Friday, September 28, 2007

Ubuntu 7.10 Beta Released

On the 27th of September, The people behind Ubuntu released to the general public the beta of Gutsy Gibbon. The final release is scheduled for October 18th. While there is warning on the page that this may not necessarily a stable release, it will give you a good idea what to expect with 7.10 when you download it on that, or perhaps a day or two later.

What is new? First of all, this is based upon Gnome 2.20, the latest manifestation of the desktop environment for Linux distributions. This release contains a number of features which enhance the experience for users. Second, there is a very nice desktop applet which can be used to search both the Internet and your computer for files and documents, plus websites.

It comes with the latest of both Firefox and Open Office to continue the productive nature of Ubuntu. Couple this with Thunderbird as both the calendar and Calendar you got quite a nice OS to do some serious work with.

With my computer, unfortunately I cannot used the enhanced desktop features which are based upon Compiz Fusion. I'm going to try it on the family computer to gain an appreciation of the working of it. From what I've seen of screenshots it is quite impressive and will give both Vista and Mac OSX a run. There is also a good screen configuration tool with the OS.

What has also impressed me is the fact that I can use my Canon IP3000 Printer as the network printer. Before I could never get the right drivers but now it is possible. It's great to send documents to be printed and watch them come out perfectly. The release notes also point out there is automatic configuration when a printer is plugged into the machine, I'll try that with my HP at a later time.

If you have already installed Ubuntu, you can go to Gutsy Upgrade Documentation for information on downloading and installing Gutsy on your computer. If you like to use betas this is a good way to begin an appreciation of this system. Otherwise you can wait another 3 weeks and download the finished product.

I plan to download it when it's available and until them I plan to do some exploring of the new release.

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