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New Ubuntu Foundation Announced 315

Posted by Zonk
from the ubuntu-brings-best-wishes-for-everybody! dept.
AccUser writes "Mark Shuttleworth and Canonical Ltd, founders of the popular Ubuntu Linux-based operating system, have today announced the creation of The Ubuntu Foundation with an initial funding commitment of US$10m. From the article: 'The Ubuntu Foundation will employ core Ubuntu community members to ensure that Ubuntu will remain fully supported for an extended period of time, and continue to produce new releases of the distribution. As a first step, the Foundation announces that Ubuntu version 6.04, due for release in April 2006, will be supported for three years on the desktop and five years on the server.'"
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New Ubuntu Foundation Announced

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  • Great News (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:06AM (#13013095)
    IMO Ubuntu is the distro most likely to break out into the main stream. I recently switched from Gentoo and can personally attest to the simplicity and ease of use of Ubuntu. The typical non-nerd doesn't want a command line; doesn't want to compile a custom kernel; doesn't know what "compiling" means. Ubuntu is perfect for the mainstream, and a guarantee that the project will continue is great news.

    Long live Ubuntu! (And Kubuntu too)
  • Happy to hear it (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bad_outlook (868902) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:06AM (#13013096) Homepage
    I'm very happy that Ubuntu has come out of the gate, and done everything right. Since I've been using linux (1998) I've never seen any company so behind Linux as Cannonical have been, and I have a good feeling about this. Funny thing is, yesterday I just recieved my free Ubuntu cds; I 'ordered' 15 x86 versions, and 6 powerpc versions. I'm giving them to friends to try the 'live' option, and dropping them off at coffee cafe's, music stores and colleges. It's a good time to be using free software, and I think it can only HELP the world in coming together.
  • by hubie (108345) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:11AM (#13013135)
    I am ignorant on this topic, and a quick look at the Ubuntu FAQ didn't help, but what exactly is the relationship between Debian and Ubuntu? Is Ubuntu a complete fork, or is it dependent on Debian for core functionality?

    I am a bit confused because I see some people here give high praise for Ubuntu over Debian, things like how Debian is way too slow to release while Ubuntu is up to date, while others have pointed out that Ubuntu has the advantage where they can cherry pick the best things out of the x86 code that have gone through the rigorous testing in Debian.

    From a support standpoint, when a security flaw is found, does Ubuntu fix it themselves (and thus make it available for Debian), or do they have to wait for the Debian packages to be fixed?

  • by Amadaeus (526475) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:12AM (#13013147) Homepage
    3 Years of desktop support and 5 years of server? The fact that Ubuntu is looking at long-term development for their OS instead of the usual 6-month fire-and-forget releases of many other Linux Distros subscribe to is an encouraging sign that Linux is coming of age.

    Longer lifespans for Linux provides a level of security that will allow many users wary of switching over from Windows to start looking at a Linux distro as a serious replacement for their current OS. Just think: there IS an alternative to warning users that they have to buy a new OS for new features and security updates.

    I'm only worried that theyll spend all $10m on pretzels and beer.
  • by AccUser (191555) <mhgNO@SPAMtaose.co.uk> on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:13AM (#13013154) Homepage
    But isn't this a symptom of open source software, in that everybody is able to do it their way? With M$ and Apple, we get an operating system that works the way they want it to. With GNU/Linux, you get to choose a distribution which works the way you want it to. And if you can't find one that does that exactly, you have the opportunity to do it yourself.

    Obviously in the real-world (!) we all just want something that works the way we want it to, without having to scratch around every distribution. Personally, I think that Ubuntu [ubuntu.com] does it for me.
  • Re:Great News (Score:2, Interesting)

