEM partners into a race to the bottom where their products have been commoditised to the point that they are left to fight over scraps by competing on price alone. These days just about the only way they can differentiate their products from the herd is by having more USB ports than the rest. Hence their obsession with feature checklist marketing.

Were Joe Public made aware of just how much of his purchase price goes to Microsoft he may quite reasonably choose to use an alternative in the majority of cases where all he wants is to do a bit of web surfing. Microsoft cannot of course allow this to happen hence their abusive OEM agreements which form the heart of their monopoly.

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Joke

Linux folks really want a all free store

Linux folks really want a all free store. Besides the numbers are not there the real vocal one do not spend. The jury is still out weather there will be any loyalty.

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Flame

another linux vs windows argument, joy..

And yet I choose to join in anyway..

Goat Jam your argument is fundamentally flawed. You claim a lot of users only want to do web surfing, so why not just use Linux? You quite brilliantly sum up the counter argument with this claim. To most users, a Linux machine is ONLY good for web surfing or an inferior form of document processing. Certainly, windows benefits from entrenchment and OEM lock-ins, but we should still see far more users trying out Linux than we do. I even know some well meaning but non-technical people that have given it a go. 9 times out of 10 they'll switch back once they realise things that were only a Google search away with Windows, are now much more difficult.

I think the default installation of VM software with automated execution of Windows binaries was actually rather good. If I were in charge of a distro's development, getting a decent windows VM running on my distro would be my first priority, closely followed by ensuring its use is transparent to the user. Sure, it's damned difficult, but this is an imperfect world, and the average user is going to pick the easiest option every time.

MS will continue to operate on the edge of what they think they can get away with. Sure they charge more, but the user gets to stay in their comfort zone. The key to beating windows isn't crying about how much cheaper your OS is. You need to comfort the user that they won't be missing out on functionality by using your distro. Arguments like "but you only need web browsing, we can do that!" are exactly the wrong ones to take.

Linux has certainly made a lot of headway by developing their own equivalent apps, but GIMP remains inferior to Photoshop, and Openoffice remains inferior to MS Office.

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