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Old Idea Pool content

This page is for everyone to contribute ideas for projects, bounties, enhancements and proposals. Please contribute your feedback on ideas here and add a link to your page on the wiki or add your mail address, so people can get back to you. If there is a package that is not working properly, you should file a bug report instead.

Please see our participation documentation for information on where and how you can get involved. Also visit AcademicInvolvement, Ubuntu Specs and Ubuntu Bounties as well. Ubuntu Specs is where official feature requests are made.


  1. Old Idea Pool content
  2. Hardware compatibility
    1. PS3 Xubuntu Hardy Heron
    2. Other Hardware
  3. Instructions
    1. Do this before adding your own ideas
    2. Adding ideas
  4. Hardware
    1. Printers
    2. System Requirements Too High For Developing Countries
      1. Available Resource Scalability
      2. Xubuntu ShipIt Availability
    3. Power button = sudo button
    4. Fast startup
    5. Faster startup via special file placement
    6. Startup at Shutdown
    7. Hardware Compatibility
      1. How-to List for Hardware that Does not Work Out of the Box
      2. Compatible Hardware List
      3. Install(check)tool for Windows
    8. Clustering/Distributed Computing
      1. Zgrid
      2. OpenMosix
    9. Mobility
      1. Touchpads
      2. Better LaptopTesting pages
      3. Charging control
      4. Power Save & Management GUI
      5. Laptop profiles
    10. Graphics
      1. Automatically Updating DRI Drivers
      2. Supporting the DRI-Team
      3. Complete and Friendly TV Tuner Card Detection and Installation
    11. Networking
      1. Support and Install for Speedtouch USB Modems
      2. Active Directory/Single Sign On Integration
        1. Note
      3. Bluetooth
        1. Package
      4. Ubuntu Bandwidth Manager
    12. Storage
      1. Poweroff removable storage devices after unmount
      2. Password Protected Folders
      3. Raid
      4. Mount removable storage synchronously
      5. Filesystems
        1. New Filesystem Principles Idea
        2. New Filesystem Hierarchy Standard
        3. Detecting File systems
        4. Full disk encryption
        5. EXT4
        6. ZFS
        7. Versioning Filesystems
    13. ALSA and Sound
  5. Package Management
      1. Self-contained packaging system
      2. Add/Remove programs should be able to only show one of each type of program
      3. Apt needs some updating
      4. APTFS- a drag and drop software repository
      5. Aptitude
      6. Create an Ubuntu-Volatile repository
      7. Configuration Templates through Apt
      8. Updating
        1. Update Manager needs new features
        2. Update manager feature to "upgrade" to a new partition
        3. Uninstall updates
      9. Package managers should focus on the list of deliberately installed packages
      10. User- and Maintainer-Contributed Content
      11. Apt-get source button
      12. An installed source code manager
    1. Shells and Bash
      1. Get rid of bash
      2. More "intuitive" keys for line editing
      3. predefined Aliases
      4. Disable history file
    2. Desktop Interaction
        1. CLI vs GUI Thoughts
          1. More actions available from the GUI, rather than forcing users to use the CLI
          2. Improving a little bit the startup time of the Desktop
      1. Languages
      2. Desktop Effects
      3. Applets/Widgets
        1. Roll-a-deck
        2. "Suggested Action" Feature
          1. "Update Manager Notification Message"
          2. "suggested script" variation
  6. Desktop/Workspace Management
    1. Looks
      1. Background
      2. Icons
      3. Skins
      4. Effects
      5. Pannels
    2. Interactions
      1. Butons
      2. Applications
      3. Windows interaction
      4. Remote Desktops
      5. Accessibility
    3. Global views
      1. File Management
        1. Permission Handling
          1. Intelligent SUDO
      2. Configuration/Preferences
          1. Versioning System Configuraition aka System Restore on Acids
          2. Update the GNOME and KDE themes
        1. Cursor
        2. Font
        3. Screensaver
      3. Help/Troubleshooting
        1. Expert System for User Configuration/Problem Solving
      4. Multimedia
      5. System Management
        1. Startup
        2. Shutdown/Reboot from GNOME/KDE/XFCE menu
        3. Login with USB pendrive
        4. User Login/Switch
        5. User visible and standardized program data
        6. Management over CIM
      6. Program Requests
        1. Database software
        2. Archiving software
        3. Games
        4. Internet
        5. Multimedia
          1. CD/DVD Ripping/Burning
        6. Productivity
          1. Mind Mapping software
          2. Online Banking
        7. Programming
          1. FPC and Lazarus
        8. System
          1. Upgrade memtest (boot option that comes with Ubuntu)
        9. Universal Access
  7. Installation and LiveCD Ideas
    1. Installer
      1. Live CD
        1. Ejectable Live CD
        2. Kickstart option for Live CD
        3. LiveCD + save sessions
        4. Copy LiveCD session preferences to disk
        5. LiveCD for Secure Exams
        6. Memory Check
        7. Bootstrapping ISO from hardrive instead of burning to CD
      2. Live USB Disk
      3. Allow dist-upgrade to use LiveCD as package cache
    2. Ubuntu Infrastructure
      1. Marketing
        1. Marketing Slogan Ideas
        2. SpreadUbuntu: Ubuntu Switch Site
      2. Online Services
        1. Ubuntu Website
        2. Canonical Provided Services
        3. Collective bounties
        4. Ubuntu bandwidth project
      3. Derivitaves And Extras
        1. Ubuntu derrivative part 2
        2. Dedicated PVR Ubuntu derivative
        3. Ubuntu Lite CD (Download Only)
        4. Apps CDs
        5. QEMU Image
      4. Certification
      5. "Real" Open Source Participating Program
      6. New User Training / Learning
        1. Crash Course
        2. Book Idea
      7. Volunteer policy
        1. Media training for LoCo teams
    3. Security/Hardening
        1. Securing Repositories
        2. Signing and Encrypting
        3. Proactive Security
        4. External Audit for Rootkits
        5. PAM Modules
    4. Other Ideas (no clear category)
      1. Document Safety
      2. Dual Boot Loader
      3. Others
      4. Super OS
      5. Ideas To Make Ubuntu More Usable And A Viable Alternative To Windows For The End User
        1. Virtualizing the Current OS
        2. Killing SPAM
      6. Doing the Basics Right
      7. Thoughts About "Linking" Applications
      8. Make Ubuntu avaialable at public libraries
      9. Gutsy's (minor) deviance from usability: Applications with overlapping features
      10. Visual Diff For Update/Upgrade
      11. Quick Startup with Elisa Media Center
      12. PS3 Xubuntu Hardy Heron - Quick Easy Project

Hardware compatibility

PS3 Xubuntu Hardy Heron


  • This is a very quick and easy project with most of the neccesary work already done by various with their work detailed below. It just needs about a days worth of time to put it all together.

Other Hardware

  • driver for microsoft habu gaming mouse
  • driver for okiC5600 printer
  • Improve Intel 965P Chipset detection, so that it doesn't detect a 965G (965P with integrated graphics). As of now, at booting, it fails to detect the 965P properly, which means booting fails and some kind of agp error appears (I guess it searches for the integrated graphics which isn't present). As of now, I can only boot with agp=off


Do this before adding your own ideas

Adding ideas

  • Please try to keep the ideas organized by topic and in alphabetical order.
  • Please add bugs to where they will get the attention they deserve

  • For suggesting bounties add the suggestion to BountyProposals


  • Canonical Ltd. should start offering their own built systems just like DELL is doing. DELL is making lots of money by selling computers pre-loaded with Ubuntu Linux while Canonical Ltd. could do the same and use the revenues to further support the Ubuntu project. It's a win/win deal. Mark Shuttleworth could make an investment with motherboard, graphic/audio card, printer, etc. makers (VIA, Intel, ATI, etc) so they build one robust system with open-source native Linux drivers (along with all the bells and whistles of native support) once and for all. Then Canonical Ltd. could market that system that would be flawless since it would have native drivers and it would have been tested. Not only would this make Ubuntu profitable for Canonical Ltd., but it would promote Ubuntu as the best end-user deal while encouraging a healthy competitive race with DELL and others. The Ubuntu promise would remain intact since it states that Ubuntu (the software) will always be free of charge. I hope you read this, Mr. Shuttleworth.

  • The ability to execute/install .exe programs easier, such as Internet explorer and iTunes, without having to go through Wine etc.
  • Auto detection of multiple seats would be a life saver. They wanted to give xorg.conf the axe with Ubuntu Hardy, and not having to use it to set up multiple seats would be wonderful. I have two gpu's, two plugged in mice, two plugged in keyboards, and two monitors of equal specs. It should be easy enough for a script to tell when there's enough hardware for x number of seats.
  • Integrating some sort of "backup VGA or DVI drivers" would be nice. I bricked my AGP graphics card and the whole X display couldn't start because there were no drivers loaded for the onboard one. Also, some sort of automatic drivers update on startup or shutdown, preferably the latter.
  • I would like to have some kind of Software integrated that automatically installs windows drivers from their CDs, floppy disks
  • Some kind of system performance tuning tool would be great. For example, after I installed Ubuntu I noticed that it was using some swap, even though there was plenty of free memory, so I added a line to rc.local that brought the "swappiness" down from 60, and it stopped using swap (and ran faster) after that. It seems to me that's the kind of thing that should be done out of the box, though. One of the boot scripts could read parameters from a configuration file and use them to set some system properties. I'm thinking mostly of hard drive spindown timeouts with hdparm and swap usage with /proc/sys/vm/swappiness, but I'm sure there are other useful options that could be set. A simple tool written in python started from the Administration menu could then show these options, and by default would be set for good performance ("swappiness" of 10 and hard drive spindowns after 15 minutes of inactivity, for example). --Donald Straney (
  • If swap space is disabled (ie, during partitioning for dual boot) and is lost from fstab, then the system can crunch on lower RAM machines. There does not appear to be any management on this (specific issue: having Azureus and Firefox running on a 256k machine). Perhaps the user should be warned/reminded that there is a problem when (a)there is a detected swap partition and (b)it is swapoff or not showing in fstab. Otherwise the user might be unaware that the swap space is disabled and wonder why the machine hangs.
  • A LTSP solution that allows Diskless Clients and a Server to be load balanced -- JDnewbie
  • Ati remote wonder I&II is incomplete; if some people had time to fix it I would be grateful:

    • Play, pause, FF, RW eject cd-rom
    • Ok button isn't working
    • Double click work 1/5 times
    • Numpad keys display: &é"'(-è_çà

    (Tenshu_AT_gmail_DOT_com, Paris France)
  • Integrate the Win4Lin 9x patches into the kernel and have the mki-adapter module either in the base linux-image or linux-restricted-modules package. (I realize that this is a bit of a controversial subject given the DCC reversal on Win4Lin.)

  • An xbox 360 controller driver. It's a really nice controller and it would be great to be able to use it on ubuntu. Thanks.
  • A program to map joystick/gamepad buttons and axis to keyboard buttons and mouse axis. Preferably with the ability to save profiles for different setups. (much like the Win32 program JoyToKey) This would allow the user to use a controller to play games that normally wouldn't accept a controller input. It would also be nice because it would enable disabled people to interact with the machine by using a controller in conjunction with the onscreen keyboard.

  • More motherboard-drivers, such as Asus ones. All persons that I know uses Asus products. But me, when I tested Ubuntu liveCD for the first time, couldn't connect to the internet because my LAN chipset wasn't integrated! So, if you want to help somebody, please search and integrate these drivers! (Note: I founded a VIA driver for Asus motherboard and I packed sources and read-me in an archive :

  • To make hardware work with Ubuntu, make an application that lists all the hardware that is currently compatible with Linux (and supported by Ubuntu). In this application, it will be possible to search for a device using hints such as hardware type, brand, etc... The app could contain links to vendor websites, etc... This way users will be sure their new device will be supported. Example: I want to buy a webcam, I open the application "Choose New Hardware for Ubuntu", I type "webcam" in the search box, a list of all supported webcams is displayed, I choose the Philips SuperCam 12, because I know it's good and it's supported by Ubuntu !! Then when I receive it, I plug it in, and it works right out of the box!!!! If Ubuntu becomes *really* popular, vendor really will want to be on this list so maybe they will start to contribute to make Linux Drivers !! This app could be web-based, something like (like with the same type of interface but with compatible hardware devices search instead of packages search...) Forum discussion on this topic.

  • Detect hardware in the installer and have a mapping from USB or PCI device numbers to driver packages, probably in the s-list and the deb-file itself. The installer would automatically install the drivers for the installed devices. When a new USB / Firewire / whatever device is hot-plugged and is unknown in the system, the installers pops-up and proposes to install the driver he finds in the database. --Johannes2
  • USB devices attached to computer should power off when it shuts down. I'm having this strange issue with wacom tablet and bluetooth dongle, that when computer turns off from Ubuntu they keep powered on with light on. This does not happen in Windows. xerman
  • When detecting new hardware, show the user that it has been found and that the process of installing drivers is going to follow. If the repositories needed are not in "sources.lst", ask the user if he/she wants to add a new repository. This goes along with the possibility of having a text/html/xml file with any kind of repository available for Ubuntu (free, universe, multiverse, whatever). The user should be told what support exists for the repository that could be added. xerman
  • Detect and configure 'Wacom USB graphics tablet', at least change the mouse driver to wacom when it is seen (usually on /dev/event2). Add cursor and eraser devices to the X config. The tablet is my only mousing device, it's inconvenient to set up as the core pointer when it's using the wrong driver by default and can't be moved. :P
  • Improve hardware detection for ISA sound cards and USB devices such as scanners and printers. An out-of-the box full multimedia experience is critical to getting homes using this almost perfect OS.
  • Make Ubuntu work smoothly with Apple Mini
  • Set up many-mouse buttons (probably with imwheel); this is something users shouldn't have to battle with (it is still hard).

a lot of users want work with five muse buttons after instalation

  • An easy GUI that will allow me to upgrade from 32 bit to 64 bit without burning any CD's or anything of the like. Just click on a button and then come back in half an hour. -- Justin Emmanuel ( )

  • More usable default mapping for mouse-button emulation on Apple computers. F11 and F12 are too far away from the trackpad to be used comfortably on Apple laptops for the third and second mouse buttons. The command (Apple) keys would make ideal second mouse buttons, and the small Enter key next to right-command could make a good third. It may also feel more natural if these buttons worked as modifiers to the main mouse-button, the way control does under OS X. -- Ben Hourigan

  • Decent super-duper [FireWire - IEEE 1394 - iLink] support. Make support built-in/embedded so we can install & boot Ubuntu from external [FireWire - IEEE 1394 - iLink] drives!-- Fu Kay

    • Make MiniDV on Ubuntu "just work". I plug in my consumer camcorder with a IEEE1394 cable, and Ubuntu notices and provides a desktop icon for the camcorder. Double-clicking the desktop icon launches a program to capture video from the camera -- the Kino program is an excellent GPL'd, GTK-based tool for this. The end user could then use Kino to edit the captured footage. To my knowledge, MiniDV is not protected by patents the way some other video formats are, so support for this could be added to all versions of Ubuntu.
  • Integrate prc5x webcam drivers into mainline
  • Completely merge gatos into and make ATI All-In-Wonder card support out of the box. -- Reviczky Ádám János

  • A central control panel for hardware configuration, where I can configure all of my hardware, tools like for example the KDE Control Center just DON'T do it all.
  • One of the biggest markets for Linux in the next year may be the Playstation 3 "gaming console." The ground work for porting Linux to the Cell processor has been laid (and Sony has made its interest in Linux clear ([ Sony has sold 100 million PlayStations since the console was released in Japan in 1994, and 70 million PlayStation 2 units since it was introduced in 1999. The above suggests to me that with minimal effort Ubuntu and the PS3 could offer each other significant "added value" at next-to-zero cost. The market potential for the Linux disto that collaborates with Sony on this (or at least ensures PS3 compatibility) is enormous. -Alex Martinson

  • The ability to add .kmap files to the available keyboard set up list... I want to be able to use the Colemak keyboard set up, but I have to use terminal to enable and disable it, I would like to be able to change it just like I would change between QWERTY and Dvorak, or between languages... I think the default is just pressing both ALTS.
  • Add an 'OFF' setting to caps lock key behavior, and set it off by default with the colemak keyboard layout.
  • Extend the mouse configuration possiblities, i.e. configurable extra mouse buttons, better and more speed/sensivity options and stuff like that.


  • As a new linux user, one of the more frustrating things I am dealing with is getting my printer to work. Perhaps using or creating something similar to Apple's Bonjour/Rendezvous to automatically detect compatible hardware on the system or local network and configure the drivers for that hardware with little or no input from the user? -ebeyer

  • Epson X1190 printer and scanner support.
    • Lexmark x1250 printer and scanner support - a lot of peope want use scaner
  • drivers for okiC5600 printer.
  • Add a "Print-to-PDF" functionality / PDF-printer to the standard cups installation. In other words, Cups-PDF should come pre-installed. More about the currently very user-UNfriendly state of CUPS and PDF printing:

  • Printer setup on home networks with windows based machines. I'm a software developer and I don't know what a printer command line is (referring to the open office printer setup tool).
  • Switch to hplip for hp printer drivers
  • Local auto-detected printers that are obviously a fully supported model should be automagically added. The system knew I had an hp deskjet 940c plugged in already (the autodetect field said as much), why should I have to go through the new printer wizard? -- ChrisZS ([at] gmail [dot] com)
  • Replacement of Gimp-Print with Gutenprint (the new name for Gimp-Print 5.0), this includes many enhancements and bug fixes for Epson users (and I'm sure it fixes issues with other printers). I believe its now in Debian Sid so backport possible? -- A-Wing (info [at] a-wing [dot] co [dot] uk)
  • There should be just one printing dialog all over the system. It should offer the following options:
    • Destiny/whatever: PDF file, PS file, Direct to Printer
    • Paper and Quality: Select paper size, select color-b/n, select dpi
    • Two sided printing (if allowed): long edge, short edge, off
    • Copies: number of copies, pages to be printed, collated or not
    • Save configuration: save selected configuration of all the standard options available.
    • and an Application specific button: if I call the print file option from Evince, there should be an "Evince" button if Evince has printing options other than standard. Same for Gimp, Inkscape, OpenOffice. This would make printing from any program a standard task with a uniform interface, and having every program its tweaking options if needed. Programming printing dialog should be a lot easier (I think) too, as there would be a call to the printing dialog, and the specific directives would be accessed through the "application specific button". -- xerman

  • Printing should be more stable. I get printing from evince hanging the printer (HP CP1700d) the first page prints, then the second starts and it gets stuck while printing in the middle of the page, needing to cancel printing both on Ubuntu and the printer, and restarting printer. This has happened too with Evolution. -- xerman

* Printer capabilities differ from app to app. Two sided printing is available at OpenOffice but not in Evince (HP Photosmart 3210 -just tested this 2 apps for printing) and this is a very weird issue. -- xerman

  • Color-only mode is stupid & pointless. If someone wants to print in color, they will just colorize the text.

  • Printout mode is confusing, There shouldn't be 2 dropdowns for choosing resolution, one for "printout mode" and another printout mode (folder) > kcontrol > printer > printer (dropdown) configure.

  • PS3 Xubuntu Hardy Heron - Quick Easy Project

System Requirements Too High For Developing Countries

The system requirements for Ubuntu are too much for most under-developed countries, for instance my own - Zimbabwe. The majority of the people who own computers have either Pentium 1, 2 or 3 machines with an average of between 32 - 128MB RAM.

To run the Ubuntu live CD, one requires 256+MB RAM, while a standard Xp installation requires 64MB RAM. There is an option to set up swap space for additional memory but hard drives are quite limited in capacity, some people still use between 2 - 5gig. The version 7.04 of Ubuntu requires 4gig just for installation. So, a lot of people cannot experience Ubuntu even if they are willing.

Although there is an option of the lighter weight Xubuntu system (which I have not used,) it is not available via shipit, and is very difficult to download as the connection in most households and offices is 54.0kbps (through dial-up modems).

I am also not sure how to (if possible) install Ubuntu, without running the live CD since in the boot menu help the prerequisites are 128MB RAM. Please, if there is a way of installing Ubuntu without the live CD, let us know on the CD cover.

I would like Ubuntu to be made more accessible to the people who have 'sub-standard' systems especially to the poorer people of society who cannot afford software.

Norman Nhliziyo (

"If your system has less than 192 MB of system memory, use the Alternate Installation CD" when you download ubuntu click the checkbox at the bottom which says alternate installation cd. From what i understand this only requires 48mb of ram. I'm not sure if you can get the alternate cd's via shipit but i would think you can.

Lithium (

Available Resource Scalability

Norman is correct and I'd like to add that the trend of bloating software, although to some degree justifiable, is both alarming and disgusting. Being able to run Ubuntu quickly and effectively on older hardware is useful to more than just those who can't afford a better machine.

I propose that the applications included by default in the distribution be rated by RAM, CPU, and HDD usage, as well as by how necessary they are to accomplish the basic task they are related to (printing, web browsing, etc.). During installation on low-end machines a wizard could be called that would allow the user to select and deselect individual packages according to their resource ratings. A running tally of the estimated base RAM, HDD, and CPU requirements could be calculated as they choose packages. The user could also be offered several preselected choices of packages, each attuned to different RAM, CPU, and HDD specs.

Other than simply having resource-minded package selection during installation, the user should also be given base package alternatives during installation. This could also be tied in to the previously-described wizard. Everything from the window manager to choice of web browser and word processing package could be chosen based on available resources.

To summarize, each package during installation gets a Yes, No, or Replace With option while showing a running tally of estimated hardware utilization, with multiple presets included for varying system specs in case the user isn't up to the task of manual selection.

I don't think varying hardware specifications should necessarily merit the existence of a new distribution. A system like what I propose would eliminate that need and allow a much broader swath of the public to use Ubuntu with pleasing results. To further this goal even more developers could decide to make new releases of their applications "resource aware," such that they could actually scale up or down the amount of resources they attempt to use based on what is available. Usually an application is programmed with imaginary hardware specs in mind and not much thought to how best to enable it to perform well on both low and high end machines, but this could be changed perhaps in some instances without a terrible amount of pain.

Kevin Fishburne (

Xubuntu ShipIt Availability

It does sort of seem redundant that the people who need Xubuntu are the people with less powerful computers, yet they have to download it. Most people with slow computers also have slow internet connections. While I, personally, do not need it, many people are unable to use Ubuntu, and Xubuntu being available via ShipIt would probably help these people very much.

Power button = sudo button

looking at my pc, i can see that the power button is plugged directly into the mobo... so, i'm assuming that pressing the power button gets the mobo to send a signal to the os?

is that signal hard for software to fake? if so, it might be an idea to change the os's response to the signal from 'show power down options' to 'grant sudo to focused window/gksudo screen'

in other words, so you could choose one of the following behaviours for sudoing:

1/ type 'sudo blah' and enter password (current behaviour)

2/ type 'sudo blah' and poke the sudo button (ie, the power button); good for slow typists, possibly more secure, and kinda cool imo Smile :-)

3/ type 'sudo blah', poke the sudo button to give your account sudoer privileges for 30 seconds, then type in your password to give the program sudo rights; most secure option, requiring a trespasser to both discover your password and simulate a signal from the mobo.

If someone has enough control over a system to simulate a power button signal, they're the owner of the system. Period.

:I'm not sure if that's a good idea... Currently, pressing the power button bring up the Shut down menu, which I find a very intuitive action. Also, this could bring trouble when using VNC and remote desktops - how would you then push the button, even if you had sudo-passwords? --~~~~

Fast startup

A fast reboot option in Ubuntu, a restart as fast as resuming from hibernate. Maybe add two options in boot menu: 'Fast startup' and 'Reconfigure fast startup'. When you select 'Reconfigure fast startup', the system boots in normal mode, and at a specific position (e.g. at end of init or before desktop manager comes up), pause system and save data in RAM to hard disk (like hibernate). When you select 'Fast startup' system resumes from that file. If you have a fresh installed Ubuntu or hardware you need to reconfigure fast startup. --

Faster startup via special file placement

A faster startup option: when system starts, just track all the files (or, better - the hard drive sectors) from which the system reads it's data (programs and data itself). I suggest, that their order in most of cases will be practically same. Then - make a special application which will reorder the files which system needs to bood in the very same order as they necessary to the system during boot - to make them be sequentally written piece-by-piece on the disk. example: if system requires 2 sectors from fileA, then 1 sector from fileB, then 4 sectors from fileC, than 5 sectors from (again) fileA - according the tracker, reorganize these sectors into one sequence - let on a hard drive track they occupy physical sectors as 2-fileA - 1-fileB - 4-fileC - 5-fileA. I.e, if two pieces of one file is read in different times, and there are other file between them - a file ougth to be fragmented - first piece, then another file, then second piece - in order to all this cortage be accessed faster. So, the system during startup will still access many files, but physically it will be one solid array of data on hard drive - i.e. sector-by-sector, head-by-head, track-by-track - no jumps or repositions. It may be called "smart fragmentation" or, "logical defragmentation". The effect of such reordering might follow the difference between the speed reading one solid big file and huge of small files randomly distributed on disk. -- a.n.vinogradov(AT)

Startup at Shutdown

Let the user perform startup operations at shutdown and save an image of RAM. This can be done through a setting or during shutdown. When you shut down a computer you're not usually in a rush, but when booting you want the OS ready a minute ago. I don't know how to implement this exactly, but it seems pretty straightforward: instead of "shutdown" it would be "silent-restart-and-hibernate-with-one-click". I guess the kinks would have to be worked out. -- Noam Nelke, Israel. (NoamNelke(AT)

Hardware Compatibility

How-to List for Hardware that Does not Work Out of the Box

Detect hardware (wireless cards, Lirc Devices, Video Cards, etc) that cannot have full functionality out of the box and show a list that links to the forum to install drivers for it. If there are multiple method of install, they should be voted on and ranked. This would reduce people's frustration with Linux. I just about went insane going through all the forums to install the hardware for MythTV. Ubuntu will never support every type of hardware out of the box: there isn't enough space even on DVD, and support for proprietary hardware is difficult.

With the 'out of the box' thing. It depends on what you think out of the box means. If ubuntu came with all the basic drivers (enough to the neccessary parts of pc work) and included lots of networking drivers it is possible that once it is installed it could automatically download the rest from repositories (this of course would depend on file sizes of drivers because noone wants to be downloading for three weeks before their pc will go that could happen with dial-up users).

Lithium (

Compatible Hardware List

* A simple, printable list of current hardware fully supported by Linux. List hardware for which a free driver is included in a respected collection (e.g. the Linux kernel, the Gutenprint printer driver collection). Hardware which is no longer on general sale should be removed from the list. People could bring the list to a hardware shop, along with penguin "Linux compatible" stickers which the shop could stick on the product description signs. People would find Linux hardware easily and Linux would be visible to normal people. It may also spur the buying of Linux compatible hardware -- even Windows users may prefer the "Linux-compatible" feature to non-compatible.

* On the website, list hardware that just works with the current version of Ubuntu so that system builders can save time by buying "Ubuntu Friendly" hardware. Hopefully, this will simplify the system building process to:

  • # Order Parts from Ubuntu's (or an approved affiliate's) web site # Assemble Hardware # Install and configure Ubuntu with no headaches (hopefully in under an hour)

Hardware categories may include complete systems, motherboards, video cards and USB devices. This will establish an Ubuntu hardware brand similar to "Intel Inside" without making hardware. As soon as enough people ask, "Is it Ubuntu Friendly?", you'll have a viable hardware brand. (How many people is that? I don't know.) To help with this, create a client application that automatically (as much as possible) collects and submits hardware information to the Ubuntu web site and a server-side app that puts it all together to generate the list. You could sell these parts on the Ubuntu website or collect referral fees from approved affiliates for click-thru purchases. For partially friendly hardware, list incompatibilities and other gothcas more consistently than at other Linux hardware sites. -- pdirezze[at]

* I'm surprised that something like this hasn't been done already! I think a cross between a standard, category based list of hardware and a small wiki/comment section for each hardware piece would be a good start (and easier to make a client side app to autosubmit). Also, people could submit hardware lists of specific computers which would link to the relevant hardware pages in the database, and a computer page could summarise the compatibility status of its collective parts. I'd love to code or maintain/be part of a site such as this, but I wouldn't know how to begin making it official. Would a server be supplied? Could I pick the language? Is there a framework in place for Ubuntu sites already that must be used? - mark.goodall [at]

Install(check)tool for Windows

* An Ubuntu install(check) tool for Windows to check for hardware and show devices that run well and the devices what have no drivers on Linux.

  • I agree. Just after I installed an Ubuntu-based distro (Freespire), I found out that my sound card was incompatible. This could be used to help people from making my mistake.
  • I also agree, this tool could also be dos based, to boot a computer without an os installed and check if its hardware is supported, maybe an option in the loader of the live cd...

Clustering/Distributed Computing


Zgrid is the first distributed computing architecture to be built into a desktop or server operating system. Any individual or work group can quickly build a low-cost supercomputer. Scientists, animators and digital content creators can run a single job across multiple computers at once, without rewriting code. Sun Grid Engine (open source) and Globus Toolkit available to be exploit. Perhaps someday it will be the most powerful and efficient OS with grid engine ever.


It would be a major bonus to have an implementation of the OpenMosix cluster on Ubuntu Server edition or, with most households now having multiple computers, provide an easy-to-use implementation for the average user. This feature could be another hat-trick to boost Ubuntu's booming popularity while rescuing the OpenMosix project. AFAIC I've seen it in action in Dynebolic Linux, and it's sweet. Now that I'm choosing a Linux distro to go enterprise level this would be a bonus.

From an Intel article:

:OpenMosix adds clustering abilities to the Linux* kernel that allow any standard Linux process to take advantage of a cluster's resources. By using adaptive load-balancing techniques, processes running on one node in the cluster can transparently "migrate" to another node where they can execute faster. Because openMosix is completely transparent to all running programs, the process that has been migrated doesn't even know (or need to know) that it's running on a remote system. As far as that remote process and other processes running on the original node (called the "home node") are concerned, the process is running locally.

:This transparency of openMosix means that no special programming is required to take advantage of openMosix's load-balancing technology. In fact, a default openMosix installation will migrate processes to the "best" node automatically. This makes openMosix a clustering solution that can provide an immediate benefit for a wide variety of applications.

  • Warbo: OpenMosix seems to be getting discontinued in 2008 due to the widespread availability of multi-core machines, making clustering less desirable. I think this section sould be removed when OpenMosix is officially abandoned.

  • Orb: OpenMosix is indeed being abandoned, but I believe it should be adopted and slowly pushed towards the stock 2.6 kernel. Multi-core machines are growing popular, but so are faster networks (gigabit / 802.11n) and the number of computers per household. Multi-core systems are still costly and are not readily available to developing countries or underfunded research groups. At some point, a generic clustering solution will become necessary, and OpenMosix is a reasonable candidate.


This section is about mobility platform solutions and will include mobile devices that use alternative connectivity technologies. This includes, Bluetooth, iRDA, and media card readers available in most laptops. The effort is to help Ubuntu perform on laptops right out of the box. -- BalajiRamasubramanian - Apr 5, 2007.

  • Some way to adjust brightness, contrast, gamma. Right now I can use xgamma for gamma, but no way to adjust brightness and contrast. My laptop (HP zt3000) looks horrible without adjusting contrast, so much so that I am forced to go back to using Windows (feel pity on me!)


  • A gui interface for configuring the Synaptic driver for touchpads.
  • A way to disable the touchpad temporarily after a key is pressed, to stop accidental touches while typing. This should probably be enabled by default for at least 0.5 seconds using syndaemon or made available as an option to enable from the Mouse preferences in the System -> Preferences menu. There is a touchpad tab already there, it could easily fit in as an extra option.

  • Since Lifebook touchpads are supported by kernel psmouse module natively, the corresponding xorg driver (evtouch) should be in the distro --- at lest in universe, since its autoconfiguration is unlikely currently. It is packaged for Ubuntu by Soren Hansen already: The lbtouch driver mentioned in the description is superseded by the psmouse module [Václav?milauer]

  • My IBM laptop has a fingerprint reader. It would be cool to be able to use that for sudo and the screensaver, ssh, etc. graphical PAM authentication configuration.. see relevant section for elaboration.
  • Touchpad configuration for the ppc version. I couldn't configure the touchpad to tap to click or change acceleration.
    • Also it shoud be an option to disable your touchpad with a keyboard shortcut (like ctrl+super+D). If you use a mouse you don't need the touchpad anymore.

Better LaptopTesting pages

* I think the wiki does not do the job for laptop testing pages. Instead, see my idea How do we get a project like this authorized? I would hate to use several hundred hours on the project, if it was turned down. -- Daniel Skov Klejnstrup (daller) Email:

  • Saïvann : This idea is VERY important, people need to know if their computers will work on Ubuntu. A lot of people will not try to install Ubuntu until they know that somebody else tried the same thing. It would help people know what works and what doesn't, what are the solutions, etc. And it would greatly help Canonical to have better priorities on what's working great and what's not working. This could be expanded not just to laptop but peripherals in general. --

* I like the site of UbuntuLaptopTest but we need something more organized where we don't repeat information. The wiki identifier can be based on Brand and Model laptop. For example http://site/WIKI/ACER_MODELXXX should show how to install Linux in that model, the just new created wiki pages can have a default template so people know exactly which info have to fill. Also I propose to have kind of a form to create that wikipage from zero just submitting the Laptop brand, model, issues founded, official links.

* The wiki should be able to point to the VendorID:ProductID devices, like http://site/WIKI/ids/5986:0100 should show instructions to install that device, in the example is the integrated Orbicam Webcam in my laptop, that way the laptops wiki pages can point to the devices wiki also so no need to repeat the information. email me at contact AT ivangarcia DOT org

Charging control

Expose battery charging control to the GUI power management utils like gnome-power-manager. Then the user can select the strategy that best suits his or her needs, and increase battery lifetime. The current strategy is to charge batteries to 100% whenever connected to outlet power. This drastically reduces the lifetime of most current batteries (LiIon), if used naively. For example if the laptop is turned on and off daily while connected to outlet power, this reduces the available charge of the battery to a minimum quite rapidly. Some laptops provide support for controlling when to charge the battery (eg. some ThinkPads). Exposing charge threshold or "charge now" features to a GUI would make it much easier for regular and experienced users to preserve their laptop batteries.

