Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

We've had the chance to install Ubuntu 10.04 "Lucid Lynx" on several machines now. Except for one particular model of Dell, the experience has been wonderful. The boot time is great--less than 10 seconds on reasonably new hardware. The new default visual theme is refreshing and beautiful. It "just works," which is more than I can say for the aging Windows XP at this time, even when used with older hardware that it should "know about."

In fact, this release has been so good, that I've now reinstalled my personal notebook computer with a fresh copy of Lucid.

There are some downsides, such as the lack of customization in the login screen (a problem that has carried over from the previous release, Karmic Koala) but the trade off for speed and stability is well worth it, and I'm sure the missing options will be reintroduced in time.

For fun, I also tried installing Debian Squeeze, and was not as happy with the outcome. The Ubuntu team really does do a lot of work to make Linux more user-friendly. I also tried Linux Mint 9 Isadora, which is based off of Ubuntu Lucid Lynx, and it seems quite formidable in its own right.

Of note--I particularly like the inclusion of the new Thunderbird 3 email client. It has some amazing features, but its attempt to autodetect the settings for my mailbox was a failure, and I had to manually set the options the correct way--a task I don't think a normal user would have been able to do, since it involved turning off features that were turned on that in past versions of Thunderbird never were turned on. On the positive side, I love the new "Smart Folders" and the improved search capabilities.

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