    by KiroDude (853510) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:15AM (#13013162)
    I can only agree.... I propose to install Kubuntu to any friends/relatives computer I can get my hands on .. none of them has ever come back to Windows .. I've recently installed kubuntu on my work laptop and detected everything, even the PCMCIA wireless card at the first try... Simply excellent. If it continues its path it'll be a serious contender to windows.
  • by poopdeville (841677) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:15AM (#13013169)
    Most of the distros you mentioned are designed to fill a particular niche. Ubuntu is designed as a user friendly Debian-based distro (meaning, it uses apt-get and not RPMs or some other scheme). Gentoo is for the ricers. Suse and Redhat are for the enterprise. Mandriva is an easy to use RPM based distro. Yellow Dog is a lame RPM based distro for PPC machines. The Brazilian, Chinese, Japanese, and German distros are for people who speak Portuguese, Chinese, Japanese, and German, respectively. Caldera is dead. See, they all fill a niche.
  • by rpsoucy (93944) <rps@soucy.org> on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:17AM (#13013176) Homepage
    They started out friendly, but now Ubuntu is distancing itself more and more from Debian, they're making no effort to even stay compatible for package installation, which I think is hurting Debian in the long run. I really wish people would just try and help Debian if they have a problem with it instead of starting up yet another dist to make GNU/Linux "OS of a thousand distributions."
  • by _|()|\| (159991) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:23AM (#13013233)
    Ubuntu looks promising, but it almost releases too often. A longer support period is welcome.

    One thing I'd like to see is a looser coupling of the apps. and the O/S. I'm happy with a five year-old version of Windows, because I can trivially install new applications. Linux distributions encourage one-stop shopping, which is nice at first, but I shouldn't have to upgrade the entire O/S to get a newer version of Emacs. You can upgrade components piece meal; however, you lose some of the benefits of a tested distribution.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:24AM (#13013241)
    What Ubuntu has to offer is a very nice user friendly up to date version of Debian with access to all of Debian's packages built for Ubuntu. After using other distros such as Redhat and Mandrake, while being nice, I was soon frustrated by dependencie problems when tring to install or compile some obscure package that I wanted to run.
    With access to over 16000 packages when enabling the Universe and Multiverse repositories, it is easy to install those using Synaptic. Since Debian stable doesn't update very often, Ubuntu is much more up to date with packages being released every 6 months (and easy to up date) in conjunction with Gnome releases. Of course you can be more up to date if you run Debian Unstable, but that is not meant for the masses. The only other distros that come close to the number of packages as Debian is FreeBSD (not linux though but nice also) and Suse. Really I think if you want to run GNU/Linux, a Debian base one like Ubuntu (or Knoppix or SimplyMepis) is the only way to go for convenience of the largest choice and ease of installation of prebuilt packages. For x86, AMD64, and PPC I don't know what any other distro could offer that I'd want to use anything other than a Debian based one for GNU/Linux or FreeBSD if I wanted a BSD based system. Really, everyone else is just reinventing the wheel in my opinion.
    73 de w0uhf
  • about them bugs (Score:3, Interesting)

    by dmouritsendk (321667) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:30AM (#13013274)
    First, let me say I really like ubuntu(it's edged out gentoo as my perfered linux distro) and have nothing but respect for its developers.

    But with that out of the way, I really think there's room for improvement in the bug-squashing/support department.

    For example, I reported a bug about three months ago that made it impossible to enable DMA support on devices connected to my ATA controller(i knew it wasn't a hardware problem, or bios misconfiguration since i had a gentoo install on another partition where everything worked fine).

    Several users promptly confirmed the issue, and a nice person linked to a thread on the forums where the issue was debated. The issue wasn't too complicated, and was bacially a hotplug bug that was fixed by blacklisting the ata controllers driver module and then adding it to /etc/modules.

    The "problem" is, that it seems this bug is relevant for most i875 based motherboards(when the distro is installed on a sata disk, its then impossible to enable dma on the ATA devs), and its still not fixed in the repositories. To this day you still need to fix it manually, eventhough the bug is confirmed and very easily fixed.

    Thats not very impressive if you ask me.
  • Ubuntu review (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Henry V .009 (518000) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:31AM (#13013283) Journal
    I've been playing with Ubuntu lately, and I like it. There are some problems though:

    Sound. I have to kill -9 the ESD process to get some applications to work. A lot of applications had to be tweaked individually after install.

    Synaptic. Synaptic does its job, I can say that. But the user interface leaves a lot to be desired. I upgraded to Hoary yesterday. Why did that have to involve editing sources.list by hand?

    Applications. Why the hell do newly installed applications need to be added to the menus manually? This is Ubuntu's biggest flaw. When you install a new program, you'd better know how to invoke it from the command line -- and good luck finding that out from Synaptic's description, which disappears after install anyway.

    Firefox. Ubuntu's web browser of choice, Firefox, is unresponsive after opening new tabs. Firefox is much nicer in Windows. And IE for Windows is far more responsive than either.

