Ubuntu 9.04: The Sizzle that Fizzled

khess -1 Tallied Votes 439 Views Share

I downloaded and installed Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) and am happy to say it's an overall success. Of course, I would say that because I love Ubuntu; it's my favorite Desktop Linux distribution and I've seen a lot of them. Being Debian-based, it is rock-solid, stable, easily updatable and a pleasure to use. Canonical, Ubuntu's commercial benefactor, is a top-notch development company and a cool bunch of folks.

However, (and this is a big however) I don't really see that big of an improvement over previous versions. I use Ubuntu 8.04 and am perfectly satisfied with it. 9.04 has OpenOffice.org 3.x but so what? I can install that myself.

I don't really see any major improvements. It looks the same. It feels the same. Same applications. Same everything.

Sometimes I feel that whomever is responsible for putting out new distributions feels they must just because it's time to do so. Ubuntu updates every six months whether it needs to or not. No, I'm not disappointed or disenchanted but am a little curious as to why it's such a big deal.

Should you upgrade to 9.04? Sure, why not. If you already have Ubuntu, you'll certainly recognize everything and won't see much difference but it won't hurt either. If you're looking for a Linux Desktop distribution to use, this is a fine one. You'll love its sleek design, easy-to-use interface (GNOME) and plentiful applications.
It has everything you need in a Desktop operating system and more.

For us jaded types (Ubuntu converts), it's just another ho hum update. I guess you can wake me up in October when it's time for 9.10. I'll expect to see something more than just an OpenOffice.org update. Come on, guys, make the next one a real contender for those who are otherwise going to convert or upgrade to Windows 7.

Ubuntu 9.04: Expect the expected.

Have you used Ubuntu 9.04 yet? What do you think?

dwatson 0 Newbie Poster

I have seen a number of these "9.04 isn't that impressive of a release' commentary's and must say that these types of articles demonstrate that the author has failed to fully research his subject.

9.04 includes many changes, corrections, and features in the release - not everything, however is on the surface.

9.04 includes better hardware support (I can now tether my Motorola Q9C phone for example), the system is faster (faster boot times, disk performance, etc), video/graphics handling is improved upon, the new panel alert features and themes are rather 'chic' and add to the overall finish of system.

Everyday I find 'new' things (for instance UFRAW had display issues in the prior release which are now fixed in 9.04) Not everything as I stated in right on the surface, but the changes are apparent and this release offers more than meets the eye.

Six months updates, I'll take what I can get - most companies fail to update their products that often and when they do they usually package it as a new release and make you pay for it.

As far as a real contender for Windows 7 - i am the IT Director for mid-sized company and we are evaluating Windows 7 at the moment (most of our machines run XP) - I don't see where Windows 7 is all that impressive - same GUI as Vista, some tweaks to the taskbar that you either love or hate and if you want XP compliance you'll need to run XP in VM - something that is far better managed under Ubuntu.

Is Ubuntu Linux perfect, no, but as a community product it really impresses me. As a long time Microsoft user (supporting well over 6000+ clients) , Ubuntu is the first OS to turn my head and that says a lot about the product.

khess 95 Practically a Master Poster

I agree that Windows 7 isn't impressive. I just expect more from my buds at Canonical, I guess. As I said, not disappointed, just unshocked. I expected more.

GwydionDdu 0 Newbie Poster

Like dwatson, I too am responsible for many customers who run XP and Vista, and like dwatson I have been testing Windows 7. To be brutally honest, this is so going to aggravate XP users as it is Vista in new clothing. Sure, there are some tweaks under the hood, but basically you ain't getting more than Vista.

Now I have been using Ubuntu since 5.10 and I have seen each release bring improvements and some regressions (my sony ericsson phone no longer mounts as a removable media as 8.04, but as a 3g device and I still haven't found a way to mount it as removable media). Anyway, 9.04 for me personally is much better than 8.10, it boots faster thanks to ext4, there are a number of tweaks under the hood, new message alerts, there is quite a bit to be impressed with. Not every release should be about what's on the surface. Snow Leopard is more about under the hood improvements than new features. I also test Ubuntu distributions as they develop and report any bugs and annoyances that I find, and to be truthful, for me this development cycle went without a hitch (hopefully Karmic will be the same). So lets give the Ubuntu team some praise, like dwatson said, for a community project releasing a new product every 6 months is something to marvel at, look at how long Vista took.

