Canonical have unveiled the beta 1 of the latest incarnation of its Linux operating system - Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal). Time to take it for a test spin.
Check out the Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal) image gallery!
Since this is a beta it is not intended for real usage, and neither is it fair to carry out a full review. So I'll jsut go as far as to say that the installation was short and sweet. I particularly liked the way that I could enter details such as time zone info, keyboard choice, and user name/password while the install was going on in the background. It's an interesting twist and a handy way to save time during the install.
Here's a quick what's new:
- Ubuntu 11.04 beta 1 features Linux kernel 2.6.38, Gnome 2.32, Compiz 0.9.4 and Xserver 1.10.
- New Unity interface.
- Firefox 4, Banshee 1.9.5 and LibreOffice 3.3.2 installed as default.
- Ubuntu Software Center features review and rating system for applications.
- Windows snapping by dragging windows to screen edges (a la Windows 7).
- Imporoved multi-touch support.
- New wallpapers.
I did run into a few problems - I had troubles getting the Unity interface working both on standalone systems and in a virtual machine. I also had issues where the OS would boot into a blank screen as shown below:
I'm still investigating why this might be the case. But it does say beta on the tin, so problems are to be expected. Later I'll try upgrading a working Ubuntu install later to 11.04 Beta 1 later and see what happens ... stay tuned!
Redownloaded the .ISO and things seem happier on a physical machine. now going to try installing 10.04 beta 1 into VirtualBox which should (fingers crossed) allow Unity to work if I follow these (or maybe these) instructions.
Success! After following these instructions (which despite being in Portugese are pretty easy to follow) I got Unity working in VirtualBox 4.0.4: