NOTE: UBZ Planning moved to Launchpad

Please note that all UbuntuBelowZero planning is now being done in Launchpad, please don't edit this wiki page further (the changes will not be picked up and used).

Go to: to see the specs which are already registered

If you find BOF topics listed below which have not yet been registered in Launchpad, please create these according to the process listed below.

  1. Create a spec/BOF suggestion on the wiki, see for a template.

  2. Go to$PRODUCT/+specs, where $PRODUCT is the name of the product you want to register the spec against. There a real multitude of tracking options there, including the nice feature of requesting feedback from another launchpad person for your spec. Note, that you will have to provide a link on the wiki for the spec you are registerting, since LP only tracks information and does not hold the spec content.

  3. Note: For Ubuntu specs use:

  4. See and for an example and explanation of how to create the specs.

Old UBZ BOF Planning

As at UDU, the plan is to focus on "Birds of a Feather" (BOF) meetings at UBZ. These will be organised so that each BOF results in a recorded output. It might be a plan, a process, a piece of code, etc. In each case, every BOF should terminate with a written report of the BOF, the conclusions, and the action items (and to who they were assigned).

Ideally we are aiming to at least have a framework spec created for each topic, with a broad outline of the Introduction, Rationale, and some of the Scope and Use Cases listed so that everyone understands intent of BOF topic in advance.

BOFs will be related to one or more of the main tracks:

  • Ubuntu (including Kubuntu and Edubuntu)

  • Launchpad

Startup/shutdown process:

  • I'd like to have a series of BOFs to deal with the startup sequence in small, manageable chunks. This has been an obsession of mine since we started the project, and now I'm on the distro team I'd like to make this a reality. The goal is not only to give the user their desktop faster than anyone else on the planet, but also to be able to reliably detect, configure and activate hardware and the services the user will need. (ScottJamesRemnant)

  • HardwareDetection - covers how we detect hardware, both when the system is running (udevd listening on uevent netlink socket?) and how we ensure that at startup we capture potentially missed events (synthesise udev events from a combined udevstart/coldplug replacement in initramfs?). Should also cover how we make sure we don't process events before we can deal with them (ie. network card module built-in, but none of ifupdown in initramfs).

  • HardwareActivation - our current boot process has parts that rely on certain pieces of hardware being available, such as networking, bluetooth, sound and printers. We should instead provide a means to activate these when the hardware is detected rather than assuming it exists, and move the startup scripts into activation scripts instead.

  • NetworkConfiguration - activation of network hardware is a complicated issue, we need to ensure that any hardware the user plugs in is automatically configured and used if possible and that devices such as modems and wireless cards just work; including choosing the appropriate default route for the system. The best tool for this job still seems to be network-manager, but it doesn't really play nice with the netbase/ifupdown system we currently use. This BOF will talk about making them both work together when the hardware is activated to get it running without bothering the user too much. Also the WEP Shared Key/Open Key/WPA mess should be addressed here.

  • StreamlinedBoot - identify what we're actually doing during boot up, and decide what we actually need to be doing and drop (or move) anything we don't; regroup the boot sequence into clear targets ("hardware detection", "console setup", "filesystem checking and mounting", etc.).

  • ReplacementInit - discuss replacing the tried, trusted and terrible sysvinit with something a little more flashy such as initng or launchd.

  • UsplashUntilDesktop - usplash currently bows out once gdm flips the vt, for users who are using gdm autologin, it would look sweet if it could wait until gnome-session has got their desktop ready for use.

  • SplashDown - showing a splash screen while shutting down, and showing an explanatory splash screen while preparing for hibernation. To be more general, the user should be presented with a console when he/she doesn't intend to use it. See ConsolelessUbuntu.

  • FasterGnomeStartup - identify what takes the gnome session so long to start, streamline it down and get from gdm to desktop so fast we don't need a splash screen.

