Xubuntu 15.04 Beta 1

The Xubuntu team is pleased to announce the immediate release of Xubuntu 15.04 Beta 1. This is the first beta towards the final release in April.

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.

Please note the important install known issue below and at Bug 1425690: “New windows are created offscreen”

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

Highlights and known issues

New features and enhancements

  • LightDM GTK Greeter Settings tool added
  • development wallpaper introduced
  • xfce4-power-manager now handles light-locker’s settings in its “Security” tab
  • xfce4-panel now has an intelligent hiding mode
  • xfwm4 has window previews, better support for CSD and corner-tiling
  • the display dialog now has improved support for multiple monitors
  • the appearance dialog shows previews of themes’ palettes and icon-themes
  • Thunar now has improved keyboard navigation

Known Issues

Currently installing is only functioning correctly from the livesession install icon.

  • From either the boot screen OR the try/install dialogue – directly installing has windows created offscreen, this can be either the first install option screen, or where that works – the final Installation Complete dialogue goes offscreen. (1425690)
  • It is possible to move the offscreen windows, ensure that ubiqity is focused (alt+tab) then with alt+space+m and then Move the offscreen dialogues can be moved so they are visible.
  • If you boot to Try from the boot screen or from the Try/Install dialogue – tests have shown that these options function correctly.

Other Known Issues

  • wrapper bug on clean installs (1425401)
  • Mugshot camera does not initialize (1414443)

New application versions in the Xubuntu packageset

  • Thunar 1.6.5
  • Catfish 1.2.2.1
  • Xfwm4 4.11.3
  • xfce4-panel (4.11.2)
  • lightdm-gtk-greeter (2.0.0)
  • xfce4-settings (4.11.4)
  • xfce4-power-manager (1.4.2)
  • xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin (1.4.3)
  • Menulibre (2.0.6-1ubuntu1)
  • Mugshot (0.2.5.1)

Other changes

  • Albatross, Bluebird, and Orion are no longer installed by default

Xubuntu at Mexican collection agencies

The Xubuntu team hears stories about how it is used in organizations all over the world. In this “Xubuntu at..” series of interviews, we seek to interview organizations who wish to share their stories. If your organization is using Xubuntu and you want to share what you’re doing with us please contact Elizabeth K. Joseph at lyz@ubuntu.com to discuss details about your organization.

Late last year we heard from developer Greg Blumenthal when he told us that he’d been deploying Xubuntu to customers who were “extremely happy” with their new systems. This month we took some time to ask him some questions about his work and the deployments.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and the organizations you work with?

I am a freelance LAMP developer. Most of my clients are Mexican debt collection agencies, although I also work with food processing companies, telemarketers, and B2B VoIP companies.

What influenced your decision to use Free/Open Source Software for your customers?

Stability, ease of installation, ease of management, timely security updates. Interestingly, cost is NOT an issue here, as pirate copies of Windows are readily available.

What made you select Xubuntu specifically?

Low memory footprint, ease of installation on older systems, and ease of configuration to appear as familiar as possible to the end-users.

Can you tell us a bit about your Xubuntu setup?

I remove games, xchat, and other work distractions, and add openssh-server (allowing remote management), ntp, samba, and a SIP client (usually Zoiper or SFLphone). Everything is configures for Spanish with either Spanish or Latin American keyboards. I even install it in Spanish, even though English is my first language.

Is there anything else you wish to share with us about your work or how you use Xubuntu?

The biggest challenge is always sound. Whether it is ALSA or PulseAudio, I spend more time and effort managing sound issues for my clients than all other issues combined.

Huge thanks to Greg for taking the time to talk to us, and best of luck in his continued work with Xubuntu!

Xubuntu 14.04.2 released

Xubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr
Xubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

The Xubuntu team is pleased to announce the immediate release of Xubuntu 14.04.2 Xubuntu 14.04 is an LTS (Long-Term Support) release and will be supported for 3 years. This is the second Point Release of it’s cycle.

The final release images are available as Torrents and direct downloads at http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/xubuntu/releases/14.04.2/release/

As the main server will be very busy in the first days after the release, we recommend using the Torrents wherever possible.

For support with the release, navigate to Help & Support for a complete list of methods to get help.