Power Save & Management GUI

For laptop users, the management of power is very important. Ubuntu needs a GUI for power saving settings such as CPU scaling, screen brightness, fan speed and hard disk performance. The GNOME Power Manager applet has very limited options, but may be this applet is the right place to start.

Laptop profiles

Laptops have been mentioned before under Startup and Networking, but I think they deserve a separate heading. I'm disappointed with the network profiles part of KNetworkConf (System Settings: Network Settings), which seems quite buggy. Even though I have Kubuntu, I use network-admin from GNOME for setting my network profile, but this isn't much better then KNetworkConf, and neither provides all the features I want. I know there are a few tools specifically for this, but I haven't investigated them yet. I suggest Ubuntu should provide a single tool by default (across GNOME and KDE). I'm not talking about Zeroconf, etc. (though of course that would be very useful too), but about pre-configured profiles for office, home, etc. -- GraemeHewson

  • Set dynamic or static network address, and if the latter, gateway and addresses of DNS servers. These are the basic settings provided by KNetworkConf and network-admin.

  • Allow setting the profile through a command as well as a GUI. A profile could be selected through GRUB at boot time. Once booted, a CLI might be more convenient for network engineers plugging in different cables, and so on.
  • Set addresses of NTP servers
  • Set available printers, local and network. (The laptop could be connected to a docking station with a local printer.) Allow spooling on plane for printing at office? This could get complicated. KISS?
  • Set display (docking station again, or user plugging in hi-res display). Could this be dynamic -- what if Ubuntu had been installed without having seen the hi-res display?
  • Other hardware (modem, mouse)
  • Firewall configuration
  • Not connected to a network. I've seen a couple of bugs here, not previously mentioned, which I'll report through Bugzilla.


  • After installing Ubuntu, it should use a Display Resolution that all monitors can use. For instance; When I install Ubuntu, it sets my resolution to some 1900x which is what a HDTV would use, and with my 17inch CRT monitor it doesn't work that great. -- Jeremy[at]Hankenson[dot][com]
  • Add support for downloading videos from cameras via the gtkam application.
  • Port the SuSE app Sax2. It allows xorg.cong to be configured through a GUI, including dual screen configurations. Such functionality is badly needed in an "anyone can use it" system like Ubuntu wants to be.
  • A good interface in GNOME for tweaks to xorg.conf to control the entire video setup, or at least adding non-standard video resolutions, setting up Dual Display (nv or ati), enabling compositing and whatnot. Many forum articles are about XTweakThatShouldBeSimpleA-Z. Windows has a dialog for the whole video setup, so to pamper Windows converts, they should NEVER have to see the X config. --JamesGolden

  • A simple way of configuring X for projectors would be a priority. Impress is less useful if you can't easily link the OS to an external projector to give a talk. It works if you restart X, but the resolution can be wrong. And it's useful to have a clone on the screen. -- BenHall3

    • A "yust work"-interface to configure VGA/DVI output for beamer presentation
  • Better support for multiple graphics cards, and multiple monitors. In Hoary I had two cards, each with its own monitor. Now I have two monitors on one card. Windows handles them after a few reboots, but I have to do research to set them up in xorg.conf. "dpkg-reconfigure xserver" only sees one card and monitor. - RudolfVavruch

  • A graphical tool for changing the login screen resolution (maximum resolution of X). It is a basic task -- AleksiNurmi

  • Resolution 1920x1080 (aka 1080P) should be available as a generic monitor type. More and more users have HDTV displays as a primary monitor.
  • this hardware-rendered x server should go in as soon as it's usable. The version of in Hoary will already have the composite extensions if I'm not mistaken, and it would be great to have it all rendered on the graphics card.

    • Warbo: Is this now obsolete? If someone knows that it is then could they please remove it (and this comment), or if they know it is not then please remove this comment, and perhaps add your own? Thanks Smile :)

Automatically Updating DRI Drivers

An option to automatically update DRI Project drivers (ATI Free Drivers). Many users don't have support for their drivers in ATI Commercial Drivers (e.g. my Radeon 7500). People want this to get the faster drivers for their systems for Games, 3D, Graphics, etc. for more information: DRI CVS

Supporting the DRI-Team

  • For desktop users it is getting more and more important to have working 3d acceleration. Especially for the latest Gnome and Kde features (transparency and other beautiful or useful gimmicks) it is quite important to have this working. While some card manufacturers deliver binary drivers, those vary in quality and no use for some platforms (ppc...). The work of the DRI project is very important for Linux on the desktop and so for Ubuntu. Maybe it would be a good idea for Canonical (if there are resources left for that) to hire some of the DRI folks or at least support them financially, because they don't have enough time to develop, because they have to do it in their spare time.
    • This really is important; the use of proprietary drivers hurts Free software. -- Jeroen

  • Convert the utah-glx drivers to the DRI format. While the cards currently supported are rather old it provides a solid basis for further nvidia drivers DRI Project Homepage


Complete and Friendly TV Tuner Card Detection and Installation

Upon booting and seeing that there is a new card (especially TV tuner cards) do everything needed to make them work (build-essential, kernel mods, etc). You could focus on one brand first like Hauppaugge then work on the other brands. Wink ;)

I agree completely. Although i think you should start with pixelview not hauppagge Big Grin :) I think this would be a relatively simple thing to do. Sure it would take a while to make it all cards go but i think it would be worth it. I think a way to do it (maybe not the simplest but its a way) is you could get the output from lspci then use that to find tv cards. Any that are found you could then autosetup the drivers for based on card names, models, and revision numbers.

Lithium (


  • I think there is a lot to improve in the reactivity of network-manager: we should be able to change of network easily and should see new networks faster and it should be able to reconnect faster after a loss of connection.
  • In the Ubuntu System->Network (Network Settings) configurator on the "General" tab, there is the "Automatic service discovery" check box option. It would be nice to split this into two check boxes.

    • 1)Scan for available services on the network.
    • 2)Advertise local services on the network.
      • This would allow for some reduced network chatter/traffic originating from the local machine.
  • Need a driver for the F5D7010 Belkin G wireless card. An effort to utilize ndiswrapper was unsuccessful. Either a driver or good instructions and common errors list/solution/resolution status page? Wireless card support is a huge issue that Im hoping for improvement before 7.10 goes Beta.


  • There are good drivers here

* Need a driver for the zte mf 330 pcmcia modem card

  • Can an Ubuntu Linux driver for a USB wireless adapter with a Zydas - zd1211- chipset be available in Ubuntu? I have tried so many Linux distributions without any support for my wireless adapter. I really like Ubuntu and would really want to switch all my development to it, except for the limiting lack of internet connection due to unavailable driver for the Zydas chipset of my wireless dongle adapter. I know so many people are looking for this driver because of my Google search, and further search in many Linux forums. I believe it will be a big boost if available.
  • Ubuntu needs to support ADSL modems (with eciadsl, for example). Furthermore, connecting to the internet shouldn't require sudo.
    • I agree with this guy! Please, please, add support to the accessrunner usbatm driver! (precompiled module)

  • Wireless LAN support is becoming an issue for more people all of the time. I would love to see Ubuntu be the first single-cd install (since it's difficult to install drivers from the web if you can't activate your net interface!) that accurately identified *and* activated many common wireless NICs including PCMIA and USB. Failing that it would be perhaps just as valuable if Ubuntu were to be associated with the largest database of what wireless hardware works and what doesn't! To the best of my knowledge there is no such database specifically for debian.
    • might provide us with some support for the above USB WLAN devices (Atmel AT76C503/505A in specific). - Brian Jackson

  • Providing an interface for wireless management and support for various authentication protocols (LEAP, PEAP etc. etc.) would put Ubuntu a step forward to being a viable alternative to Microsoft Windows or Mac OS X. -- Terry Dellino
  • Easy GUI networking options so that I can set to connect via DHCP but set my DNS servers manually and it will persist when I reboot.
  • Install the traceroute-package by default. traceroute is essential and will be needed often _before_ there is access to a repository. And it's only 22kB and should fit on the CD. -- tschaboo[at]
  • A configuration dialog for VPN (virtual private networks) is missing. With Windows, it is a matter of seconds to setup and configure a VPN connection through an unsecure network such as the internet to a remote system even with smartcard encryption. Ubuntu contains tools for creating VPNs, for accessing smartcards, etc. but unfortunately not a gui frontend to configure these components as easily as windows user can. -- Christian Jacob tronex[AT]
  • more network card drivers, such as linux-wlan-ng installed by default, as well as including ndiswrapper in a default Hoary installation
    • prebuilt rfmon-patched prism wireless modules (see [Orinoco + Monitor + Kismet 2005 + Hoary]) in the repository would be good -- [sjalex]
      • I agree that ndiswrapper should be included in a user interface! As a Linux/Kubuntu (7.04) newbie, I had a hard time to configure ndiswrapper for my Fritz!Stick USB. This should not be done in a terminal but in a user interface, like in, say, Puppy Linux. liunxcub, smusnmr[AT]
  • better support for corporate proxies - it should be done once and supported in multiple apps (gaim, mozilla, synaptic)
  • easier pppoe configuration (gui or link) maybe from network-admin program... -- Lyly
  • We should use something like the xandros winbind/samba client login stuff by default and set up Ubuntu to log into active directory out of the box. If our goal is to get Ubuntu adopted everywhere as a desktop, this one is huge. If admins don't have to fight through 10 scripts to get this to work, Ubuntu becomes much more friendly to existing environments. --Keith Bassett
  • a program for connecting to the Internet which supports dail up, ppoe/pppoa .... that start each time your not connected when you start your browser.
  • Zeroconf/Bonjour/Rendevouz support. There is an opensource implementation called Avahi and according to their homepage it already supports all important features mentioned in the mDNS RFC. Avahi could be used to share printers (cups) and music (rhythmbox) with other users without any hassle. Mac users will also appreciate this since they could just plugin their ibook/powerbook in a Linux network and start printing. -- Ramon de Ruiter won[AT]

  • Only start networking at boot if the interface has link; otherwise wait 10 seconds and continue booting (10 seconds for user to plug in network card) (mostly interesting for laptops) -- Jochem Kossen jkossen[at]
  • Internet sharing. So that in a few click I can share the internet from ethernet on eth0 to all nearby wireless laptops on eth1. For this to work it would need to turn on dhcp, and network address translation. windows and mac os x both make this very easy.
    • This can be done w/ FireStarter (which I suggest is needed for firewalling). Though it must become obvious it can do both. -- JoeTennies

  • Easy to use WiFi network roam program for mobile users. Are Debian network interfaces the right thing to use or is something custom like wifi-radar needed?

  • Integration of linux-wlan-ng with iwconfig tools. At the moment linux-wlan-ng uses a custom interface, and is a pain too setup. These drives are used a quite a few wifi devices such as the usb d-link dwl122.
  • Do a better integration of netatalk 2.x, please! Encrypted authentication should be possible by integration of and the GUI-"Shared Folders" should also manage AFP-shares.
  • WPA support without manually configuring WPASupplicant. WPA Supplicant is pretty easy to configure, but it would be much easier for beginners if it was integrated into the Networking configuration tool. Should be fairly easy to accomplish.
    • - I more than fully agree to this! As a Kubuntu (7.04) newbie, I would have liked to have it as

      • easy as with Sidux. Linuxcub, smusnmr[AT]

      - Agreed. I'd like more WPA support as well. -User:Webonomic

  • Graphical tunneling utility that uses SSH or another relatively secure protocol with preset tunneling modes (e.g. VNC, CUPS, NFS, Samba, etc.). This would allow roadwarriors or other remote clients who do not wish to use a command line to connect to home or work without compromising security. -- thelinuxevangelist<A~T<gmail/D0T/com

  • My apartment building has more than one 802.11 networks. Install asks me for a WEP key, but doesn't ask me for what SSID the WEP key applies to!
  • Add ZD1211 driver to Breezy. I compiled this with Warty, and it worked fine.

  • Samba, smbfs, ssh should be installed by default for setting up mounted files shares in an office environment. Also to allow for remote admin.
  • Add a program GPRS Easy Connect for connecting to the internet with a mobile phones/modems PCMCIA with irda/USB/COM/Bluetooth and GPRS/EDGE/UMTS

  • Use Nokia 770 as model for easy connectivity over GPRS and bluetooth. See,,79633,00.htm for a demo.

  • Some form of easily throttling maximum network speed for the whole system (and also in specific applications?) in some control panel is desirable.
  • Disable ipv6 by default. saves a lot of trouble for new users and people that need ipv6 should know how to activate it.
  • Again I posted in both internet and network seeing that the internet is one big network I again stress the fact that linux NEEDS to step up to the simple connect and share concept. By this I AM NOT WANTING A WINDOWS REMAKE. I simply want to plug in a router, ok, plug all my computers up, ok, turn them on and have all three major systems (os x, windows(and families), linux(Ubuntu)) to all work together. the program configures it for me, minutes later (not hours from setting up samba and yada yada) instant file sharing (excluding legal stuff) no complex writting of stuff. Thanks. This would probably be appreciated by all people of all systems.
  • I agree with the above. I'm a newbie (1 year with linux) and have tried to connect two ubuntu desktops into a LAN to allow them share files. Although I'm not so bad in computers this "simple" task was mission impossible for me. I would like it to be as automated as possible and in all cases it can't it should be intuitive.
  • Install nscd by default to cache DNS lookups, saving bandwidth and improving response times. A network trace shows every Web page loaded by Konqueror, even on the same site, needs a DNS lookup (AAAA and A), every ping response causes a reverse lookup, etc. (Netscape and descendants have their own caching, but I don't think double caching would be a problem.) -- GraemeHewson

  • Have RP-PPPoE (available through automatix) included by default - the GUI for setting up PPPoE connections easily (Contact:

  • It is great with all Howto's existing to help users when they are stuck - but they don't really do any good if one can't access the internet to start with because of problems... To include a large collection of searchable Internet/Network Howto's in the helpbrowser or similar would be a great help in these situations. (Contact:

  • Include this nifty script: to allow users to pinpoint network-errors easily. (Contact:

  • Add a simple-to-use unique applet to manage BOTH wired and wireless networks and BOTH static or dynamic configuration. The system knows about trusted network connections; it tries to connect to trusted connections, otherwise it searches for available connections, then ask to the user if he/she wants to use one of the available connections or he/she wants to specify another connection, then it uses the connection specified by the user. Each time a new connection could be available (e.g. network cable plugged in, wireless network card switched on, GPRS device connected, whatever), the system must search for new networks and ask the user is it finds new networks. If interested in this idea contact davide <dot> vernizzi <at> gmail <dot> com both for mail and Jabber, I'd be glad of contributing.

  • There should be a way to share your internet connection, so you can basically turn your computer into a router with a simple graphical interface. For example say I get online through wireless, but I would like to have a switch which gets it's connection through the unused ethernet on that box. I should be able to do this.
  • Simple, I hook up a router, plug all my computers in bam I'm on the internet and I can share files with both OS X Windows(and families). Why can't we all get along like the mac does with windows? Create a program that configures itself, and at the end giving you SIMPLE EASY TO READ options for 'corrections' if need be. No pre setup yada yada configuration yada yada samba write some horrific code cross fingers and hope it works crap no simple stuff like click and ur done. I think this would draw the attention from both os x and windows Smile :)

  • PeerGuardian integrated with Ubuntu - Currently there is no existing version of PeerGuardian available for Linux, it is an advanced open source IP Blocker and Filters spyware, fake P2P trackers, phising websites and more. Currently this is focused on the Windows enviroment. What i am proposing is if Ubuntu can make use of the opensource PeerGuardian code and make it run on Ubuntu so Linux users can benefit from its functionality. Although Linux is not prone to viruses or spyware like Windows, there are ways in which data is captured by prying eyes. This program helps keep your computer secure and data protected.

  • Many home networks connect to the internet through a DSL modem. Unfortunately, this modem connection sometimes goes down. SuSE have a really cooled applet called kinternet (under KDE, therefore) that can run on each PC and enables the user at that PC to see the status of the pppoe link and restart it, without going to the gateway PC. This means that my kids can check and restart the link without touching my gateway machine or any priviledged account on it. This applet is what makes my kids run their dual-boot machines under SuSE not Windows, and is why I run SUSE on my gateway, not Ubuntu. I don't know if kinternet and the SuSE Meta PPP daemon - SMPPPD runing on the gateway that it works with are proprietary SUSE that need licencing - they're not ported to anything else I can find - but for me this functionality is the number 1 show-stopper. SMPPPD also allows dial-up links to be started and when needed and closed when not.
  • I put a script into the WiFiHowto that autoconfigures the wlan device to a preconfigured WLAN if it is found when bringing up the device. The script uses the functionality in /etc/network/interfaces and if called on ifup. -- TobiasHunger

  • Realtek 8185 and 8187B WPA support without NDISWrapper. Free drivers are available on the internet (rtl-wifi, for example), but are really difficult to get working in Ubuntu. I would love to see these drivers built into Ubuntu in the future.

Support and Install for Speedtouch USB Modems

In the UK and I suspect many other countries, many of the ISP's provide users with Free USB modems. The most common by far is the Speedtouch USB modem, these come in many shapes and sizes, but are basically 4 revisions.

There is a great Guide for technical Users at Most of this suggestion comes from that guide.

I believe that non-technical users should have the benefit of being able to use this modem. The process of setup could be done with a simple install and then config panel, The install panel would look for the modem and it revision number

  • awk '/4061/ { print $5 }' /proc/bus/usb/devices

Then extract the firmware, and place it in

  • /lib/hotplug/firmware

Then the config panel could use the command

  • dmesg | grep 'ADSL line is up'

to display to the user whether the DSL line is Synced

Also then a simple routine to modify chap and pap secrets files would be very useful, it would also benifit the user if a single panel managed the chap and pap and also the PPP details also, rather than users having to change them separately. A sample PPP auth file follows.

noipdefault defaultroute user 'username@isp' noauth updetach usepeerdns plugin 0.38

# debug

This is also need to register the modem with the PPP config

  • sudo install -m 600 speedtch /etc/ppp/peers

A few other bits would need sorting out : such as DNS lookups,

  • sudo ln -sf ppp/resolv.conf /etc/resolv.conf

This is a bit rough, im sure there's a better way.

Finally a script to attempt PPP Authenticate when the line is up, this could be placed in RC2 or possibly a dialup shortcut in the Internet section of the Appilcations menu or as a Desktop icon.

  • #!/bin/bash modprobe ppp_generic modprobe pppoatm count=0

    while $((count++)) -lt 40 do

    • sync=$(dmesg | grep 'ADSL line is up') if [ ! -z "$sync" ] then
      • pppd call speedtch exit 0
      fi sleep 1

    echo "The SpeedTouch firmware did not load"

Please remember that All this came from the excellent guide at All I have done is submit this as a Idea, to try to get someone to make a non-technical user process to get the modem up and running.

  • Warbo: This is being worked on with the EasyUsbAdsl spec (which I am interested in for Sagem Fast800 modems). You could perhaps help this along with testing and things (I've added a link to the info you have given to that page as well).

Active Directory/Single Sign On Integration

The large majority of corporate/enterprise networks use a single sign on system to simplify and centralize user authentication. The standard technology used to do this is MS Active Directory. Making it easier to to authenticate an Ubuntu desktop against an Active Directory domain would help increase the take up of Ubuntu within the enterprise IT environment.

1) Integrate an option into the install process allowing the user to specify an LDAP server to authenticate against for single sign on. This should be possible without the need for users to edit configuration files.

2) Integrate an program into the desktop system allowing the user to change and or create new LDAP settings using a GUI interface without editing configuration files.


Single Sign On is already implemented here FeistyNetworkAuthentication


The current Bluetooth interface is terminal based and not very user friendly. What we need is a GUI based interface for both upload and downloading stuff from Bluetooth devices. Right click on a file and choose an option - "Send Via Bluetooth" to send a file to a connected Bluetooth device.

To do this, currently, I am using a Perl Gnome script that calls gnome-obex-send. I would like this to be part of the package and would prefer it if it adds a menu to the Gnome menus and not just create a script in the .gnome2/nautilus-scripts directory.

Here is a the script. Kindly use it as part of the package. I would be great if it is a part of the package itself.

#!/usr/bin/perl -w


  • $uri =~ s/\s/\\ /g;

    gnome-obex-send $uri;


This script works with filenames with spaces too and can be a part of the obex package.

Also, the installation of Bluetooth services should be easy. It should not involve too many steps. Currently one has to make sure the following shell script is executed each time he starts the machine.


sudo modprobe l2cap

sudo modprobe rfcomm

sudo mknod /dev/rfcomm0 c 216 0

sudo sdptool add --channel=10 OPUSH

sudo rfcomm bind /dev/rfcomm0 00:0E:6D:7F:06:63 10


I have currently set it up as a program to be run in every session. But that is not good enough. It should be automatic, right after an install. Initially, I tried kbluetoothd. But it does not load at startup unless sdpd is loaded. Besides, in kbluetoothd, sending files from the laptop to the device is not possible - only reception.


One single package should run all Bluetooth devices for both sending and recieving, and must run right out of the box. The package can be called obex-pack or bluez-pack. A single point solution in all desktop managers - Ubuntu, Kubuntu and Edubuntu should be available. Also, this package should install be default once the device is detected. Note the automatic hardware install project above.

Ubuntu Bandwidth Manager

I'd like to see a local-computer dynamic application-level bandwidth manager a la the windows application Netlimiter. It's similar to a traffic shaper, and can double as a firewall. You give it rules like "Allow up to 700KBps down/50KBps up for whole computer," "Allow 500KBps down/35KBps up for group (Ktorrent, Miro)", "Allow 100KBps down / 10KBps up for Firefox", "Allow 200kbps down/16KBps up for group (teamspeak, synaptic)". It bases itself on executable path, so multiple instances are put into the same limit. Dynamic = immediately changing bandwidth as soon as you hit apply, not relying on some kind of pre-launching lockin like trickle.

So far, I've been recommended trickle, which is tedious, command-line based, and instance-specific, wondershaper, which is just the whole computer limit and command-line based, and squid, which involves complicated cache and network gateway work. Traffic shapers rely primarily on port traffic, which is very difficult with applications that switch ports, multiple apps using the same ports, et cetera.

I've found Pyshaper, and it noted the above points and undertakes to fill the niche, but it appears to be very much a dead alpha from five years ago.

It just seems like a package that should be either created new or branched from pyshaper, and put into Ubuntu as an official component (though deactivated by default). Ubuntu boxes very very often run alongside windows boxes, as mine is, and getting them to play nice with the rest of the network is right now a nontrivial lesson. There are plenty of apps out there right now which don't offer smart bandwidth management, and I'm somewhat sick of Miro filling the pipe.


  • By default keep home data on a different partition.

Poweroff removable storage devices after unmount

Some USB flash drives emit a light when plugged-in. This light turns-off after the user clicks on "Safely remove device" under Windows. This way, the user knows that the drive is indeed safe to unplug. Wheras Windows powers off USB devices after unmounting them, Ubuntu doesn't, and safety lights stay on even after the device has been unmounted. Wouldn't it be better if Ubuntu powered-off USB devices after unmounting them?


Password Protected Folders

We should intergrate a folder/directory password protecting feature into Ubuntu. Here is how I see it working:

If a user opens the protected folder, the neat password prompt for administrator should happen, but it should be made to look diffrent. Maybe the folder with a lock icon instead of just a lock, so the user doesn't put the root password or somthing. Wink ;)

If a user changes directory in Terminal directly to that folder or any sub directory under it, the prompt like sudo would come up. Only, it would say " Folder Password: ".

I'm not sure how applications trying to access files in there would work, files which are protected should be excluded from any searches and unknown to any application without a password. Only the directory's name should be publicly avalible.

(I have a feeling that this idea is already in Ubuntu, or was submitted, but I'm just making sure it has been said.) Big Grin :)

  • -Kavon


  • RAID is too hard to get working. It should be much easier to install and manage RAID arrays. Conceptually what is going on is very simple, but in practice the process requires a lot of headache. Both installing an Ubuntu system on a (root) RAID array and creating RAID arrays out of new hard drives should be supported. ~~~~
  • "degraded" RAID1 array install:

    • I run a full RAID1 array for my Linux install. Although the Ubuntu (4.1) install allows the installation of Ubuntu onto a RAID1 array, it seems to require that the RAID1 array be fully online, ie. all component member devices of the RAID1 array are online. I'd like the ability to install Ubuntu to a "degraded" RAID1 array, where only half of the component member devices are available. This would allow me to test out Ubuntu before completely moving to it, by going through the following steps :
      1. Degrade my existing RAID1 array, containing my existing Linux distribution install eg. split out all /dev/hda devices from the existing RAID1 array.
      2. Boot the Ubuntu install
      3. Create a new RAID1 array, listing both the /dev/hda and /dev/hdc devices. However, nominate the /dev/hdc devices as missing.
      4. Install Ubuntu, as per the normal procedure
      5. Test it out to see if I'm happy with the install.
      6. If I'm happy with the Ubuntu install, add the missing /dev/hdc devices into the Ubuntu created RAID1 array.
      7. If I'm not happy with the Ubuntu install, boot into my old distribution, and add the /dev/hda devices that were part of the Ubuntu RAID1 array back into my original, other distribution RAID1 array.
    • The advantage of this method is that it potentially avoids having to restore from backup an existing distribution and personal data if I'm not happy with the Ubuntu installation.
    • I realise that the above install method is somewhat complicated and should be performed by somebody experienced with booting multiple installations of Linux on multiple devices. However, it would be far simpler and easier than the method I recently used, where I had to install Ubuntu onto a non-RAID1 disk, create a new RAID1 array after Ubuntu was installed on the other disk, copy Ubuntu to the RAID1 array in single user mode, and then add the original native disk into the newly created array.
    • To sum all this up, a change to the Ubuntu installer to allow degraded RAID1 arrays to be created would make the above short-cut RAID1 installation possible.

Mount removable storage synchronously

by Jez9

I think that when you plug in something like a USB dongle, it should be mounted synchronously (-o sync) instead of in buffered mode.

For me, this is far preferable to the minute performance gain gotten by mounting the device in buffered mode. You're very unlikely to be using such devices for anything except data storage/retreival, in which case mounting synchronously is a major benefit. We're looking to make Ubuntu easier to use for new users, right? Well expecting them to know you have to right-click, 'unmount', before removing the drive is IMHO unreasonable. It's also irritating for people like me who know you need to do it, but either occasionally forget or don't want to bother.

Mount the thing synchronously by default. This is what Windows XP does, and it allows you to just remove the drive after any file transfers have finished. Yes, problems will occur if you remove it durung a file transfer, but that's gonna happen in ANY mount mode. It's far more obvious to the user that this will cause a problem than removal of the drive before unmounting. Also stop displaying that 'unsafe device removal' message for devices mounted synchronously.

I think this would make Ubuntu more intuative and easier to use.


  • Option to use different file systems as the root filesystem and to change it once it has already been set without losing data.
  • The ata_piix module is broken, causing frustration for many linux users. Most people trying to use Feisty or Gutsy on any intel ICHx IDE chipset are frustrated by the inability of the kernel to access their cd and/or hard drive. This can prevent the live CD from booting, prevent an installed system from booting after an upgrade, or, in my case, prevent me from accessing my CDROM drive on an installed system (Gutsy testing installed via netboot)
  • There should be a way to encrypt your file system through using graphical tools, including swap.
  • Add possibility to encrypt partitions (probably most adequate at install time) Especially interesting for notebook users. cryptsetup / luks . See Linux Magazin 10/06 (german)
  • USB memory sticks should be backup-ed to the local system. They are lost/destroyed quite often. When inserting a new stick a dialog should ask the user if this is his/her stick and if the user wants to create a back up in his directory (/home/user/usb-backup ?)
  • When inserting a memory stick for the first time, the user should be asked, if he wants to create a truecrypt volume on the stick. These volumes are auto-mounted when inserting the stick into a ubuntu pc. Add everything to the stick needed to mount the volume on any other operating system (truecrypt executable for windows). When (not if) the stick is lost, no data can be stolen.

New Filesystem Principles Idea

  • I do think that folders (aka directories) are outdated even now. A file is merely a piece of information, and it's name is really useful only to OS, not to users. I suggest Ubuntu would propose a new file storing standard:
  • Every file is related to some subjects.
  • One of the relations is the Main one (this is a 'folder' for old-fashioned programs). But a file can have more than only 1 relation.
  • Files also must have a title (a 'name'), which is unique within the main relation.
  • We should be able to use SQL to get a list of files matching our criteria.
  • An 'Open file' dialog should contain the following fields:
    • Storage: a list of media to store files (a good idea is to include 'Any storage' item into the list. Users home folders also should appear here);
    • Categories: a list of categories; user will select an appropriate category;
    • Files in this category: a list of files that use this category as the main one;
    • Other related files: files that are related to the selected category, but don't use it as the main one;

    • Files that may be also related: files that are not marked as related to the selected category, but found through a full-text search. The file lists should be filled along with showing the results, so that users won't wait to reach the desired file. This concept will in future replace the folders hierarchy. To start, we can make new-fashioned 'Open file' and 'Save file' dialogs, and integrate Tracker to fill the 'Files that may be also related' field.

      • DBFs seems to do this for KDE, maybe we could find/make something for GNOME?

      • ZFS integration would also be handy for the task.

New Filesystem Hierarchy Standard

  • Let's be frank, it's years old, ugly as sin and more incomprehensible than a crazy cat lady. It's great if you understand it, but the average user couldn't tell their /etc/init.d from their /dev/null. I propose we do the following:
  • Change /bin to /Programs/Essential User Commands
  • Change /boot to /System/Bootup Files
  • Change /dev to /System/Devices
  • Change /etc to /System/Configuration Files
  • Change /home to /User Files
  • Change /lib to /System/Libraries
  • Change /mnt to /System/Mounted Devices
  • Change /opt to /Programs
  • Change /tmp to /Temporary Files
  • Change /proc to /System/Processes
  • Change /sbin to /System/Binaries

In order to ensure compatability, symlinks should be used to link the old folders to the new ones.

  • Contra: The "old" definitions have some big advantages, especially when you are typing names in a Console. The suggested new names bring much discomfort. Capital Letters are less efficient and Spaces are really disturbing. But the most important contra is that a complete change would cause much compatibility trouble and people have to learn a complete new scheme. By the way: The suggested names look like W*ndows to me and I have the feeling that just the W*n world might be patched to Ubuntu. In case the filestructure is changed it is important to choose a neutral approach which is most efficient and comfortable. My suggestion is to offer symlinks from the new names to the old ones as an option, but this is a minor thing to do and just a simple script that might be offered by anyone. kuef 9th August 2007

  • [Warbo"]: I think the proposed names leave much to be desired. If there is to be a 1:1 mapping of directories then something like /opt -> /Programs is pretty poor considering that almost every program is stored in /usr (with binaries in /usr/bin, /usr/sbin, /usr/local/bin and /usr/local/sbin, sharable data in /usr/share and /usr/local/share, program components in /usr/lib and /usr/local/lib, etc.). Plus why make /sbin go to /System/Binaries, which not only makes little sense in the context of a descriptive label, but also contradicts /Programs/Essential User Commands. Personally I think that whilst the current system is not perfect, nothing is perfect and changing things around from a system which has worked fine for several decades would bring more disruption than benefits.

* [Chrisford]: I would like to see a user friendly interface to the file hierarchy. Something similar to Mac OS X's finder but better. Keeping the original hierarchy but with a fancy UI pointing to Apps and users folders. Like Pictures, Music, Documents etc... This is what the non-linux user expects from an os.

* [RobG3]: I think the file structure should be changed, however I think it should still keep lowercase spaceless names so command driven programs will still work fine.

  • users - folders for users on the system
    • root - have the root user in the user folder instead of /
    • default - this will be a default user, taking alot of settings out of the old etc folder (like firefox etc)
    • shared - a shared user where everyone can edit file, this will be for music cd's etc
    • name - here is a standard user, each user having there own folder
      • .settings - this will hold all the settings, not hidden, e.g. gnome, firefox etc
      • Desktop
      • Documents
      • Music
      • Video
      • Other - Maybe some other standard folders, e.g. pictures

* programs - this will hold all the programs except system programs

  • binaries - similar names to the old usr folder, except full names
  • libraries

* system * settings - this will hold the settings from etc that arn't in the default user, e.g. network settings

  • binaries - system binaries
  • devices - dev folder
  • libraries - system libraries

* boot - boot files for grub or similar

There may be some more folders, but this is only a first idea. I beleive it would appeal to both old style useres, and in-experianced users.

* I think is better to have a directory for example /var/sharedir linked to all home direcory of users as AllUsersPublic, alla data at this directory can be stored modify for all internal users without problem of ownerhip. For example marry and wife have different users but want to share the same files.

Detecting File systems

  • Ubuntu does a good job of mounting external file systems, whether it be USB Disks, external hard drives or CD's. But internal changes on IDE disks are not handled at all. Ubuntu should notice file system changes, communicate them to the end user and suggest possible actions. See Partition Configure

Full disk encryption

Provide an option during installation to create encrypted partitions (including Root, Home and Swap) with LUKS, and automatically configure scripts and configurations to allow booting from them.


Ext4 is the latest ext* filesystem. It supports much more data than ext3. And it has been around since 2006! Ubuntu is ext3 based, so I am preposing an upgrade.


ZFS provides a much more flexible, powerful and lower maintenance filesystem than anything linux offers. It is open source, and although designed for multi/many disk servers, it will offer many benefits for workstations and home computers, many of which have several disks.

ZFS would allow some radical changes in the management of ubuntu's filesystem, and could provide a drop-in replacement for partitioning, striping, block-size decisions, EVMS,LVM,MD etc., etc.. Particularly powerful features are:

  • best use of all available hardware for security and speed.
  • compression to increase bandwidth. (Reiser4 also talking about this. Implementable with existing linux tools?)

