Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 2 is released!

The Xubuntu team is pleased to announce the immediate release of Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 2. This is the final beta towards the release in October. Before this beta we have landed various of enhancements and some new features. Now it’s time to start polishing the last edges and improve the stability.
The Beta 2 release is available for download by torrents and direct downloads from
http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/xubuntu/releases/utopic/beta-2/

Highlights and known issues

To celebrate the 14.10 codename “Utopic Unicorn” and to demonstrate the easy customisability of Xubuntu, highlight colors have been turned pink for this release. You can easily revert this change by using the theme configuration application (gtk-theme-config) under the Settings Manager; simply turn Custom Highlight Colors “Off” and click “Apply”. Of course, if you wish, you can change the highlight color to something you like better than the default blue!

Known Issues

  • com32r error on boot with usb (1325801)
  • Installation into some virtual machines fails to boot (1371651)
  • Failure to configure wifi in live-session (1351590)
  • Black background to Try/Install dialogue (1365815)

Workarounds for issues in virtual machines

  • Move to TTY1 (with VirtualBox, Right-Ctrl+F1), login and then start lightdm with “sudo service lightdm start”
  • Some people have been able to boot successfully after editing grub and removing the “quiet” and “splash” options
  • Install appears to start OK when systemd is enabled; append “init=/lib/systemd/systemd” to the “linux” line in grub

Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 1 is released!

The Xubuntu team is pleased to announce the immediate release of Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 1. This is the first beta towards the final release in October. Before this beta we have landed various of enhancements and some new features. Now it’s time to start polishing the last edges and improve the stability.

The first beta release also marks the end of the period to land new features in the form of Ubuntu Feature Freeze. This means any new updates to packages should be bug fixes only, the Xubuntu team is committed to fixing as many of the bugs as possible before the final release.

The beta 1 release is available for download by torrents and direct downloads from
http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/xubuntu/releases/utopic/beta-1/

Highlights and known issues

New features and enhancements

  • Inxi, a tool to gather system information, is now included
  • To allow users to use pkexec for selected applications instead of gksu(do), appropriate profiles are now included for Thunar and Mousepad
  • The display dialog has been updated, multiple dispays can now be arranged by drag and drop
  • The power manager can now control the keyboard-backlight and features a new panel plugin, which shows the battery’s status, other connected devices with batteries and controls the display’s backlight brightness
  • The themes now support Gtk3.12
  • The alt-tab dialog can now be clicked with the mouse to select a window
  • Xubuntu minimal install available – information on installation and testing will follow shortly.

Bug fixes

  • Setting-related menu items earlier available only under Settings manager are now shown and searchable in Whiskermenu (1310264)
  • Presentation mode in Xfce4 power manager is now working (1193716)
  • apt-offline is now functional, previously “Something is wrong with the apt system” (1357217)

Known Issues

  • Video corruption when booting a virtual livesession (1357702)
  • Failure to configure wifi in live-session (1351590)
  • com32r error on boot with usb (1325801)

New application versions in the Xubuntu packageset

  • Catfish 1.2.1
  • Xfwm4 4.11.2
  • Updates to xfdesktop4 (4.11.7), xfce4-panel (4.11.1), login screen (lightdm-gtk-greeter 1.9.0)
  • xfce4-appfinder (4.11.0)
  • xfce4-notifyd (0.2.4-3)
  • xfce4-settings (4.11.3)
  • xfce4-power-manager (1.3.2)
  • xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin (1.4.0)
  • Light-locker-settings (1.4.0)
  • Menulibre (2.0.5)
  • Mugshot (0.2.4)

Other changes

XChat is removed from the default installation; we recommend trying the Pidgin IRC feature if you need to connect sporadically. Otherwise, if you prefer XChat, it’s still available for installation in the repositories.

inxi

inxi is a full featured system information script that will detect information about hardware specifications, including but not limited to vendor details, CPU info, graphic and sound cards. Most importantly, it will output everything in a easy to read format and it can also be used on irc clients like irssi, weechat or xchat.

How to use inxi?

The general use of inxi is inxi -<color> -<option>. inxi output is colored and to change the color for better visibility use the c option followed by a number between 0-32.

