Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue #116 for the week November 2nd - November 8th, 2008. In this issue we cover: Mark Shuttleworth interview, Ubuntu Open Week, Jaunty: Open for development, New MOTU, What about my bug, Relaunch of German UWN translation, Ultamaix, LoCo Release Parties, Launchpad Developer Interview, Ubuntu Podcast #11, IBM Lotus Adds Ubuntu support to Symphony Apps, TimeVault simplifies data backup for Ubuntu users, and much, much more!

UWN Translations

  • Note to translators and our readers: We are trying a new way of linking to our translations pages. Please follow the link below for the information you need.

In This Issue

  • Mark Shuttleworth interview
  • Ubuntu Open Week
  • Jaunty: Open for development
  • New MOTU
  • What about my bug
  • Relaunch of German UWN translation
  • Ultamatix
  • Ubuntu Stats
  • LoCo Release Parties

  • Launchpad Developer interview
  • In the Press & Blogosphere

  • Ubuntu Podcast #11
  • IBM Lotus adds Ubuntu support to Symphony Apps
  • TimeVault simplifies data backup for Ubuntu users

  • Upcoming Meetings & Events

  • Security & Updates

General Community News

Mark Shuttleworth interview

Stephen Shankland, writing for CNET News Business Tech, reports on a conference call with Mark Shuttleworth. During that call, Mark explained that his investment is made to focus on areas the company feels are important, rather than simply focusing on what might be profitable. So, though he could push profitability faster by concentrating only on core operations like the server, this could result in cutting back development in other areas of importance. This is the reason that he's willing to fund Canonical for the next 3 to 5 years, instead of seeking profitability in possibly only 2 years.

Ubuntu Open Week

Ubuntu Open Week is now over, and what a week it was. If you didn't have a chance to attend, or missed a session you were looking forward to, the logs of the sessions have been posted. By going to the Ubuntu Open Week wiki page, you can get the logs.(scroll down to the schedule, and click on each session's title) Seven sessions were presented on each of the five days, with an additional bonus session on two of the days. The sessions covered a wide range of topics that even included a question and answer session with Mark Shuttleworth.

Jaunty: Open for development

The toolchain is now in shape, and Janunty is open for general development. Automatic syncs from Debian should begin shortly. It is expected that the first milestone will be in mid-November, and that the automatic syncs from Debian will cease towards the end of December, or early January. These dates are at best tentative considering UDS, and the Christmas holiday fall into the same time frame. It is not recommend that users upgrade to Jaunty at this time, however, developers wishing to get started are encouraged to do so provided they are comfortable with recovering from anything up to and including complete system failure.


Michael Casadevall (NCommander) is now a MOTU. Michael has been working mostly on FTBFS fixes, general packaging work, as well as improving REVU to make it more user friendly. He also is actively working to improve the ports kernel, and Ubuntu ports in general. Be sure to congratulate Michael on his new MOTU status. Launchpad: Wiki:

What about my bug

Leading up to the Ubuntu 8.10 release, Ubuntu developers and quality assurance engineers were very busy sorting bugs. They had to decide what could and should be fixed for the final release, and what would have to be set aside for the moment. They made these decisions by estimating the importance of each bug, identifying whether it was a regression or not, assessing the risk of potential fixes, and by applying their best judgment.

In September, the total number of open bugs in Ubuntu increased by only 70. While an increase doesn’t sound like much of an achievement, you have to consider the fact that in the same time period, 7,872 new bug reports were filed. The remaining 7,802, or over 99%, were resolved before the release.

The news isn’t all good, of course. There are currently over 46,000 open Ubuntu bug reports in Launchpad. Even at this impressive rate of throughput, and even if the team were to freeze all development, and stop accepting new bug reports entirely, it is estimated that it would take over half a year just to sift through the backlog of bug reports already received.

When 8.10 was released, some users were disappointed that it still had a bug which affected them. This is regrettable, but it is also unlikely to ever change. There will never be a release of Ubuntu which is entirely free of bugs, even though every non-critical bug is important to someone.

So, what do we do? 1.Prioritize bug reports effectively. 2.Measure performance objectively. 3.Improve incrementally. 4.Ensure that the most serious bugs are identified an fixed early in development. 5.Communicate about known bugs.

For a more detailed explanation of 1-5, please visit the link:

Relaunch of German UWN translation

Mathias Florian Menzer reports on the re-launch of the German translation of the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter. This is not a pure translation, as it is geared more toward the German community and is oriented more on news from the German news portals. The latest edition can be found at [Ed. Note: Welcome back, German translation!]


Occasionally, programs appear that would be better left undone for the good of everyone. Ultamatix is such a program. It's roots come from Automatix, a program most in the Ubuntu community shudder at remembering. Ultamatix is suppose to install applications and fixes to assist the "New User" experience with Ubuntu. A transitional tool. The bottom line is that, it does this in a dangerous, and potentially damaging way. Matthew Garrett was a nay sayer of Automatix, and after taking a closer look at the Ultamatix code, it became clear to him that it too has big problems. Any user, new or seasoned should bypass this application in favor of learning the proper way to install, and configure their system. Quick fixes aren't better, smart fixes are.