Versioning Filesystems

Hard drives have continuously grown in capacity and offer ever more affordable mass storage solutions. It would be great if Ubuntu took advantage of the large storage capacity of hard drives to bring real benefits to the user. One way to do this would be to use versioning filesystems for the home drive (where the user's important files are stored). Every single change the user makes to a file would automatically be remembered and the user could do things like ask "What did this file look like on Sunday". It could also be used to undo inapropriate changes that have been made (such as deleting a file that the user wants back). This would be very useful as the user can often make mistakes when editing a file. There is a GPL filesystem called Wayback that uses FUSE to implement a versioning filesystem on top of any other filesystem. Ideally, graphical tools would also need to be provided that allow the user to query the filesystem in a user-friendly way and from within the file manager.

  • Agreed. Setting up versioned directories (or /home file systems) should be an easy thing to do for both users and administrators. If set up
    • (a) old versions of overwritten files in that directory should be recoverable
    • (b) the entire directory should be easily synchronised (e.g. between desktop and laptop).
    It should be configurable that after a merge only one of the hosts (desktop or laptop) keeps the history, the other only the latest version (and all changes since the latest merge).

    In normal usage, having versioning should be completely transparent, both in the GUI as in the command line. Commit should be automatic, not a manual command. In versioned directories/file systems, applications should not keep tilde~ backups of the next-to-latest version or use other similar workarounds. In a sense, Trash is also a workaround of not having versioning. For versioned directories, Trash contains "links" to the latest version (in the versioning system) of deleted (trashed) files.

ALSA and Sound

  • Use PulseAudio as default, fedora 8 already does so, and works great. my ubuntu boxes have many problems with sound, I can't user realplayer and firefox at the same time (because of OSS) the Master settings only affect the columns and not the phones.

  • When the PCM sink is at 100%, the sound gets a big distortion.
  • write an alsa driver so I can use my laptop as a phone headset ( SoundBase ( ALSA / OSS configurator and execution) would use Ncurses to select to:

    • Enable / disable and load/unload Oss/Alsa kernel sound modules and restore old configurations (changelog file).
    • Execute alsaconf .
    • Enable/disable the default sound mixer, load/unload alsa/oss mixer and execute alsamixergui.
    • Select the output configuration for popular players (XMMS / Xine...).
    • Configure MIDI (hardware or software SoundFont s, midi default player and midi plugins).

    • Execute XMMS with midi plugin and support.
    • Execute aplaymidi .
    • Execute timidity .
  • Add bluetooth-alsa support for bt-headsets (

  • Add a general multi-band equalizer instead of the actual one band one. Because users have any way to manage sound output directly.
  • Better sound devices support. You should implement ability to choose default sound card for playback and default card for recording. You should implement also "Force to use default option". Now, sound is played among applications randomly (?). Sound on logon screen is played on second card, startup sound on default, FLASH animation sound on website on second card, sound preview in GNOME on second card and so on. It's very irritating.
  • Out-of-the-box ALSA configuration with multiple channels. I want to be able to play a movie in mplayer and start a second movie (in a second instance of mplayer), being able to mute the second movie without muting the first one, being able to change the volume of the first one without changing it for the second one. I want to be able to mute amarok momentarily while playing a stream in realplayer without muting realplayer in the process. Esound already does all this, but not all application support it and it seems that developers are targeting ALSA. From what I understand, this is possible in ALSA, I have just never been able to make it work. Perhaps it could even be supported at OSS level, so that I can run skype or audacity without having to close all my sound-related programs? There should still be a Master/PCM volume control, of course, but every application should have its own channel to be set individually. If this entails using an .asoundrc, then put it in /etc/skel, for instance. - numerodix [] gmail , com
  • I agree that software mixing support through ALSA drivers is area where most(if not all) linux distros are lacking. The inability to use linux as a multimedia platform is what i find drives users away. Easier ALSA .asoundrc configuration might help. Maybe this could be done through a gui. And also support for asym by default would be help since dmix cannot handle input streams. - carlosfocker[] gmail . com

  • Jackd server integration so that rosegarden4 and above can be played out of the box.
  • RealPlayer + Flashplayer and co to have ALSA wrappers so that multiple audio streams can be played.

    • Warbo: Flash player 7 from Adobe now uses ALSA, as do Free Software implementations. I'm not sure about Realplayer, but it is based on Helix, which is Free Software, so I would think it as ALSA capabilities.

  • Add X-Fi sound drivers to the list restricted drivers and/or include OSS 4.0 which includes X-Fi support

Package Management

* i have an idea for the synaptic package management,is that making synaptic package management could be able to read and install all packages format that ever made for linux such as you know ( tgz,rpm,deb and etc). and if its able to decode exe file like cadega , wine or crossover so its like all in one . yeah Wink ;)

* After installation of programs (using Synaptic) a popup propose where store the program at menu-bar and icon to use (change allowed). The icon is proposed automatically (after a auto-search in icons directory better, same size of other used icons, at top of list proposed). All programs (bin) without a menu link, can be stored automaticcally in a directory of menu-bar 'All programs' and, if selected, can be presented the same popup to move it in other place of the preferred menu (selecting icon).

* I think we must create a new package type better then .deb package. The .deb packages have the compressed content in two .tar.gzip file. We can do a package with .tar.bz2 archives, so the packages are more small. I put the extension ".ubu" for the new packages.

  • Warbo: I thought that Debian packages can support pretty much any compression type these days. I know they originally had Gzip hard-coded into them, but since debian-binary 2.0 I thought Bzip2 was supported (and if a new Open Source compression technique is going to be used then why not 7zip?). Making yet ANOTHER type of incompatible package is a bad idea in my opinion.....

  • Experienced Linux users aren't going to be looking to install kubuntu-desktop. Theyre going to be looking for KDE. I'm not suggesting that you change the name back to KDE, but some cross-referencing is really necessary. If you change the name of an application, all you need to do is add the old name to the description, so that when I type

apt-cache search kde | grep desktop

kubuntu-desktop comes up. I can't tell you how much bad-mouthing of Ubuntu I did after a search for KDE produced no result. I could imagine no other explanation but that apt was somehow broken.

  • Windows users are used to install software by just clicking "Next". I think that the next step is to add this feature, built-in in Ubuntu. This feature will attract thousands of "Scared from linux windows users" users. In my opinion, this is the next step in the Linux world.
    • Take a look at Gdebi for an .exe-like install of .deb packages.
    • The package manager is one of the most powerful features of linux. Why would you want to have to go back to managing sets of install files when It's done for you automatically, with all dependencies and everything. This is for me one of the biggest selling points for linux and ecspecially Ubuntu when I am trying to move clients from proprierty software, "You need to do that, OK no problem, just go to synaptic, search on your keyword, find the description that matches your need and tell it to install. The rest is done for you."
    • Warbo: As is said above, Gdebi gives double-click installation of packages, and dpkg has had configuration wizards for a long time for packages where there is no obvious default configuration. I think this deserves to stay, however, as Gdebi is not a universal way of installing software, alien, checkinstall and other methods exist, which can make installing third party software confusing. There are many attempts to tackle this, but until there is an accepted cross-distro way of doing things the point is still valid.

  • Compiz - the information displayed in the pane should state that the command "compiz --replace" needs to be executed in order to run the package. There are a lot of new users asking how to execute.
  • Perhaps it would be simpler for the end user if you divided the Add/Remove Apps into System Components and User-Installed Apps.
  • KDE-based Klik looks like a very promising project, and it's not just a theory: thousands of Klik packages are available today. Ubuntu should keep a close eye on this project with a view to perhaps integrating it to the desktop.
  • Start installing packages while downloading. It will speed up the hole process if apt-get installs packages with satisfied dependencies while downloading other packages. Use case: joe wants to install 3 applications, the total amount of required packeges is 12, the first application needs e.g. 4 packages, the second 5 packages, the third none aditional. now apt-get orders the package so that packages with less dependencies than others are downloaded first. apt-get chooses the third package without unsatisfied dependencies, downloads it and starts to install it immediately while the other packages are downloaded. as soon as the third package is installed and all packages for the first application were downloaded, apt-get installs this application while downloading the second one, with the most depenencies ... and so on ... -- Soc
  • Be sure to check out SoftwareMap... a great idea for an easier package manager. -- SolidAndShade

  • In Gentoo there's something called USE-Flags. I can define a systemwide "ssl" flag to install all application with ssl support, I can define "doc" to install special documentation... It's kind of a dependency switch... You could add a "restricted-formats" for totem to install all restricted packages for it too... -- fabian
    • Under Debian, and I think also Ubuntu there are task-packages, which manage to install all packages for a particular problem (e.g. ubuntu-desktop).
    • But I think it would be also interesting to have some knobs to let some packages depend on other packages for example lang:de would force mozilla-thunderbird}} also to install {{{mozilla-lang-de. Like language-*-pack, which doesn't install every package, but only this one which is useful because an depending package is also installed.

  • It would be great if Synaptics would show just my installed applications in a list somewhere and NOT their dependencies, so I have an overview over my selfinstalled packages -- fabian
  • It would also be great if I could remove certain packages without removing ubuntu-desktop, cause I don't need reisertools for example... (this has got something to do with the point above, cause after my proposal, there would be just ubuntu-desktop in the list...) -- fabian
    • This has been implemented in feisty. it is now possible to remove the default apps without removing ubuntu-desktop -- SamTygier

  • maybe group together certain packages (mount, time, diff,grep, less...) to a "gnu-base-package" or something like that. That would clean up the lists in synaptics dramatically... -- fabian
  • There should be an easy way for temporarily installing the packages (something along the lines of save-package-configuration -- install new package and all its missing dependencies -- revert to saved package configuration). As of now, I have to check the dependencies list prior to installing a package for testing so that I could remove not only the main package but its obsolete dependencies as well. -- wolli
    • Use aptitude instead of apt-get. Such feature in Synaptic would be great because it is used by most of the users IMHO.
  • The requirement above should be implemented not only for temporarily installed packages, but for all, and not with the help of saved package configuration. A perfect way would be, if package management knew, wheter a package is installed intentionally, or "by necessity", as dependency of one or more intantionally installed package. When the user removes an intentionally installed package, all packages installed "by necessity", whose only intentionally installed dependent package is the removed one, should be removed. This feature could save remarkable disk space, and make package management more transparent. -- loci2
  • Use unionfs to implement the above. I will see if it's possible to install breezy ontop of hoary using unionfs to simulate dualbooting. -- JohnNilsson

  • Support having a unionfs layer on /etc where user modified files are stored. When the system needs to modify /etc it should thus make sura that changes are written to the system layer not the user layer. -- JohnNilsson

  • The centralized repository method of installing software (apt-get/synaptic) is valuable, but it is not a complete solution. It has the following problems: latency between software release and acceptance into repository, the difficulty in maintaining a large repository, the installation of non-free/proprietary software etc. The solution is autopackage . It is not designed as a replacement to synaptic/apt-get, rather to supplement its shortcomings for a superior solution. The ultimate goal should be something similar to MacOS appfolders, but better. Once the user has chosen to give some software access to their system, we should be making it as easy as possible for them to act upon their decisions. Security therefore becomes a matter of how to aid the user in making the correct decisions rather than making their lives inconvenient.

  • A centralized package management tool would be great value if you are to manage more Ubuntu-machines in a network. The idea is to select the packages from a central location, and then be applied by a daemon on the clients. You could manage all clients at once, have different groups, and install specific packages on single machines - all from the comfort of your office/room. NielsKjøllerHansen

  • A way to install rpm, or tar packages without using the command line. Some sort of integration into nautilus or Konqueror. Installing packages that don't appear in the Ubuntu pool (like maya and limewire) using alien, and then installing them using dpkg without using the command line would be so much easier for people wanting to install packages, but don't understand/are afraid of the command line. If you see a problem with this (give me a break, I am 14) email me at

  • Automated package cleanup (such as what debfoster or deborphan offer) with apt (and accessible via front-ends like Synaptic or Adept). TrishankKarthik

  • Add a way to easily reinstall all the dependencies of a program, without having to check the package page to see which software we whould reinstall to make something works again (also it should reinstall the dependencies of the dependencies and so on). geearf(at)free(dot)fr
  • Sometimes is a headache to install apps from sources, first one has to get the source, then the ./configure, make, sudo make install, and pray all the dependencies are met. There could be an app that does that for the user, it could get the source file and try to make the ./configure, if certain dependencies are not met, then launch Synaptic or apt-get the files, then "make" and then "make install", once done, ask the user where to put the app "Accesories, Internet, Multimedia, System related" and set the link in the Applications Menu. Then keep record of that app in a Historic just as Synaptic to check in new "updates/upgrades". -- xerman
  • Google like searching in synaptic: something like "intitle:gtk perl". basically give user control of searching package name and description.
  • Synaptic is an excellent package manager. Why use adept in Kubuntu?
    • Because adept is KDE and it is better integrated to our desktop environment.
  • Respin .iso's every 2 weeks with important updates. I estimate 85% of synaptic traffic is being wasted just bringing 3-month old disk installs up to date. Not only that, but it's annoying having to download 100MB of stuff every time Ubuntu is installed somewhere.
  • Relying on centralized repositories is inefficient. Package updates could be optionally delivered via a file sharing protocol like bitorrent. Each system that downloads updates could then act as a seed/server to provide updates to other systems requesting them. The central repositories would provide the initial seed and checksums to verify integrity of data. This would be particularly effective at reducing load on the servers during major version upgrades. This could likely be implemented completely in the apt layer of the system and might not even require any code changes to higher level interfaces (beyond perhaps adding an interface to allow/deny sharing and to set bandwidth limits). Let me be clear here; I am not suggesting just providing torrents of ISOs (that is already done) but finely granular sharing of individual package updates through functionality integrated into the package management subsystem.
  • Install 'gkdebconf' and 'libgnome2-perl' by default, on (first) gnome startup, add a script that changes the configuration mode from dialog to gnome. Or instead of just first, each time gnome starts, and revert to dialog on logout. (So dpkg-reconfigure can be called from console if something goes wrong with X and it needs to be re-configured) -

Self-contained packaging system

  • A system such as PBI used in PC-BSD is needed for Ubuntu. It incorporates all of the needed libraries and files into a single directory and with an installer that is simply amazing. This allows programs to run independently of the OSes libraries and there is no fear of a program install/removal damaging the system in any way. This solves problems of library versions and makes installation/removal trivial.

It is not good have in .pbi file all needed libraries because so we have some duplicates of libraries. They must be in other packages.

- Dominic Tiberio (dominic*NOSPAM*

Add/Remove programs should be able to only show one of each type of program

  • It could be by default or as an option. It would only show one of each type of program, e.g. web browser, email client, feed reader, IRC client, etc.

Apt needs some updating

  • Apt should should have a relational database, so that it will run faster, also there should be some more data stored about the programs to facilitate system restoring. The data should be backed up automatically and regularly, so that if the database is stored on another computer and first computer has a hardware failure, the data from the backup can be used to completely restore the computer to its status again. It should be a relational database that contains checksums of the compressed and uncompressed files that will be installed. So that if there is a problem with the computer and something is segfaulting, every file on the computer can be checked against this information, including freshly downloaded files, so that they can find out if any of them are corrupt and need to be replaced. Then apt can automatically download the file. I have had to numerous times manually edit the text database that apt writes to because somethings had been changed to "." when it should have been ">". In a good relational database, the version numbers can be kept separately from the rest of the data, this will all go to help avoid corruption and lead to scalability both for individual machines and networked enterprise machines.

- -- Justin Emmanuel ( )

APTFS- a drag and drop software repository

I strongly believe one of the best features of the UBUNTU desktop experience is the (apt) software repositories. My humble suggestion will to make getting the software simpler, more intuitive and fun. Rather then apt-get or even the nice-but-adequate synaptic front end- a (poss. FUSE based) file system for browsing software repositories.

In my scenario, the user would browse and search the repositories in a similar method to how they browse a hard drive. To install the user could drag and drop into their own local repository or just right click>install or 'mark for install'. Of course the options/information available in synaptic would still be available via a package's context menu and properties dialog. This will make the software repositories even more user friendly.

The hierarchy would be quite simple, a single folder "Software Installation" would have a folder for each of the 'sources.list' entries and special folder with currently installed software. When off line- not connect to the internet- the repositories would be grayed or hidden, like wise if a UBUNTU CD is inserted/removed.

The user could then either search all repository or browse through a particular repository as they can in synaptic. Packages would appear as files. mini-icons could be used to indicate secure repositories, applications already installed and system-altering packages (ex. kernel, KDE-desktop). The entire interaction would happen though nautilus , with dialogs similar to synaptic.

in summary: let Ubuntu users browse software repositories just as they browse data directories


  • download packages with multiple threads , and source list should be alternative to change to other mirror sites automatically. Smile :)

  • When a package can be upgraded, it would be better to download only files which have changed, and not the full package. I think Foresight Linux's package manager does it :

Create an Ubuntu-Volatile repository

I'm running Ubuntu Hoary on my server, and I would like to hold off on upgrading since it is operating perfectly. What would be very nice is to have a Volatile repository that has continues updates to software like ClamAV etc, so you are always running the latest version on your Ubuntu box. The rationale here is that, although new versions may introduce breakage, having very old security software is close to having none (specially for AntiVirus). The Debian solution (with the volatile repo) is a quite elegant workaround.

Configuration Templates through Apt

Hi all! I suggest we create:

1) apt-get packages that set up configurations for specific tasks

2) a program to create these packages from user created config files

New people want to use Linux to do cool things. They want to make routers, file servers, etc. The largest barrier to them doing so is figuring out the configuration files. It would be nice to do 'apt-get install homefileserverconfig' and have properly done up configuration files dropped into place. Routers, Wireless Access points, file servers, would all be handy. Those of us that rebuild our machines regularly would love this as well. It would also be nice to have a little gui where you could specify a list of your own already done config files and it would spit out a .deb package for us. Imagine how easy it would be to rebuild a box. Imagine if all the cool projects out there had one of these configuration packages. Setup should be a breeze!


  • Incremental updates: Use rsync or xdelta with apt to cut down bandwidth. This requires that the reference (as far as apt-sign is concerned) package is an uncompressed tarball. The rsync case is easiest - a transparent protocol change - but there's a CPU tradeoff; the xdelta solution has all the advantages but requires the server side to keep track of old versions.
    • This is really important for people in developing countries, where bandwidth is usually expensive. -- RobinMunn

    • Another possibility, besides rsync and xdelta, would be bsdiff. -- RobinMunn

  • Downloading updated packages in the installer should start after the first user logs into the system, preferably integrated with the new hoary application update monitor. This would reduce the time to install Ubuntu dramatically, especially on systems with slower network connections.
    • This would also prevent upgrading to an unstable configuration (i.e. no x) out of the box (which has happened to me on two boxes)
  • Enhance/Integrate apt-build for easy optimization of the whole system
  • It would be nice if the update-notifier could be configured to show if there are *new* packages in the repos. If anyone's like me, they'd like to go through the list in Synaptic and check for useful packages. Update-notifier updates the repo info silently, so I wouldn't know if new packages are offered. It would be important to make this an option though!
  • Kernel upgrades can fill the /boot partition causing kernel panic. Maybe more than one upgrade old kernels should be deleted automatically. That way upgrades wouldn't clutter the boot menu and it would still provide a way to use a backup kernel. Users shouldn't be forced to delete kernels manually! - AleksiNurmi

Update Manager needs new features

The default update manager that comes with Ubuntu (with GNOME) lacks quite a few features:

  • A select none, select all button
  • The ability to ignore updates
  • The ability to categorise updates into System's and applications' updates.
  • The ability to sort updates according to their urgency
  • The ability to download updates without installing them, and to only install downloaded updates
  • The ability to sort updates according to whether they're security updates, bug fixes or new features
  • The ability to destribute updates with a Peer-to-peer protocol. Since most updates are the same, this can improve server balancing.

In addition, far too many updates don't include a description of changes. This should be obligatory. No empty 'changes' should be allowed.

  • Also, the update program should auto-check for updates instead of having to click the "Check" button to check for updates. Old updates could still be displayed and if they aren't found on the server they will confuse the user.
  • The ability to know which updates will require a restart after updating, and after updating, something telling which updates are requiring the restart.

Update manager feature to "upgrade" to a new partition

Update manager currently supports updating the OS with -c -d. In theory one could make a copy of their current installation into another partition and then do an update there. It would be nice for the update manager to support installing an upgrade into a new partition. The feature would essentially get the list of packages currently installed; and install equivalents into a new partition. The /boot partition is updated to leave the option of loading either the current version and new options are added for version+1.

For example, if the current version installed is Fiesty, there is an option to update manager on the command line (say -c -d -p /dev/hda4). In this case, the update manager will install the new yet to be released version (Gutsy) as an upgrade into the /dev/hda4 partion (vmlinuz/initrd need to go to the /boot partition - with grub entry updates to run Fiesty or Gutsy).

This would also support upgrading to a future release that goes to ext4; because the new partition can be formatted to ext4 before the upgrade and will be able to mount older ext3 partions until they are upgraded by the user.

Uninstall updates

The Ubuntu Update Manager currently allows installation of updates, but not uninstallation. At first glance, this probably sounds dumb, but, say that you are running low on space on the hard drive. Maybe being able to temporarily delete the updates until you have more space would be a good idea. In fact, if the Update Manager could automatically remove updates when there is a disk space problem, that would be great.

Package managers should focus on the list of deliberately installed packages

Package Management means keeping track of the list of packages the user wishes to have installed and automatically deal with the dependencies, that is, installing all needed and uninstalling all unneeded packages. This list - the list of deliberately installed packages, the output of

  • aptitude search ~i | grep -v "i A"

or the world-file in Gentoo - is the essential data which the user wants to manipulate when he uses a package manager. Unfortunately there is not even a simple possibility to display this list! Neither Synaptic nor Adept can show it and even aptitude needs the help of grep. (Synaptic and aptitude can, however, show the utterly useless list of automatically installed packages, while exactly the opposite would be interesting.) I think it should be displayed by default when a package manager starts. When a user adds a package to this list, it should be installed, whe he removes one, it should be uninstalled - including the corresponding dependencies.

User- and Maintainer-Contributed Content

As a relatively new Linux user the most annoying thing about Synaptic to me was the difficulty of finding the most popular and useful applications. Presented with a list of thousands of packages it was nearly impossible to separate the tiny, barely maintained developer-oriented packages from the big, useful, n00b-friendly packages.

Users should have the ability to rate each package as well as sort and search the packages by their rating. Users should also be able to post comments/reviews about each package. Package maintainers should also be able to add screenshots which would be displayed alongside each package as it was selected, giving the user a preview of the interface.

Kevin Fishburne (

  • Warbo: Excellent ideas. The first issue is meant to be solved with GNOME-App-Install (Accessible via Applications->Add/Remove), since that (mostly) only contains programs that users interact with (ones which have desktop files), and any backend packages like libraries are automatically installed as needed. The rating system I agree with, there would have to be a smart algorithm designed to process ratings along with the current popcon data to produce realistic, non-spammed scores. The comments and reviews would be cool, but would also be a maintainance nightmare (due to spam) not to mention an internationalisation headache, so I don't know how feasable such a thing would be. The point about screenshots I absolutely agree with. Free Software allows users to choose software based on preference rather than compatibility, and to a certain extent rather than ability (since code can be shared amongst similar projects, the UNIX philosophy of separating features into generic libraries and backends can still be found in a few areas, and the Open Source method of working gets a lot of stuff done whilst maintaining competition amongst projects), thus the only real difference to a user between, say Rhythmbox, Listen, Exhaile, Banshee, etc. is the user interface, and they have no idea what that is like if they don't have a screenshot until they install it. Plus, Ubuntu's naming scheme for applications, like Mplayer Movie Player, VLC media player, Banshee Music Player, etc. gets across the function of the program as well as a unique name to identify it from the others. However, it is still easier to remember what the application interface looks like rather than names like Totem Movie Player and Mplayer Movie Player, so users can find their favourite applications by screenshot, rather than having to remember the different names.

    • Kevin: Regarding the second issue, Synaptic could be tied in to a web page with which users would be required to register and would use standard anti-spamming techniques such as distorted character recognition, etc. Synaptic would act as a "front end" to the page for comment and rating submission, and possibly even an interface by which new users could register on the site. Internationalisation could be dealt with by having the registered user select a language when submitting the comment or review. Users could choose whether or not they wanted to see comments in their default language or all languages. Overall a beautiful example that comes to mind is the newegg site. Imagine newegg was selling Ubuntu packages via a GTK front end that incorporated its web site's basic features, that's some serious usability.

Apt-get source button

Simple idea. Just adding a GUI to the apt-get source command. It could be placed somewhere in the properties dialog box, or in the 'Package' menu. This would make it simple for people wanting to browse the source or edit it to get it without opening a terminal. Maybe useful if they are already in Synaptic?

Robert Clipsham - mrm0nday at yahoo .co .uk

An installed source code manager

I think we need of an installed source code manager for management as on gentoo. So if we must install source code, we can remove it with a command or a click in a GUI, and we can delete the source tree in /home/*/.

Shells and Bash

  • xterm, enable 256 color support (--enable-256-color) or add 256 colour support to gnome-terminal? Vim looks great on 256 colours over ssh.

Get rid of bash

  • Why bash , when there is much much less frustrating , and highly intelligent shell : ZSH ??

The reason zsh should be the default shell is 1. Its tabbing so much more intelligent than bash. 2. zsh has a spell checker of sorts, so if I mistype chmdo insetad of chmod, iit prompts up whether i want to correct the spelling. Both these options are huge time-saver and very lovable. Please consider zsh as the default shell.

  • It won't fix spelling errors, but there is a Bash completion file installed by default. Simply
      . /etc/bash_completion

    But it should really be in /etc/bash.bashrc. -- JPKotta Well, bash can correct at least some spelling errors as this extract from the man page shows:

      cdspell If set, minor errors in the spelling of a directory component  in  a
              cd command will be corrected.  The errors checked for are transposed
              characters, a missing character, and one character too many.   If  a
              correction  is  found,  the  corrected file name is printed, and the
              command proceeds.  This option is only used by interactive shells.

    -- User:DagAsheim

  • There is one big reason to have bash as the default shell: bash is the standard in the Free software world (for reasons not discussed here), that means that most script writters will have to install bash in order to run their scripts, as opposed to the smaller group that will install zsh because of their preference as an interactive shell. If anything, a better suggestion might be to use bash as a replacement for sh that is used for most scripts, and install zsh as the default login shell. -User:Coz - I agree with User:Coz . Ubuntu is not about using the product with the most bells and whistles. Not as many people use zsh as bash. -User:Webonomic - Switching to zsh would cause huge incompatabilities for many users to please the few who are more used to zsh. Bad Idea!

More "intuitive" keys for line editing

<Ctrl><Delete> and <Ctrl><Backspace> to delete words, <Insert> to toggle insert mode, etc. See suggested configuration files at HowToReadline. --GraemeHewson

predefined Aliases

To save "typework" (<--is this correct? sorry I'm from Austria) there should be Aliases defined in bashrc like alias dist-upgrade='sudo aptitude update; sudo aptitude dist-upgrade' and other often used commands

Disable history file

Writing the shell history file to disk is clearly a security exposure. Use case:

Wilbert is a reasonably experienced system administrator. On call one night, he tries to log into an unfamiliar system and accidentally types his password instead of his account name. The next day his laptop is stolen, and the clueful thief reads Wilbert's history file and gains access to his account.

I have this in /etc/bash.bashrc:

export HISTCONTROL=ignoreboth

(The second line is a BTW.) -- GraemeHewson

  • This is matter of what the majority wants, a pool would be needed; and to point a small flaw, Wilbert, being the reasonably experienced admin, would know about this risk and disable it if he wants to. -User:Coz

That would be a great feature, no doubt! Any program that registers what we do needs an option to disable it or clean the history. Firefox has a great feature to delete everything, most of messenger tools also have. I'd like to see in Terminal a way to configure or simply delete my history. It is not only security but privacity! Maybe two options would be enough: disable/enable and clean. --Roger

Desktop Interaction

  • When you download a file from the Internet you get an "Open With?" dialog. It suggests an application. If the application you want isn't in the list, then you have to navigate /usr/bin to find it. Couldn't it be made so you can select the application you want from the applications menu or some other more user-friendly way?

Bug report

* A GNOME client for the UNIX messaging system (wall, write, etc) should be created and running. If you are not running a console and only X, you will miss out on useful broadcasts and messages. This is especially important if your running Ubuntu on a network or as a multi-user system. LukasSabota (punkrockguy318 _at_ comcast _dot_ net)

  • Graphical Tutorial Program For Kids And Adults. There is Wink. It can create tutorials: You can render/export files to swf, pdf and html.

  • Gnome: HIG is a need to make the user experience before the computer something really fun even if the user is working. At least, don't make the use of a computer painless. Certain windows, now I think of Gimp "Save as PNG" option causes a dialog window to appear, where one chooses the parameters of PNG file to be saved; it's nonsense that this dialog window covers my entire desktop at 1280x1024, and gets over screen at my 1024x768 iMac G3 15inch. This due to oversized buttons. I've seen many dialogs/preferences windows expand too much, more than needed. This should be arranged setting standard wide and maybe scrollable height. Besides, this dialogs/preferences appear when selected from the parent application, then they shoul appear in the center of the screen to get attention. -- xerman
    • Warbo: Gnome has Human Interface Guidelines available here.

  • Gnome: Creating a link to an application autopropose the icon list (same name, same size ..), create an enanced button to start as terminal (without inserting manually gnome-terminal -e).
  • Gnome: Permit to create to a link to run as supervisor, and permit to execute it without request of password.
  • Temporized pc shutdown option, in Log Out menu. Shutdown pc in x sec --BigSus

  • It is hard for desktop publishing users migrating from windows to make thumbnails,using image resizer tool is good option as it will make multiple copies of images with custom sizes. This feature is also included in Windows XP power toy. I suggested this utility so many times to Gnome community but got no reply. If you want I can give idea how it works also can give you MS vc++ Code. Any developers contact

- --maheshkale

  • Default Download Manager: I always that install some distro from Ubuntu, and I need to download a big file from internet, I have the problem (like a big amount of people) that there is no any Download manager.
    • In the (and my) case of Kubuntu, can you add Kget.
      • KGet is nice, but I have found it to be not completely reliable. It does crash at times, and its download-list autosave feature only saves every so many minutes, depending on how you configure it, instead of saving every time a change is made to the list. So if you add a download and then it crashes, you will have to readd that download. It does support resuming, but then there's the interface issues: little things like not being able to pause or unpause multiple files at once, etc. d4x is a more capable and reliable download manager, but it's also pretty complicated, and one time when I was using it it lost all download queues completely. Frankly, the most reliable and easiest-to-use download manager I've found for Linux is the DownThemAll! extension for Firefox. I've never had it lose a download or a queue, it resumes well, it's simple but powerful, and it integrates well with the browser.

  • A launcher for GUI applications: One thing I heavilly dislike in most window managers is that you start an application and sometimes nothing happens. Maybe its the permissions or maybe its a system error - you never know. I would propose to design a launcher for all applications that are started from gnome start menu and also from desktop. The launcher would present with a progress of launching the application and would provide visual clues to the user if something goes wrong - like std and/or error outputs. After the application shows its main window or writes something to the error output the lancher would be hidden/expanded.
  • The current gksudo password window (with dimmed desktop) is pretty, but a more basic option such as ktsuss would be more functional by not limiting desktop use when password prompt appears.

CLI vs GUI Thoughts

Some people under the impression that a CLI is outdated and detrimental to the desktop, and so should be abolished.

  1. The CLI should *not* be completely abolished as it serves as a fall-back for low-level problem solving.
  2. The CLI is the foundation of linux.
  3. While there are operations/configurations that can't be altered in the GUI, the CLI should remain as default
  4. A GUI simply cannot be as flexible as a CLI. Not that a GUI shouldn't try.
  5. The shell is irreplacable as a system tool.
  6. The removal of easy access to the shell is entirely unnecessary for a successful desktop distribution.
  7. An operating system should only go some way to 'protect the average desktop user from themselves' by limiting their ability to configure their system, removing the CLI is below that line.
  8. Damaging your system with a CLI in linux is difficult. You need to know the right commands. If you do know what 'rm' or 'mv' do, or any other potentially destructive command, you probably also know what they do.
  9. It is not our place to decide what and what not a user is allowed to do with their system.
  10. We can set up systems to prevent them from making easy mistakes, such as Alerts and notifications in the GUI, but removing means by which they can perform many useful tasks on their system (by reducing the CLI "console") is not the logical way to do so.
  11. Some third party applications such as Google Earth, World of Padman, etc, come with an installer that should be run as root. At the moment that means opening a terminal and running the installer with "sudo" in front. We could do this using GUI too, if for example an item was available when right clicking the installation script. e.g. something like "Run as SUDO".

More actions available from the GUI, rather than forcing users to use the CLI
  • Ideally people should be able to do *everything* in the GUI that they could do from the CLI. (For example, a DeviceManagerSpec)

  • perhaps a week or so early in the development where we turn "off" the CLI "console" by default, just to bring out problems with the GUI.
  • Not suggesting we turn it "off" for the real release.
  • From the usability perspective GUI is generally more intuitive than CLI, which will gain users in the long term.
  • Choice and freedom: should only the users who learned how to use the console be able to configure their system?
  • Adding an 'advanced' button that gives you more options to choose and edit, perhaps in a tree style properties dialog (directly mapping to text config files) could be a possible solution.
  • Autoglade is the simplest way to give a lot of CLI commands a GUI. It can be used to create useful GUIs for a variety of commands. An interesting example can be found in autoglade tutorial writing a GUI for rdesktop.

Improving a little bit the startup time of the Desktop
  • I have noticed a little "drag" until the desktop is fully ready and the bars+icons are completely drawn on my desktop. After I have added the IM client in System/Preferences/Sessions it got even slower. So I tried the following: encapsulate each session's entry in "nohup ... &". The starting time and readiness of the entire desktop got clearly better (especially on a dual core machine). So I wonder if the sessions manager could not implement such a thing transparently (launching all tasks in parallel or at least it could have a check box on each task which can enable/disable parallelism if some things need to be ran sequentially).