Software management:

  • FirefoxUpdates/Firefoxplugins - There has to be a nice way to make firefox not display the "install missing plugins" link but tell to use apt to install plugins. Same for updates
  • VariantSelection - easy switching between/adding of ubuntu variants (ubuntu,kubuntu,edubuntu,etc...)

  • Expansion of AddRemovePrograms - show screenshots, comments, ratings, installation of codecs/plugins or other commonly installed non-GUI programs, integration with launchpad.

  • AutomaticUpdates - automatic/silent installation of (security) updates, possible even when current user has no sudo privileges

  • RemovingDefaultPrograms - better mechanism to remove programs included in the default installation. Not removing ubuntu-desktop, maybe somehow remembering this is a default installation minus program removed, so you won't have problems when upgrading to a new distro version.

  • SmallerUpdates - Updates in the form of patches, I think suse is doing something like this? (even great when only as a last resort for dialup users)

  • AutopackageIntegration - Autopackage integration in Ubuntu to make it easy for commercial software to have installers (also have a look at klik)

  • BackportsPromotion - make people more aware of backports, provide an easier (GUI) way to enable them (SoftwareManager would cover some of the above)

  • AutomaticUpgrade - make it easier for users to upgrade to the latest version of Ubuntu.

  • PackageSelectionSnapshots - Be able to take a incremental snapshot of all the packages installed on a system. (SivanGreen)

  • PackageDependencyFixes - two fixes to the dependency system for smoother, more reliable updates with less faff needed by maintainers.

  • PackageVersionConflicts - should we share the same version namespace as debian or should we use our own (Prosposal by MarkShuttleworth (2005-10-19))

  • DefaultAptSources - the default apt sources.list configuration

Desktop software:

  • EyeCandy - more (optional?) eyecandy in Ubuntu

  • CDBurningSolution - evaluate solution used in breezy: many programs vs. one centralized program (e.g. gnomebaker)

  • JukeboxCentralization is good, right now there are many programs to do similar tasks, for example, there's a ripper, a cd player, a music jukebox, there should be a centralized jukebox with support for playing cd's & ripping, maybe next version of rhythmbox? Do we need eog & gthumb? gthumb is better, and maybe f-spot gets better by the timeframe of dapper.

  • Fix gnome's clipboard management. 2.12 new clipboard technology doesn't work with all applications. It's not very usable right now.
  • Nautilus: evaluate enhancements for nautilus, for example nautilus -actions (, nautilus-share (, or other enhancements made by other distros. The gtkfilechooser "find as you type" is a nice enhancement that could be added to nautilus (both in spatial & browser mode). Search enhancements: ( Something similar to kde's metabar ( would rock.

  • For laptops: GSynaptics allows the user to configure Xorg's synaptics driver in a GUI manner. If not, the mouse capplet in gnome should be enhanced to configure things for laptop users or something similar.

  • LookingGlass - If you wanna dazzle Vista wannabees, there's the package you'd want to consider. A 3D Desktop with much less requirements than Vista LG3D Site.

  • HomeUserBackup - Backup tool available in menus. Possibly backing up home dir + list of installed graphical apps? Allow incremental backups. Allow backup of shared partitions (like FAT partitions shared with Windows).

  • ScreenSaver - Speccing gnome-screensaver communication with the desktop (handling of fullscreen running apps, access from processes like acpid). And making it wonderful to use, too.

  • MenuEditorPanelIntegration - Integrate the menu editor into the gnome-panel (the menu itself), to let the user changing the menu directly (using the right-click, for instance), and the ability to sort the menu items arbitrary (now the items are sorted alphabetically, only).

  • MenusRevisited - Preferences menu - how to make it less cluttered. Putting system tools to pasture.