    Menus. I like the start menu organization. The "Places" menu is great. I was beginning to think that Linux was congenitally incapable of setting up the most important bit of UI on the system. The menu is even better in Hoary.

    Folder Navigation. I don't like the fact that there is no back or up arrow when exploring file folders. This is massively stupid UI design.

    All in all, it's a nice system. It's a million years behind Windows in usability; there is clunkiness present everywhere. But there are lots of free applications. As usual with Linux, it is so impossible to install or change anything without expert knowledge that you can safely recommend the system to your grandmother without the slightest fear that she will be able to mess anything up.
  • Re:Great News (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Tanaka (37812) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:32AM (#13013287) Homepage
    I recently installed Ubuntu. I have been using Gentoo for a few years, mostly on server boxes. Sure it installed smoothly, but once it was up and running, finding all the applications I needed was not so easy. I like the fact that just about everything you need can be found in Portage, and you know that even though it may be a bit slow to install, it will work (mostly!). Gentoo's online community seem a lot more clued up on stuff too.
  • by grim42 (800577) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:32AM (#13013288)
    I heard from someone on the Ubuntu forums that the reason for delays is that they have had over 1 million orders for CDs.
  • by SassyDave (557868) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:34AM (#13013305) Homepage

    I was going to mod you up so we could see a healthy discussion on this topic, but I'll reply instead.
    They started out friendly, but now Ubuntu is distancing itself more and more from Debian
    I have to respectfully disagree. I run Ubuntu on my laptop, and I have switched the /etc/apt/sources.list to use the Debian unstable sources. The two distros are binary compatible (meaning I can use Debian .deb files on Ubuntu), and it works great. I get the eye-candy of Ubuntu (a pretty good default setup) with the new packages of Debian unstable. I for one like the setup.
  • Re:Happy to hear it (Score:2, Interesting)

    by bad_outlook (868902) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:34AM (#13013310) Homepage
    though I doubt they really cared much or contributed to Linux in any meaningful way.

    Point, somewhat taken, as I started on Red Hat 5.0 - but I never felt they had a connection with the users like Ubuntu/Cannoncial has had, they always felt like a big company *trying* to be what OSS compaines should be. I feel Ubuntu is the real deal, and I stand by my statement.
  • Developers, What?? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ciroknight (601098) on Friday July 08, 2005 @10:58AM (#13013507)
    My biggest critique of Ubuntu is that it seems to almost handicap anyone who wants to be a software developer.

    While yes, we can grep through apt-cache and try to find all of the development packages we need, why can't they just provide a pseudo-package "ubuntu-devel" that has everything (gcc, make and friends, gtk2 dev libraries and docs, etc) wrapped up into a neat little package? This is one of the things I loved about UserLinux that hasn't quite made it into Ubuntu yet.
  • by ciroknight (601098) on Friday July 08, 2005 @11:01AM (#13013536)
    I think you have it backwards; Debian is distancing itself from all of its children.

    By keeping their incredibly slow support cycle, by not listening to other distributions that rely on Debian's apt system, they're really shooting themselves in the foot when it comes to keeping up.

    While Debian I'm sure will continue exist, desktop Debian is certainly dead, and Ubuntu will most definitely take its place, especially with their new endowment and resolve. If you really want to think about it, Ubuntu really is the future of Debian anyways; slowly phasing out perl in favor of python, etc. etc.
  • by LnxAddct (679316) <sgk25@drexel.edu> on Friday July 08, 2005 @11:03AM (#13013557)
    Just FYI, most of Ubunut's ease of use comes from Gnome, not from Ubunutu. Most of Gnome is coded by Fedora/Red Hat devs with a large foundation from Ximian.
  • Re:Ubuntu review (Score:2, Interesting)

    by tpwch (748980) <slashdot@tpwch.com> on Friday July 08, 2005 @11:04AM (#13013565) Homepage
    sorry for duping this reply, but I messed up the formatting alot in the first one, and I really want to reply to this. *kicks self for not using preview*

    Sound. I have to kill -9 the ESD process to get some applications to work. A lot of applications had to be tweaked individually after install.

    Synaptic. Synaptic does its job, I can say that. But the user interface leaves a lot to be desired. I upgraded to Hoary yesterday. Why did that have to involve editing sources.list by hand?

    Applications. Why the hell do newly installed applications need to be added to the menus manually? This is Ubuntu's biggest flaw. When you install a new program, you'd better know how to invoke it from the command line -- and good luck finding that out from Synaptic's description, which disappears after install anyway.