-- Mircea Postolache


  • How about including Mozilla/Firefox that is built with Xft & Pango support so that it can display indic language pages (like that provided in fedora). There seems to be such build already in the net. I understand that just pango linking alone is not enough m17n library has to be linked to it ?! right? can some one throw light on this? rajesh ganesan

  • Localized Firefox bookmarks. Windows version has them, Ubuntu does not (at least the Finnish version). -- AleksiNurmi

  • How about a way to wire hotkeys to change the keyboard layout; I translate on the side, switching between about 6 or 7 languages, and it's really hard to scroll through those all every time I want to switch. It's a small thing Windows has that just makes things nice. --Charles Eddy
  • During install, when it's asked if you want to download laguage support for application and desktop, download only packages for ONE language, and not for all. -- sylvainsab

Desktop Effects

  • I believe CompizConfig should be preinstalled with Ubuntu so users can easily customize the preinstalled Compiz-Fusion.


  • I believe Screenlets should be in the Canonical repositories. I also believe it should be pre-installed (enablable and disablable like Compiz-Fusion) to keep up with Apple and Microsoft in the industry.

I believe there should be a link (in preferences of the interface) to a package of screenlets containing preselected screenlets so the user does not have to look for others on the internet.But it should perhaps not be pre-installed because there might not be enough space on the cd and I don't think most people want this to be autamaticaly activated and it takes a lot of ram.This should be a possibility (simply accessible) for the user but not imposed.

  • Desktop screenlets or the jackfield widgets should be integrated and should be easily turned on (like desktop effects in feisty). OSX and Vista have them by default and Ubuntu should also have.
  • Tomboy should have support for more then one dictionary for spell-checking.

right now, every word you type in a language other then the default one will show as a spelling error. there should be a way to choose multiple dictionaries.

  • Search man pages and package description with Deskbar (and possibly even a user driven database on the net), and show the results in a google-like way (arranged by relevance). for example, if i search "make partition image" it should show dd, along with a description.

or if i search for "create new partition" it'd show parted, gparted, and every other relevant tool... you get the idea.

  • use rdiff or similar mechanism to make restore points of system and other selected directories.
  • after making the restore points option, integrate it into the desktop so that if you search for a file you already deleted, it would show as deleted an let you restore it to whatever date you desire - and even preview it first.

or if you search for text that has been replaced, show the last time it was there...

  • I think it would be really cool if rather than having weather "widgits" like on SuperKaramba, or a whether applet like on GNOME, weather was displayed almost like desktop background, so that if it's snowing, snow would start falling on your desktop, and it'd accumulate on the taskbar. Or if it's raining out, it'd look like it was raining on the desktop. This kind of thing would make using a computer alot more fun, kind of like Beryl does.

    • Warbo: There are various ways to do each of these things (E17 has a fancy rain module, xsnow draws snow that can build up on windows, etc.) but they are all separate. I just found weather-wallpaper which, with some modification, might be able to do these things.

  • There should be a gnome-panel-applet that allows you to toggle on and off services ( such as apache, mysql and postfix ), and also an option to quickly change configuration files. This feature is built into wamp. However, it is a faster way for admins to administor and control running services. rather then having to find the admin services panel (which is often slow to load on some older servers). Also the ability to see stat's for each service, and changle loaded modules would be nice.
  • A great idea for gnome is placing the auto-mounted disk's icons in the status tray and not the desktop. I haven't see this anywhere but i'd love it.

- --Oceanelement

  • Warbo: Personally I don't like having too much stuff in the notification area. I am annoyed when some applications don't let me turn off their notification icon, since it just looks stupid having such a mass of little redundant widgets.

  • Boot to windows button:,118200,00/article.html - if you read the article, follow the instructions and mod it for your install, etc. it works very nicely. I currently now have a nice button next to my clock that I press, enter my passoword, then hey presto - the computer reboots into windows. Now, I know the idea of using Ubuntu is to avoid windows, but I found this very very very useful - and so have many of my friends, and other dual booters I have spoken too (it is all too easy to have the need to reboot, and competly forget about grub menu, go make a cup of tea, then your stuck!). My proposal for dapper - to have this built into the log out menu - so you have the option "reboot to windows". I know many people would find the useful.

  • Gnome-Panel: Instead of the default menubar, have USP (Ubuntu System Panel, available in the Universe repos) as the default system menu. It is much like SuSE's new Slab. At the moment, it is not terrible configurable, and by default has a launcher for a non-default program (gcontrol).
    • Warbo: I don't like these adapting interfaces. It is much more pleasant to have things stay in the same location on the screen in the same menu, etc. Just look at how much people got annoyed at Microsoft Office when it started hiding unused menu options. The pain of having to search around the screen for the desired option because it keeps moving is more than the slight inconveniance of skipping over menu items that aren't used every time (although the menus can be customised via Alacarte, but once changed they stay like that until changed again. None of this "Commonly used applications" stuff)

  • Applets via Applications Menu: How many users don't know about GNOME Applets? - I've been using Ubuntu over a year, and I have seen them before, but because there was nothing there of interest at the time I forgot about them. Then when I needed a Sticky Note app I had no idea where it was, or exactly what it was called. Looked in the Applications menus - no sign of it. Looked in Synaptic - nothing. Googled and found references to Sticky Notes, but got distracted by alternative apps like Xpad, Gjots, etc. Eventually found a mention of Sticky Notes being a GNOME applet - OK where are they? Finally found them - after wasting half an hour! There should be an obvious entry in the Applications Menu, not to 'gnome-applets' (what would that mean to the average user?) but to something like "Other Tools and Features" which goes to the applets adder. When you're looking for a tool or feature it would be an obvious place to look. Haz5 02-June-2007

  • 'Control Panel' as a tab on the upper panel: The reason for not having a control panel is that it would take some time to open up compared to when the items are directly accessed from submenu. A possible solution would be to include control panel as a tab on the upper panel which will open up instantly like a virtual desktop. There can be four such tabs - one for the 'Desktop', one for the 'Control Panel, one for the 'Personal Documents', and one for the 'Universal Documents' accessible to all users of the system.


Basically there will be a roll-a-deck graphic that will be somewhere on the desktop. This graphic will resemble an icon at first. but when you move the mouse over the roll-a-deck it will increase in size and align itself in the middle of the screen. The roll-a-deck is a 3D object this means you can rotate it forwards or backwards to cycle through every contact you have on the computer or on a web server account all in alphabetical order. (Of course you could always just type the first letter of the contact you are looking for and start from there.)

Each contact will be represented by a small tab. On the left of the tab there will be a picture, so you can easily identify your contacts. On the right there will be an arrow to add, edit and delete contacts. At any time clicking on a tab will virtually pull out the card and display it in a vector graphic window.

This card will contain more detailed info about the contact and will contain all of the possible means of communicating with that contact. This includes instant messaging, multiple e-mail addresses, blog comment, SMS, Phone (if you have digital phone service provider), and more. At any time you can flip the entire contact card around to the back, this will allow you to edit the contact info. When the option is selected the entire card will flip and become the interface for communicating text, voice, or video conferencing; This interface will vary depending on the option of communication selected.

When you are done everything will turn back into an icon; in fact if you have not pulled a card out yet you need only to move the mouse away and it will automatically close; remember this is a vector graphic, that means it will just pop out and disappear and will not remain open to further clutter a chaotic mess of open windows. This will allow users to contact anyone they know by any means in a matter of seconds, without going through a web-browser, or through multiples of application interfaces!!!

Contact me if you are interested in hearing more ideas for integrating web browser capability and more into the desktop with similar results at digitaldumpster at hotmail dot com

"Suggested Action" Feature

Any error message, or notification balloon should have a "suggested action" option below. The suggested action will read the information from a community driven (wiki style?).

Seconded: this feature should come with a URL, so that *ANY* error you get takes you to the appropriate error page. On that page, you can 1) view solutions left by people who had the error before you 2) vote for the solution that worked for you 3) submit your own solution

Example: the user get an error: "Hey your Drive is not mounted, Removable.. PMount error, bla bla.."

  • (Click here for web page that explains and addresses the issue)
    • "Solution: Please edit your ftsab.. etc.. etc.."

"Update Manager Notification Message"

When you need a new update for your linux it would say

  • "You have a new update for you computer.
    • Click here to open the Update Manager"
    If it is a distubtion upgrade it will say this "You have a new dist upgrade! The name of the (k)(x)(ed)ubuntu dist is {It will say the nickname here}"

Then, when you click it would ask you for your password

"suggested script" variation

The wiki could also include a "small script" that will allow fast solution for the problem.

  • "Solution: Please edit your ftsab.. etc.. etc.. you can also click here for automatic script"

Seconded: If a solution had been offered in the "suggested action" section on the website, there should be a way to script the action so less experienced users could still apply the fix without jumping into CLI, etc. There could be a community rating system to verify that the fix works before it becomes a "recommended solution." If there is a recommended solution for the problem and it has been verified, the user experiencing the problem should be presented with a "do you want to try fixing the problem automatically" dialog where they can choose to run the script or be taken to the suggestion page to read up on the issue.

  • It'd be nice if this feature included a rollback option of some kind in case if it screwed things up too much to work anymore. Then again, if that was a likely result of the script, I doubt the script would be verified in the first place.
  • Scripts could potentially contain checks for certain packages and hardware and only run if the user is in a specific state (ie: the fix only works for ATI cards with flash version X.X.X installed). Then there could be multiple recommended solutions that try running until one of them completes and applies a solution.

Desktop/Workspace Management

1"would be nice to "copy the ideas in this section to a page with votings, inspirations wiki and ircchatroom(or something with archives) 2"then" forward this webpage to Gnome or Kde teams and also invite all the email adresses to ubuntu dev chats when touching this subject 0revemped by me (is there a point to sign this act?could be so it's



  • Different wallpapers for different virtual desktops, so it's easier to tell where you are. - RudolfVavruch

    • I second this. Seems like a simple approach to make workspaces mom proof.
    • Options for different Backgrounds on Different desktops (I would really like this) With animated wallpapers like enlightenment 0.17.
    • Warbo: I use kdesktop instead of nautilus precisely for this reason, it's silly that nautilus doesn't support it without using third party scripts and things. Also, Looking Glass has a really nice feature; its backgrounds can be animated, and when changing workspace (left or right) the background pans around like a panorama. This is very impressive and quite subtle.


  • Ability to have different icons on each workstation, so i could have one workstation (workspace?) dedicated for graphic program icons, another games, and so on. - Theyain the Fox, found at

  • Customizable font colors of desktop icon names, e.g. by right-click->rename->font color. I believe that I'm not the only one who would like this. Furthermore it would be nice if different desktop icons could have names in different font colors. There already is a way to change such font colors, but one has to dig more or less deep into the system for this and, as far as I know, one can only set one color for all icons, not separately. I think that such a feature would be nice for people who have wallpapers of different colors, e.g. a nature wallpaper of a pic of let's say grass and sky. In such a case the icons on the grass part look nice with names in white, but icons on the light sky part would look better having names in a darker color. - Kpr2

  • I'm used to having lots of icons on my desktop. The way I've grown accustomed to finding the one I'm looking for is by right clicking the desktop and sorting the icons either by name, date modified, or size. The only option that is presently available when I right click the desktop is “Clean up by name”. I'd love to see some other options available for sorting my desktop icons.
  • I believe the current icon format in the desktop is actually taking up too much space. For someone who believes in keeping like 20 - 25 files on the desktop, the amount of screen space taken up is huge. ( though it could be transferred to another desktop ). Reducing font size doesn't help either. The icons at present are too far apart and can be further compressed to include more icons in a smaller area. Thus improving upon the amount of free screen space that will be available.


  • Why not make it possible to have each workstation have a different skin. - Theyain the Fox, found at


  • Maybe install brightside by default, to allow edge-flipping desktops in Metacity. It wouldn't do anything by default unless the Screen Actions tool in Preferences was used to enable it. (Compiz Fusion can do edge flipping already, so it wouldn't be needed there)


  • Darek27: I think that Ubuntu should have only one gnome panel (bottom) like new Suse 10.1 Default Suse 10.1 has only one gnome panel with menu "Applications" "Places" "System". Similar to KDE and Windows. It's important for new users which like similarity to good known Windows and for businessmen who decide is linux good for company or not (because it hav'nt standard look and is different from good known Windows). Advanced users can switch on two panels. Screenshoots (Suse 10.1 desktop): screenshots If you want, you can change the long names of menus "Applications" "Places" "System" to shorter "Applications" "Actions" (like older Gnome) to save the space on bottom panel (but it's not necessary because people buy new monitors with higher resolutions, in future 16:9). See discussion (wiki): OnlyOneGnomePanel Specification: only-one-gnome-panel

    • PiotrUsewicz: I think that Ubuntu team should reconsider having two panels (top and bottom). While bottom panel is OK, the top one just seems a bit too much. The most annoying thing is that you can't simply move your mouse to the top right corner to close the applications, as there is no close button. What is more, this is not OS X where you can close a window using keyboard. Ubuntu Desktop should be redesigned to gain more working space and improve general system usability. Remember that vertical space of screen is smaller, much smaller than horizontal one, especially on 16:9 screens.

    • I agree, it's better to have as much Desktop as possible, in my configuration, i use a bottom panel with taskbar,menu,clock and notification area, and a top menu with shortcuts that auto-hides. It would be nice if that menu had some sort of zoom like in macosx, and i didn't have to go to configuration-manager, to setup the autohide time to 0.
  • I think it would be nice to maximize the user space on the desktop, avoiding bg panels for example. Do users still need a window-selector when they have a desktop-switcher. I have never been using AfterStep or NextStep but I think their design might be more adapted to full 3d accelerated environment (Xgl). Going down to the analogy desktop<->"real" desktop, windows<->sheets of paper, I enjoy a clean desktop... What do you think ? - Xav

  • The apps all have their buttons, menus, title bars, tabs, address bars, and everything at the top. It only makes sense that the desktop should too. If the screen is large enough width-wise, there should be one panel at the top. If not, the current configuration is okay, assuming people use alt-tab instead of clicking on the window list. Having your main panel at the bottom by default would be a serious UI flaw; the windows users can get over it-- you have to be different to be better. Apple also realized this with the placement of their panel.
  • Under the "System" menu, there are a lot of options in the submenus (about 20 in each menu!), why not splitting this into groups like for example "Session", "Packages", "Hardware"? This way, it will be easier to read and then, it will become easier to use.
  • Automatically ADD the 5 most often used Apps into the upper panel, next to the System Menu (users actually do this manually adding their favourite apps). -- Tabe_2 2008-02-05 19:37:23


Butons,1205,l=&s=26945&a=167795&po=7,00.asp and,1205,l=&s=26945&a=167795&po=8,00.asp

  • The multiple desktop selection in the bottom right corner is nice, but people like my mom often accidentally click on places you would never think of, I don't think she would understand where her window has gone. I would suggest make it less accessible those desktops, even if power users like it more the way it is now. Maybe make a double-click necessary. Also the calendar should disappear more easily in the top right corner when you accidentally click on it, instead of requiring to click on the button again.
    • Comment: Single click is good. Workspace switching needs a different idea for your mom.
    • Rather than get rid of confusing stuff, is there some way to make it less confusing?
  • Workspaces is a very useful tool but is located in one side of the screen (in the right), because the idea is to work with many screens, locate it in the middle of the bar will add some kind of "orientation" I mean something like I put that window in one screen to my right or to my left or maybe the first of my right hand and not only I put in the first or the second


  • Sometimes I open an application in one workspace and I want it to stay there but as soon as it is opened it interrups the activity I am doing in other workspace, maybe it would be useful to select if we want this behavioral o maybe to open the application in the same window where we clicked to open it
  • Workspaces: How about a system to give different programs different default workspaces to open on. For example, I have 5 workspaces named Internet, Work, Games, Multimedia, System. Using this system, I would be able to tell Firefox to always open on the Internet workspace, Rhythmbox on Multimedia, Synaptic on System.
  • Core Toy: Of course it's best to let the system handle load distribution for multiple cores, but what wonderful geek fun it would be if each workspace had a "Core Dedicated" checkbox leading to a core selection dropbox. When enabled, all applications launched from that workspace would run on the specified core. I doubt it would be of much practical benefit, and there may be technical barriers to doing it, but it sure would please geeks (I mean, come on, "Yes, I have these jobs running on Core 0, and over here I'm doing this stuff on Core 1") and it is geeks after all who spawn the buzz.

Windows interaction

  • A "stack windows side by side" button would be helpful. Although the multiple workspaces are helpful, there is nothing quite like having both windows visable at the same time.
  • The ability to minimize full-screen applications with a simple command such as alt-tab in Windows. Currently it is impossible to easily minimize any full-screen application, including but not limited to games.

- --David O'Connor

  • The Force Quit dialog is too confusing. It gives the options Cancel and Force Quit. At first it seems like cancel the program and putting a big red X icon beside it doesn't help. Should be much more decisive. Like: Have Mercy and Kill.
  • I think that having a nice way to organise windows on widescreen monitors would be helpful. For example, having windows maximise only to the half of the screen that the window is in, although this should be totally customisable by the end user. The reasoning behind this is that people read books in portrait mode, so why should web pages be any different. This is just a suggestion, but I believe that this idea can be made into something that is amazing, unique, and would get Ubuntu 8.04 attention from anyone with a widescreen monitor.

Remote Desktops

* Remote Desktop (RDP) behavior: As a Windows user moving in the direction of Ubuntu, I would like to see the functionality of Remote Desktop improve. One Example I can think of is this situation. I always have a few machines open, and navigate them by the "remote tab" that Windows RDP shows located on the top center of the remote window. It gives the location of the remote machine by connection name (when in full screen), and the ability to minimize, maximize, and close. Somehow, that went missing in the instances I have seen. I oversee and manage several networks during the course of the day, and that is a small detail, but it would mean quite a bit to people who are looking to feel at home with their migration to Ubuntu.

  • Volcimaster I'd like the ability to do RDP-like actions: resume a 'detached' X session, start an X session on this box, then move to a new workstation, and grab it back up again. I know you can do this with VNC, but a native RDP-like tool would be great.


* On screen keyboard and Text-To-Speech software should be included by default in the installation of Ubuntu.

Global views

  • AzraelNightwalker: "this is not OS X where you can close a window using keyboard" - you really never heard of ALT+F4???

  • Although not very impressed by the upcoming windows vista, there are several features which should be included, just because they make sense and improve usability. Additionaly this could be very impressive when recruiting new users who say "but i heard the new windows os will do this and that, so i will stay there". We could just say "look, we have done this already!". In my opinion we shouldn't avoid doing things just because others did them already. I think it is really important to clone good features from other os'es, if necessary, and throw bad ones out. <soc äT krg-nw d0T de>

  • Warbo: I think there is far too much redundancy in the desktop at the moment. For example, icons on the desktop, in the menus, in a file manager, on a panel, a window on the desktop, tabs within windows, taskbar entries, notification area icons and panel applets can all represent the same thing. This is a complete waste, and it makes things confusing as to where certain options should be placed. At the moment it seems GNOME is following a put-it-anywhere-it-might-be-wanted philosophy (which results in such awful UI as the Microsoft Windows Control Centre, traversible only by remembering where developers ended up sticking the options you're after rather than by using common sense to find them) rather than a simple, logically layed out system. For instance many applications can be closed via a widget on their window, an enty in a menu inside the application, right clicking on a taskbar entry, right clicking in a notification area icon, etc. It would make a lot of sense to bring some of this stuff together, for instance the "desktop widget" idea for little snippets of information is a good one, but why not have that information in the application icons? If a taskbar entry is flashing, does a notification area icon also need to flash? What is the difference between a panel applet and notification area icon (aside from the fact that panel applets can be moved around)? What is the difference between the taskbar and a bar of tabs (this is especially evident for fullscreen windows, but applies to all windows)? What is the difference between a window with a viewing application showing a document and the icon for that document? Should icons be static, so users can rely on them always being exactly the same, or can they include dynamic content, such as Evolution showing the number of unread messages, or Pidgin showing status and new message notifications? Should icons exist at all now that we have the computing power to display the whole document at once? Should applications exist as standalone things or should their functionality be built into the file managers? I think there are compelling reasons to stop bolting on yet more layers to the desktop system and take a step back to think of the fundamental goals of the system.

File Management

  • At the moment only SMB shares can be browsed and mounted using the Gnome GUI. Mounting between two linux machines using SMB is plain crazy! We should be able to run the network on open services without having to resort to FUD-linked systems like SMB. There is currently a blueprint out at for this mounting. It should be a high priority.

  • When in nautilus there should be an easy way to give that window administrative rights right from the menubar or something similar. This would make editing conf files easier and less terminal demanding.
  • "Send to" menu should include mounted drives (floppy, writable CD, USB disk, mounted windows partitions etc)
  • "Notes" in the file properties dialog box in Gnome should be displayed on the vacant space in the lower part of "Basic" tab in file properties. see picture there. This way notes would prove more handy. Also, notes should appear as a popup when I point to a file for 2 seconds or so. These options for displaying notes should be configurable (time delay before note display, turn off notes popups).

  • It would be quite useful to add the bluetooth vfs module to Nautilus, enabling a GUI location for accessing bluetooth storage devices for GNOME (Kubuntu users already have this functionality in Konqueror). -

  • Gnome: When copying/moving files, say, from my desktop to my flashdrive, Gnome presently gives the following alert: “A file named “temp-doc.odt” already exists. Do what to replace it? The file already exists in “Desktop”. Replacing it will overwrite its contents.” It would be nice if it gave the modification date for both files, so I can check and make sure I'm not over-writing the newer file.
  • Gnome Save Dialog: I've noticed that GNOME's Find dialog has an icon that can be dragged to the desktop or other Nautilus windows to save the search. Why not add this feature to the GNOME save dialog, so you can just type a filename and drop the icon in a folder? -- NickBooker

  • Nautilus: Right-click option to Mount an iso, displaying an icon for the mounted image in all the usual places. Thought it would be useful for downloaded ISOs to be able to just use or check them from the GUI rather than having to burn them -- NickBooker

  • Nautilus: Right-click option to play media files in a folder, and if the folder contains jpg's i.e. album covers, these jpgs be ignored and not included into music player playlist.
  • Nautilis: Right-click to create new directory (better than at menu bar) but without to remove it from the menu.
  • Nautilus: Faster indexing of files and smarter way of displaying items with very long names, at the moment Nautilus displays the full name, however, this should be restricted to a max number of charctecrs, or having an option in Nautilus under Menu-->View-->full name display/short

  • Nautilus - When displaying a folder that contains subfolders, the subfolders currently show the number of items they contain. It would be useful to have the option of having it actually calculate the size of the folders and files in each subfolder in the list. It would make folder/file management so much easier. I realise there would be a resource hit for Nautilus to calcluate the size of each subfolder on the fly. Thats why it could be an option. da.brickbat [a.t.] gmail dot com
  • Nautilus: When you click Search Nautilus searches in the user's home directory no matter which directory they are viewing at the time. It would be much better if it searched the current directory by default, or at least gave you a choice of where you wanted to search before you type in your query. I have most of my files on a separate drive which I search regularly and the current system means I have to search, select the current directory in the options then search again. -- Robster3

  • Nautilus: we must have some tabs for browsing in the directory, as an internet browser.
  • Nautilus: to have the possibility to setting a wallpaper for the directory
  • Send to option in file folder menu only sends to evolution this can be extended to cd/dvd creator and create archive menu can be consolidated in it
  • when cd is inserted cd opens automatically on opening the parent folder the media folder opens i think computer folder should open because there is option to copy cd only there
  • nautilus search seems to be awkward there 3 different ui one is cltr/f on desktop one from nautilus itself and one in system menu (not including the deskbar) there should be one consistent way and also the idea said by the above user also deskbar must be able display results by itself and should not launch a separate application for it
  • nautilus 1.0 had the feature of album cover feature makes searching library easier
  • on selecting file folder it should show two icons when moving the cursor to its edges for streching
  • The "remove file" option on nautilus should be activated as default, and ¨shift delete" be its default shortcut.
  • When you drag a file with the middle mouse button you only get a small set of options. I suggest this could be enhanced depending on the type of file you drag, for instance if you drag a compressed file, add an option to extract it to the destination folder you are dragging it. Other options could be included depending on the type of file. This is something windows users miss.
    • It would be nice if there was an option to move all the 'Drag/Click and drag with Middle Mouse button' menu items into one right click menu. This would really help laptop users or mouse users with only two mouse buttons. Very confusing. Also prevents people using the advanced 'Modfier + MiddleClick' for resize and move operations.

  • How about using tabs in Nautilus like Firefox does? That way you could easily have many folders open and navigate between them, in just one window. If you wanted to drag a file to another folder, you could have two tabs. One with the file, and one with the folder where you're gonna put the file. Then you just drag the file to the tab(without releasing the mousebutton) and Nautilus would switch the tab so you can see the folder. Then you drag the file from the tab to the folder and release the mousebutton, and Nautilus begins to move the file. --Robban aka Synt4x_3rr0r.

  • Warbo: From a UI perspective I don't like redundancy such as this. If tabs were used universally then that would be fine, but we also have windows (and for some bizarre reason windows-within-windows in some cases!). I think there should be a single, intuitive way or organising things, rather than a loose hiearchy of different paradigms.

  • Gnome: Spring loaded folders could be of interest. Besides, if tabs are included in nautilus, spring loaded tabs could be interesting too, and so, Spring loaded favourites in nautilus. Draggin a file from a tab window to another tab not in front causes the destiny tab to get the focus to see its contents, then drop there the file. Draggin a file from wherever to a folder causes the folder to open in a new nautilus window(or in the same if it is already in a nautilus window - or maybe a tab if nautilus is tabbed) to look at its contents. Draggin a file from wherever to a Favourite in Nautilus window (left, under devices) causes that favourite folder/device open in the same window of nautilus, another window or a new tab. -- xerman
    • Sincerely seconded, KDE and OSX have had this functionality for a long time and it was discussed by the GNOME guys a while back and nothing came of it.
  • Gnome-Nautilus: it would be nice not to have 17 copy windows while copying 17 files from one location to another. It would make less clutter to have just one window with all the copies docked. -- xerman
  • A recurring problem when using dual boot (Ubuntu/XP) is that a shared FAT-partition is handled differently in the two OS's. Windows is case insensitive, while Linux-based systems are case sensitive. There should be 1) a script installed by default that renames like this: File.txt > File.txt2 > file.txt (I'm assuming this is the only way to rename loads of files at a time) 2) Also, Nautilus should have a context menu that works like this: Right click a directory > Get the option to make all directory files upper-/ lowercase, or make the first letter uppercase.

  • Instead of application icon in Nautilus top left corner, icon for "up" could be used. When you click on it, Nautilus would go back to previous directory. (Same as pressing "Backspace" key). That is, when using Nautilus in spatial mode. This is also filed in bugzilla: .

  • Gnome Icon Previews - It would be nice to have the ability to have rendered as standard small icon to save space. Then when mouseing over an icon a popup displays with preview of document. Inside the preview window are navigational windows to navigate pages. This preview window should also be resizable via draging to allow for small text to be readable as it zooms.
  • Gnome Folder icon previews - Would be great to have folders, when you are in icon view, have previews of the media of the medai they contain overlayed on the folder icon rather than the plain icon - as in XP and described in this url

  • Warbo: GNOME has too many file browsers. Just counting save/open type file managers I have come across at least 4 different ones. This is stupid from a consistency point of view. It has been said before, Nautilus is a very nice file manager, so why not stick to it and sort out the horrible mess which is drag and drop to replace all of these redundant and confusing dialogues?

  • Emblems and folder/file colouring for Work space and improved workflow: Having easier access to the emblems and colouring coding folders/files to help in organizing the workspace, having colours assigned through the right click menu, and then an option saying assign emblem, I think assigning emblems through the properties adds way to many steps for a user. I strongly recommend having the assign colour as First and then assign emblem a Second,
  • Nautilus: Nautilus should have a drop down selection menu for mounted drives and folders, just like gthumbs.
  • There should be an "undo" for desktop and nautilus. For example, if I accidentally rename a file on my desktop, there is no way I can get back it's previous name. Same case for Nautilus.
  • Preferred applications should not only list default email and browser, but also have another tab for "open with" where users can set which application is used to open certain types of files. See idea here:

  • Trash : add a "Restore" button in the trash, to restore some or all deleted files in their original folder. -- sylvainsab
  • Trash : have the same trash folder than KDE and XFCE (KDE's and XFCE's trash is in ~/.local/share/Trash/ whereas GNOME's is in ~/.Trash).-- sylvainsab
  • File Browsing: If a user browses to C:\data (or other folder) 90% of the time when accesing files, it would be nice if the file browser asked the user if this should be the default folder when opening the browser, instead of having to edit a path or other system settings, a bit of "artificail intelligence" is what is missing from most operating systems. Also, a dual pane viewer such as 2xExplorer would be great as many people are moving files between internal hard drives and external USB devices routinely.

* Dual Pane File Managing : Add the ability to Nautilus to incorporate dual pane file management. Similar to Directory Opus for Windows. -- Bill378

* Folder comparison / sync similar to Beyond Compare on windows, I know there is diff and xxdiff but they are not the best suited for quick gui based folder comparison. Geared towards syncing a local hard drive with an external usb/firewire HD. rsync and Unison are available but something integrated into gnome/nautilus would be far easier to use. I know that there is a gui app guiffy available but in my experience it is slow and flaky being based on java, it would not even complete a scan of my /home directory-- Bill378

Permission Handling

  • Is there a way to enhance GNOME file management so "newbies" can use their files with fewer disruptions caused by permissions problems? For instance, when they try to open a file that they don't have permission to open there could be a dialog saying, "you don't have permission to open this file. it is only accessible from _the user who owns it_. If you would like to open this file please enter this user's password: " -- or, if the permissions are wrong, "this file is a movie file but had been disallowed for reading. would you like to change the permissions?" Anyway -- we could have much more user friendly file handling in GNOME/Ubuntu/Nautilus. It could be intelligent and helpful.
  • Permissions when copying from read-only media.
    • Currently when a file is copied from read-only media, like a cd-rom, it's permission stays read-only. This can be very frustrating to new users who are not familiar with the concept of different permissions for different file operations. Ubuntu should default to setting the permissions to read-write when copying into the user's Home directory.
    • Is there a way to implement file access so that they can be edited by regular users. For instance, if you want to edit /etc/X11/xorg.conf manually using gedit, could you have a pop-up requiring you to enter the appropriate password? What if you opened it up using nautilus -- could you double-click xorg.conf and be able to edit it? I think that would make it easier for "newbies" to follow some instructions on editing config files.
  • When the password has been incorrectly inputted to access synaptics (or the like) could there be an option to retry? CiaranMooney (ciaran.mooney{at}gmail.{com})

  • Sane defaults for mount options. Eg. a /tmp partition doesn't need suid or dev support, so set defaults to nosuid,nodev -- Jochem Kossen jkossen[at]
  • System -> Administration -> Authentication management

Two mutually exclusive lists of authentication mechanisms, on the left, the unused available mechanisms, and on the right, the mechanisms in use. These should include, as implemented: Signature Facial recognition Thumb/finger print scanning password voice password/voice recognition etc.. and should be able to be used for logging in in any combination.

Intelligent SUDO

Improve "sudo" so that it knows if it opened an application. If you "sudo konqueror" it acts as sudo in konqueror ITO copy paste permissions etc. However if you want to edit a file from the "sudo" konqueror you can't just double click the file to edit it in KATE. It treats you as a user in Kate not a sudo who opened kate. You have to go back to console and sudo kate the file from there - a bit of a pain

Possible solution: Inspired with idea that came from Automatix2. There are some additional scripts available in Automatix2 that integrate into GUI. The soultion might bethe following. When you right click the text file you can edit the file with e.g. Gedit. Why not add the option of Shift+RightClick to do the same with root privileges? User would be asked for root password and continue with text editing as root.

I think that this proposed change might introduce a potentially dangerous effect I'll call "permission propagation". If the command "sudo konqueror" were to open a konqueror that always ran its subsequent commands as root, then it becomes much more dangerous because super user permission can "leak" into spawned processes. A better solution to the problem that you brought up (namely, wanting to use Kate as root) is a modification to Konqueror that allows a program to be run as root. This allows for super user permissions to propagate intentionally, but not accidentally, thus making the computer safer. --PirateHead


  • System->preferences: This menu is huge, it would be nice to have sub-categories, like on fedora core 8.

