The Karmic Koala is coming!

Posted in Computers, Ubuntu on October 3rd, 2009 by Andy

Ubuntu 9.10, codenamed Karmic Koala, is due for release 29th October.

In the meantime you can grab the beta and help with squashing bugs.

Karmic is a pretty cool release, hot on the feature list is:

  • Slick new splash screens at startup and shutdown.
  • Even more boot speed impovements than Jaunty
  • New netbook remix interface
  • Super-fast ext4 filesystem by default
  • Empathy IM client replaces Pidgin
  • First look at the new Ubuntu Software Centre that will eventually replace Add/remove, Synaptic, Update Manager, and allow you to buy commercial software through the package manager. Games anyone?
  • Ubuntu One included by default
  • New bootloader: Grub2
  • A ton of stuff under the hood, like the new version of Gnome, HAL deprecation, and initial support for the Desktop Couch database.
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Ubuntu One: File storage goes a bit cloudy

Posted in Computers, Ubuntu on May 15th, 2009 by Andy
Besides integrating seamlessly into your Jaunty desktop, Ubuntu One has a web interface.

Besides integrating seamlessly into your Jaunty desktop, Ubuntu One also has a web interface. Note the applet on the top panel.

Cloud computing is a trendy concept right now. And why not? The amount of bandwidth we have these days means you can squeeze a lot of computer power through an internet connection.

Ubuntu has just unleashed their new cloud-based Ubuntu One service into public beta. The service is similar to Dropbox, and is free for the basic version.

In a nutshell you get 2GB of storage, which you can access through some nicely seamless integration with Nautilus, so the data you put there can be used by any of your apps. When you’re away from an Ubuntu One-equipped desktop there’s a web interface. I’ve found it really handy for documents I want to access from my Windows machines at work, as it saves the hassle of converting everything into Google Docs.

You can pay for more storage at US$10/month, but at the moment this only gets you 10GB, which ain’t a lot.

Overall, it’s an interesting development from a few angles:

  1. This is only the beta. How far will Ubuntu integrate this into the desktop? Will we see mail and or calendars linked up to this? Browser bookmarks? Gconf?
  2. Canonical (the cash behind Ubuntu) are clearly looking at cloud services as a way to monetise their freebie desktop OS. That doesn’t bother me at all, but i’d imagine some open source freetards will be unhappy.
  3. The Ubuntu One client (though not the backend) is open source and all pythony, so there’s not a lot stopping people from plugging their Debian or Fedora/Redhat desktop into this service. Or their Mac or Windows one, for that matter.

Overall, it’s an interesting service. It’ll have to add features to compete with Dropbox, which currently gives you more storage for the same price. Watch this space though.

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