Feeds

Ubuntu 'Maverick Meerkat' erects own App Store

Beta mongoose flaunts new face

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Review Ubuntu fans, fire up your virtual machines. The beta release of Ubuntu 10.10 is here. Maverick Meerkat, as this release is known, is actually several weeks ahead of the original schedule, and that means Ubuntu 10.10 is on track for its final release October 10.

We wouldn't suggest using the beta in a production environment, but if you'd like to install it for testing purposes, you can grab the beta from the Ubuntu download page.

The first thing you'll notice on booting 10.10 is that the Ubuntu UI has changed again. The look of Maverick is not radically different from the previous release, but it has a number of subtle improvements that make the default theme a bit nicer. Application windows sport smoother gradients. Window buttons have been enlarged and refined (though they are still on the left by default). And there are some slick new progress animations. The default Humanity icon set has also been spiffed up for 10.10 and now includes some icons for external devices such as the Motorola Droid and iPod touch.

Overall, Maverick's default theme makes for the sexiest Ubuntu yet (well, aside from that overly-purple desktop image).

Other parts of the Ubuntu interface have seen makeovers as well, like the revamped sound menu and the redesigned Ubuntu Software Center. The Software Center is quite a bit more user-friendly with a new "History" option in the side menu, showing all package installations, removals, and upgrades by date or by searching.

But possibly the biggest change in the Software Center isn't the interface: it's the inclusion of the "For Purchase" software section. As of the beta there's still no actual software to buy, but the interface is beginning to take shape. Unfortunately, in my testing, I was unable to login to Launchpad to even see the purchase screen. Eventually, the plan is for commercial Linux software to be purchased and installed right alongside the familiar free options, but for the beta, things are still a bit rough around the edges.

Ubuntu 'For Purchase' Software Center

Ubuntu's (fledgling) 'For Purchase' Software Center

Still, it'll be interesting to see how the Ubuntu community reacts to the idea. Will Ubuntu end up with an App Store of its own? There's certainly enough free (as in beer) software out there to cover most people's needs, but offering an easy way for users to purchase software might attract more big-name commercial software to the platform.

The Software Center is also part of Ubuntu's continuing foray into built-in social networking, with the ability to post your installs to Twitter (via Gwibber). In the previous alpha release, Rhythmbox also got the social touch with a new button to share your favorite tracks with your friends via Twitter, but the button has been removed in the beta, and it seems that, at least for now, the feature has been put on the back burner.

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Next page: Gwibber greased

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Microsoft to bake Skype into IE, without plugins
Redmond thinks the Object Real-Time Communications API for WebRTC is ready to roll
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
Mozilla: Spidermonkey ATE Apple's JavaScriptCore, THRASHED Google V8
Moz man claims the win on rivals' own benchmarks
Yes, Virginia, there IS a W3C HTML5 standard – as of now, that is
You asked for it! You begged for it! Then you gave up! And now it's HERE!
FTDI yanks chip-bricking driver from Windows Update, vows to fight on
Next driver to battle fake chips with 'non-invasive' methods
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Ubuntu 14.10 tries pulling a Steve Ballmer on cloudy offerings
Oi, Windows, centOS and openSUSE – behave, we're all friends here
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.