I promote Ubuntu and Linux as much as I can and I am responsible for a customer having a new server with SME server on it and that little baby only gave us grief when we put a wrong sized drive in for the RAID 1, but apart from that it has been running without any downtime for almost 3 years.

kanwar.plaha 0 Newbie Poster

Ken, I agree with you and I see this because not much in GNOME has changed over the years -- maybe a small notification here, or a theme there etc.
I would love to see next official Ubuntu based on KDE4. I believe it will be more dynamic in content, fresher in look and feel and most of all, it will make Windows-users feel more at home -- which is likely to bring in more converts to Ubuntu (and Linux)!
With a bit of serious customisation by a team like Canonical/Ubuntu, KDE4 can work wonders. Sorry, Kubuntu is great but definitely not given the same attention by Canonical as the default Ubuntu.

cayhorstmann 0 Newbie Poster

I don't get it. Like clockwork, Ubuntu delivers incremental changes every six months. The betas are largely uneventful, stuff gets a bit better every time, the price is right, and life is good. What's your complaint?

With Microsoft and Apple, you get oh-so-exciting changes every 2-3 years, but frankly, how exciting/useful/worth the $ have they been?

ravenous 266 Posting Pro in Training

I think that the major focus of this release of Ubuntu was "under-the-hood", as it were. The main improvement has been a fairly hefty improvement in boot times, battery life (on those devices that have batteries), better netbook support and a general consolidation of the system; tidying up of features, fixing annoyances and long-term, low-level bugs and such.

In my opinion, this is exactly the right move. OK, there's not really a huge "WOW" new feature, but is that really what you want? If you use your computer, like we all do, then stability and reliability is what you want, not some piece of buggy spanglyness added on top of other buggy code. With the, admittedly outwardly subtle, changes in Jaunty, the Ubuntu guys are in a good position to deliver some real eye-catching changes in Karmic Koala, which is the plan, I believe.

timgws 0 Newbie Poster

I seriously do not know what you are talking about. The new Ubuntu release (9.04) fixes many 'gripes' that people have had with previous versions of the same distribution.

To give two quick examples: Samba 3.3.2 has been released, which now makes configuration of Windows SMB shares nice and simple, and fixes many issues with connecting to shares that require domain authentication. Now this does not sound very cool, but it does make putting Ubuntu in a enterprise environment *much* easier.

Kubuntu 9.04 (which uses the *exact same* repositories as Ubuntu) has had a *massive* overhaul. KDE 4 now does not crash every 4 minutes, my nVidia graphics driver for the most part works out of the box, updates are downloaded in the background, and installed when *I* want them to be installed.

Xen, a massive part of my day job, *just works*. Install and bamn!

kanwar, you look for an official Ubuntu that is based off KDE 4, look no further then Kubuntu. Kubuntu (just like Ubuntu) can be shipped to you for free, and after a few minutes (ie, after installing QtCurve and a new Desktop theme) everything looks nice and pleasing.

So, to wrap it up, sure, Ubuntu releasing a new version might not seem very cool, but every release fixes many issue. I like to think of new releases not as new releases, but rather as 'service packs', and every service pack (just like a Windows service pack) fixes up gripes that people have with the previous one.

The updates are not what you see, it's what you get.

humans-enabed 0 Newbie Poster

Faster boot times(this is always good!), ext4 support, slicker interface(not completely different but slicker), new notification system, better multi-monitor support, bug-fixes all around, open-office upgrade(yes open-office upgrade - the newbies don't know how to do it(e.g. Preston Gralla)),etc. what's not to love? Also, more stuff "just works" on more machines. This is how it goes, and every 6 months - I find this impressive. What really did the author expect to happen, for it to become a different distro or something? I'm wondering what the real story is. Was there some killer app feature that the author expected and didn't get?

Shannon VanWagner
humans enabled
Posted from Ubuntu 9.04 GNU/Linux / Firefox 3.0.10

bart.nicolotti 0 Newbie Poster

And what about Monodevelo 2.0 and mono 2.4!? With this you can develop .net apps on linux and then run them on windows and viceversa!