    Firefox. Ubuntu's web browser of choice, Firefox, is unresponsive after opening new tabs. Firefox is much nicer in Windows. And IE for Windows is far more responsive than either.

    Menus. I like the start menu organization. The "Places" menu is great. I was beginning to think that Linux was congenitally incapable of setting up the most important bit of UI on the system. The menu is even better in Hoary.

    Folder Navigation. I don't like the fact that there is no back or up arrow when exploring file folders. This is massively stupid UI design.

    yes, the sound thing is a bit of a problem, but you don't have to kill -9 it, just disable gnomes sound server and then edit the esd configs (which I'm sure you can handlle if you can handle kill -9) to auto-spawn whenever its needed and then kill itself one second after it has stopped being used.

    editing sources.list by hand? just use the update manager. its in the menues.

    I've installed three different apps on my ubuntu setups today, they all ended up in the menu automatically.

    Firefox works fine here, and what does ie have to do with this? Firefox is the most popular browser, so its the default one. If you like opera or some other browser then just install it.

    Yep, the menu is great.

    And for the folder navigation thing, there is what you want, but its not enabled by default. You can enable it in the file manager preferences dialog (can't tell you more details since I'm not using an english locale, so I would get the names wrong)
  • by Steinfiend (700505) on Friday July 08, 2005 @11:04AM (#13013570)
    I think you've hit upon the difference (right now) between Linux users and Windows users. There are some people who are happy with going to whatever fast food restaurant is closest, ordering whatever the "combo" of the day is and driving home to eat it. There are those, however who would rather do a bit more research, drive a little bit further to get a nice juicy steak. Linux users will put in a bit more effort, a bit more time to get an operating system that works they way they want it. A Windows user is happy with whatever lands in their lap.

    What Ubuntu and distros like it are trying to do is be able to offer quality steaks at fast food prices and convenience. Not a bad goal in my book.

    *Actually I would have said sushi rather than steak, but it gets its point across. Mmmmm, sushi!
  • Re:Ubuntu review (Score:4, Interesting)

    by greenguy (162630) <estebandido&gmail,com> on Friday July 08, 2005 @11:12AM (#13013633) Homepage Journal
    Synaptic. Synaptic does its job, I can say that. But the user interface leaves a lot to be desired. I upgraded to Hoary yesterday. Why did that have to involve editing sources.list by hand?

    Granted, this can be a little intimidating for newbies. But after the first time, it's not that hard. The only tricky part is remembering to sudo.

    Applications. Why the hell do newly installed applications need to be added to the menus manually?

    Er, they don't. Give it an hour or two, and they will magically appear on their own. I know this from repeated experience (I'm on Ubuntu right now).

    This is Ubuntu's biggest flaw. When you install a new program, you'd better know how to invoke it from the command line -- and good luck finding that out from Synaptic's description, which disappears after install anyway.

    You can uncheck that option.

    Firefox. Ubuntu's web browser of choice, Firefox, is unresponsive after opening new tabs. Firefox is much nicer in Windows. And IE for Windows is far more responsive than either.

    This is true. On the advice of another Ubuntu user, I installed Galeon, and I've been much happier since. I'm perplexed as to why Firefox chews up so much processor time.

    Folder Navigation. I don't like the fact that there is no back or up arrow when exploring file folders. This is massively stupid UI design.

    In the preferences, on the Behavior tab, click "Always open in browser windows."

    All in all, it's a nice system. It's a million years behind Windows in usability; there is clunkiness present everywhere.

    Gotta disagree with you there. Windows seems far clunkier to me. I work for a non-profit, so I don't have much experience with XP, but the versions I see look like they're held together with baling wire. Ubuntu is the picture of elegance in comparison.

    But there are lots of free applications. As usual with Linux, it is so impossible to install or change anything without expert knowledge that you can safely recommend the system to your grandmother without the slightest fear that she will be able to mess anything up.

    Er, I think this is the first time I've heard dificulty of use discussed as an advantage. I'd phrase it as "You don't need to learn all that much to make changes, and if you don't want to learn anything, it will still work fine as is."
  • Re:Great News (Score:3, Interesting)

    by IANAAC (692242) on Friday July 08, 2005 @11:41AM (#13013839)
    IMO Ubuntu is the distro most likely to break out into the main stream.