  • UsabilityReview - Make a focused effort to find and correct usability flaws and nitpicks before release. (I think someone has already started, and did quite a good job - UsabilityWishlist)

  • OneClickI18n - Make it easy as a one click effort to have good I18N's desktop for using and typing in your favorite language. (SivanGreen)

  • Codecs Downloads - Most newcomers will find it a pain in the "where you know" not to be able to play MP3 or watch a DIVX out of the box. Why not during the install propose to download the related packages, but with a clear explanation that those codecs are not opensource, etc... etc...?
  • LaptopTestingTeam - X issues workshop? (incl. ati problems)

Help and migration:

  • DocteamPlansDapper - Docteam planning for DapperDrake

  • ExtraCds - Making additional CD images available for download/purchase with software from universe with each a certain theme, e.g. a programming utilities cd. Mainly important for those of us that are not so fortunate to have broadband internet, who at the moment have a very difficult job installing extra software.

  • NonBroadbandUsers -In general have some thoughts at non-broadband users and what they need/miss.

  • InstallerForWindows -Ubuntu installer forWindows (old mailing list post)

  • MigratingToUbuntu - Does Ubuntu have all the tools needed to effectively migrate to linux with it (this includes importing Outlook calendars + mail, browser settings/bookmarks, etc. from other installations and/or OSs)?

  • HelpfulHelp - helpful, up-to-date, Ubuntu-specific help. Needs approval and bountying. Contents of Breezy FAQ Guide can be tamed for UbuntuHelp.

  • ForumsCommunityIntegration - Ubuntuforums integration with the rest of the Ubuntu community.

  • ExistingDocumentation - Fixing existing non-Ubuntu documentation (location, register to Yelp, etc.)

  • InclusionOfDocumentation WIP in milestone releases - have the documentation team map out internal milestones that coincide with distro milestones, instead of doing much of the integration work a few weeks before release.

  • BetterWikiDocs - Moin needs some major love for doc work. We need to talk about how to achieve that.

  • WebsTranslation - Start the process of translating and localizing the Canonical/Ubuntu web services (Ubuntu web page, Launchpad...) into another languages.

  • The UbuntuWebSite is highly polished, but poorly designed, uninspiring, and poorly integrated with the wiki. A BoF would be enough time for a heuristic evaluation to compile a list of improvements.

  • EvaluateUbuntuGuide, the forum howto's and the wiki pages to see what can be made easier/better/improved, see UbuntuGuide

  • Ubuntu.Mac Look at possibility of starting a .Mac-like service for use across multiple Ubuntu computers (using Launchpad??)

  • FrozenWiki - Ubuntu Wiki Snapshots (from the official one and from the LoCoTeams) on the users desktop




  • Malone XML-RPC interface. (BradBollenbach, JeffBailey)

  • LaunchpadPerformance -- making Launchpad blazingly fast.

  • Bug/BugTask permissions (suggested by sabdfl)
  • Launchpad Auto Build System Performance - discuss current (Master/Slave) topology disadvantages when having multiple buildd-slaves, investigate new approaches and their costs/risks (CelsoProvidelo, DanielSilverstone, AndrewBennetts)

  • BugListNavigation - navigating to next/previous bug reports from a search, for quick bug triage

  • SupportTracker -- Launchpad currently has a support tracker. Is this going to have a revenue model? Are upstreams going to use it? If the answers to those are "no", is it redundant with the Ubuntu forums? If not, should there be integration between them, such as syndication? (See also ForumsCommunityIntegration.)

  • MaloneSearch -- simple search form, advanced search form, search operators, search operator suggestions, synonym suggestions, misspelling suggestions.

  • SubmissionWithLogin -- any POST form submission in Launchpad (e.g. commenting on a bug, making translations, editing a product) should survive if you are logged out before submitting it. You should get taken to the login page, and logging in should perform the action.