    • I second this one ! it shouldn't be a big deal to do it ...
  • Nautilus: Pattern/background can not be customized for different folder this happens in the browser view in spatial view each folder can have different pattern/background one way to avoid is to specify pattern/background for folder in spatial view and then revert to browser view
  • Include themes using different colours, and make sure all default themes can have their colours changed using GTK's new colour-changing abilities. This should be done to a similar effect as the theming idea used for Microsoft's MSN messenger and Windows Media Player, but system wide. (that idea was one of the seven things microsoft did right, please don't take offense to their origin) The background and all is great, but I have my own shades of purple, green, and blue, even gray that I like; not orange. A simple color picker dialog with real time previews would be great. The background image should be a .png with only black and transparency, in varying degrees, so that the color(s) behind can easily be switched without requiring a new image be generated.
  • Default key strokes across Gnome. For example, ctrl+w closes a window in some programs, others it does not. A default set of keystrokes should be defined, at least for basic open/close/save/quit/new/etc. operations.
  • KeyTouch, a program to configure the extra function keys of your keyboard with: -- Marvin Raaijmakers

  • Side buttons (buttons 4,5) on popular mice models should work as forward/back buttons in browser windows (eg: Nautilus, Firefox) by default. Currently this is only possible using external programs such as imwheel, which require a moderately technical setup and configuration process.
  • There should be an option to set to number of lines a mousewheel scrolls by default. It is possible to set this for specific programs such as Firefox, but it is not possible to set a system default that works in Nautilus, Epiphany etc and other programs that do not offer this option. Currently KDE and Kubuntu offers this, but Ubuntu(Gnome) does not.
  • I can right click on the bars at the top and bottom of the screen and change their properties. A right click on the desktop itself gives a menu to lauch a handful of apps and to change the background. This seems inconsistant to me. Perhaps, in addition to background change, include options to change themes and the screen saver. Side nit: Windows allows pretty extensive customazation of the desktop through the right click access. Counter argument: It's all there in the System menu at screen top. So do you put this stuff where it can be easily found or where the user is concentrating when they want to make a change? -- MichaelRasmussen

  • It would be nice to adjust the amount of lines being scrolled by using the mousewheel. Some people want to scroll fast (like me), while others like to scroll slow. If you can adjust this, it wil give your Ubuntu installation a more personal touch. This is possible in Windows and KDE, however not in GNOME. So if someone can add this function to the mouse settings window (where the speed of the cursor and doubleclick can be adjusted) it would really help me and a lot of other people too (I hope). -- Thomas de Hoog
  • IceBuntu theme for IceWm: I don't know if this is the right place to request this, but I am very busy with work and don't have time to spend searching: the current default IceWM theme is a clone of Windows XP. This clone is illegal, unattractive and very much anti-Ubuntu in philosophy. Why don't the Dapper developers replace it with my theme, IceBuntu, which is a clone of Dapper's new theme. It's more attractive, and makes IceWM look nearly as good as Gnome. I'd love for it to be included as the default theme:

- -- Ilya Yakubovich (

  • Take Portland Project into account from the very beginning. Having the ability of using KDE apps in Gnome or viceversa without the interface mess should be a must. I feel more comfortable and more productive with Gnome than kde, but apps like AutoQ3D, Flash4Linux, QDVDAuthor, TaskJuggler and several more are not available. I like Gnome better, but Gnome lacks of apps. As OpenOffice is more gnomish kde is fighting with koffice which also includes an Inkscape and Gimp like apps. This is not happening the other way, maybe we could use the Portland Project to bring those apps to Gnome keeping the cool, clean, quality and productive interface. -- xerman

  • Separation of Evolutions and gnomes configuration files so that if my gnome configuration gets corrupted and I have to delete them, I wont have to reconfigure Evolution again and then spam train it again.
    • And, in addition to this, it is incredible that it is not possible to upgrade all your settings from Evolution, when you have a backup of all your calendar entries and such. (Use case: Joe Q. User (i.e. me) is copying ~ to a backup Feisty, then doing a clean install of Gutsy. Evolution should import all those backed up files automatically when I have them moved to their correct placing. Instead I have to play cat and mouse with those damned files, which doesn't even have human readable names. 4 calendars amounts to around 30 clicks. It is incredible that something basic as this is STILL not included. This is so dissapointing!)
  • A lot more artwork please! New themes, new icons, new skins. With very discreet if at all branding.
  • Remove "Screen Resolution" from System-->Prefrences. We don't need of this window because we have "Screen and Graphics".

  • A compatibility setup should be setup that lets you have the same basic settings for all browsers. There are a lot of them (Firefox, Konqueror, Epiphany, etc), and they should be made aware of each other, so that saved passwords, bookmarks, history, etc. are kept synched. Maybe not all can be handled, but only one of these aspects is better than none. Rationale: I like to use different browsers to check out the positives and negatives of each. GNU/Linux is partly about choice, so Ubuntu should maintain that in terms of choosing your apps as well.

Versioning System Configuraition aka System Restore on Acids

Why not use subversion/unison to put the files in /etc and ~/.gnome etc under version control? Together with a deamon that tracks changes done in configuration files (using svn status or similar) and a nifty GUI to go back in time for particular files this would be a tremendous transparent help to all who accidentally garbled up some configuration file(s). (Contact:

Update the GNOME and KDE themes

started by

  • an updated theme will give non-technical users a better impression that Ubuntu is as advanced as the competition
  • a well designed, pixel-perfect theme will add to the overall impression of quality, much like packaging and responsive buttons on consumer electronics.
  • a default Ubuntu branded theme including window decorators and window switching panels (earthy gradient fills, vector graphics) will further define the Ubuntu brand and lift areas of the product which now have dated UI.
  • a theme should extend to Compiz, making sure minor window glitches are high priority above additional plugins.
  • a default theme should be such that a majority of users will not need/want to change it


  • Why not insert as default cursor icon the "Pinux's Tux Cursors Theme" for Ubuntu? See

    • I actually like Jimmac better, but allowing the user to change cursor themes would be great idea. See GCursor

  • From a usability viewpoint, the default cursor (arrow) should not be black and white. The most desktop environment is white background / black text. White cursor is hard to spot against such background. Maybe Ubuntu could introduce a brown cursor? Also, the default cursor is too small in higher resolutions, like 1400x1050 laptop. The default installation (Breezy 5.10) doesn't ship with a bigger cursor theme. I don't see how making the cursor big and not white could hinder users, except for natural change resistance.
    • Actually, the contrary is true: a b/w cursor results in having the maximum average contrast against any background whereas a coloured cursor is only better visible against a pure b/w background (provided the viewer has not certain visual impairements, with colour blindness being one of the most common ones). Nonetheless, think that a black cursor (with white outline) has advantages over the current default of white (with black outline) in this respect. Maybe both alternatives should be provided. I agree on the necessity of having a bigger alternative cursor scheme, though. Not only for higher resolution screens but also for users with visual impairments. -- SaschaBrossmann

  • When selected multiple items to move into a folder on the desktop, there needs to be a visual way to show that the cursor is actually over the folder that its going into. I've found that if I am transfereing pictures they obscure when the destination folder icon so you cannot tell if its been highlighted for the transfer. Also maybe making the pictures translucent when dragging them?


  • May I suggest a nicer GEdit font? The default one is UGLY and is the same one for many years. Fonts have improved over the last few years, especially in Unix-world. Pick a nicer fixed-width font.
  • A smaller/clearer default font, to waste less desktop space: (screenshot of Ubuntu with Deja Vu Sans Condensed)

  • FreeSans is a more polished-looking font than the current default for GNOME. Why not use FreeSans as the default instead? Picture of it: -- Ben Hourigan

    • Bitstream Vera are nice fonts.
      • DejaVu are even nicer (based on Bitstream Vera) --Angrykeyboarder

    • I strongly oppose this idea. FreeSans is IMNSHO a horrible clone of Helvetica (its only advantage being free as in freedom). Its technical quality is way below par (e.g. screen rendering sucks exorbitantly due to poor to non-existant hinting), typographically it has more issues than i want to think of, etc. If anything, the default font should be changed from Vera to DejaVu as the latter has better international language support (more glyphs) and the non-condensed versions have kept Vera's good low-resolution hinting. -- SaschaBrossmann

  • Gentium is one of the best looking fonts available, highly professional, and FREE. I strongly suggest to add it at least as an alternative to the standard fonts.

    • I absolutely agree that Gentium is excellently and professionally designed and easily counts amongst the best free/libre fonts that are currently out there. Therefore I strongly second the notion to include it in the standard Ubuntu distribution. OTOH i would definitely not consider it as a reasonable alternative for the GUI: Gentium has clearly been designed for print use (at higher resolutions) and lacks some of the qualities that are of utmost importance for screen interface fonts, amongst those good low resolution rendering (especially at small sizes). Even if the hinting was completed, the issue of having serifs remains. Please be aware that no font is good for all occasions/usage scenarios. -- SaschaBrossmann

  • Check out the Gentium FAQ for more details about an upcoming Sans-Serif font called Andika.

  • There are already various open fonts with broad Unicode coverage and smart features who will give wider language support for Ubuntu and reduce dependency on restricted fonts. These font families are released under the Open Font License which grants the following freedoms: using, studying, copying, merging, embedding, modifying and redistributing. It is an FSF-recognized free and open license.

  • Gentium, Charis SIL, Doulos SIL and Padauk SIL are packaged and co-maintained via Alioth. There is also a metapackage of all things related to font design in preparation.

  • Other font catalogs Fonts under the OFL and Unicode Font Guide For Free/Libre Open Source Operating Systems.

  • Now that things are looking good for collaborative typography here are some areas we should work on to make Ubuntu better in the area of font management:
    • parse more font metadata in gnome-font-viewer and in a properties tab
    • center the gnome-font-viewer dialog by default
    • allow the dialog to be closed via shorcut
    • use trees to reduce the problems with scrolling
    • allow the pangram to be changed to be able to see more glyphs for a particular font
    • add a contextual menu entry to install a font directly
    • be able to distinguish in a visual way (manual grouping? tags? emblems?) system-wide fonts (/usr/share/fonts/) from personal ones (~/.fonts) as well as restricted/proprietary fonts from free/libre/open ones when browsing fonts:///
    • Review and implement the improved font selection widget to allow more logical grouping of font families directly from the font menu. -- NicolasSpalinger

  • Install packages ttf-khmeros, ttf-mph-2b-damase, and ttf-tmuni by default. This way you'll extend the font support to most languages covered by Unicode. No need for minority language users to go through the process of installing an extra font for viewing their own language (Khmer, Tibetan, Tifinagh for Berber languages, Dhivehi, Cherokee, Limbu, Tai Le). Even scholars and other enthusiasts would be served by the addition of some historical / limited-use scripts (Hanunóo, Buginese, Old Georgian, Glagolitic, Coptic, Linear B, Old Italic, Gothic, Ugaritic, Old Persian, Deseret, Shavian, Osmanya, Cypriot, Phoenician, Kharoshthi, Syloti Nagri). In any case, the latter are bundled in the same package with Tifinagh and others. -- MiikkaMarkusAlhonen


  • Cut down the number of screensavers down to ten maximum, the ten screensavers the user is most likely to use. Like Games, Ubuntu currently includes far too many obscure screensavers. Less quantity, more quality will make Ubuntu more professional.
  • Perhaps we should have a pretty Ubuntu screensaver?
  • I don't know if this is a Gnome, XScreenSaver or Ubuntu issue, but I think it would be cool if the "Start new session" option, accessible from GNOME menu were also accessible from the XScreenSaver lock screen (the one which asks you for your password) [feature seen on KDE 3.2 - Mandrake 10.0]
    • This feature exists for xscreensaver 4.21, but is marked experimental.
  • Button to log out the current user after a timeout (like on xlock, it is mentioned also on xscreensaver's FAQ) -- TimoAaltonen

  • Is there away to give some more options back to the users - like tweaking the nice additional effects provided by a number of the Xscreensavers, for example the text, size of images etc used in the screensaver.
  • A nice way to select only a number of screensavers at random would be nice, as some of them are out and out ugly - As thats an opinion, a bit of choice in the matter would be good. Especially people on lower specced machines typically wouldnt want the OpenGL based ones running. -- NickGlynn

  • There should be an option for laptops in System/Preferences/Screenserver to allow to disable locking of the screen while in lid/hibernate/suspend mode. By default locking should be off because it's annoying when you have to write your password everytime. If someone needs it because of security concern he could easily turn it on.


  • Instant logon to an irc server via a slick Ubuntu corner style app. Should be very minimal and graphically appealing -- as simple as a Google bar etc. Tech inclined folks can idle in the channel and wait for first time users. Custom client strictly for Ubuntu? Again, very simple and very elegant. Instant help right out of the box. -- potentialspam(at)telus(dot)net
  • Include extensive easy to access network troubleshooting documentation so that users are never stranded with no docs.--Anthony Barker
    • Link to launch this netowrking help from web error page, in addition to suggesting mistype. Maybe even a netwokring setup 'wizard' particularly since Ubuntu does not activate network interface on boot if not present on install. --SpaceBunny

  • Ubuntu should come with a 'tour' of the distro for first time users (especially first time users of linux), that will get people on their first foot. showing them howto setup the distro, What on earth some things mean (note; root means nothing to my mum, telling her to sudo would help no-one) and where to look for more information. Could easily be achieved with a short series of HTML pages with images or a small program designed for this. Also should automatically open on the first install. People should not have to look up on the Internet to find out how to do basic things. -- Gord Allott
  • What would be great (esp. for new users) would be to have a "search engine" available in the Firefox search bar that allows users to search the Ubuntu forums. Another search engine could be a deb package search.
  • To reduce some traffic on the ubuntu forums, and as a warm greeting to new users, there should be an introduction to Ubuntu at first login after install. For experienced linux users, such a windows is easy to dispose of with one click, never getting in the way of new exploration. For a complete novice on the other hand it can be invaluable to get a guide that tells you "Here is your home directory", "Here you can find the office suite", "Click here to browse the internet", "This is your e-mail program", and so on. --Garyu
  • It would be useful to have an easy way to find the english name of any application. The internationalization of Linux/Ubuntu is amazing and certainly very helpful, however, english is the lingua franca of the internet. Searching the forums for a specific application is a lot easier if you know the english name. What if all applications had an entry describing their english/official/original name in the About dialog? -- ØyvindJensen

  • I think it is critically important to have an integrated help system for all installed applications. At the moment I need Yelp, qt3-assistant and khelpcenter installed. A new user wants to click on help in whatever application they are using and the help for that app to open, not a message saying that the help cannot be displayed. All help files should be viewable in one application and if the help for an app is not installed by default then clicking on the help menu for the first time should ask you if you would like to install the help files now. --Stephen Whitehead (

Expert System for User Configuration/Problem Solving

Consider the process a user goes through when she has a problem, such as "wireless not working", or "desktop won't restart after hibernation", etc. Typically when getting advice over the forum, for example, they are asked some questions, told to do something in particular, asked the result, then the next set of instructions are based on the outcome of the previous one.

This can be generalized into a decision tree, with each node an action (i.e. running a script, doing an installation, etc), then the next node chosen based on the outcome of that action (where the system executes the action automatically) & perhaps more input from the user.

Suppose we could condense all the expertise present on the ubuntu forums into an expert system for novice users This would be highly data-driven, and easily updated during auto-updates. When particular advice is absent from the system, experts should be able to submit new advice (i.e. new nodes & branching rules) in an easy, automated fashion, where after review & verification it could be added to the system.

Eventually this could become a very powerful usability enhancement for novice users, to minimizing have to dig through forum threads & running things on the command line. It would also formalize & centrallize all the expertise floating around.

-- CheeseSandwich


  • I think it would be great to have an extensible library which can access online collections of media (mainly audio, but maybe video as well [although Democracy may be a better option for that]) and offer a single API to program developers to access this content. Similar to Amarok's inclusion of a Magnatune interface, although it would interface to whatever Creative Commons (and similarly licensed) and public domain collections that there is a plugin for (for example, the Internet Archive, Mod Archive, Newgrounds Audio Portal, etc.). The plugins could provide a simple mapping of the their individual collection's quirks (genres, scores/ratings, etc.) to the standard API so that items from different sources can be compared side-by-side in media players which implement a GUI for it. Perhaps an iRate-type suggestion system can be used (or, once it is filled with more free content?), although open to anyone's collection, rather than running from a centralised server. This would be a real contender to the ITMS integration of the iTunes media player, and requires no cost. Of course, notification should be sent to each collection's maintainers asking for official approval, maybe more details about how to implement a plugin cleanly for their particular system and suitable notification whenever their system changes significantly and the plugin needs updating. If no "official" approval is gained then it should be possible to implement anyway, since the content is freely, if at all, licensed and is available from a web browser by anybody with a few clicks (although many sites rely on advertising, and if these adverts are not seen by users directly downloading the music from a media player then they may claim their servers are being unfairly used). I was thinking about coding a simple script to do this myself, but realised it is too complex for my limited Python knowledge. -- Warbo

  • All adduser scripts and tools should automatically add the new user to the sound group by default. I noticed this and found the solution, but the average family should not have to research such thing so that each family member's account can hear audio. -- TaxMan

  • Cleaner and clearer options for integration of closed source software that is commonly used like -> Firefox plugins: Acrobat Reader, Macromedia Flash, RealPlayer and easier and clearer integration of things like VMRL, java (Sun) SDK and/or JRE, VLC, mplayer plugin for firefox without having to search around in Synaptic for the packages every time you want to re/install.

    • Warbo: This has been implemented with easy codec install, and also the ubuntu-restricted-extras package.

System Management

  • Elektra xserver patches - The elektra xserver patches would allow disabling and enabling the use of closed-source drivers (like nvidia or fglrx) very easy. Elekra sets up a registry for Linux; so a script could change registry entries of the xorg configuration to suit what the driver needed. This would remove the awkwardness of scripts editing configuration files, and such. This would also allow other graphical applications to edit the xorg configuration.

  • Default installation of the rpm dependency chain and the ability to install graphically and seamlessly.
  • "Low disk space notification" should appear only for the root and home partitions. This notification should never be displayed for read-only filesystems.


  • reduce boot times, avoid usability issues (see item 21 in, and help out notebook users (see complaint below) by removing the network configuration and Internet clock check from the startup. I've just pulled mine and I boot in about 1/3 the time (faster than windows). Just as importantly, the network config and the clock check are silly in the case of roaming laptops, since user input (passwords, perhaps other configuration) will certainly be needed before the network is properly configured or the clock works. I think Windows actually has this one right: they do the network stuff after login, which makes user intervention easier and doesn't waste time. Finally, the network config is not necessary for anything else in boot: When I removed the S40network and S40ntpcheck (or whatever it was called) from my boot sequence nothing broke. --dpod (daniel.odonnell the-symbol-above-2-on-us-keyboards

    • Doing networking after login means I can't connect to the computer remotely, unless I login locally first.
      • You can do it after the login prompt is shown, with low priority, so that it will not interfere with the log in.
  • Offer the ability of 2 kind of startup: Clean and Detailed. Clean could show just the ubuntu logo, the progress bar and a message "Starting Ubuntu System". Detailed could show the ubuntu logo, the progress bar and all the messages shown nowadays in breezy. As I understand we've got to the graphical detection, we could have a cleaner screen, better resolution and a more ubuntuzized schema. There could be an option to change that pattern to another where there is a "Powered by Ubuntu" logo and a Company logo (I'm thinking on distributing Ubuntu throughout business and having the company logo on boot could get CEOs very happy). The image shown should be kept the same from grub to gnome welcome screen (if possible). -- xerman
  • Same for Shutdown: show the graphic screen Clean or Detailed. This two options could be locked from Gnome so no user could change them once set. -- xerman
  • After the graphics card bios I found that SuSE comes out with a SuSE screen while mobo bios is detecting stuff with the option of "Esc" to get to detailed detection. This is a good idea as many users (end users) don't need to know a thing about if a HD is on master or slave channel 0,1 or whatever. This works with SuSE 10.0 Live CD which I've tested (they keep the same image from mobo-bios detection, grub, and startup process) and I think is a good idea for Ubuntu. -- xerman
  • A text field would be extremly useful on the boot logo / login screen, where one could put text... just a line or two. Uses of this: Let's say ubuntu is installed on a laptop, and the user would put on that text field a message of the contacts/adresses of the laptop owner so that if the laptop was lost or something like that, if some one would boot it that person would know who is the owner of the laptop... Others uses are for companies that could put their company name there... Or also if I installed to an old person I could put there instructions or even hints to the password maybe... It would be also useful on schools. Maybe it would be possible to pass variables through the text field, like today's date, etc... In the end the user could insert the text to be displayed on the login/boot field somewhere in the control panel. -- crei0 ( guedes.andre[=@=]gmail[=.=]com )
  • Make file system check optional. For laptop users there are often several remounts per day. fschk takes some time, time that would be better spent working sometimes. So, make it an option with a 5 sec timeout, and if the users cancels, repeat the question at next boot.
  • For those of us having several kernel versions installed, it would be nice to have a tool that boots a different kernel depending on detected situation.
    • My use case: I have lowlatency and generic linux-image installed on my laptop. I'm told lowlatency will drain my battery fast, but also make my computer work faster. Maybe make it like this: Aan easy GUI when installing an additional flavour of kernel, that lets me set: "start lowlatency if plugged in, start the other when using battery on boot". Still, of course, let me manually change the kernel to boot with grub. I imagine we have to put this thing in the bootloader.
    • Related to this, I'd love to be able to turn on the lowlatency features while using the generic kernel on the fly, if my power supply changes (i.e. I connect or disconnect the power, I could have a prompt brought up after a set number of seconds). This might be impossible for now, but would be great.
    • Also related, there should be a warning that it drains battery when admins install lowlatency, maybe make this warning depend on whether or not this is a laptop (i.e. "is there a battery supply?")
  • Remove the kernel version number from the grub menu and just call the entries "Ubuntu 7.10" and "Ubuntu 7.10 (recovery)".
    • Don't keep the grub entries for every kernel ever installed. When a security update installs a new kernel just rename the entry for the old one to "Ubuntu 7.10 (old)" or something like that.
    • Those who want to see the kernel version in the boot menu and use more different kernel images shouldn't face much problems editing their grub menu by hand. For everybody else it looks just ugly and it can even confuse users with no technical background.
  • At first boot it would be nice to have a screen asking the user to download important plug-ins like MP3 support, DECSS, Microsoft fonts package (Verdana, Arial, ...). That will help the first time user to get all the things he/she wants to 'simulate' their Windows experience. Any discussion about this would be appreciated.
    • Warbo: Gstreamer-based apps should now ask users whether they want to install certain codec packages when unsupported files are opened, which I think is a nice approach since it only bothers those people for whom it matters (which is good since having formats like Windows Media installed for no reason is worrying to me, as I oppose the use of such things. Perhaps more of a division between decoders and encoders is needed, so users can play anything that they happen upon, but must install extra packages if they want to rip, for instance, a DVD to a proprietary format. This would help to limit any damaging effect of proprietary format lock-in). Personally, being in the UK, I have DeCSS, LAME and loads of other Free Software installed which is restricted within the USA, since I might as well, but I do not have any Microsoft fonts and things, because they are not only restricted but also restrictive, and thus I do not want them. There is now a package called ubuntu-restricted-extras (along with Kubuntu and Xubuntu ones) which depends on many commonly-used restricted packages.

  • Ability to choose which Operating System you would like to boot in each time you want to restart your computer. Just a small prompt window, and a little checkbox saying wether to never ask this again. Thank you.

Shutdown/Reboot from GNOME/KDE/XFCE menu

  • When the user selects an action that is going to bring down the machine check if other users are still logged in and display a warning dialog. This kind of check has to be done when action is either of shutdown, reboot, hibernate.

--Alexander Todorov <alexx dot todorov at gmail dot com>

Login with USB pendrive

Ubuntu could offer a special feature of protecting your computer/login. It would be based on pam_USB project (url: | ) and it would allow users to use their USB thumbdrive to login.

Also, this module could be used to lock your computer (like if you close the laptop lid, it prompt's you for password) when the USB thumbdrive is not pluged-in, but this function is not provided by pam_USB project.

User Login/Switch

  • A new GDM theme is needed. The one we have now looks great, but it not features a user selector, so you need to write user name and password, instead of clicking on an icon.
    • I second that. What I did on my box is edit the happygnome-list background.svg so that the colors match better the Ubuntu look-and-feel. Check out HappyGnome for the file and instructions. RickyDs

    • And I third that! I was just going to suggest it myself, then I noticed that it had already been suggested. It should be disableable though. And users should be able to set a personal image' like in windoze. There should be some default pictures of the Ubuntu circle of friends in different colours.
    • Ok, I brought it one step further, I modified the Human theme so that it includes the user album. The only issue I'm having right now with it is that clicking on a user prefills the user name field, but doesn't emulate an [Enter] Keypress. You can get the theme as-is from RickyDS

    • Maybe one of those or ? --MiKom

    • The default font showing the login name typed by the user should be much larger and fixed-width, so that every character can be recognized. There is enough space for a large font like a 17-point one, and it would be a major usability improvement. --PhilipGanchev

    • It would be great if login names were UTF8 compliants so that users could use their natural names to login. --tn
  • User should have opinion to log in without password. Just click username in loging screen and get in. That couldnt be any security issue, because you have enabled automate login for one user also.
  • Compile and package GDM with '--enable-secureremote=yes' option, so you can use xdmcp through ssh from GDM.
  • Change the "password too simple" limitation on selecting new password to only a warning, currently if you don't enter a password complex enough you'll never be able to login. I think caring about security is nice, but if i want to use "3" as my password i should be able to do it. It would be much better if I get a "Your password is really insecure, do you want to use it anyway? {Use it anyway} {Change password} " kind off popup. I install ubuntu for lots of kids and this "password too simple" issue is really disturbing. ( )

User visible and standardized program data

Everybody uses program data like addressbooks, bookmarks, emails, email account settings, IM account settings (Jabber, ICQ, etc.) but unfortunately all of this data is stored in "weired" dot directories. Even an experienced user has a hard time tracking this data down for backup while for the human being targeted by Ubuntu it is nearly impossible to know where to look for this data. Since I belive that data is more important than the programs that work on that data I suggest to put all of those files and directories in a directory in the users home directory and call it something like "User data".

In this directory there could be a structure similar to this:

|cryptokeys (directory)
|email (directory)
|-emails (directory; contains the real email data)
| (email account settings)
| (jabber account settings)
|-498239254329529.icq (ICQ account settings)

I think this could be implemented with relatively little effort by patching the standard programs in question. It would be much harder but not less worthwhile to create and standardize such a directory structure and the necassary data formats so that you can use all your program data with the different programs and move from one program to another with ease.

Management over CIM

I suggest management of different things in Ubuntu over CIM (Common Information Model, This allows:

  • Uniformity in performing different configuration and management tasks. Network administration, user management, system services configuration can be mande in one single and standard way.
  • Simplicity and obviousness. In CIM everything is an object, so users (and developers) work with object-oriented model of managed entities. This provides very obvious management structure that is extremely easy to use.
  • Extensibility. CIM approach is highly extensible, new managed entities (i.e. anything that can be managed, such as filesystem, databases, LDAP, hardware, look-and-feel and so, and so on...) can be easily added to an existing management system.
  • Ease of development. CIM has at least one free and open implementation: Open Pegasus ( It's development framework is very straightforward and has good documentation. So anyone can easily start developing his management components under this platform.

I have alerady an experience writing under Pegasus platform. So, if you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me. My e-mail is

Known projects on this topic:

Program Requests

  • I think it would be good to integrate essential software features together, for example link calender, email, messaging, todos nd other organisational features into one more streamlined program. This should make ubuntu far easier to use, help improve stability and simplify the os. It should also make it easier to introduce new features were organisational tools ca interact with each other / have one media app to run all codecs and integrate features like IM and VOIP into one more streamlined program. It is still difficult for most end-users to setup up their system because each features needs to be individually setup. Dont mean to be comparing OSs to much but Mac is UNIX based and very similar to Ubuntu, however is more streamlined, easier to use and seems far more integrated to the user. You dont need to know random bits of code or even see random code when using the OS and therefore makes it appear far more solid and reliable. Doesnt anyone else out there think that the office package we deploy is basically a rundown copy of MSOFFICE97? Why cant a better office package be developed? Weve got great features in every other sector apart from this one.
  • Integrated sphinx and festival. Open source voice recognition and synthesis may have a long way to go yet, but it needs our support to get there. And it does. need. to get there. It's not looking like the Naturally Speaking guys are going to blow open their source code and port it to linux anytime soon, and as we move into the future, this is something people will grow to expect.
  • The Mac menu hack, AWN, and desklets need to put into repos..

Database software

  • Ubuntu do not provides a valid database software for "human" users. OO Base do not provides a easi way to create flexible forms and kexi forms do not work in Ubuntu... Only programers can make databases using Ubuntu. The comunity suported software in the repository do not work at least.

Archiving software

  • unrar included in Ubuntu is broken. Using original unrar would help but is non-free. Ubuntu's unrar doesn't unpack any modern rar archives.
  • p7zip could provide every functionality needed for archiving, included those provided by unrar. It supports: 7z, ZIP, CAB, RAR, ARJ, GZIP, BZIP2, Z, TAR, CPIO, RPM and DEB. And it has already been packaged for Debian experimental.

  • File-Roller, when using drag-and-drop, should start extracting the files when the user drops the file somewhere, ""not"" when he/she starts dragging.

  • Consider integrating archive management into Nautilus such that archives are simply opened and handled like directories (by using GnomeVFS?).
  • Fileroller is just too slow, maybe it could be improved or replaced by another archiving program.
  • Fileroller: possibility to extract files with a drag&drop to the desktop.

  • There is no frontend for the par2 tool and users have to use command line. PyPar2 is a frontend written in Python, it has almost the same dependencies as GDebi and is in Debian repositories.


  • Create a game mode wherein the desktop environment and most running programs are suspended to swap per the user's settings. This serves to eliminate distractions, free up RAM, and avoid process interruptions. This will be especially handy on modded xboxes and the PS3, which have been running linux for some time now, but don't have very much in the way of memory-- as consoles aren't designed that way. This also will be appreciated by gamers who use compiz, and will serve, with the point below, to make ubuntu the best gaming os in existence.
  • Integrate QJoyPad, get it a new developer/maintainer, and get it up to spec. The psubuntu liveCD should be able to be run and used without any non-sixaxis input devices, as should xubuntu on the xbox.
  • Cut down the number of games. Nearly all Linux distributions include obscure games that the user is unlikely to use. Have about three or four of the best, low resource, familiar games included as default on Ubuntu.
  • I think less games is a good idea. Make some games for low end systems and some very good for medium systems, like openarena (perhaps something not so violant?)
  • A good game should be added to the repository.
  • there is a good list of games for Linux here:

  • sign a petition for updating OpenGL first. (to give directx a break) and sign a petition saying we want games to come to linux platforms seeing that the linux comunity is evolving from geeks(big time programers) to simple average joes(like me). I know what the people say "Linux CANNOT RUN GAMES" I think thats bull, game companies just dont wanna spend money. So make free open games. That are better than the 1980's games we are still forced to play on linux (and all distro's of it including Ubuntu and the other popular suposedly 'windows like')
  • Support playing online poker: Though i dont play poker myself, I know more than a dosen people who do. They would love to switch to Ubuntu, but the poker software runs only in windows. When it is possible to run these poker games in Ubuntu, it will increase the number of Ubuntu users enormously.
  • What about another icon for jumpnbump, just like this one Smile :)

  • Replace xbattle by its successor xbattleAI ( )

  • Add an new distro of Ubuntu for World of Warcraft, WoWbuntu perhaps. Or at least a item in apt-get for players.


  • KDE .torrent editor,

  • Gnome-ppp, a new and fresh gtk clone of the popular KPPP.

  • gui for pptp vpn setup
  • Add Kadu (a Gadu-Gadu IM client) to repositories. Virtually everyone in Poland (over 10 million Internet users) uses primarily gadu-gadu for instant messaging. There are two other ways of handling GG that I know (either Jabber or GNU Gadu), but both are IMHO inferior solutions. There is no easy way for non-savvy users to install (Kadu and GNU Gadu) or configure (Jabber clients) and IMHO it's the biggest obstacle for most Polish users. -- Muszek (Is this necessary? Can't Gaim do gadu-gadu? --Ethanallison)

  • synaptic should read proxy information from gnome proxy settings
  • Simple application that keeps track of torrent files you download and lets you resume them is necessary. gnome-btdownload is ok, but it's unpractical to have to either keep .torrent files to be able to resume them or download them again from the Internet. -- MateuszDrożdżyński

  • Simple yet functional torrent client (gtk). My suggestion is Transmission, it works by far best with gnome. It's an early project, but it works flawlessly.

  • Firefox: Clicking the url in address bar should automatically select the entire url so that users can begin typing their new url straightaway (rather than first selecting the entire url manually). To do this, we need to enable this key: browser.urlbar.clickSelectsAll to TRUE (its set to false currently)
  • Add Bidwatcher to (official/supported) repositories.

  • Pidgin has the ability to have a rolling list of contacts. It would be cool to have a Gnome panel-applet that shows this info, instead of the floating small window. (Swallow-applet sort of does this, but doesn't really work well. Amongst other things, disconnected contacts are still present.)
  • More Pidgin-plugins, like SmartEar:, Gaimnosd:, Gaim-album:

  • Parental Controls
    • Ubuntu needs to try & start intergrating some sort of parental controls into the sytem. Good parental controls will go a long way into making it a viable option for family pc's.

  • Please let us have an option to start Firefox minimized and to be able to close to tray. (Come to think of it, all important applications should have this possibility. Gaim and OOo amongst others have this feature, and contributes to the feel of a snappy OS.)
  • Pretty up Firefox with Firefox widgets: This should be easy!

  • VNC that will not conflict with gnome's vino. It will sit on the standard ports and it will be able to be started up from PC boot up without having to log in as a user first.
  • Epiphany instead of Firefox - provides a similar level of functionality, is Gecko based and runs much quicker then Firefox.
  • Claws-Mail as the default mail client (Previously sylpheed-claws-gtk2). Thunderbird is being dropped by the Mozilla foundation and it is much less resource needy then Evolution. Many plug-ins exist in Universe to extend it.


  • The option to purchase mp3, dvd options.
  • Ubuntu or a third party should consider giving new/novice users the option to pay for and legally install all software to play restricted multimedia formats. For example, the default Firefox start page could explain to the new user why restricted formats can not be supported out of the box in a free/libre OS but then provide the user with, say, a link that gives him/her the option to pay for and download the necessary software to play such formats -- in a fully legal manner. Doing this would help Ubuntu overcome a significant barrier to adoption faced by quite a few would-be users considering a switch from other OS platforms, while keeping Ubuntu fully free (in all senses of the word). (Note that this is similar to what has already been done with the "restricted" repositories; the idea here is to give users an easy way to install "restricted and not-free-as-beer" software).