    For this to happen a couple of things need to be included in the distro. I took a look around the Ubuntu home page a couldn't tell if they were included or not, but:

    For the mainstream to accept a Linux desktop, it needs mpeg3 playability out of the box. And flash. And Java. To my knowledge, no Linux distro ships a decent video player (well, the player's are there, just not the codecs - you have to go download them).

    I'll sound like a Suse fanboy, but Suse is the only distro I know that comes with the aforementioned apps ready out of the box, sans video codecs.

  • by Siener (139990) on Friday July 08, 2005 @12:54PM (#13014535) Homepage
    I've heard nothing but good things about 'Ubuntu'... But for some reason I can't bring myself to try it out because of the funny name.

    I realise you're saying this tongue in cheek, but Ubuntu is an extremely fitting name. The concept of Ubuntu embodies exactly what the FOSS movement is/should be about.

    Being South African myself I'm also very proud that someone like Mark Shuttleworth is putting us on the FOSS map.

    Thanks Mark!
  • by Hosiah (849792) on Friday July 08, 2005 @01:46PM (#13015045)
    I just went ten rounds with the Missionaries of the church of Debian's Witnesses two days ago, and here we all go again!

    I'll just lay some points down once and for all, and I don't care what anybody says, these are the facts as I observe them with my own eyes and the common-sense that logically concludes from those observations:

    (a) More Linux = Big Win for everybody! I don't care what it is, how it works, how narrow it's market is, who funds it, who writes it, what they believe, or whether they make money. More Free/Open software enriches us all.

    (b) Bill Gates must surely be laughing his fat moneycat ass off watching all the Linux tribes bicker and flame each other. Just try to keep this in mind, when Linux fights Linux, Bill Gates wins.

    (c) Every distribution I've tried that was derived from/based on Debian worked for me. I've never heard the complaints about Debian-based distros that I've heard (and experienced) with Debian itself. It is indeed in Debian's best interest to take a backseat and continue maintaining the base packages, but leave assembling them into released operating systems up to other distros.

    (d) If the above statement makes your blood pressure pop your eyeballs out of your head and steam shoot out your ears, the person you are mad at is the Debian founder as I read in his own personal blog. And you have no right to be mad about that, it's his distro and he speaks much good sense about it and I am agreeing with him and emphasizing his point. If Debian is that precious to you, then just download it's packages and make your own system, because that's all anybody else has ever done, anyway! Isn't that the selling point, you can customize it?

    (e) Linux wouldn't be Linux if everybody doing something with Linux didn't have the right to do it. If you're mad at all the distros, there's nothing to stop you from downloading the tarballs and building it yourself. You can even call your arrangement the One True Linux, and say everybody else is a hypocrite and a poser and a lamer. I can download the exact same tarballs and say the same thing about my arrangement and about everybody else. The point being: The source and kernel are GNU/Linux. United! Completely! Steady as a rock! Everything else is what we make out of it, because Linux is and will always be a ball of clay. You can use that clay to build an idol to worship, or a toilet bowl, but you also can't stop anybody else from doing the same. Don't be surprised if somebody pisses on your idol or worships your toilet bowl.

    (f) This has been a Public Service Announcement. Flames will be printed out and shredded into hamster litter, because /dev/null is mailing me bounce messages.

  • Re:Great News (Score:2, Interesting)

    by coolGuyZak (844482) on Friday July 08, 2005 @02:02PM (#13015164)
    Yes, but in Ubuntu (last I checked) you needed to add the universal repository to /etc/apt/sources.list before you had access to anything major. One of the "benefits" that Ubuntu has is it limits the packages available to users. Unfortunately, it makes it harder for those of us who *like* choice.

    I think Kubuntu has Kynaptic/KPackage or something similar as a package manager as well.

    I tried Ubuntu out for a week or so. I realized I hated Gnome, and turned it into a Debian testing box. I also tried Kubuntu out (about a week after release). I realized I hated Gnome and installed Gentoo. (KDE in Kubuntu was basically set up like Gnome, at the time).

    I also had large issues with the number of needless packages kubuntu installed (for some reason, it had postfix going), and it ran incredably slow. There was no difference in speed between the liveCD and the installation... and that includes application load times, where I had to wait for the CD drive to spin up before it loaded anything. It's probably changed by now, but it didn't present a wonderful experience to me.

    Currently, I am still with Gentoo. For now, it's the best amd64 environment I have seen.

If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants. -- Isaac Newton

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