  • ResolvingTargetedBugTasks

  • LaunchpadLoginApp - It'd be nice to have an application that will handle account creation and registeration with launchpad. Such application could gather information from a user's system, locale, and other preferences and provide it for the usage by the Launchpad account. This would save the troulbe and/or distraction involved in having to open an account when trying to use the launchpad integration on the first time. (SivanGreen)

  • SetupSnapshotsLaunchpadSide - In order to support SetupSnapshots , we'd need to spec how would the data be stored against Launchpad on the server side, to enable easy retrieval and modifications to a snapshot using a web interface. (SivanGreen)

  • TheMissingLink - A translation layer to bridge the possible gap in transforming SupportTicket ---> MaloneBug; by devising sets of common questions developers repeatedly ask to define a bug, a decision tree could be created in favor of automating the process of transforming a SupportTicket to a MaloneBug. this would entail automatic acceptance/rejection of bug reports based on customer ticket issuing, and would save manual intervention of a support representative / maintainer / developer that would usually result in asking the same question all over again, as per the issue domain. (e.g. outputs of various logging commands, attempting a predefined set of steps , etc..) (SivanGreen)

  • LaunchpadKnowledgebase - Launchpad should allow for a knowledgebase similar to MS TechNet or Novell's Knowledgebase. However, LP can provide this in a way that applies to upstreams, distros, as well as allowing for personal annotations.

  • LaunchpadCapitalization - Consistent capitalization for headings, and consistent capitalization for menu items. (requested by sabdfl)


  • DapperReleaseProcess - figuring out the right release process to ship a wonderful, long term supportable dapper release that we can be even more proud of!

  • PackageHeadersEducationSession - I'd like this to be a single session suggested to be mandatory for all distro people and motu; to explain exactly what Conflicts, Replaces, Provides, Pre-Depends, etc. do and why people need to stop abusing them and breaking our upgrade process. Weaponry may be involved. (ScottJamesRemnant)

  • XineramaSupport - Currently, we have a fair number of applications which don't behave very well in a multi-head environment. Xinerama is the X protocol extension which lets applications know that there are multiple physical displays attached and make sure to put up windows which doesn't span multiple physical displays and similar problems.

  • LinuxKernelRoadMap - We will need a very traditional kernel for the server support (5 years) and probably a more flexible and open one for the workstation (3). This BOF is targeted to identify the different requirements and integrate them with other part of the system.

  • UbuntuClusters - Breezy had the first real cluster love (HA oriented). This BOF target is to evaluate all possible combinations of clusters solutions we would like to offer to the community (more high availablity solutions, high performance solutions, thinclients reusage into cluster environment).

  • UbuntuClustersDeployment - This might be a subtopic of the above, but it is more related to d-i integration in order to find a simple way to deploy cluster installations.

  • OpenAFSSupport - Along the lines of support servers and cluster filesystems, it would be great to have OpenAFS support out-of-the-box in Dapper. This would require adding OpenAFS modules to the kernel, as well as getting all the pieces needed for Kerberos in place (Kamion's openssh 4.2 integration work w/ GSSAPI is part of this). There are also many schools that use Kerberos and OpenAFS, and have custom distributions for their students (RPI, for example).

  • DebianPatchFeeding - It's in everyone's best interest to get Ubuntu patches into Debian (sid). There are a number of Debian developers who are not happy with Ubuntu's changes to their packages. A team of people active in both the Ubuntu and Debian community who can pick through Ubuntu-specific changes, find things that are relevant to Debian, and file bugs (and/or NMU if the patch is critical enough) would go a long way towards helping the problem.

  • ZeroConfSpec - It would be nice to include zeroconf support in breezy, it is needed to discuss if this would be suitable to have setup by default.

  • Consider changing the default partitioning scheme

  • Consider the integration of the work done by Molinux and Guadalinex. For example, the graphical installer stage 2 process (see this and this).

  • DbusRestart - Either fix all applications so that we don't have to restart Dbus/HAL, or fix them all so that we can (preferred option)

  • Gnome Art-like application(s) for easy installation of new backgrounds etc. from Similar to kde's get hot new stuff.

  • SetupSnapshots - Save, restore and share User and System setups everywhere (SivanGreen).