  • Put sound volume applet in the upper right, and make it extremely easy to turn down volume. I suggest you just move your mouse to the upper right corner, click and hold the button, and then move downwards. This is not possible in breezy.
  • Volume manager is a pain for those of us with e.g. a subwoofer. The sub is controlled by Master Mono on my Inspiron 9300. Usually setting the volume manager to adjust PCM works, but not always. Ubuntu should provide good support for volume adjusting on all computers.
  • Provide a clickable script on the desktop of every new installation that will automatically install multimedia/non-free support (mplayer/mp3/java/flash/nvidia/etc) but warn the user about the legal implications beforehand. Adding support for all these non free features is crucial for a fun and usable desktop, but it is very hard for a novice to do as of now
    • Whilst attempting to open a restricted format, have to option either download the aproprite codecs or to convert it to an open format. ( Maybe a utility for converting multible files? )
    • Provide a totem-multiverse metapackage which will depend on totem-gstreamer, GStreamer good plugins, GStreamer ugly plugins and GStreamer ugly-multiverse plugins. - OnkarShinde

    • Right now, we use Rhythmbox for listening to streaming music, Totem/VLC for playing files on our computer, CD Player to play CDs, Soundjuicer to rip CDs and Serpentine to create CDs. Fact remains that we can REALLY combine all these features into only one player, and let it be the default official multimedia player for Ubuntu.
    • Realplayer: also a better integration/installation of RealPlayer codecs could be provided and in general more "outofthebox" multimedia plugins for firefox -- Lyly

    • Nis is trying to do that here

    • As is Ubuntu Geek here

    • there is an unresolved (?) legal issue about aiding people to break the law (?)
    • RealPlayer installer included with Dapper installs RealPlayer 8. Please let it install 10 instead of 8.

    • Totem support for CDemu,

    • It would be great if Totem could open a cue/iso file as an play movies from them instead of going through the mount sequence like you have to do in Windows using DAEMON Tools. --- TrondAndersen

  • Provide a version of totem compiled as i686, i386 performance on proprietary nvidia drivers is horrible, if this is an xv issue with the binary driver, provide a download of totem compiled against it
  • Build in MythTV for ease of use. Support as much hardware as possible.
  • Incorporate the Demudi ( music software integrations, audio workstation (Like Garage Band) is a killer app.
  • Praat - doing phonetics by computer. GPL, new release a couple of times a month.

  • Reduce multitude and confusion of multimedia applications. The needed functionality is currently divided between five applications with significant overlap (Totem, CD Player, SoundJuicer, Serpentine and Rythmbox). The following use cases should be considered:

    • Use case 1: A CD or DVD is inserted; the content is presented; items (Audio/Video) can be selected for playback or storing in the media library (ripped).
    • Use case 2: The multimedia application is opened from the menu; the media library is presented; items can be selected for playback or burning to a disc.
  • This could be good but also annoying for more advanced user. Maybe a better symbiosis between these programs can be a solution.
  • People generally don't like Windows Media Player. I think separate programs might be a more successful approach. Maybe even separate programs for music and video: Video does not need playlists or libraries. Music needs them, but does not need a visualization box. Media library may just confuse things. -- AleksiNurmi

  • Kino wouldn't overlap with anything, and it uses a consistent GTK2 GUI. Besides, I think Mac has a bundled video editing program, why not Ubuntu? -- AleksiNurmi

  • Consider integrating Cinelerra as a "professional video editing" application. The point of having Kino is a great deal, just needs a QDVD Author ported from KDE to Gnome to get the DVD video editing and toasting something to be done at home with no need for a windows or apple machines. -- xerman
  • Consider using Nautilus for everything besides playback.
  • All program in "main" should be esd compatible. making "killall esd" before using gnomemeeting is not a solution for real OS. Lyly
  • Consider integrating MMS ( as a multimedia center.

  • Rockbox support: Rockbox is an open source replacement firmware for mp3 players. It runs on a number of different models. I think the community should look into how we can be able to nurture open-source development in regard to mp3-players. How? First off for me, mkboot makes a dualboot between the original firmware and Rockbox on the great iAudio X5 player. However, this is only developed for Windows. See here for some forum stuff on this X5 feature: Second, it would be extremely cool if Ubuntu had a feature where you could change your player-settings in a GUI in Ubuntu. Working a billion settings on a small annoying screen by way of joystick is time consuming, and often confusing. I'm sure there are Linux users (or others with good programming skills) on iaudiophile-, iriver- or rockbox-forums that may help with this. MP3-players are important to people, imagine how many rockbox users would react if they could have Rockbox and their player (iAudio, iRiver, iPod) integrated in their OS. Heck, I would even consider finacially supporting such serious development. (This might also encourage more people to use open source software on their DAPs, which is a Good Thing (TM).)

  • Please consider having dedicated Podcast Aggregators added to the Multimedia Section. Some suggestions include: Castpodder which used to be Ipodder ( or Gpodder. I know that Amarok has some of these features, but I would like a simple to use dedicated program.
  • Porting SubRip to linux (using kylix):

  • Consider integrating Armangil's podcatcher, a command-line podcast client written in Ruby:

  • Add an option to Rythmbox to fade-in/fade-out music when playback is started/stopped.
  • instead of supporting "xyz" proprietery codec offer a program to convert the file to "zyx" free codec.
    • it (the program) should make it simple to convert an mp3 library to an ogg vorbis or wmv/flv/mov/rv to xvid/theora it could be integrated into konq ot into amarok as an option - when the program tries to open a file that is an mp3 it would be converted and played.
  • Better video management: Lots of users have a solid archive of videos on their hard drive. It's now time to develop a tool that manages all your videos, like e.g. Amarok does with audio. Handling multimedia should be coming in as one of the top 5 things a desktop OS should handle (the others being stuff like office apps, internet/mail, system upgrades). I'm thinking:
    • Use a database system that can keep info on all videos, like Category (.e.g. "music") > Subcategory1 (e.g. "live concerts") > Subcategory2 > (e.g. "Band") > Year, Venue, Director, etc. etc. Make the format for the database portable.

    • Have the GUI with a menu list (like Amarok's left column).
    • A view window on the right (that can be fullsized of course).
    • Make it so that it can use all backends (VLC, Mplayer, Gstreamer, xine, although I'm not sure if VLC or Mplayer is a backend) for whatever format the video is in. (Totem is getting better, but there is still a lot of stuff it handles badly. VLC is superb, in that it even handles disk images of DVDs, but isn't as integrated. I think user decision is vital, so a user should be allowed to set a preferred backend on a per-video AND per-format basis, but maybe having VLC as the default, because it is more likely to be known to a user coming from Apple or MS, and supports way more than any other player I've seen)
    • I've found that Linux lacks a good tool for identifying properties of a video, so we need that too (so far, idvid from package Tovid (which incidentally, should be packaged in Universe or something) gets some info, exiftool from package libimage-exiftool-perl, gets some, but not all).
    • The app should assist the user to scan for media, and put it in the neat database (mysql or sqlite?).
    • Gcstar does some of this, but not anywhere near enough.

    • The app should cleanly integrate with Gnome (which is most common), but not look terrible with KDE & XFCE either. (Amarok could be used as a model for visual integrating. Amarok on Gnome does look OK.

    • A "basic controls" and "advanced control" which gives the user ultimate... eh, "control", is crucial.
  • Tweak Wine configuration and version to run more multimedia software. Previous versions of Wine (current: 20050419) did run a lot more than the current one and the standard configuration file of the wine package isn't well tweaked.
  • Work on SLCreator or similar to create a photo story like experience, If installed as part of the default ubuntu installation would be a great application for users as this is what your average user wants.

CD/DVD Ripping/Burning
  • Coaster (libburn) - GNOME/GTK alternative to K3B

  • Sponsor a unified cd burning lib, whether it's libburn or freedrtools or whatever
  • Just to add some more weight to the Goobox issue, I have just upgraded to 5.10. I inserted a CD and was presented with what I considered a complicated interface for just playing a cd. I use a Logitech Cordless MX Duo, and even though the keyboard shortcuts were correctly detected, the media buttons had no effect on sound-juicer. I installed goobox and set it as my default with the --play --hide-show options. What does this have over sound-juicer? A nice notification-area icon to control the cdplayer and show that it is running, and my media keys just worked! I think this is a superior way to have a cd player work. John Collaros <>

  • Also, the cdrdao library is not installed by default in 5.10, so some Gnome burn tools (installed by default) don't work right from the beginning. - AleksiNurmi


  • I think there is really low number of development utilities included in the installation itself. I suggest to include less games and stuff like that and focus more on the development features.
    • Blender3D, GIMP (keep GIMP in there)
    • Linux MultiMedia Studio (+plugins), Audacity (or equivalent)

    • asm, c++ compilers with debuggers
    • LiVES, Cinelerra, PiTiVi..

  • Increase the start-up speed of OpenOffice, by having the ability to load Openoffice/evolution into memory at boot. Maybe an option to only load certian functionality (at boot, and the rest load at runtime), based on an assesment of the users hardware.

  • May I suggest that the GIMP not be included as standard. It's a very advanced app when all your average user wants to do is do some basic touching up of photos and perhaps basic cut-and-paste operations on images. I think the GIMP may be a bit heavyweight for your average user. Perhaps the GIMP would benefit from pluggable UI's, one native, one simple, and one photoshop-like. Pass this along to who needs to hear it.
  • Make some sort of bibliographic reference manager available as add-on under OpenOffice.org2. "bibus" is written in Python and available, just a PITA to install. (See also my edit on AcademicInvolvement for details/background)

  • Evolution: Should be able to minimize to system tray. Also should be able to produce popup snippets of new incoming mail.
  • Apparently Suse/Ximians distribution has Visual Basic support for OpenOffice, i think this is huge as frankly as OO macros/UNO stuff is simply horrible - it won't help folks in migrating. I can see a large consultancy opportunity for ... me! ... if I could promote VBA excel macros in office.

  • For above point: My Dad was a VB programmer, and his attempt to crunch a spreadsheet made it /very/ apparent that it needs its macro system beefed up, fixed, and stress tested.
  • Provide the option to use both the "traditional" and "Ubutuized" version of the OOo interface. I am finding the need to install the "Official" OOo packages as users migrating from OOo on Windows to OOo on Ubuntu are finding the transition difficult.
  • We need a tool that will allow for effective editing of pdf-documents, i.e. ability to write notes directly on the slides or whatever. Maybe in the form of text boxes? This would be a must-have for students.
  • Consider alternative more powerful project management software. For example, include OpenWorkbench. OpenWorkbench runs under Wine (though the Save/Open via GUI functions did not work at last check). Prefer a native GNU/Linux implementation.

  • Easy access to symbols in OOo: I think that a way to really increase productivity would be to have a custom toolbar/palette/whatever with relevant symbols that are really not easily accessible. E.g. I find that I use too much time to try to find alpha and beta symbols in Insert > Special characters. This is really annoying. I never remember where they are, and I use them a lot. If we could have a palette of sorts where users could dump the 20 symbols they use the most, this will be a huge increase to productivity.

  • Having a dictionary similar to WordWeb ( would be an excellent idea. WordWeb is a dictionary and thesaurus that installs fully on your harddrive which makes it very fast and efficient. Pronunciation sound files could be easily added to it. It is a very practical application on laptops especially when no Internet connection is available, a very common situation for frequent travelers. You simply select a word in any open application (a browser, pdf file, word processor document...etc) and with a simple shortcut the dictionary instantly opens a window showing the entry for that particular word including a button to start the sound file, if any. Although not a practicing programmer myself I believe such an application would be very easy to implement. Starting with a very simple interface and database the program would be revised and improved and updates could be automatically delivered through the Net whenever a connection is available. It is a very useful and convenient educational tool which can also be extended to languages other than English. I personally don't know anyone who wouldn't find such a program extremely beneficial. I have contacted the WordWeb author several times asking for a Linux version but apparently he wasn't interested. I hope somebody in the Ubuntu community will listen.

Mind Mapping software

Online Banking

Online banking with Ubuntu is still an issue. If you want to use HBCI (standard protocoll for communicating with a bank) there are not much choices and those available for Ubuntu are either heavy buggy (see launchpad) or have a lack of features. There at least two applications that could close the gap:

Getting better support for HBCI and online banking is an important point for "pulling" windows users to Ubuntu as there is wide range of HCBI software for windows/os x around that comes whith a rich feature set. (Suggestion by CasparClemensMierau)


  • DTrace
  • One button to install all Developer essentials, this with keep compatibility not just with old software but other users, benchmark being one button to install all software needed to configure and compile wine from CVS.
  • I believe development tools should be kept to a minimum, because wannabe programmers should know their Synaptic/apt-get anyway -- AleksiNurmi

  • I agree with AleksiNurmi --for the Ubuntu distro. This may have already been covered-although I haven't seen it-but I propose there be a new branch of the Ubuntu project, call it --DevUbuntu-- or --CodeUbuntu-- or something, a Ubuntu specifically geared to developers, one which would contain all things needed to code and do software or web application development.

    • It would be similar to Edubuntu in that it would have preinstalled, configured packages which are streamlined and optimized.
    • As a universal developer distribution, it should support all the modern development languages C/C++, Java, javascript, C#/objective C, .NET/VB/VBA, Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby, Ada, Erlang, lisp, etc. Sorry if i left you out, other language.
    • It should have best of breed development libraries and frameworks (eg: rails, struts, cocoon, zope etc).
    • There should also be testing frameworks such as junit and phpunit.
    • It should have support for other tools and languages such as html, css, xml/xslt/xetc (i made that last one up).
    • Should include one best-all-around IDE for each of the different languages. This may turn out to be several optimized eclipse profiles with plugins and settings for each language. However, there are also several language specific IDE projects on to choose from for example, many having much acclaim.
    • This project should also include debuggers, code reformatters, optimizers, a best all around SCP/SFTP/SSH GUI program to coordinate uploads to a development server.
    • It should include virtual machines as applicable, runtime environments, and LAMP with a script specifically to set up this development machine as a development server, using a loopback setup to test one's applications.
    • Additionally there should be support (gui) for CVS and Subversion versioning clients integrated into the shell.
    • It would be nice if it had a collaborative tool other than chat for virtual extreme programming, but that may be asking a lot.
    • Finally, and this is a big stretch I know (perhaps not feasible- i don't know the issues), but borrowing from SELinux or similar distro-one having mandatory security policies- might make for a useful super secure distro for startups trying desperately to guard their IP whilst working virtually out of coffee shops and odd places (i've done something like this so i know there are my last company we had an ssh tunnel to our development server and a locally cached db). Ok. I'm done.
  • Could Ubuntu become the ultimate Python development environment? All the batteries included. Major cross-platform tookits should be taken into account. Also... Ubuntu projects using python should be more visible, maybe some shortcuts to relevant source files or at least a wiki page listing all the Ubuntu python related projects. A programming menu item should be default, contributions via Python should be encouraged. Maybe add Guido van Robot for wannabe programmers.

  • ipython installed
    • vi/emacs with python syntax highlighting turned on by default (also other scripting languages)
  • Port Eric3

  • Improve Nautilus support of SVN, CVS source control. Develop integrated clients like TortoiseSVN and TortoiseCVS, which have developed into very usable clients that overlay desktop icons. Hide CVS folders by default. bpilgrim1979
    • Ubuntu's gnome already has launcher emblems for cvs-added cvs-modified, etc!
  • Develop control panel for starting/stopping LAMP services--"Changing user..." dialog first, then control panel stays open. Allow command line switches. bpilgrim1979
  • Not all developers are Linux geeks, and not everybody who developes developes the application on the whole. Maybe there is a team of developers, some dealing with interface, some dealing with forks, or whatever. There should be something like this:
    • Build essentials installed by default. I don't know nobody using ubuntu who hasn't needed build essential to install an app from source, so why have it as an option?. Once all apps are in the repository, there is no need, but in the meanwhile, have it as standard.
    • Segregate Developer Applications as:
      • Basic Linux Programming: anything needed to develop for console. We asume the editors would be Gedit/Emacs/Xvim...
      • Gnome Programming: anything needed to develop for Gnome. This item should have subitems, each of them dealing with either specific programming language or specific IDE. Let's say, if I want to write a program in C++ using anjuta, then all the libs, headers, apps taken as necessary should be installed, besides, Anjuta and its dependencies so Glade and its dependencies too. If I want to use C# and monodevelop, the same. And this with stability.
      • KDE Programming: idem as Gnome programming, but with KDE apps. -- xerman
  • Add Jedit to the Ubuntu package list. It is alot more powerful than most of the other editors available, open source and with a plugable architecture.

FPC and Lazarus
  • As an amateur Delphi programmer, I'm a sucker for visual interfaces... and I've got no idea how you people get anything done with KDevelop!
  • I'm asking that these two applications be included as standard in - at least - the Universe repository. Since it's all GPL, it could conceivably go into Main, however...
  • They are a basically a drop-in replacement for Delphi... that is to say, a completely visual, object-orientated, cross-platform, RAD tool with integrated IDE, debugger and compiler written to take advantage of one of the easiest languages ever known - Pascal.
  • RPMs for Linux AMD64 and i386 already exist... it is trivial to port these to deb (with alien).
  • I can confirm that the AMD64 27/3/2006 CVS releases all convert to debian fine, and install through dpkg. There are three required packages - fpc, fpc-src and lazarus - which can all be found here

  • This thing works! It has GTK and (upcoming) QT widget support, and can be used to write everything: libraries, visual applications (including games!), console apps...
  • Summary - minimal work, maximal benefit Big Grin :) -- Nick37;


  • Gnome Recovery Tool: This is more that a request for a backup tool. I have had my Gnome installation messed up a couple of times and the only way to fix it was to reinstall the distribution. I, and I think there are a LOT of people who would really be excited if there was a tool that could save Gnome settings to the place that the user wants to save them ( even across the network ) and restore them from there. It would be good if the tool could create restore points so that the current status on the desktop could be saved. It would be good if the tool could go through the desktop settings and automatically make sure that all the settings files are sane. ( so the user will never see that "You have been logged out within 10 seconds" message ). It would be good if that same tool could also go through non user specific Gnome installation, obviously this does not include the files that change from distribution to distribution, and correct anything that would stop Gnome from functioning properly, things like settings in /etc etc. It would be good if this functionality could be provided both via a desktop app and via a command line interface that could be embedded in a script. (note to developpers- a command for this allready exists and is listed in the xorg.conf file. However it's exceedingly difficult to remember or even find for an average user. It would be extremely easy to make a script to make this command automatically run on a Gnome crash in all likelyhood.)

- -- Justin Emmanuel ( )

  • I would love to play around with NMM. It does not currently compile on Ubuntu, the Debian version will not install. There are massive important dependencies that need to be dealt with by Ubutnu. I would love to see more integration with Ubuntu as a whole, it really does seem to have amazing potential, I would just like to see it made available to Ubuntu users, as it is not available to them at the moment.

- -- Justin Emmanuel ( )

  • Add a GRUB Recovery graphical tool. Many people have a dual boot system (Ubuntu + Windows). After reinstaling the Windows GRUB is deleted and Ubuntu don't start. Mepis (LiveCD) have the graphical tools for GRUB Recovery, Open Suse Installer also have this recovery function. (Ubuntu Terminal with special how-to from forum isn't easy for beginers! )
  • I would be glad to find a graphical interface for configuring GRUB like you have it in OpenSuSE. It is quite difficult to set attributes like default start, timeout, etc. for new users. thomas.schreiber[at]
  • give the possibility to easily cofigure the grub bootmanager (choose which OS is on top of the list, set the time you have to choose between the OSs ...) This should include menu items, splash screens, and kernel parameters. System -> Admin -> GRUB configuration (see below, above.. which have been posted since this was put here.)

  • A graphical user tool that allows us to easily customise and put our own pictures on the boot splash screen, I know that there are limitations, but that could be really cool.
  • Add GShutdown to the Ubuntu package list. GShutdown is an advanced shutdown utility which allows you to schedule the shutdown or the restart of your computer.

  • An app to easily create your own live cd by just selecting the filesystem. This would be very useful because people can use this as a restore cd/dvd or to take their desktop with to work or school. This would also allow Firefox on a LiveCD to have flash and adblock installed.
  • Some software that checks system files and can return them to their uncorrupted state.
  • /UniversalVirtualTerminals

  • Port YAST2 to Ubuntu. There's a YaST2 port in the making for Debian, so that shouldn't be a big matter. YaST2 in Suse (and Suse KDE Control Center with integrated Yast modules) are very close to an ideal control center. You must see it! YaST2 from SuSE/Novell is released under the GNU GPL and consists of different modules for different administration tasks. News: YaST in Ubuntu, launchpad, Porting_YaST See screenshots: 01 02 03 04 05 or download Suse: imageCD

  • A control panel similar like "The Mandrake Control Center" in Mandriva or "YAST" in Suse.
  • Ability to use Linspire's internet suite, although I don't recommend too much integration with CnR as I have personally found it to break far too often. I have found Synaptic to be far, far more reliable.

Upgrade memtest (boot option that comes with Ubuntu)

Mike: The version of memtest that comes with Ubuntu is something like 1.6, and memtest is now version 3.2 or 3.3. I would like so suggest to upgrade the version of memtest that comes with Ubuntu, to enjoy the last version of this great testing software. Something simple to do... please!

  • Warbo: Is this done yet? Can someone who knows either remove this entry and comment, or replace this comment with some clarification for future (like "Still not done as of 2007-09-09"), depending on whether it has been implemented or not respectively? Thanks Smile :)

Universal Access

  • A keyboard macros application in the repository. Macros would be shortcuts to send a series of keystrokes/ commands. Example:autohotkeys in windows.

  • Mouse gestures for linux, kind of like khotkeys but much much more useful/and configurable. I have uploaded a video here: , note that I am on a PIII so the videos are hangy, and you notbe able to follow whats happening , so read the text(in the video) by pausing.

Installation and LiveCD Ideas


  • I would like an opinion where I could select if I'd like to install Ubuntu from the Live-CD or if the installer should download the current Distribution from web. In my mind every User will download and burn new Distributions. But most of them will Update their current systems via the update opinion and won't set them up completely new. The advantages of this additional opinon are that there isn't such an big impulse to download always the newest distribution and burn them on (Millions of) CD's. Every body knows with this one CD I could install every new Ubuntu for the next X years (maybe a Version whitch is up to date).
  • Provide an exe file to bundle iso and burning software. When executed it will simply ask to insert a blank CD and after the CD is burnt it will ask to reboot the machine. I was surprised to discover how many people have problems burning iso files. The same app could be used to 1) check hardware (see above), 2) perform useful pre-installation steps, 3) burn floppy images 4) provide instructions. Ago
  • I would like an option (yes/no) where I can specify during install that all repositories should be enabled by default (including commerical, universal etc). I.e. for non-religious users that just want the easiest setup possible (-- morten /

  • I would like an option (yes/no) where I can ask the installer to look for and install commerical video drivers like NVIDIA/ATI by default (this is VERY important as I have had problems with installations that show up BLACK screen by default and where I need a proper NVIDIA/ATI driver to make the system work at all). (-- morten /

    • Warbo: Good point, but I'm not sure if this is already implemented. BulletProofX should sort out issues with blank screens after installation. Restricted Manager should sort out non-free driver installation. Maybe this can be removed as implemented?

  • The install dialog boxes must be fully resizeable. If the video card is not recognized during the installation, you must have a chance to complete the installation process with a small 800x600 resolution. [I second that. For what it's worth, the work-around I've always used is to hide the top and bottom panels.]
  • I would like an option where i can specifay if enable or not the root user. In case of root user enable ask also if enable it in grafical login too.( for advance users and aministartive task is very confortable a root user. it' true that an advance user can do that manualy, but it' only for rapidity. Ubuntu must be for advance users also. )
  • I suggest having build-essential and linux-headers-uname -r preinstalled in both LiveCD and Initial installation. Yesterday, I had to boot from the live cd and connect to the net. I couldn't compile my modem driver because these packages weren't there: you cannot eject the live cd (results in necessity of hard booting) and didn't have internet. Also, I am sick and tired of telling newbies who are trying to compile their drivers to install these packages... Usual configuration of a Linux system requires at least some compiling, so having these preinstalled (instead of see the white screen of "make: command not found") would be so much better. ~~towsonu2003 at gmail dotdot com

    • Warbo: The command-not-found ability of Ubuntu goes some way to address the issue of "make: command not found", since it tells users how to install it, but the main issue still remains.

  • Extend the migration assistance to include as much as possible, any application which is installed by default in Ubuntu must be able to import all it needs from the previous OS (Evolution for email, calendar, etc., Pidgin for IM, etc.)
  • Add the possibility of booting Super Grub Disk from the installer previous screen which it is usually isolinux. Check 1) Using Isolinux on Build a SGD based cd for information on how to do it. With SGD you will be able to restore grub to the mbr automatically, to activate partitions, to boot linux kernel directly and a lof of features that make the boot repair process very easy. You can see how SGD works with a lot of screenshots in Hermans site.

    • I'm glad to see that in Feisty, NTFS drives are indeed automatically mounted under the live CD. The problem is they are read only and I can never remember the fiddly commands and fstab modifications necessary to remount a drive as read-write. Yesterday i tried to boot up the live cd and move some stuff around between various drives to facilitate an install and found that i couldnt write to any of my NTFS drives. What I would have loved was instead of a dialog saying "you do not have write permissions for this folder" "ok", would have been a dialog saying "In order to safeguard your data, the contents of this hard drive are currently read-only. Would you like to enable write access to the contents of this drive?" "Enable write access", "Cancel (recommended)"
  • Ubuntu attempts to automatically connect to the Internet during installation, using DHCP settings from an available DHCP server. If this option fails (e.g. DHCP server exists but Internet access is limited for DHCP IP range), Ubuntu could fail-back to asking for a Static IP address or to 'Skip and continue setup' (preferably the Static IP entry could be an option in the initial installation questions - with DHCP as the default). (It's assumed that Ubuntu uses DHCP automatically to avoid overwhelming new users with technical requirements - I'd argue that many users are at least a little familiar with need for an "IP address" and would have more serious trouble with the hard drive partitioning section of the install!) -- Kubuntu_User.
  • Ndiswrapper was included on the Hoary 5.04 install disk. It would be great if the Ndiswrapper could be set up during the install, perhaps just before the automatic connection to the Internet described above. If Ubuntu is for Linux for Humans, we need to make the Internet connection as seamless as possible. - Dave Drass
  • Include ndisgtk installed by default or on the cd and easy to get to. so new linux users can get Wi-Fi working in seconds (not days).
  • To save demo-ers contortions that they may or may not be able to perform I believe it would be a good idea if the live CD came with a few exotic screen resolutions out of the box. In my case it happens to be 1400x1050 - quite popular on laptops but there are others. One reason someone might want to use the live CD is to take himself or some friend on a quick tour of Ubuntu. As it happens laptops and possibly all LCD-type screens are quite ugly when used at anything but their panel's native resolution. -- cga2001
  • I had an idea how to allow even braindead people to install Linux on certain PCs. It was originally intended for commercial distributions but the technical idea could be used by you, too, of course. I have written it in German but have a quite complete English translation

  • How about looking at ?Nesting? or ?Docking? Ubuntu into Windows from the ?Live? CD. The CD would boot Ubuntu, although content would run from the HD location. Allowing for full ?Synaptic?, ?apt-get? etc, as well as no need for Partitioning. ?Dyne : Bolic' is a good example; - DD.

  • Another idea would be to have the PPC versions use a docking technique to a firewire or USB drive, since Macs have partitions that are very different from the standards Linux and Fat partions. Since most external devices are Fat 32 and Ubuntu currently sees most of them right, it would be a perfect place to copy the files from the CD to under a folder called Ubuntu(or Kubuntu or Edubuntu if you want to use a different version). After the files are copied you can then boot from the Live CD which would then look for compatible firewire and USB drives. Once it finds a valid drive and distro it will boot into it. I am currenly running a G4 iBook and want to run Linux on it without messing up my OS X files. However, I also want to be able to add, compile, and develop software under Linux the same way I would with a standard install. It seems that this solution provides that functionality, since there is now a place for installed and compiled software to go. -

  • Something similar to Nesting/Docking above. A small business/network setup idea. You install Ubuntu on a machine which will be the 'Server'. The Server can then create package tailored, LAN pre-configured, docking/live CD's for installation on the client machines. That way there is no possible loss of support on machines that have Windows OEM'ed or 'Mandated from above'. The installation can be updated via local package directories (docked clients) or by (re)burning new livecd's.
  • I'd like to see an extra step in the automated partitioning process. Now you have an option to use all free unpartitioned space. I'd like to see this option changed to "Use free unpartitioned space" with an extra dialog asking how much free space it should use in total. This with maybe a recommended minimum amount of space that is required to install Ubuntu properly. At this stage the next best thing to use all free space is to completely set up the partitioning manually. This is far too complicated for a normal user. By just providing an option to specify the total amount of space to use the normal user doesn't have to deal with any manual stuff. -- Prodoc
  • Make Ubuntu as easy to install for Windows users as any Windows application. Users would just double-click a program that asks for their name and how much space they want to give Ubuntu, collects information about their language and such from Windows, places wingrub and the Ubuntu installer on the hard drive, modifies boot.ini, and restarts the computer into Linux where an automatic installer takes care of the rest. See InstallUbuntuFromWindows for details. -- Michael10

  • change the blue background of the text installer to something more like the Ubuntu colour scheme
  • Xserver to detect changed hardware and ask to set up-eg usb drive or flash drive will need sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg each time like plug and play
  • remind the user of their current partitions when asking them where to install grub.
  • Let the user choose if he wants to use non-free software or not. Some of us in the GNU/Linux community like ubuntu a lot, its just that it wants to install some nasty non-free software like drivers, and we don't like that. To be nice, all that we would like in order to better support your distro is to be able to choose not to use non-free software. We respect that you want more people using your software which is why you include these non-free things, but we do believe this is a stupid goal. Specifically this means packages in 'restricted copyright', as multiverse is disabled by default.

  • As extension create a simple graphical interface for modifying all of the Grub bootup options in boot/grub/menu.lst, particularly the default operating system to boot into (many will people prefer Windows by won't know how to change it).
  • Optional support for ISA devices. Either ask the user if he wants to try ISA autodetection or to select a driver from list. Personally I had to "modprobe ne" to get networking. Not important if Ubuntu's hardware requirements grow. -- AleksiNurmi

  • A package that automatically downloads and installs the DB2 client especially after the approval of IBM for running DB2 on Ubuntu. -- KenFoskey

  • Installer should offer an option of "Upgrade Installed System" once "Upgrading" process is reliable. For this update/upgrade to new version Synaptic "historic" could be of use. I understand that Synaptic historic is stored on the hard drive, so there could be an easy way to get that info and now which apps and which not to upgrade. As far as I know, right now we could update-upgrade to DapperDrake changin the "breezy" for "dapper" in the repositories and do an "apt-get dist update / apt-get dist upgrade", as the new version CD is in de CD-Reader of the computer, we already have new repository with new version, so checking synaptic and creating a "update-sources.list" could be interesting. Once the computer is updated, then Installer could remove the old "sources.list" and replace it with the "update-sources.list". This "update-sources.list" could be a copy of the existent changing "old version" to "new version". -- xerman

  • Add a Silent Option for OEM Installations. To allow the option of completely unattended installations accepting all the default values. Even allow the option of skipping the additional configuration screen. (OEM Installations should be using a completely blank hard drive unless dual booting windows. So wiping the drive should be ok... be sure to note it if it does wipe the hard drive just in case.) Additional oem options should also include nonet (self explainatory) partonly (partitioning only.. quiet for the rest) configfloppy (get configuration from floppy disk). The oem installer should also allow for random generation of hostnames.... installing 100 computers and having to change just one setting on all of them could be a real pain (and plus... i almost have my boss convinced to pre install linux on our computers... this will seal the deal.) -- plaguethenet [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Add something to check the integrity of software installed. For exemple my / partition just got a little corrupted, but I cannot reinstall every faulty software at once, I have to start something to get the message that some files are not good, there should be a way to check all the system (well just the things installed by deb packages). geearf(at)free(dot)fr
  • There needs to be an option at boot-up of the install CD to recreate / repair the MBR. This would work the same way that GRUB is used at the end of the install process to create a MBR dynamically by pulling in the boot information of all currently installed OS on the hard drive. It could also prompt to install the boot loader to multiple destinations: MBR and other partitions. Prompting to activate the boot loader partition might be a good idea.
  • I love Ubuntu for its "one task- one application philosophy", but I think it's time to go a step further changing installer in a way to give a user (especially a newbie) a chance to choose which applications to install. For instance, in web browsing, should it be Firefox or Opera (or any other). There should also be a possibility not to install some of the apps that one can't rid off at the moment like "evolution", "gnome games", "gaim" and so on. There is no reason one should be forced to have them installed even if he uses their alternatives or doesn't want to use them at all.
    • i second that. however i think it would be better to implement two radio buttons, one (default) for the current 'apps included' install and a second labelled 'without applications' (no games, no multimedia apps, no internet apps, no office apps ; only accessories and eog and evince ; removing an app must remove its now unused dependencies too (ie. gstreamer)!)(this would require a new metapackage, like 'ubuntu-desktop-noapps') plus an 'advanced' button, popping up a new window where one can remove/change certain applications (would look similar to add/remove apps but only offering things on the cd/dvd, or if there is an internet connection offering the full list)
  • Maybe one of the way to speed up Ubuntu even more would be an ability to install only that kernel drivers/modules that correspond to the devices present in the computer at the moment of installation. For instance there could be intallation step to connect all the devices one owns (printer, scaner etc.) to the computer in order to detect them and install apropriate drivers. After installation there could be although autodetecting of newly connected devices or a button/option "add new device". In both cases apropriate drivers could be automaticly installed/compiled into kernel from the repository/CD. Sory if there are technical errors in my post but I'm a newbie and my knowledge about kernel is minimal.
  • Allow url links to trigger installation of a package through gnome app install aptgetinstallprotocol

  • Please have the installer or initial welcoming help inform the new user of Automatix! It would save a lot of time for every new user (Contact:

  • Create an upgrade/install-tool for when you install/upgrade to a new release. Often there are big changes in e.g. Gnome desktop stuff. Copying over my existing /home/user to a new release bring *a lot* of small bugs and annoyances. The tool should/could be like this: Upgrade help > These folders on your home-dir should be replaced. Which of them would you like to replace?

Then moving chosen folders to ~/.original-name.backup Typically a user would probably want to keep their mailboxes and -settings, settings for browsers, torrent-clients, IM-clients and so on, but remove their .gnome-folders and stuff like that. PS: I mean this as a tool for e.g. Feisty before you start installing Feisty+1. Package upgrade-helper could include other ides on this page as well.

