Ubuntu 18.04 LTS new features: Bionic Beaver and new theme

Beaver on dam

Ubuntu 18.04 LTS will be the first release of year 2018 of the popular Ubuntu distribution, this article will collect information regarding this new release.

Codename and version

Beaver on dam

After Artful Aardvark, this time Ubuntu 18.04 LTS will be called “Bionic Beaver“.

The beaver is a large, primarily nocturnal, semi aquatic rodent. Beavers are known for building dams, canals, and lodges (homes). They are the second-largest rodent in the world (after the capybara). Their colonies create one or more dams to provide still, deep water to protect against predators, and to float food and building material.

From Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia.

For those unfamiliar with Ubuntu’s naming, every Ubuntu release uses two codes:

  • Codename: both names start with a letter, the first name is usually an adjective and the second one is an animal. The letters are chosen in order, if a release starts with A the next release will use letter B.
  • Version: the version is a combination of the year and the month of the release. E.g. Ubuntu 18.04 (2018 April, April = 04, hence 18.04). Ubuntu is usually released on April and October. The last two numbers usually being .04 and .10.
  • LTS: once every two years a Long Term Support version is released. Normal releases are supported for 9 months, LTS releases are supported for 5 years. An LTS release is usually more stable and will receive enough security updates to be in production for several years.

How do I install Ubuntu 18.04 LTS?

When it will be released, you will shortly find a step-by-step tutorial here.

When will it be released?

Ubuntu 18.04 is currently scheduled to be released on the 26th April 2018.

Here, you can find the current schedule:

  • 30th November: Feature Definition Freeze
  • 4th January: Alpha 1 release
  • 1st February: Alpha 2 release
  • 1st March: Feature Freeze
  • 8th March: Beta 1 release
  • 5th April: Final beta release
  • 19th April: Final Freeze
  • 26th April: Ubuntu 18.04 LTS release

Unity is dead: All hail GNOME

Ubuntu 17.10 Installation - 11 Done

In April 2017 Mark Shuttleworth, Canonical CEO, dropped a bombshell over Unity: the long awaited desktop environment. Unity has been the default desktop environment for the flagship edition of Ubuntu for almost 7 years. Now both Unity 7, and the never-born Unity 8 are dead, but still there is hope, without Canonical in it though.

Originally planned for this release, Ubuntu has already switched to GNOME in Artful Aardvark.

A new theme? Goodbye Ambiance

Ubuntu 17.10 Installation - 10 Installing

Although I still have no certain source, there is a rumor: Ubuntu developers may open a “theme contest” to discover a new GTK Theme for Ubuntu. The current theme, Ambiance, is pretty old and in the opinion of many it is showing all the weaknesses an old theme has.

Should Ubuntu really open a contest to replace Ambiance? If so, do you have a favorite GTK theme? What theme would you like to see on Ubuntu 18.04? If you have one be sure to let me know in the comments below or on Twitter!

Image courtesy of mark | marksei

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The IT guy with a little boredom look in his eyes, fond of computers since forever he now works as a freelancer in the IT and shares his experiences through this blog.

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  • Lucifer Morningstar

    RiP Unity7 you were so good. No wait I’ll stick to 16.04 till 20.04 comes out HaHaHahaaa

    • If you liked Unity 8 there’s still Yunit :) I’ve seen quite a few users on the Internet (mainly Reddit) mourning the death of Unity 7, it comes strange there’s still no fork.

      • Lucifer Morningstar

        I starred their repo, but I like Unity7 not Unity8. Maybe Unity8 was better I dunno, but what I know is GNOME is utter crap with poor design, like position of min max close buttons, position of dash, double title bar, how did it pass QA ?

        • Unity 8 was never complete, hence the need of a proper fork. Unity 7 on the other hand reached stability and most problems were solved. Maybe in the future, when 16.04 is EOL we’ll see a Unity 7 fork.

          I really liked both Unity 7 and 8, but GNOME is intriguing too. Keep in mind GNOME approach (since version 3) has been radically different compared to a classical DE and, if you use it for long enough (as for every DE), you will notice it is not that bad.

          • Lucifer Morningstar

            Could you please tell me what part of double-title bar is not bad ?

          • It all comes down to preference. I liked the way Unity handled topbars, but don’t really dislike the other way around. I do agree that small screens may benefit from a unified topbar.

            Anyhow if you really dislike that behavior you can always use one of these extensions:
            https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/545/hide-top-bar/
            https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/723/pixel-saver/

            Or you could entirely switch DE.

          • Lucifer Morningstar

            Mark I just found out what you mean, when you are not in maximized window mode the menu bar still latches to the title-bar/unity-panel. And that causes slight problems. I totally agree that It all comes down to preferences. Thanks for the links btw. Entirely switching DE in 18.04 will that be possible ?

          • I meant that you could switch to another Ubuntu flavor. You could consider going over to Kubuntu or Xubuntu or even Budgie. Of course you can always decide to install your preferred DE over your current installation, you might encounter a few hiccups especially with GNOME/Mate/Cinnamon since they mess up with each other sometimes, but overall you should be able to have another functional alternative to GNOME3.

          • Lucifer Morningstar

            K I will checkout other Flavors of Ubuntu, preferably Kubuntu or Xubuntu.