Another thing is you can digitally sign a directory with a right click!

williamruckman 0 Newbie Poster

I upgraded from 8.10. a few things are different excluding the background, login, and boot splashes.

First one is that pulseaudio did not operate after the upgrade and I had to go through hell to get it to work again.

Second is that the NVidia drivers fade to white on the lcd during shutdown and the OpenGL performance is bad from what it was.

Third, they use the new Amarok2. Which isn't as nice as the original. I will have to downgrade it.

All was working great by default on 8.10. A step backwards for me. But i'll deal until the bug fixes come out.

BufferOverFlow 0 Newbie Poster

I actually agree with you in most of what you said.

However, there's some major improvement that you forgot to mention, which is the EXT4 file format. Although it's not the default choice, however, choosing it will certainly improve the booting speed and will help improving the overall speed of the OS.

But unfortunately, on the other hand, the sound system is not improved at all. Why? Because most of the time when a certain event happens (e.g: someone logs in/out in Pidgin) the notification sound comes out with this annoying cracks sound as if you're walking on bunch of bits of broken glass, or something. Sometimes it also happens when I play a video file in MPlayer.

I also tried to ask anyone for help, but no one knows the solution.

Plus, the problem with Brasero is still there, it just fails to burn anything, I wonder of this is a kernel problem.

BufferOverFlow 0 Newbie Poster


>>> And what about Monodevelo 2.0 and mono 2.4!? With this you can develop .net apps on linux and then run them on windows and viceversa! <<<

And that's exactly what I hate about Ubuntu. The support for the bloated Monodevelop thing.

scru 909 Posting Virtuoso Featured Poster

>>>I would love to see next official Ubuntu based on KDE4. I believe it will be more dynamic in content, fresher in look and feel and most of all, it will make Windows-users feel more at home -- which is likely to bring in more converts to Ubuntu (and Linux)!

And I would officially *stop* using Ubuntu

Scott82 0 Newbie Poster

First off i'm gonna say I use Linux.... currently Ubuntu and Debian (dual boot) I dont even have Winfails installed right now, and i've been working on getting my wife to go to Ubuntu also :D.

However, you guys really underestimate Windows 7.... the main problem with Vista was that companies are getting more and more tired of making new drivers available and that smacked Vista in the face. With 7, it can use the Vista drivers, but drivers designed specifically for 7 will work a little better (usually the software that comes with the device is actually the only thing that needs to be changed). so the main reason that Vista failed is already solved by default in 7 (hardware support), other than that 7 uses far less memory for the system itself (no apps loaded), it uses far less processing power for the system, and each window uses far less memory and processing power than before. this makes things load faster, run faster and the whole system far more stable. for example.... until recently I was playing World of Warcraft (canceled a bit ago), on Vista I would get 25 to 30 FPS, in windows & i got 60 to 80 FPS on the same machine... that's not a small increase.

The main thing that Windows always fails at is price. Is an OS really worth $300 (for all the bells and whistles) to a home user that already has another version of the same OS (Windows) installed? for some people it's worth it, for some (most in the case of Vista) it's not. I know it's not worth it for me anymore, I really don't see any reason to ever shell out more than the price of a low budget PC to get an OS alone. (really I'd rather buy a Ubuntu based Netbook for the same price rather than buying a OS that replaces a previous version of the same OS.)

There are of corse problems with Linux.... to name a couple: Printers..... I have no idea when I go to the store which printer will work with Ubuntu. I heard HP or Brother printers usually work, but I really don't want to have to keep returning a printer to the store with the excuse 'It wouldn't work with my OS'. so I have yet to buy a printer for my computer, I have the Lexmark that I used with Windows sitting in the closet. other than printer nightmares, I personally HATE (i'd put some choice phrases on that but dono the rules of the forum yet, just use your imagination) Pulse Audio... It adds nothing and makes things a pain in the butt. luckily it is easy to remove in Ubuntu and doesn't come default in Debian (yet).

Other than those couple little problems though, I don't see any reason to ever go back to Windows (and those reasons aren't enough to overcome the incredibly frustrating BSOD).

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