Bug fixes for the second point release

  • Black screen after wakeup from suspending by closing the laptop lid. (1303736)
  • Setting Manager items not searchable in Whisker Menu (1310264)
  • Weather plugin updated. (1377612)
  • Both XChat and Pidgin have had security updates
  • Updated versions of Firefox and Thunderbird

Highlights, changes and known issues

The highlights of this release include:

  • Light Locker replaces xscreensaver for screen locking, a setting editing GUI is included
  • The panel layout is updated, and now uses Whiskermenu as the default menu
  • Mugshot is included to allow you to easily edit your personal preferences
  • MenuLibre for menu editing, with full Xfce support, replaces Alacarte
  • A community wallpapers package, which includes work from the five winners of the wallpaper contest
  • GTK Theme Config to customize your desktop theme colors
  • Updated artwork, including various enhancements to themes as well as a new default wallpaper

Some of the known issues include:

  • Window manager shortcut keys don’t work after reboot (1292290)
  • Sorting by date or name not working correctly in Ristretto (1270894)
  • Due to the switch from xscreensaver to light-locker, some users might have issues with timing of locking; removing xscreensaver from the system should fix these problems

To see the complete list of new features, improvements and known and fixed bugs, read the release notes.

Help the Community with testing and win Xubuntu stickers

Manual testing of the development version is an important part of the development cycle. The goal of manual testing is to find bugs that have been introduced during the cycle.

Finding these gives developers the opportunity to fix issues before the release. The sooner they are found, the bigger the possibility is that the bugs are fixed before regular users see them on their desktop. Without manual testers, our releases would be buggy. All that being said, we need your help doing manual testing.

Unfortunately, manual testing can often be a tedious and thankless job for the contributors who are doing the testing and bug reporting for the community. This cycle we’re hoping to change that up a bit.

We will be giving out 7 Xubuntu Sticker Bundles from now through April to selected top testers on the following schedule:

Timespan Admissible test reports
February Test reports from start of cycle to 28th February
Beta 1 Tests reported during the milestone
March Test reports from 1st March to 31st March
Final Beta Tests reported during the milestone
April Test reports from 1st April to 23rd April (end of the cycle)
Final Release Tests reported during milestone
Cycle Tests reported during the whole Vivid Vervet cycle

Depending on the success of this initiative we’ll look into adding Xubuntu t-shirts and Ubuntu books to the program during the LTS cycle leading up to April 2016.

How can I participate?

To help us out with testing and be considered as a sticker bundle recipient, do the following:

  1. Follow the Xubuntu-devel and/or Xubuntu-users mailing lists for calls at milestones when specific image testing is required.
  2. Report all of your tests to the image tracker, for you to be considered your name needs to be on the trackers.

Learn more about ISO and package testing on the Ubuntu wiki.

Xubuntu Stickers

Terms

Test images are available outside of the milestone periods for dailies. A limit of one sticker bundle is available per tester. The winning tester will be notified at the end of each period and contacted by our marketing lead for shipment details.

Thanks

Thanks to UnixStickers.com for graciously donating the Xubuntu Sticker Bundles for us to give out.

Thanks to the Ubuntu Community Fund for covering the price of incidental materials and shipping for these bundles.

Finally, thanks to everybody who has done manual testing for us!

Xubuntu 14.10 released!

Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn
Xubuntu 14.10 Utopic Unicorn

The Xubuntu team is pleased to announce the immediate release of Xubuntu 14.10!

The release is available for download by torrents and direct downloads from http://xubuntu.org/getxubuntu/

As the main server will be very busy in the first days after the release, we recommend using the Torrents wherever possible.

For support with the release, navigate to Help & Support for a complete list of methods to get help.

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!

Starting with Xubuntu 14.10, you should use pkexec instead of gksudo for running graphical applications with root access from the terminal for improved security. The Xubuntu team has prepared and shipped the necessary pkexec policy files for all default applications in the Xubuntu installation that we deemed necessary.

Please note that changes in the default configuration affect all users who haven’t changed the default configuration. Read more about the default configuration changes in the release notes.

Highlights

  • New Xfce Power Manager plugin is added to the panel
    Note: Upgraders from Trusty will not see the new xfce4-power-manager panel plugin by default, but instead stick to indicator-power. This can easily be resolved by uninstalling indicator-power and adding the “Power Manager Plugin” to the panel.
  • Items in the newly themed alt-tab dialog can now be clicked with the mouse

Known Issues

  • com32r error on boot with usb (1325801)
  • Virtualbox can start with a black screen (1378423)
  • Black background to Try/Install dialogue (1365815)
  • Qt apps don’t use the Gtk+ style by default, workaround is to install qt4-qtconfig and set the style there

Workarounds for issue in virtual machines

  • Move to TTY1 (with VirtualBox, RightCtrl+F1), then back to TTY7 (with VirtualBox, RightCtrl+F7) and proceed

For a more complete changelog between Xubuntu 14.04 and 14.10, please refer to the release notes.