  • The current desktop packages ubuntu-desktop, xubuntu-desktop, etc. are very heavy with end user apps. There is a need for the server install to provide a lightweight desktop GUI with the set of available administration apps. For those administrators that are used to Windows Server management, there isn't a comparable installation option unless you go through and identify exactly the packages needed. Adding an ubuntu-server-desktop package would simplify the setup for those administrators that want a lightweight gui for managing their ubuntu servers. --A.Mon
  • My idea is to add a Pong-type game during the loading sequence of the OS. I suggest this as looking at the progress bar isn't too much fun, so I believe you may be able to play a small(5-10second?) 1 player game of Pong(or perhaps another lightweight minigame?) in a frame just below the progress bar. Thoughts: this could be done for both livecd testing and installed OS's (

  • My idea is for an option in the partitioner of the installer that installs along-side windows (without manually editing the partition table). If ttat already exists, then better Operating System detection is needed.
  • Create an installation CD that has both a LiveCD install method and a plain old text installer, so that if a user has gone to all the trouble of creating an ISO of a Live CD and ends up not having enough RAM to run it, they can instead run the alternate installer (an option like this was in Fedora 7 and all previous installers; Fedora 8 has moved to a LiveCD, but they still have a text installer). My guess is this could be done by making the alternate installer use the same files as the installer on the LiveCD. (I think there's a very small amount of room left on the LiveCD's anyways?)

Live CD

  • I really think it is important for users to be able to easily access (at least read-only) their existing ntfs partitions from the live CD as for a lot of users (me when I was installing it) the live CD is something that they will want to use to try all the different programs, and sometimes to see if the programs (OpenOffice) work with their existing files for users who have never used linux before or used it in a long time. Having to open up a terminal and to mount the ntfs partition using umask=0222 using the sudo command for someone who is just trying out the system I think is quite an insurmountable challenge, but something that should be relatively easy to change at least on the live CD if not in the installation itself. Thanks for your time. - Misha Koshelev

    • I'd like to second this-- I just received a happy report from a user that switched. The only thing they were unsure of was how to mount their NTFS. Perhaps a simple "I notice you have a windows partition here. Shall I make it accessible?"-- ToddTroxell2 2007-05-02 09:47:42

* It would be good to change some of the defaults for basic programs run from the Live CD.
1/ Default Terminal preferences 8pt font, disallow bold text, scrollback 50000 (instead of 500).
2/ Default Gedit preferences 8pt font.
3/ Default is focus follows mouse (System -> Preferences -> Windows -> Select windows when the mouse moves over them).
4/ command rm should be mapped to rm -i.
5/ Place an icon for the terminal on the panel.
6/ Put the system Monitor on the panel. I also prefer a wider default, 200px instead of 40px.
7/ Have gawk used for awk instead of the 11 year old mawk.
8/ Include openmotif on the Live CD, although it doesn't need to be installed by default.
GrahamPetley Sep 14, 20.45 CET.

Ejectable Live CD

I noticed this yesterday when I booted from the live cd to run a rootkit scan. You cannot eject the cd, otherwise everything gets borked and you end up hard rebooting. Either the live cd eject should be disabled, or there should be a script that preloads essential tools to RAM (or better yet, swap or hard disk if available) and restores everything once it sees the live cd. This way, Live CD will also be a long term usable OS as well. ~~ towsonu 2003 atat gmail dotdotdudu com

I just learned about Slax, which, I guess, uses a script to copy filesystem to RAM. For Ubuntu, one could boot the CD with copy2ram. This would ideally copy the critical files / directories to the RAM and than eject the CD. When non-critical programs are launched, Ubuntu could give a "please install LiveCD now" type of warning and copy only the part where the launched program resides to the RAM etc. If two many progams are launched and the system runs out of RAM (and swap), Ubuntu could warn "insert your CD and do not eject it until closing some of your application to free %RAM". Of course, as applications are closed, RAM should be freed for other applications. ~~ towsonu2003

Unfortunately, not being a programmer, I can't contribute code. Could the writer of Slax help?? ~~ towsonu2003

Uses: A LiveCD that can be used almost the same as an installation. Slax' modularity is already there thanks to apt-get. Potentials are: users with no hard disk, users who want to try Ubuntu for a long time, paranoid users (write-only filesystem, reboot resets previous changes -no viruses/rootkits -good for webservers who do not pla on rebooting unless compromised). All these users will be able to access the CD drive (read documentation saved in CD, install software, install emulated OS/server from within LiveCD, listen music, watch DVD, play games etc etc). ~~ towsonu2003

Kickstart option for Live CD

Quite some open source projects, like Typo3, Lamppix and schoolTool, are offering demo CDs. These CDs boot your pc into a fully configured webserver. If the Ubuntu Live CD would have a kickstart option, these projects could just as well offer a kickstart script for it. Instead of downloading a modified live cd distribution, just download the script that adds some functionality to the live cd you already have lying around. More info here. By brammeleman at nerdnotes dot org.

LiveCD + save sessions

I love Ubuntu for a fact and it is just great! I am a novice Linux user and I really enjoy trying out new distros on my "extra computer". I recently came across dyne:bolic ( Live CD and was just blown away by how different it is. If I were a multimedia artist, that would probably be the distro for me.

What I have in mind is an Ubuntu Live CD that would let you easily save settings and files on all kinds of media -- the hard disk, any removable disk, or even to a CD-RW. By this, I mean through a button that you can just click. With the settings safely saved away, you can be assured that everything is how you left it the next time you reboot.

I don't know how feasible this idea is but this would surely be handy for those who move a lot.

Copy LiveCD session preferences to disk

Whenever I install Ubuntu from the LiveCD, I will usually change system settings and preferences while I'm waiting for the install to finish (gotta love Ubuquity). However, right about the time I have everything looking just the way I want it, the install is finished and I have to reboot. But none of the changes I made get copied to the new install! It would be nice to have a way to apply my LiveCD session changes to my new install, either when I shutdown after the install, or even a Ubuquity prompt at the end if it's install process. Heck, even a desktop icon to sync preferences to the new install would be nice (this could also be helpful when using the LiveCD as a recovery CD.

LiveCD for Secure Exams

I'd like to create an Ubuntu-based live CD for administering secure exams in law (and other) schools.

It should be stripped down and configured to bar certain user actions:

  • bar read access to local drives
  • bar Internet access except for transmission of exam
  • offer a stripped down text editor (with administrator option to block cut and paste functions)

It should boot both PPC and x86 laptops and include hardware support for hard drive, video, network (wireless), usb storage. Sound and most peripherals are unnecessary (e.g. no printing, scanning, cd burning).

It should save regular backups of the exam in progress with an option to save locally or to a server.

It should have an easy means for an administrator with little tech knowledge to change basic configuration options and burn a new version. --david[at]altruistek[dot]com

Memory Check

Warbo: The live CD uses the system's RAM extensively, and on systems without swap space it can be quite common for the system to crawl to an abysmal speed (as in, text typed into a TTY takes around 5 to 10 minutes to appear). This can happen due to using programs like the GIMP, and saving many files to temporary storage. In such a situation it becomes impossible to shut down the system graphically, and the user might not even be aware that something is wrong. Shutting down from a TTY (which is not obvious to new users anyway) can fail because it needs super user priviledges and sudo cannot authenticate (it can timeout due to the system's speed). If a warning popped up to tell the user that memory is running low (similar to the low disc space popup) and that they should save their work to nonvolatile storage (obviously work out more understandable language) because the system may begin to slow down dramatically then this could not only save potential data loss, but also potential filesystem corruption when users are forced to switch off their systems because they could not get it to reboot/halt cleanly. Perhaps a notification area applet can appear with a clickable action of rebooting or something (with a warning about the consequences of clicking it) like currently happens when the update manager has installed a core system package like a kernel.

Bootstrapping ISO from hardrive instead of burning to CD

It is possible to boostrap an ISO image, and install from it without ever having to burn to a CD. I think his should be automated (specifically for windows users). Case use: A windows user wants to try out ubuntu live. So they download the ISO. Normally they would have to burn the image to a CD first, which takes time and resources to do.... and then they have to know how to change their bios to booting from a CD rom before the hard drive. By making some kind of script that lets them bootstrap right from the iso the would: Not have to burn the iso image to a CD, which will save time , resources... and also take out a point of error which could happen.... if the CD was not written properly for some reason. They might think this is ubuntus fault and not realize that their cd writer just created a coaster for some reason. Also it will require less expertise since the wouldnt have to fiddle with bios settings to change the boot device order. And thirdly, I believe boostraping a Live cd image from the hard drive would be significantly faster than booting up from a CD which has a slower read speed.

  • This will also make it easier for people without a CD-burner (or DVD-burner if Edgy+1 switches to DVD format) -- JohnMccabeDansted

  • Kanotix has this possibility since ages - it's called the "fromiso=" cheatcode and it's authored by bfree. It is especially interesting in conjunction with the unionro= and unionrw= cheatcodes, you might want to investigate those as well. -- probono

Live USB Disk

Large (>2GB) USB disks are becoming very popular. I suggest that in addition to the live cd image, Ubuntu will distribute a windows executable that will make a USB disk into a live ubuntu disk. The installation program should not repartition the USB disk - it should only copy files into it and make it bootable using syslinux. In that way, people will still be able to use their USB disk to transfer files, but they will also be able to boot ubuntu from it.

This has a lot of advantages, for people who have a USB disk with a spare 800 MB:

  • Attaching the USB disk and running an executable is easier than burning an ISO image (especially if you don't have a CD burner...)
  • The USB disk will be much faster than the CD, and much more fun to use - I recently installed ubuntu from a live CD, and it took me about five hours, due to a bad CD and/or a bad drive. Even when it works ok, it's pretty slow.
  • The USB disk will have presistent settings, so people would be able to use it as an operating system which goes with them.

To summarize, it will simply make installing Ubuntu much more fun.

-- noamraph at gmail dot com

Allow dist-upgrade to use LiveCD as package cache

Many users download the LiveCD even though they have a running Ubuntu system they wish to upgrade. It allows testing whether the new release will work properly and is desired for virgin machines and recovery functions. While one can upgrade from CD using the alternate install CD, it should be possible for the regular (normally net based) upgrade to allow the LiveCD to be inserted in the drive, and to check it for any packages it needs before attempting to download them from the net. This would make upgrade much faster and reduce load on package servers.

Of course, if there is a newer package available for download, that would be used instead of what is found on the LiveCD. For those who upgrade many machines but still have net access, this is a big win.

Ubuntu Infrastructure


  • The release names are great and just screaming out for graphics to go with them. Giving the creatures a "face" would increase curiosity/interest in Ubuntu.
  • Each release has been in a different country, which to me shows Ubuntu is a truly global initiative. So why not incoporate a release creature graphic and location iconic imagery onto t-shirts, posters, wallpaper/backgrounds/themes, postcards, etc, at each release? Who knows, in time a "Breezy Badger" t-shirt might become a collector's item? -

  • Make a community driven "spread-ubuntu" section where members can contribute videos (Note: Check out ) (using wink, vnc2swf or similar like in PuppyLinux, logos, slogans, banners, comic strips... Have a rating system for the contributed files. Make the best ones easily available for download. Make periodic polls, contests and bounties. In the same section have articles about "spread ubuntu" initiatives and calendar of forth coming events... Ago

  • It is important to create "promotional videos" with screencasting technology (see above) to be demoed on Linux stands. Possibly on specific arguments (desktop, education, research, business...). Take for instance the 20 minutes video of RubyOnRails, its impact was dramatic. Videos do help a lot. The best video should be on accessible from Ubuntu homepage. Ago

  • Facilitate the organization of exhibition stands, where users can have a chance to play with the system, obtain brochures and CDs and watch the above videos. Make it easy to obtain all the material (brochures, videos, CDs) that may be required. Ago
  • Organize an "Ubuntu ono the road" tour where the exhibition stands are installed in major cities/universities. Ago
  • A you beaut "U Bunt 2" weekly cartoon strip in the Wiki. Any cartoonists in the house? -

  • Sell small stickers (2x3cm) with the Ubuntu/Kubuntu logo say something like "Ubuntu Linux Inside" to replace the standard Windows sticker and promote Ubuntu Linux. You could sell five or ten in small packets for 10-15 euro and use the funds for the development of Ubuntu/Kubuntu/Edubuntu. Or give them away at Computer Shows and thru pc/Linux magazines. jdwijbenga(add)
  • In addition to this Idea, you may give some stickers (2x3cm) with the Live CD.
  • Produce and distribute little stickers (may be rubber sticker?) with the ubuntu logo to cover 'windows's logo key' or 'apple key' on the keyboards to transform them in an 'ubuntu key' -

  • Ubuntu radio program - AntonioOgnio

  • Ubuntu printed magazines - AntonioOgnio

  • Ubuntu T-Shirts!!! - AntonioOgnio

    • Warbo: Canonical now has a store full of Ubuntu merchandise, as well as a CafePress shop. This may be removed in the future as implemented.

  • Ubuntu Logo Suggestion: Medicine Mask - I think the current ubuntu logo doesn't have enough character and is therefore not memorable enough...its nothing compared to a big X, or a colourful flag, which is why I'd like to suggest a new logo that has something todo with the name, the african name. The first time I heard "Ubuntu" I immediately thought how great it was that there was a supermodern technology (ie. linux distro) called something really primitive & old (ie. old African word), an interesting contradiction. How about if the logo reflected the actual name with an African medicine man's mask?? Something everyone associates with tribal Africa, but in contrary to past suggestions is not discriminating in any way. It would make this distro much more memorable and interesting through this contradiction! My Wiki:

    • I think you are wrong here because the word "Ubuntu" is suppose to mean helping each other out. I don't think the Ubuntu distro has much at do with Africa as it does about people working together hence the people joining hands logo which I think best represents open source software and the distro. - Andrew313
  • What about some Ubuntu contests to make people feel involved in their favourite distribution and also attract more attention from news sites and other users. Some ideas are a Ubuntu Splash Screen Contest (similar to the GNOME one) and maybe a Ubuntu Wallpaper Contest (e.g. like the KDE one) -

  • A downloadable wallpaper similar to the chocolate one, for Windows users who are stuck with Microsoft (or other Operating Systems) - Aidan
  • I think the t-shirts need to be re-designed to be catchier. For example, a brown or tan t-shirt (like the shade used in the Ubuntu theme) with a small Ubuntu logo with "Ubuntu" in off-white on the breast, front, and on the back, an image for the current release. (

  • My suggestion here is about Kubuntu. I do know the difference between Ubuntu and Kubuntu (one includes the GNOME environment while the other one includes the KDE environment) and I agree that it is an excellent idea not to include the two environments by default in the install CDs. But I think the two different names (Ubuntu and Kubuntu) are confusing for newbies, who may think the two products are different distros (when they are in fact the same distro). What do I suggest? I suggest you to use only one name for the two products (Ubuntu) and to distinguish them by adding "version G" and/or "version K", or "G edition"/"K edition". --Alexandre
  • We would probably get thousands of people to switch to Ubuntu if we ran TV commercials.
  • I know the brown color is widely accepted by the Ubuntu community by now, but gradualy changing the brown colour to something more "fresh" more "young" like orange would be a good idea imho. This is obviously highly subjective, but I think the orange colour is more and more associated with "revolution" and change (as political events might have influenced people's perception). There's a plethora of existing orange glossy themes for Ubuntu available online which could make great replacements for the brownish wallpaper/backgrounds/login window and which perfectly integrates with the already orange menus and window decorations.

Marketing Slogan Ideas

  • Don`t miss innovation... be part of it. Ubuntu Linux.
  • Microsoft Windows is "Easy to Use"... Ubuntu Linux is "Natural to Use".
  • The future is not near, is here. Ubuntu Linux; a system from future.
  • If you made a virus, what OS would you make it for? 98% of all viruses aren't compatible with Ubuntu Linux.
  • Linux for Humans; An Operating System for Everyone. Ubuntu Linux.
  • Ubuntu Linux: Welcome to Computing Humanity.

And just a slight revision on the first idea:

  • Don't just wait for innovation; be part of it. Ubuntu Linux.

SpreadUbuntu: Ubuntu Switch Site

How about a site aimed at switching Windows users?

Let's just get Drupal going (, already used in the Fridge, and let's follow the Firefox lead (, they are doing amazing things and there is no point in reinventing the wheel. In fact It would not be a bad idea to get in touch with the spreadfirefox team and reuse much of their work.

The site should:

The website already exists and all the domains:,, and are already registered ( Lets help it take off. At the moment there is only a static page. The site needs a lot of community effort. See also

It would also be a good idea to make a sister site for spreadlinux... At the moment redirects on I think should have similar content but agnostic in terms of distros and trying to be VERY gentle when explaining to visitors that there is not such a thing as "one linux"...

mark.goodall [at]


As 6.04 will be 'up against' Vista I think that a feature comparison would be beneficial on such a publicity site. Comparing common desktop functions such as CD burning, organising photos, handling multimedia content (music, ripping CDs etc.) and working online. Allowing users to drill down into HOWTOs, support and provide access to support for those migrating from Windows or testing their toes would help. I would be willing to put what time I could towards such a project. Mike Blamires, mike [at]

Online Services

  • For people like me the iso image is no longer available for BitTorrent after I reload my machine. Could we put something in that would make the Ubuntu files available for BitTorrent on new installs.

  • An online account system like Linspire, one that will allow me to set up multiple machines with the same configuration at the press of a button, or allow me to save a configuration online and anytime something goes wrong with my machine I can just "synchronise" automatically downloading installing and configuring my clean machine with my online image.

Added: or it could be like .Mac. Canonical would provide (for some charge) a on line disk space where I can sync my applications settings, configuration or files. It could be a good business model for Canonical to provide these extra services.

  • Ubuntu Free-NX: Live-CD is a good way to try Ubuntu, but there are other solutions to try it without restart the computer. More posibilities are better for users and Ubuntu, so It would be great a service based on FreeNX. Users could test it in their SO with an account and the instalation of a client; very useful for enterprise migrations and other purposes.In that way also a VMware (or similar) image could be interesting.

Ubuntu Website

  • Create a section on the website for How-To videos (using wink, vnc2swf or similar) like in Puppylinux (see, very user friendly and less boring than a FAQ. Also a nice marketing tool. It could even be made via a community effort allowing Ubuntu members to contribute new videos. Ago

  • Some coordination to help with the translation of the actual "Ubuntulinux": website and any other information, in as many languages as possible, to let the newcomer access easily information about UbuntuLinux in their own languages

  • Given that accessibility is an important goal of ubuntu, shouldn't the website be designed without tables used for layout? 3-column css layouts are possible.
  • A website in which it is possible to send a thank you message to the author(s) of a specific free software project, to add one's own signature to an existing thank you, to report success stories, to make a donation Valerio Paolini) reported by EnricoZini

  • Make the RosettaFAQ work better. Motivation: users only go to the "support" section of a site when they are having a problem. RosettaFAQ naturally pair the problem with a solution, and are really the most useful kind of online support. The situations is this, however: 90% of people all share the same 10 or so problems, so adding RosettaFAQ tends to dilute the effectiveness by making it hard to find the RosettaFAQ for that critical 10%. Here is how to fix this: Add a section at the bottom of each FAQ which says "This FAQ solved my problem" with a yes button and a no button. Presumably RosettaFAQ are stored in a database somewhere. Add a column to the FAQ table which is called NumberOfUsersHelped or something like that and stores the number of times someone clicked the "yes" button for that FAQ; also add a NumberOfTimesViewed which is incremented anytime someone views the FAQ. On the support page put a big list of problems which are ordered by NumberOfUsersHelped/(NOW() - date_posted). (Dividing by the age prevents favoring older RosettaFAQ). This way the 90% of people with common problems have their questions answered right there on the support page without having to dig around at all. I did something like this for a commercial software company and it drastically cut down on their number of support calls. The best part is you can easily see which RosettaFAQ are confusing or otherwise not helping people because they are viewed a lot, but no one ever clicks the "yes" button. Once you have this in place you can add lots and lots of RosettaFAQ, it is suprising which are helpful and which aren't. --()

  • Is possibile add to this page ?? It's the official italian forum Smile :) (AlessioFattorini)

  • Divide this page in several smaller. Or add anchors/links in TOC. It is becoming difficult to navigate and edit this page.
  • Some great ideas on this page, but they tend to get lost because this page is so long. I would suggest using the feature request part of bugzilla to submit and vote on ideas that we think are the most important. For example the most wanted feature in KDE right now is Bittorrent support, and that is going to be put in the next release. -Axiom (a very new kubuntu user)

    • There are a couple of problems with this: 1. is that the bugzilla is going to only have a subsection of the users . 2. Users know what they want, but not how to do it. It is important to make that distinction
  • I was looking for a "Ubuntu Link Button" to put it on my web page and blog. I am expecting it on the offical site and cant be able to find it. Please provide some Link Buttons on the site.
  • Ubuntu IdeaPool should not be a wiki, it should work like a rating system so other users could comment and help prioritize great ideas and common needs (Dell Idea storm is a good example). It's not really friendly user to edit this page. -- AvalosCesar Apr 20, 2007.

    • - Must agree. This wiki discourages most non-wiki-literate users from making suggestions - I nearly gave up! Haz5 02-June-2007

  • Or MediaWiki allows editing of smaller sections of a page ... how about implementing that functionality (or using MediaWiki instead?)?

    • - Must agree. Haz5 02-June-2007

      • I also strongly agree. Mediawiki has a huge baes of users familiar with the syntax. That alone could help the Ubuntu documentation improve faster. It is an issue that's strongly decided or is it just that there's no one willing to do the work to switch over to Mediawiki? I can't do all the work, but I'm willing to facilitate getting it done. TaxMan

  • Need much more user-friendly wish-list for suggestions! It took me half an hour of googling to find the best place to make suggestions - I'm hoping this is it. Then after registering it takes me to the User Preferences, but then no obvious way back to the IdeaPool page I want to edit. Then you have to edit the whole page which is quite difficult to navigate around. When you're in a hurry, like at work, these niggles all add up to a bad user experience and make you want to give up. Not sure how I "add a link to your page on the wiki" (have I got one?)- so I've just copied what someone else seems to have done. Haz5 02-June-2007

  • Add a link to the UbuntuHashes page from the download page. You link to it indirectly via the 'How to get an MD5sum page, bu those of us who can need an easier way to check hashes on a new download without going through several pages. Hashes are necessary with every download, so they need to be prominent.

Canonical Provided Services

This is a suggestion to the Ubuntu company. Please provide an imap account - not in your linux, but general imap service. And when anyone installs k/ubuntu, the thunderbird should be seamlessly integrated with it.

I am forced to stick to ms windows since I use hotmail in my outlook express. If kubuntu starts providing imap service or ties up with some provider, then not only will i truely shift to ubuntulinux, but I can continue my ubuntulinux propoganda easily and in a better fashion.

In a similar vein, create ".Ubuntu" to provide desktop-integrated web identities for Ubuntu users. Clearly, a computer running Ubuntu is great. How much greater and more revolutionary would it be if Ubuntu offered a seemlessly integrated, comprehensive set of web services? Similar to Apple's .Mac (previously iTools) but free and open source, .Ubuntu is a suite of internet services for Ubuntu users, such as IMAP/POP email (, Jabber, web storage, calendar service, synchronization or backup service, software profiling, integrated desktop sharing/live support infrastructure, with automated configuration of the desktop to utilize these features. Upon installing Ubuntu, the user would be allowed to sign up for .Ubuntu or enter a .Ubuntu username and password to log into the service. Once logged in, the user can use the .Ubuntu features on the desktop and through a web interface. Project Spec.


  • i like this idea. maybe on the first start of thunderbird where it asks if you want to impoert something? an option to create a new account? <soc äT krg-nw d0T de>

Collective bounties

I would very much like the possibility of collective bounties. Something like the following:

  • person A proposes a bounty and contributes 20 Euros for funding it.
  • Persons B, C, D and E read the bounty proposal, decide that they like it, and also contribute 20 Euros each (perhaps by donating that money to Ubuntu and specifying that it should be used for that bounty).
  • Now, instead of 20 Euros, there are 100 Euros up for offer, which is much more incentive to contribute.
  • See also

I could imagine a bounty in this vein for e.g. funding development for the nouveau ( free NVidia driver project - I think that lots of contributions would come in, which could greatly speed up their development. (My Launchpad login is Michaeljt should you wish to get in touch with me).

Ubuntu bandwidth project

It could be nice to let people with ubuntu to give some of their upload bandwidth (few Kbps) to ubuntu itself, in order to be able to have a much greater upload potential. Some sort of small software that you can turn on or off, and that disables automatically when your bandwidth usage goes over 80% of your maximum (so it doesn't slow down users). Files uploaded by users can be automatically checked with a checksum. So, no dirty tricks.

With this bandwidth, ubuntu can provide: distribution CD/DVD, video/multimedia content, e-learning material.

By: simone.brunozzi [.at.]

  • If you want to donate bandwidth, use BitTorrent to stream/peer the various Ubuntu ISOs -- Madpilot

By: jojoman02 [ at ]

  • I support this idea, this would take a massive load off ubuntu repos. I have been working this out in my head. I believe i have a viable solution. What needs to be done is an azureus like bittorrent hash link needs to be included somewhere within the metadata of the update file. the slightly modified version of synaptic would then check a DHT (kad?) network that works similar to bittorrent. obviosuly the deb files (etc) would have md5 sum also. thinking about it only synaptic's downloading components need to be modified (user side). because they would could easily be able to read the md5 sum, check if someone has file on DHT network & download. If this fails the client could always use http at local repo to download the file as backup. (sorry for the lengthy explaination). yes i do stream ubuntu's iso's on release until 2.0+ share rating. i am just trying to address a concern that ubuntu shouldn't be spending money on repo bandwith when users are willing to upload for free. this could even be an optional feature.

By: in_flu_ence [ at ]

  • I second the idea. Peer-2-Peer Networking will indeed ease out the overall operation cost for bandwidth. This is extremely crucial for a community project. We can always tap on the BT and eDonkey network since these are the most used network for P2P. Every ubuntu user can contribute in one way or another as BT and aMule are available from the package repo. In addition, this will also facilitate the Spread the word team because they can redirect the download to these networks instead of congesting at the limited download links available from the website. One concern will be to ensure that these network can be tapped by people with narrow bandwidth.

Derivitaves And Extras

  • A barebones Ubuntu that has most software removed like Bittorrent, Totem, Evolution, Gnome Games, Rhythmbox, ETC. This gives the option of installing other software on the users preference such as Exaile, Deluge, Thunderbird, VLC, ETC. By: jholtiv [ at ]
  • For FreedomToasters [] and for DialUp PPl: a dvd or cd iso with all the most common applications that are not included into THE CD. AndreaAbelli

  • Simplify the use of emulators to run Ubuntu on windows, via Qemu or possibly Colinux (which in my experience is way faster than Qemu under windows). See , . DSL distributes an embedded version (using Qemu) which "just works" under windows or Linux ( Probably Xubuntu should be used. Ago

  • "The Perfect Desktop" version. Everything included on this list should all be included in this new version of ubuntu to be burnable to either two dvd's or a single double layer dvd. This would make people jump all over ubuntu. - infini

  • I worked as UNIX system adminitrator for some years. I noted that the thing missing for server configuration is a simple but well integrated configuration management tool installed by the default distribution. A tool that allows to configure the services using minimal information but with attention for security. It's for that I began to work onto a simple shell script that can help to configure Ubuntu Server services like DNS,DHCP,RADIUS,LDAP,Web and MAIL,IDS,RAID and more other server is a very simple approach but it sets up the server downloading and installing the right packages and then configuring it with a simple text menu. I think this will be really useful to include in Ubuntu distribution, because the script doesn't require any graphic neither than the default provided by server installation of Ubuntu. At the moment i don't have so much time but the tool is at good development point. If someone if interested to this idea can contact at .

  • A second cd with some new extra packages!
  • An Ubuntu Internet cafe management product - PopeMensa

  • Localized ISO! For example, a Hoary Hedgehog Spanish ISO (apart from the official one) containing:
    • People want a full localized CDs. Not all files for a local language are on the CD, many are on the internet repositories (like dictionary etc). Part of computers has not a internet connections at all and are not full localized. See Ubuntu Customization Kit This tool helps you to customize official Ubuntu Live CDs to your needs. You can add any package to the live system, for example language packs, or some applications. (CD Ubuntu6.10de, CD Ubuntu6.10fr, CD Ubuntu6.10en, CD Ubuntu6.10pl ....)

    • The boot messages written in Spanish.
    • The boot screen adapted for Spanish keyboards (in order to type boot parameters correctly).
    • Localized packages for Spanish:,,,,, mozilla-firefox-locale-es...
    • Live CD also localized: boot messages in Spanish, boot screen adapted for Spanish keyboards, localized packages for Spanish, localized Windows programs for Spanish (Open, Mozilla Firefox, etc.).
    • Localized packs of the two CD (the Hoary one and the Live one, as is now be shipped from, with texts in different languages.

  • An easy way to customize as explained in February 2005 Linux Magazine's article Red Hat - Creating a custom installation CD or something like the one it is already done with the Live-CDs

  • Ubuntu Home server: We need an Ubuntu router/firewall server howto. We can use the minimal install instructions to start it. Personally I'd recommend webmin as the primary interface, with that its only a short step away from being like "e-smith". I have a dual nic PC (P2 400) with 10 gig drive and 192 meg of ram that I'm willing to use as a test/documentation helper. I'm willing to submit time and the use of my adsl connection. I'm willing to build, re-build and add/remove hardware fro different solutions (ie, single nic firewall etc) I just need a bit of help in the "howto" dept.any offers of help please send to senectus at the google mail address.

  • I work as an IT adviser for a ministry of a developing country. What would make Ubuntu Really Useful in this organization would be a "backline" product: an UbuntuServer which would handle things like

    • centralized user authentication (Linux and Windows),
    • print services,
    • file services (with version control and maybe webdav),
    • intranet services like a simple wiki/blog (and an interface to the file services above)
    • mail services (optional, at least here)
    • web proxy (with filtering),
    • network services (dhcp, dns, wireless, gateway, routing, firewall, vpn)
    • monitoring (mrtg, snort)

* ""UBUNTU Internet Cafe and Village Server"" "A third vote and bounty idea" for the above requests for a server package with ""WebMin"" interface for router, ""Squid firewall/caching"", and ""basic mail (pop3 and SMPT)"". I think a with a good team of mentors and supervisors, Google might accept this idea for as one of its ""2008 Summer of Code Projects"".

  • I ( support satellite linked Internet Cafes in Southern Sudan. I have also used private Internet Cafes in Nairobi and Bangladesh which are even slower than those in Sudan and which are going out of business as they cut their rates below $0.50 per hour for use of a computer with Internet access.

  • ""UBUNTU Internet Cafe and Village Server"" or ""UBUNTU Network Edge Server"" could help these cafes and future villages with ""One Laptop Per Child"" and other second hand laptops. "Internet Cafes have and continue to train a lot of new internet users." Off-peak and slow period downloads of large attachments (sent to a users local e-mail) and caching in the server could help people who now "are sucking the Internet through a straw." They could get more work done in less time and save money.
  • Struggling Internet Cafe owners could improve service and build some customer loyalty with local e-mail accounts that complimented gMail and Yahoo mail accounts and pre-fetched caches for preferred sites. Windows upgrades, new Adobe releases, and good free anti-virus updates could be locally cached, maybe someday with cooperation fro Microsoft and Adobe. Someday commercial caching companies such as Akamai might even cooperate. And ideally a future satellite multi-cast cache could be added with an inexpensive one-way satellite downlink covering much or all of Africa.
  • I really think that the UbuntuServer distribution needs to get behind and implement Xen for DapperDrake. Xen is already ramping up to be the killer open-source application for Linux; if the Ubuntu team could create an option to install UbuntuServer solo, as well as with Xen implemented (via some easy GUI tools for configuration), we could easily see Ubuntu market share grow even more. Plus, since Dapper is to be supported for 5 years, implementing Xen early would allow the developers to improve and backport the new Xen packages as they are released, further broadening Linux's presence in the datacenter. - TyranoJones

    • I'll second the need for Xen at the heart of Ubuntu, especially the server distribution. There could be some spin-off benefits for LTSP e.g. each user has a XenU instance on the server. The same could be done on a single machine for a security hardened installation: file sharing would be done on the virtual local network. N.b. a combination of this on [ZFS], would be a killer app. Each Xen instance could work on a clone, so OS files would not be duplicated for each instance. This is Dapper+5... For Dapper+2, can a Xen instance be NFS booted with a load of Read Only files shared among instances, on the virtual LAN created by Xen?
  • Packing even part of these into one easily installable distribution would be very, very valuable. I would be able to deploy a full and unified environment to each department easily. Now i would have Ubuntu on the desktop and Fedora, Mandrake or some other product on the backline. And i still don't know how to handle centralized user authentication on Linux... but that's another story Smile :) -- RobinLauren

  • Kind of an Ubuntu Media Center would be appreciated by Media Center constructors

Ubuntu derrivative part 2

I experienced the use of all 3 main ubuntu distribution ( KDE, GNOME and XFCE) on a single setup, installing kde and xfce from my ubuntu's synaptic and ended up thinking that it is a great thing that it comes that easely to use diferent interfaces and structures withins the same filesystem basic. I noticed that most applications, other than the conflictious ones, can be used in all distributions whitch is great..Then had problems with GDM and logon screen apps but anyhow it worked nice for a while and i'm glad of what i got. So i come up with 2 diferent ideas stated as "it'd be great if" -It'd be great if there were a solidified multi-buntu made dvd/iso with some professionnaly-verified shared stability presetting -It'd be great if those 3 systems could be merged together allowing to use Anything from one distribution into another (but then it all becomes realy tech for me so i shut before talkin stup) (and may i add that my english has its leaks) As i do not yet understand the why the heck there are multiple equivalent systems running linux whithins ubuntu projet and neither the way they truly interract it makes it hard to certyfy that my idea is great..But yet, my actual experiance tells me "why not; if they can work separately merged, they can work merged separationless too" That's about it -Matt ( kyfkyft(arrobas) )

Dedicated PVR Ubuntu derivative

There are lot of users who are probably interested but lack the technical knowledge required to set up a PVR using Ubuntu and MythTV. To overcome this could a stand alone Ubuntu derivative be created which allows users to easily install and just use their PVR?