  • Better Desktop of Presence Management/Connection Management for IM/Mail etc. (see IPCF - Inter-Personal communication Framework). Thinking of ShtoomVoIP Breezy Goal, dotUbuntu etc. we should work on this project to have a transparent framework for the (K)Ubuntu Desktop. Together with a Launchpad Integration for User Authentication and some newly created community services like Mail/Jabber/SIP we could have a highly integrated desktop.

  • UbuntuPVR-like - As already mentioned in ┬Ábuntu UDU BOF, direct the development of mid-weight Ubuntu flavour called miniUbuntu to build a PVR-like system, including softwares like: Myth-TV, Freevo, Dasher, etc. It shows up as a nice oportunity to be leading also this young market and possibly aggreagting the multimedia community around Launchpad.

  • SELinux - Since Dapper will be supported for much longer, having a system such as SELinux integrated can be useful for minimising security risks.

  • ProactiveSecurityBOF - Integration of various technologies to harden Ubuntu against attacks & close common attack vectors.

  • SpecialKeysOnPowerPC - Currently the interaction (or the lack of it) between pbbuttonsd and gnome-settings-daemon is a mess; we should find a solution that does not cripple either part and still works everywhere (VT, Gnome, other window managers) (MartinPitt)

  • DapperStandardsBase - dapper will be supported for five years, which makes it a great thing for vendors that which to support their software on Ubuntu. With only a little extra work, we can make it a fantastic thing by providing a set of dapper features that will be supported in every further Ubuntu release for five years. This standards base should specify the library APIs that can be used (old libraries can be shipped in a compat section or pocket of further releases) and also focus on the system APIs (how do you add your program to Applications, etc.) that we will support in Ubuntu releases (through packages in the compat section or pocket). This BOF should outline those APIs and provide a specification for writing the DapperStandardsBase document.

  • LocalesThatDontSuck - Upstream glibc has extremely strict standards for locales management. Many communities get discouraged trying to get localedata updates in, and the glibc maintainers often don't have enough information to prove the information. Two options are to use the Belocs package directly in place of locales, or have translators work in Launchpad and generate the entire locales packages from the data contained in there. (And possibly distribute the information entirely with the langpacks) (JeffBailey)

  • FirstAgainstTheWall -- when we run out of space on the Ubuntu installation CD, what should be dropped first?

  • AccessibilityTargets - Define clear targets for accessibility features in Dapper.

  • AccessibilityTesting - Good accessibility support is largely a question of testing existing features early enough in the process (the niche nature of these features has often lead to a lack of testing).

  • AccessibleLiveDerivative - The Live CD derivative started by Luke should be developed further as a platform where we can include the best available Assistive Technology installed by default and can test out new features.

  • HandsFreeEmailing - Send an email without using your hands ... and other accessibility challenges.

  • Better Tablet pc support
  • CupsDbusIntegration - Inspired by, we would like to have better CUPS integration for Dapper, we need to make CUPS respond to HAL events to be able to appropriately configure plugged printers and handle other configuration changes. (SivanGreen)

  • SupportingMarketTechnologies - As Dapper is going to be a target for supporting corporate and enterprise usage, it's neccessary to suppport various available enterprise grade technologies such as common high end database solutions, to various application servers etc. (SivanGreen)

  • NonpersistantUsers - Improving ubuntu for internet cafes and classrooms!

  • IntegratingMetadata deeply into the desktop

  • DerivativeDistroTechnical - Technical considerations to take into account when creating a derivative Ubuntu distro; consequences around desktop, package and installer decisions. (AdiAttar)

  • DerivativeDistroProcess - Processes and infrastructure related to Ubuntu derivative distros. (AdiAttar)

These are the deferred Breezy Goals, some of which will also be discussed at UBZ. Needs review.

UbuntuBelowZero/BOFs (last edited 2008-08-06 16:26:35 by localhost)