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First look at Ubuntu 8.10 - Intrepid Ibex

On Saturday the first alpha release of Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" was made available for download. So what's new on the horizon for Ubuntu users?

On Saturday the first alpha release of Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" was made available for download. So what's new on the horizon for Ubuntu users?

To get an idea of what we can expect from the final release of Ubuntu 8.10 I dug through the roadmaps. What I came across was:

  • Subnotebook, in particular support for Intel's Atom processor
  • Support for 3G
  • Firefox KDE integration
  • Boot time improvements
  • Support for flash drive-based installations
  • OpenOffice.org 3.0
  • Better Flash experience
  • New theme

First look at Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" gallery

What interests me as far as all these new developments go is to see how enthusiastically are embracing subnotebooks, and this makes it clear where the company believes that Ubuntu is headed (because, after all, how many people right now will benefit from this over, say, a better out-of-the-box WiFi experience?). Support for flash drive-based installations is also obviously targeted towards subnotebooks too.

As for the other things on the list, well, it's too early to say much other than each is part of making the OS better. Improved boot times and a better Flash experience will all go towards making users happier with the default install of Ubuntu (although I've never thought that Ubuntu boot times were an issue ...).

I've had the chance for a quick play with the alpha of Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" and find it quite pleasant - no crashes ... yet!

 
First look at Ubuntu 8.10 - Intrepid Ibex

As to the new theme ... well, it's a work in progress. Some aspects of it seem better and clearer than the Hardy Heron theme, but others aspects are hard on the eyes. It's not easy developing a dark theme that works (I'm amazed that the Ubuntu Satanic Edition theme works so well ... it's weird, and not to my taste, but there's no debating that it looks great), and like I said, the theme is a work in progress.

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