This idea is similar but distinct from the GoogleSoC2007/gnome-media-center idea. The PVR interface would be the primary interface the user interacts with. When they turn on their PVR they'd go straight into an interface like MythTV, they wouldn't see the desktop.

Ubuntu derivative could be called pvrbuntu. Scottrippon.

  • Warbo: We now have MythBuntu which implements this idea. This section may be removed later due to redundancy (if anyone objects add a note below)

Ubuntu Lite CD (Download Only)

How about a Ubuntu Lite Upgrade ISO Image Download, which should be smaller than the normal one and just upgrades the last Ubuntu Installation with a new one, this would be great for 56kers, and people who's only access is on netcafes, since it should be less than 600Mb.

There are many tools today that can really make this easy, like XDelta(which generates diff files to compare old versions of programs against new) and some things, like graphics and some libraries, do not need to be updated/recopied again, anyway.

Come on, Windows provides an Upgrade version, so why not ubuntu?

Apps CDs

Something really nice with Ubuntu is that it's one of the rare distribution that is usable with a 56K modem. Most distribution let you connect to the net with it but it's a nightmare to update since it would take days. With Ubuntu, I just have to pop in the new CD that I receive every six months in the mail and Synaptic will happily update my system.

It would be nice to have have an iso (or many) that it is a snapshot of everything in main that we could download with bittorent somewhere with a fast Internet connection (or ask friends) and bring back the 56K Ubuntu installation so it would be easy to install all these great apps without taking hours to download.

Maybe extra CDs could be made for other repositories.

  • Web Extras: The Shuttleworth Foundation used Moodle for their Learnlinux online learning. Can all the web package be on the cd to run Moodle. Web based CRM/ERP software LTSP
  • Music Extras: Ubuntu already has music player, so we need Music software that create music from midi to final.
  • Educational Extras: The Shuttleworth Foundation has some school software that can be included. Moodle. Kewl.NextGen? LTSP

  • Graphics Extras

William Kinghorn

  • Include more 'pre-installed' software packages, Reps etc !?
    • - Dia, QCaD, aMSN, LimeWire, Nvu, Thunderbird, Abi Word, Adobe Reader, Gnumeric, Project Management, Scribus, Bluefish, Screem, Mplayer, Audacity, Firestarter, Boot Manager, CalmAV, etc. Info; - Ubuntu Unofficial Guide, - Unofficial Ubuntu Add-On CDubuntu-5.04-add-on-cd-e-2005-07-09.tgz.

  • I second. A special DVD-iso updated every month or so including the most popular packages (surely there is statistics about which ones they are) would be a great idea. (Contact:

QEMU Image

  • I'm proposing a qemu image, which would include an Ubuntu already installed. This would allow users to try out Ubuntu from the cozy comfort of their favourite OS. Maybe even distribute a CD with this image, that would "install" ubuntu under windows, complete with a desktop icon and start menu entry. Images for emulators or virtual machines would work, but QEMU works because it's free, and relatively fast. -- reub2000 at

  • This is a great idea. Letting people to try Ubuntu risk-free would encourage to test it out. Someone with a commercial VMWare license could make a ready VMWare virtual machine image. The VMWare Player is a free application that can't modify the virtual machine but can run it. VMWare runs better, works very well for the most important target group (Windows users), is easy to setup and use. Just add in for-dummies instructions and voila. -- Foo
    • Warbo: Wubi is working on something similar I think. It is a slightly different approach though (installing Ubuntu into a file on Windows, then booting that file with a modified bootloader instead of needing to partition).


  • In the light of the recent Ubuntu DB2 certification I think that an Oracle certification for Ubuntu Server would be highly appreciated. ( vali.dragnuta at inode dot ro )
  • Canonical is well positioned to push for a Python Certification Program - AntonioOgnio

  • See this mail on the subject:

  • Ubuntu training on video. MSDN is an example of good use of video training materials. It shouldn't really be expensive to produce a series of Ubuntu training video and distribute them over the net and in DVDs - AntonioOgnio

  • Ubuntu Linux for Dummies

"Real" Open Source Participating Program

In order to Ubuntu truelly become "Openly developed OS", Community Driven - Maybe you can create an applications, that will automatically connect the user (Programmer, Designer) to all the needed task for the next release of Ubuntu. this "True Open System" Will allow to:

  • see urgent programming task (Outlook style), and allow to see the code and participate in online coding.
  • give limited live chat / mail option between specific community working together
  • allow diffrent versions manipulation
  • have some kind of ranking

New User Training / Learning

Crash Course

Sorry for the bad editing, just thought i would throw this out there(providing it already isnt, just worded differently?).

I think that "Power Users" of windows who are migrating to linux have who no idea what so ever(much the same as myself _) of anything at all to do with linux, but only need a really simple explination.

A quick crash course of how linux works, and all of the "equivalent" system and important folders/files - I.E the equivalent of "Program Files", the equivalent of "Documents and settings", the equivalent of "Windows/WINNT" folder.

Also for people who have no idea (again like myself), the file formats of linux (.exe? .dll? .ocx? etc..) Also, a quick rundown of some of the most common terminal commands and those commands breifly explained (the need to "mount", help isnt "help" its "man <command>") etc.

Sorry for my bad grammar i am in a huge hurry. I think i have worded this suggestion rather poorly, but im sure people can see what i am trying to get at. Maybe if it was located in the "System>Help and support" section..Thanks for your time!!! tristan at 4ward dot com dot au

Book Idea

  • The easiest way to take the fear out of end-users switching to Ubuntu (via their work or otherwise) is to offer easy-to-read & absorb 'pocket books', outlining the main differences in 'how things work' compared to other products.

    • A 'pocket book' is less daunting than trying to find out the basics from a thick text or manual and simple explanations of what changes in habit or knowledge are required often will make the difference in usage levels of a product. People are adaptable, but end users who "know nothing about computers" will often find even an OS upgrade daunting because 'enhancements' and other changes are not clearly noted, explained or offered with easy-to-follow instructions.

      To paraphrase the old "hearts & minds" cliche: If you can make an end user comfortable quickly with Ubuntu, power users and companies will quickly follow. -

Volunteer policy

Media training for LoCo teams

Members of local teams may suddenly have to deal with radio and television reporters while they are not necessarily prepared for it. Media trainings for LoCo teams are necessary to bring Ubuntu to the masses.

Case study: The latest Dutch Ubuntu release party attracted about 400 participants. There was a television team interviewing members of the Dutch LoCo team ( Fortunately, the reporter interviewed 3 people with good natural presentation skills. However, these people would perform a lot better after a professional media training. For example, they focussed on explaining the questions of the reporter (which where leading questions!) instead of getting their message accros. This is typical something that can be improved by such a training. (Pim15; personal note: I consider this urgent because of Ubuntu's growing media attention)


  • There's currently no anti-virus software or software firewall installed by default - would it be difficult to integrate the ClamAV and Firestarter packages? -- TomInglis

    • There are ClamAV and Firestarter packages in the archives though, those who feel the need for such a thing will usually know how to use them. For the server installs, a default setup with mailserver linked to ClamAV or F-Prot would be nice though. -- RubenVermeersch

      • Also, a lot of Linux users download Windows files for their own Windows box. Scanning them for viruses would be a good idea. ClamAV does this.
      • A firewall is also a good idea. Ubuntu may supposedly not listen on any ports, but what if a user wanted to open up a port for a particular pieces of software? Linux does come with a firewall. It's iptables. However it has a CLI and is not "user-friendly". Firestarter (GNOME) or Guarddog (KDE) are both good GUIs that run on top of iptables. It would make sense to include them in the default installation. -- Angrykeyboarder

        • Desktop: virus scanning of files downloaded for using on windows should be possible. email scanning would be a good thing too. users should have a credible way to identify malware, even if it is not direct threat to the linux. -- TadasZ
      • have a look at aegis-virus-scanner - maybe this is what you're looking for. -- DanielHolbach

      • Server: virus scanning of any incoming mail is required at least. this means a required up-to-date antivirus available. see -- TadasZ

      • amavis-ng with spamassassin and clamav is easy to implement with postfix - have a look at those packages -- DanielHolbach

    • Server-firewall: i strongly prefer/recommend firehol for server use. please include in main Wink ;) -- TadasZ

    • Ubuntu should provide a graphical frontend for Iptables installed by default during installation; such an example of a program is Guarddog <> --chrispgskn

  • Security problem with a firewall: Kubuntu Edgy it's a desktop system in year 2006 that does not ship with any sort of netfilter (firewall) rules by default. This is huge. We need to keep the image of Linux as a secure system! Even if no services are actually enabled attack vector is still considerably bigger. Packets make it all the way to the protocol stack (versus prerouting hook).
  • What about rootkit removal of vira. If the user gets a suspicion that a rootkit is installed, it should be possible to boot from the install cd and choose remove viruses and spyware. Maybe also a trusted mode should be possible, where the computer always boots with the CD, and ensures that no vira is installed in any packages. I guess it should just happen automatically, whenever a user boots with the CD, but chooses to run Ubuntu. All we need is a single trusted hash of a list of all files. If this checks, every file is just checked the first time it is opened. Also note that updates can be perfectly handled by this scheme. The only thing that is needed is a small kernel, that can load other kernels (from /boot), and can check a public signature. Then it just checks if any kernel is installed and signed by Ubuntu - and then shows it as a boot option.
    • Firewall & Antivirus: Firestart works great and is very easy to use. It should be installed with some sane default configuration -please, don't lock the user with paranoid settings- the frustration factor they could get with things not working is a very big risk. <>

  • Important point about Firestarter: It should be made to Just Work, regardless of whether I use eth0 or eth1. On a laptop many people are switching back and forth from wireless and wired networks, and Firestarter should take that into consideration. I am really tired of the big glaring message that eth0 or eth1 is not connected.
  • Furthermore in order to use Samba you have to work your firewall. Ubuntu should pack a nice bunch of scripts helping people with Samba and NFS (and some others that are popular) in this regard, maybe implement this with the "Shared Folders" menu entry. It is a pain trying to set up Samba when you have to fiddle around with the firewall on both server and client, not knowing really what you are doing. I imagine having a dynamic IP client makes this a little harder for e.g. me.
  • Implement an easy to use application security framework based on AppArmor from Suse. AppArmor is an application security tool designed to provide a highly secure yet easy to use security framework for your applications. AppArmor proactively protects the operating system and applications from external or internal threats, even zero-day attacks, by enforcing good behavior and preventing even unknown application flaws from being exploited. AppArmor (or specification) description (Suse page)

  • A clear and easy to use firewall that will allow me to create saveable profiles.

Securing Repositories

  • Scan packages in the repositories regularly (once a day) with several up-to-date virus scanners. Choose some of the best 5. (And they should support debian archives !). The worst case scenario would be to automatically infect users with an update. a good test Thorsten Sick

  • Implement a blacklist for third party repositories. If someone should create a repository to spread malware and hint people to install it, the possibility to block apt to install software from this repository would be important.

The blacklist must be maintained and signed by Ubuntu. Thorsten Sick

  • Also a blacklist for specific packages. If there is a malicious package in some third party repositories (maybe a trojan), prevent apt from installing it. Thorsten Sick

Signing and Encrypting

To enforce data security the user should have the ability to use asymetric cryptography very easy. It will be a tough job to explain cryptography, but if it is used throughout the system, it could work.

  • Create or import a crypto key when adding a user. Submit this key to a key server.
  • View signed files/ubuntu packages in nautilus (POC i wrote at: )

  • The mail clients should go through their address-books and check for keys on the key servers. Download them
  • Evolution should offer to encrypt every mail, if a key is available (maybe a check-box in the address book "This user wants encrypted mails)
  • Maybe offer to sign every user-created content (in the save dialog)
  • If there is a signature Evolution does not know yet, it must try to retrieve it from the key server
  • Clicking on a not-verified signature in evolution must open a window explaining how to check the fingerprint (please phone the person and ask her/him for the fingerprint. If it matches, check the box "verified")
    • Warbo: I would love to see this. I am very much in favour of encryption, but don't use it that much because I can't get my head around the processes involved and setting all of my applications up. The only two issues I would make sure are kept in mind are 1) interoperability: Communicating should not be hindered, for example by using hacked-together encryption for things which don't properly support it (like an Off-The-Record Pidgin plugin which may send garbage to users of other messaging programs), and also transferring files to other people using USB sticks, CDRs and things would be difficult if these things are encrypted with the originator's key, and 2) failsafes: If used then there should be an automatic backup of private keys. If everything gets encrypted then recovering it in the event of a failure somewhere can be made impossible if the key is gone. This should not be an opt-in thing, since it will end up getting "clicked through" like proprietary EULAs and opinions of Ubuntu will drop like a stone when masses of users are left without access to their files with support channels literally unable to do anything to help. Due to security concerns this is a very tricky problem to solve, and will likely involve some thinking outside the box which is beyond me, but I think it is crucial to implementing this.

Proactive Security

Deploy FORTIFY_SOURCE and/or Exec-Shield to enhance the security of the system. These things, especially FORTIFY_SOURCE, are not very invasive and can prevent the exploitation of buffer overflows, the number one cause of security exploits. These technologies are especially appealing for enterprise deployment, a goal of DapperDrake. Fedora and SUSE already deploy FORTIFY_SOURCE, thus we can assume that any harm which was caused by using it is already fixed by now.

* I think Ubuntu should fully support an selinux setup. --Jsmidt

External Audit for Rootkits

I believe a method is required to audit and/or repair an active instance of Ubuntu (any flavor) on a computer for compromise by any malware, especially a rootkit. For example, the live/install CD that was used to create the instance should have a mode where the user boots the live CD, then runs the Audit function. The Audit function examines the installed instance of Ubuntu in light of the directories it finds, the installed packages and maintenance applied by the Administration->Update mechanism to validate the parts installed via the official mechanisms against known checksums or other criteria. The Audit should, at minimum, present a report showing any discrepancies between what's actually installed and what it finds via traversing all directories it finds. The Audit function needs to be aware of things installed via Update and Package Manager install functions, dpkg installs, configure and make (yeah, a stretch(!) and whatever else one can imagine. A more advanced capability might be to re-install compromised components. At minimum, where a discrepancy is detected, the user of the Audit function should be warend of a probable compromise. --DonLorenzo

PAM Modules

  • Include ppp-pam ( ) in the repository. It seems like development has stalled (last SVN change was on November 14, 2007 as of February 23, 2008), so someone would have to take over development.

Other Ideas (no clear category)

Document Safety

Documents stored in /tmp will dissapear. This is common sense for us, but windows users aren't used to that behavior, and my dad gets his documents eaten repeatedly. Users should be forcibly dissalowed from modifying documents currently located in /tmp. Read only would be a good solution.

Dual Boot Loader

Please improve the Dual Boot Loader. Make a graphic one like these ones


Ricardo Ramírez Cúcuta, Colombia

* OuattaraAziz see, discuss, comment and push blueprint proposal here :


  • Certain HIG, Application, Printer stuff as stated in -> -- xerman

  • Add one song per distro like in OpenBSD but songs will be selected from community all over the world (for ex. in one version song from Poland in next from Australia then from USA, Germany, Finland ... etc.). The should be just one restriction - songs should be recorded and mixed fully on Ubuntu Linux. I think it could be a good idea to popularize Ubuntu and also non-commercial artists from Ubuntu community. You can use my songs for example from "Brightside" (indie rock) or "Captain Fish" (alternative) album that was recorded and mixed using Ubuntu+Jack+Lmms+Ardour (all previous albums are obsolete ;P): . Songs are on Creative Commons non-commercial licence. When Ubuntu community songs collection will be growning up you can for example make compilation CD that can be prize in some Ubuntu contest or something. -- Dunder (adam [at] dunder [dot] pl)

Super OS

Could there be an ubuntu edition thay had all three desktop environments, and a way to switch inbetween them? This way people can try the different environments, and choose the one they like the best.(And even use different desktop environments for different tasks!)

Ideas To Make Ubuntu More Usable And A Viable Alternative To Windows For The End User

One of the first things to do is to make the Ubuntu download a Windows exe instead of an iso. The iso should still be a available, but this will make it more accessible. The exe would be a very simple program that would tell you that you need a blank CD-R in your burner in order to install Ubuntu. Then you click the burn button if a disk is available and the Ubuntu CD will be ready. Code from K3B could possible be used for this purpose.

You should also make the website into an install guide for the stupidest possible user you can imagine, at least the front page. Everything should unambiguously and simply tell you what to do next with as little text as possible. This includes telling you ahead of time to print a page.

Next, partitioning the drive to dual-boot should be completely automatic. Mine was done in a semi-automatic way, but fully automatic should be the default and have no issues. Everything should just be "click on next" if possible.

Finally, deb should be used as the standard binary format as exe is the standard Windows binary format, without exceptions. This will greatly increase usability, and should leave difficulty installing things in GNU/Linux in the past.

Roberto Sarrionandia: Perhaps the exe could backup and overwrite the Windows MBR with something that boots up the Ubuntu CD that was just burned. The exe should then instruct the user to restart, when the CD boots it could put the original MBR back. This way the user would not need to learn about boot orders.

Another Idea would be for the exe to offer a way for users to drag files to be put into Ubuntu into a dropzone. These files could be archived somewhere in the Windows partition. This location could be written to the temporary MBR, which would then pass it to the CD as a bootloader argument. This would make the installer pick up this archive from the partition and place its contents in a folder on the desktop of the default user (/home/$USER/Desktop/Backups/)

Mertiki: I think that this idea of a ultra-easy Windows installer is critically important. There's a huge mass of people who looks at websites like to download things, this would give a big publicity to ubuntu and will have a very great impact on the bug #1.

If you are interested in any of this, please email

Virtualizing the Current OS

One idea that crossed my mind while reading the above post is to extend the installation process to the point of allowing a user to Virtualize their existing OS installation during the Ubuntu setup. I understand this could prove very difficult, however if it could be done just imagine being able to make (and back up) the claim that you can install Ubuntu without losing a thing--all the best of both worlds, and also allow people to migrate to Ubuntu as they grow more comfortable.

If you like the idea, I'd like to hear your thoughts: Steve (the a with a squiggly around it) Yoooder(dot)com

Killing SPAM

I think that getting rid of spam would be a "Killer-app" that would make people move to the Linux-platform.

I know that Canonical have the competence, even inhouse (Thawte Consulting whom I bought a personal cert from myself a long time ago)

I imagine a PKCS12-solution in combination with LDAP that could solve that issue.

My standpoint is:

1. If every user has a personal certificate coming from a trusted CA they are able to sign their mail.

2. If every user has their public part of the certificate available from a directory-server (LDAP). (That others can look up just by using the same mechanism as Windows AD and Samba 4. - just by adding an extra lookup-field to the DNS) - that would mean that I could also encrypt the mail that I send with the public certificate of the recipient.

3. In my mailbox (Or even in the MTA) If I choose to only recive emails coming from trusted parties. I.e e-mail that are signed by trusted authorities - spam is limited to authenticated parties and could more easily be blacklisted.

4. If Ubuntu can distribute their solutions with this integrated from start - that would be a "Killer-app" for Ubuntu and the Linux community.

Feel free to contact me by mail niklas dot andersson (AT) techworld dot se or by msn:

Doing the Basics Right

The most obvious idea for improving Ubuntu is to do the basics right. Everything that users expect just happens and they can get about their business. Clearly this is happening at the lowest level through the ongoing bug fix process Please continue to contribute your well documented bugs to the system. In addition, with each release new packages are introduced throught the package selection process by the TechnicalBoard. In addition, there is the ongoing improvement of the underlying software through the evolutionalry nature of open source development. We also need to ensure we address the needs of the average computer user out of the box. For more thoughts see WinningTheDesktop, ReallyWinningTheDesktop, WhatWindowsUsersWant and IssuesAsNoviceUbuntuUser. For simply dropping impressions visit: NewUsersImpressions.

Thoughts About "Linking" Applications

  • Please consider adding the ability to have linked simultaneous applications running. This is a

very critical item, and since it is so important, I will try to elucidate both it's basis of importance, and a small amount of linkage description.

  • Civilization spent the first half of the last century developing languages for the various fields of knowledge, both hard and soft sciences. Before that most activity was focused on collecting, mapping, and classifying. The next stage is linkage (and evaluation), particularly simultaneous linkage. The difference between the discovery processes currently used, and those of linkage, can be understood by comparing modern medicine's discovery process with those of witch doctors. Witch doctors lay beside their patients for three days, smelling the disease odors, then take a strong olfactory and visual stimulant, and run smelling through their pharmacopia (the jungle) at night - when the temperature is lower and the scents stronger. Thus they use an olfactory linkage process. As an example of activities that can be understood as simulaneous linkage, intense study will often require the use of a primary document, a concordance, a dictionary, possibly a transliteration, sometimes a visual dictionary, notes, photographs, and various references. Placed in a computer context, this could mean that the left-hand side of the screen displays the primary document, with the minor linked aid on the right-hand side. If it is the notes for instance, that means the scroll rate of the notes would differ from the scroll rate of the primary document, and the link between the two is based on the organization of the primary document, to which the notes reference. Should the researcher then wish to view a dictionary entry, clicking on the word required and changing the minor linked aid on the right-hand side, that activity would not erase the positioning held by the note application, which could be reacquired.

    I can be reached at

Make Ubuntu avaialable at public libraries

This seems like a straight-forward idea: Free Software at a Free Library, right? Libraries catalog items by their ISBN code. I would suggest that Canonical get an ISBN code for the next LTS version of Ubuntu so that libraries could be persuaded to carry a few copies of the boxed DVD. I would suggest making it available in sets of 5. Alternately Canonical could offer downloadable CD labels (with ISBN) along with the iso image for local Linux groups to do some grassroots distributing to libraries.

*New - I've found there is an ISO numbering system called ISSN that is specifically designed for items that change, such as periodicals and computer files. It would seem to fit nicely with the CD/DVD format where updates are introduced on a regular basis, just like Ubuntu. Registration for an ISSN is free. More information is available here:

Any comments on this idea contact Jim at

Gutsy's (minor) deviance from usability: Applications with overlapping features

The biggest problem I have with Ubuntu 7.10 is that there is often more than one way to do the same thing. Ubuntu has always tried to keep things simple by having each application do a specific job, but some of the applications in Gutsy introduce redundancy.

For example: Users can search via "Applications => Accessories => Tracker Search Tool" or "Places => Search for Files". A printer can be made default by either "System => Administration => Printing" or "System => Preferences => Default Printer". Users can change their passwords by using either "System => Preferences => About Me" or "System => Administration => Users and Groups". Most (if not all) of the applications in "System => Preferences" are also available in the Control Panel.

  • I don't completely agree with you. It's important to understand that most of the example you've just given are entries for admin users. "System => Administration => Printing" should be only available for admins while "System => Preferences => Default Printer" is for every one. They don't intend to do the same thing. OuattaraAziz

    "System => Preferences => About Me" or "System => Administration => Users and Groups" are the same, the first is updating user's own setting while the second is for managing users ( available only for admins) OuattaraAziz

    As of the Control Panel, it's not active by default and it is an alternative to the "System => Administration" and "System => Preferences" submenus (it includes every entries from there). OuattaraAziz

    BUT since this behaviour were not obvious for you, this means there is a problem somewhere. ( Somehow a user must understand what is an admin entry and differenciate it from a Desktop User entry ) . Do you have some ideas or suggestion to submit ? My opinion, is that you open a bug report for this. OuattaraAziz

    • Thanks so much for responding! It's great to know that Canonical is constantly working with us to improve things. And thank you for pointing out my confusion. I only use my default account so I didn't realize that most of the duplicates do not apply to users with lesser access.

      But most users have a setup just like mine, only one account with administration privelages. For that reason, I still think Ubuntu should make sure the user understands the differences between similar applications. I think one easy solution to this would be to reword some of the launchers to alleviate confusion. Using the printer applications as an example, I think it would make sense to rename the "Preferences => Default Printer" launcher to "Set Default Printer". In addition, "Administration => Printing" could be renamed to "Manage System Printers" or something like that. I think that generally, the names of the launcher names under Preferences should emphasize the words "Set" and "Modify" whereas the launcher names under Administration should emphasize the words "Manage", "System", "Global", and things like that. If the launchers were named like that, I think the user would have a much better understanding of the differences between the applications. Do you think I should submit this suggestion in launchpad?

      Also, what about the two search tools - "Places => Search" and "Applications => Accessories => Tracker Search Tool"? They don't have anything to do with privelages (at least I don't think they do), so are they both necessary? -- JohnKarahalis

Ubuntu is highly praised for its simplicity and usability. It is ease of use that separates Ubuntu from the rest of the market. I believe that Gutsy's use of applications with overlapping features is a step, however minor, in the wrong direction.

Don't get me wrong, I love Gutsy and praise the developers for all their great work. I love the new features and polish of Gutsy, but at the same time worry that this redundancy will become a bigger problem in future releases. I would love to hear what other people have to say, please participate in this conversation. -- JohnKarahalis

Visual Diff For Update/Upgrade

I wasn't sure where to put this, so I'm putting it in the miscellany category. I know for a "beginning" user a visual diff tool for configuration files is probably overkill, but every time I update or upgrade Ubuntu I have to cross my fingers. I am not a "power user" but I do have a few personal modifications I've made to various configuration files; unfortunately, the time between installs/updates/upgrades is so long, I rarely remember every file that I have personally touched. The problem is that I also tend to install a lot of software which also touches other configuration files, so when I'm clicking through the install/update/upgrade messages I end up either spending hours to do the install because I look through each and every configure file by hand, or I end up accidentally nuking some custom modification I'd rather have kept. It would be nice if there was some sort of visual diff showing me what is about to change between configuration files. That way I could redact whatever changes (usually .nanorc, xorg.conf, etc.) when I need to. -- theChao (Jacob Smith)

David Fagan ( One of the main peripherals that many windows users connect to their computers are their windows mobile smartphones. Whether it is the professional (PPC) of the standard (smartphone), both phones use MS Activesync. Gutsy already is Palm friendly but with most of the world's smartphones being Windows Mobile there needs to be some type of compatibility application available that allows windows ymobile phones to sync up with Thunderbird (or even Evolution) the way activesync syncs up with Outlook. The synced sections would be calendar, contacts and mail.

Quick Startup with Elisa Media Center

  • I believe there should be a quick startup option in Grub that can launch a piece of software that starts up very quickly but only launches the necesary utilities to run Elisa Media Center or another media applicatioin. I read something similar to this that was supposed to be on Vista (not sure if it is) for systems built with a small screen attatched to them (don't know if they ever made those). I would love the idea of me being able to start my computer up and only having to wait a minute to start playing music if that's all i planned to do.

PS3 Xubuntu Hardy Heron - Quick Easy Project

This is a very quick and easy project with most of the neccesary work already done by various with their work detailed below. It just needs about a days worth of time to put it all together.

Yellow Dog Linux and Ubuntu currently do have a decent version out for the PS3. But both are ridiculously slow due to the PS3's meager 256mbs of ram. Xubuntu is light years ahead of YDL and Ubuntu in how fast it runs on the PS3 inspite of the ram limitations. I have known many people who installed YDL or Ubuntu on the PS3 as their first exposure to linux only to be turned off by how slowly it ran.

But Xubuntu despite being by and far the fastest distro one can install on the PS3, doesn't recognize any of the PS3's components when you install it initially.

It is possible to get the PS3's WiFi card, Blu Ray drive, Soundcard and audio, Bluetooth, Six Axis, popular Bluetooth Keyboards and Mice, memory cards, a SNES, Genesis, GBA and n64 emulator, xvid, divx, dvd and blu ray codecs working on Xubuntu. It's possible to get rid of the black bars that show up on the current Xbuntu PS3 version when viewed on any hdtv. And it's possible to maximize the 256mbs of ram on the PS3 by disabling all the services running by default on the PS3 that aren't absolutely necessary.

The link below shows exactly how to do much of that…

and here are some additional tweaks that should be encorporated into this build...

Having to go thru this whole process to get Xubuntu working on the PS3 with the PS3's components is extremely complex for people who have very little experience with linux. It's a pain even for people such as myself to have to do all of that to get Xubuntu on the PS3 with it's WiFi internet working out of the box.

Furthermore new people trying linux on the PS3 will be extremely frustrated when they can't get the operating system running at 1080i (far superior to 720p in my personal experience) on their hdtv because they didn't know to do the following when installing Xubuntu…

If you listed these commands when you first launch the install cd recommending 1080i and 1080p at 60hz for US TVs and 1080i and 1080p at 50hz for Australian TVs. You would save a whole ton of people a lot of headaches.

So please put together a PS3 version of Xbuntu that lets you select the resolution of your monitor when you install it and that has PS3's WiFi card, Blu Ray drive, Soundcard, Bluetooth, Six Axis, memory cards, divx and xvid codecs, boot-game-os launcher, black bar fix and popular Bluetooth Keyboards and Mice working out of the box.

Why force 20 million people to each have to go through all these steps to get their PS3's WiFi card and other components working when you could make a version that comes with the appropriate drivers already.

The standard hardware of all PS3s makes this extremely easy to implement and the cell possessor its something to powerful to run linux on it. When people find out that they can easily through a no hassile install turn their PS3 into one of the fastest and cheapest computers on the market, many PS3 owners will try out linux on it and be exposed to Xubuntu for the very first time.

If your PS3 build came prepackaged with drivers for PS3's components like YDL does, you could easily become the definitive linux to install on a PS3. You could reach 20 million homes immediately, and many more to come. You would be doing a massive favor to both PS3 owners everywhere (by having an all in one PS3 linux distro that's not incredibly slow like YDL is) and to the linux community at large (by exposing many more people to a version linux that's lightning fast and smooth as butter).

To put this all together, here is a list of features such an all in one PS3 version of Xubuntu needs to have…

Menu asking for the highest resolution your tv can support,

Built In Drivers For WiFi,

Drivers for Bluetooth and SixAxis,

Drivers for the Bluray Drive,

Drivers for popular Bluetooth Keyboards & Mice,

Drivers for PS3's memory card reader,

Drivers for PS3's audio and general TV Speakers,

Xvid & DivX Codecs, a dvd and blu ray codec and a media player,

Launcher on the desktop that Reboots into PS3 Menu by executing the command boot-game-os

Micheal Steele's Fix To Get Rid of Black Bars Displayed On HDTVs – When you install Xubuntu, you see blackbars all around,

Don't have any services running in the background by default that aren't absolutely necessary as the PS3 only has 256 mbs of ram

An option to automatically progress through the installation for those working off of a bluetooth keyboard and mouse that kboot wouldn't recognize

An SNES emulator, a Genesis emulator, an arcade emulator, a GBA emulator, a DS emulator and an n64 emulator and fix to run them through the sixaxis/ds3 controller

Someway To Let You Rename The Title of Every Single Program On The Menu & if possible perhaps even Create New Folders in the Menu & Sort Programs Into Different Folders In the same way that windows lets you completely customize and reorganize the program names on the start menu,

Some Included Application That Lets You Reskin The OS To Customize How It Looks if and only if a quality application that lets you do that exists.

Here is a link with the current Xubuntu version available for the PS3...

In addition to the features above, I propose including the features listed here...

Some Cell optimized kernals and tools are available here...

The second comment in the link below shows how people get Hardy Heron running on the PS3, it's an overly complicated process at the moment...

What does the linux community have to gain by doing this?

There are already over 20 million PS3 owners, and many more to come. I estimate that there are more PlayStation 3 machines in people's home's than PPC and intel macs combined. By taking full advantage of this, Ubuntu could theoretically grow to a larger market share than mac OSX, which would put it on the proverbial radar in a very serious way.

As of now both the Ubuntu PS3 port and the Xubuntu ports are struggling. I would love it if you guys reassess the value of this port and really throw your might behind creating one ultimate hardy heron release. Not only that, but I think Xuibuntu should use the opportunity to implement a few features that could make it the best gaming OS on earth, such as qjoypad integration and a gaming-mode wherein all processes not related to the task at hand are hibernated to swap while a game or, say, fullscreen blender, runs.

Windows is why people are running from the PC for their gaming. Let them run to linux. Let them not be disappointed. ...Let them wonder why they even bother with windows.

In addition, Sony has done something great by letting us use the PS3 to run linux's own code. Let them be envied for it.

What can linux's devs lose by developing Xubuntu for the PS3? Maybe countless people around the world using Xubuntu on the most powerful computer out there? If Xubuntu isn't there for the PS3, everyone will turn to YellowDog and Ubuntu, which are only slightly more functional, and incredibly slow due to the ram limitations. There are very few people who retain hope for PS3 version of Xubuntu.

I'm not just saying this is an opportunity. I'm saying this is a good opportunity, and a relatively exclusive opportunity. To miss it would be terrible. Not that we will. Those of us with PS3's are making do with what we have... but the lack of real support really will have slowed us down in taking advantage of the situation.

Furthermore, you guys are our best hope of negotiating the unlocking of the RSX. If that happens, linux will be in direct competition with the PS3's gaming OS. If you guys care to compete, and we make something better, well, what would that say about gaming on linux? People have PS3's. Did anyone think they just might want to try tremulous, apricot, warsow, urbanterror, nexuiz, openarena, and so on and so forth on them? How else is that going to happen? PS3 owners are humans too. And they're a lot more likely to try linux on their PS3 than their PC, I would think. Everyone I know who owns a PS3 told me that he wants to use his PS3 as a surfing/office/entertainment machine and has heard that there are ways to put another OS on it and that they want to get rid of a PC in their living room because it's too loud and too big and they need it for news and surfing and stuff like that, but would like to just have only a PS3 they already own with possibilities of a simple living-room-pc. I think that a simple installation of Xubuntu on a PS3 would give a great market share for Xubuntu and PS3-Users would love to have an linux os that is not slowed to a crawl by the PS3's meager 256 mbs of ram.

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