Information type Command, usage, and more information
System information inxi -b and inxi -F
The b option output basic system information, while the F option will output full system information.
Hard drive details inxi -D
Outputs information on your hard drives, like make, model and size
Hard drive partitions inxi -p
Outputs information about all mounted partitions, mount points and space usage
Networking inxi -n and inxi -ni
Outputs information about the details of the network interfaces and configuration. When the i option is used with n, Inxi will output IP address details (for both WAN and LAN).
Hardware inxi -AG and inxi -h
The A and G options output information about the audio and graphics hardware respectively. You usually want to use them together. The h option outputs you the full list of options you can use to get even more information about your hardware.

Using inxi in IRC clients

Client Usage
Xchat, irssi and most other clients /exec -o inxi -<option> | pastebinit
The -o option shows the output to the channel. Without it, only the user will see the output.
Weechat /shell -o inxi -<option> | pastebinit
Note: For weechat to run external scripts like inxi, shell.py has to be installed.

Using inxi -c0 within a IRC client environment is highly advisable because colored output doesn’t work in pastebins.

Laptop users, Fix available for the black screen on unlock bug

screenlockerIf you experienced problems with logging into your session after suspending your laptop by closing the lid (and only this exact scenario!), your days of worry should be over now. Many users have commented on the respective bugreport, many of whom experienced different issues with suspending. This made the issue very difficult to pinpoint in the beginning for us technical folk and confusing for users too.

Sean Davis, Technical Lead of Xubuntu, put together the pieces we collected after identifying the issue and the fix landed in the 14.04.1 and 14.10 Beta 1 releases. This means that the problem is fixed for

  • New installs of Xubuntu 14.04.1 or Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 1
  • New users created with xubuntu-default-settings 14.04.5

All those of you who have been running Trusty since its release have to toggle a setting in order to fix the issue for existing user-accounts:

  1. Open Light Locker Settings from the Settings Manager
  2. Turn “Enable Light Locker” Off. Click “Apply”.
  3. Turn “Enable Light Locker” On. Click “Apply”.

These steps have to followed manually because we never overwrite existing user settings.
Obviously, if you previously had disabled Light Locker, the last step is sufficient.

5 Things to Do After Upgrading from 12.04 to 14.04

The first point release of 14.04 just came out a few days ago and many LTS users waited for this to upgrade from 12.04 – in fact do-release-upgrade only offers the LTS to LTS upgrade after the first point release for stability reasons. So we thought this would be the perfect time to do a quick writeup of a few things to do after upgrading your system. User configuration isn’t updated and installed applications aren’t removed when upgrading and that’s a good thing: Upgraders will not have to restore their customizations and their system will mostly look as before.
However, for those of you who want to get closer to the default setup of Xubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr, here go five easy steps you can quickly follow to that end.

  1. screenlockerLight Locker has replaced XScreenSaver. Light Locker uses LightDM to lock the screen, merging the functionality of the login screen and the lock screen. Having both applications installed at the same time may produce bugs or regressions, so it is recommended to remove XScreenSaver. To remove it just run the following command in a terminal window: sudo apt-get remove xscreensaver
    If you would rather see a screensaver instead of an improved screen locker, you can alternatively remove Light Locker and keep XScreenSaver. 
  2. menulibreMenuLibre, an advanced menu editor that provides modern features in a clean, easy-to-use interface, with full Xfce support, replaces Alacarte for menu editing. To remove Alacarte open a terminal window and run the following command: sudo apt-get remove alacarte 
  3. ristrettoDue to a duplication of functionalities, the Xubuntu Team decided to favor Ristretto for photo viewing, and drop gThumb. To remove gThumb from your system run in a terminal window: sudo apt-get remove gthumb 
  4. xfce4-whiskermenuAs Whiskermenu is now the default menu in Xubuntu, swap out the old application menu with it. Just right click the top panel and navigate to Panel > Add New Items, then select “Whisker Menu” and click “Add”.
    After that, and to remove the old application menu, just right click on its icon and choose the “Remove” option.
  5. software-propertiesAll PPAs are automatically disabled when you upgrade, so you’ll have to re-enable release-independent PPAs manually, taking in consideration that you’ll have to check if the old PPAs work with the new Xubuntu version.