Ubuntu Stats

Bug Stats

  • Open (48204)+264 # over last week
  • Critical (19)+/-0 # over last week
  • Unconfirmed (20167)-218 # over last week
  • Unassigned (40012)+306 # over last week
  • All bugs ever reported (228707)+2542 # over last week

As always, the Bug Squad needs more help. If you want to get started, please see

Translation Stats Hardy

  • Spanish (19975)-533 # over last week
  • French (62059)+61 # over last week
  • Swedish (77110)-1349 # over last week
  • English (UK) (81453)-14 # over last week
  • Brazilian Portuguese (85342)-74 # over last week

Remaining strings to translate in Ubuntu 8.04 "Hardy Heron," see more at:

5-a-day bug stats

Top 5 contributors for the past 7 days

  • crimsun (190)
  • angusthefuzz (63)
  • charlie-tca (55)
  • chrisccoulson (55)
  • ember (30)

Top 5 teams for the past 7 days

  • dcteam (190)
  • ubuntu-us-ohio (63)
  • ubuntu-us-or (23)
  • ubuntu-berlin (21)
  • ubuntu-co (21)

5-A-Day stats provided by Daniel Holbach. See

LoCo News

Berlin Release Party

The team met in Berlin’s c-base (the sunken spaceship), and around 150-200 people showed up. There was a very busy schedule of interesting talks, and lots of chatting in the hallways. There were many interesting people, tons of excitement, hundreds of good questions, and an unequaled interest in more bug jams and packaging jams. Live entertainment by Techno followed the event which made for a rockin' good time.

Note: In last weeks UWN #115, we reported on a Ubuntu sighting on the Berlin Metro. Berlin Fenster, the company in charge of the announcement screens for the metro, ran announcements of the release party and specified the event as being for the Intrepid Ibex release. You can now see a picture of the screen announcement at the following link.

Report any Ubuntu sightings to the Ubuntu-news-team mailing list at: We will include your Ubuntu sighting in the next edition of the UWN. Don't forget to include a picture and a link to it when emailing the list.

Pennsylvania Release Party

The Ubuntu Pennsylvania LoCo held their release party in Philadelphia on the 1st of September. Like last year, they decided to celebrate the release with a Halloween costume party. The event was held at Drake Tavern in Jenkintown. Several members dressed up including Pleia2, who came as, who else, Leia. As a whole, the party was a blast, but a very unexpected event very early on almost made it end very quickly…(read about it at the link) In the end, everything worked out, and the event was a total success. Pictures here:

Colombian Team Release Party

The Colombian Team held it's release party on October 31st. Their description of the party is in Spanish, but it's easy to see that they enjoyed themselves, and had the opportunity to socialize. The site is in Spanish, but pictures are provided. More pictures here:

Ubuntu-ZA release parties

The Ubuntu-ZA team recently held release parties in Cape Town and Johannesburg. Both turned out quite good, but bringing together like-minded Ubuntu people is all that it takes to have a good release party. That and some chocolate cake to feed the masses. Pictures at the link.

Copenhagen release party

The Danish team celebrated the Intrepid Ibex release with Ubuntu Live! Held in the CBS auditorium, the whole day was dedicated to talks and installation help. One of the talks was by Leif Lodahl who has played a key role in the tv program Magasinet Penge about Open Source Software. Airing last week, the concept was: a typical Danish family of 4 (mother, father, and two kids) gets 3 new pc’s with Open Source Software installed. Will they be able to use their new computers, or will they cave in and go back to their Microsoft based computers? Of course they made it, and the family is now switching to Ubuntu for good. Members from the Danish Loco Team were also involved in the program. What was the effect of having Ubuntu mentioned on national television?...For the Danish team, it's been clear, the number of users of their forum has increased dramatically.

French release party scheduled for November

The French LoCo Team will be holding a release party over 2 days, Saturday, November 29th, and Sunday, November 30th. Included in the festivities will be a workshop where geeky, and experienced users will help beginners install, upgrade or configure their computers. There will also be a demonstration stand, 13 conferences, 2 classes, and a debate room to talk about free software topics. There will also be a room with 20 Intrepid Ibex computers, allowing people to discover Ubuntu first hand. The event will be covered by a French webradio called Oxyradio. The website for the party is

Launchpad News

Launchpad Developer Interview

Meet Graham Binns. Launchpad news brings us an interview with developer Graham Binns. Graham is one of the five developers on the Launchpad Bugs team, and works almost exclusively on the Launchpad Bug Tracker. Find out what he did before working at Canonical, how he got into free software, what other projects he's contributed to, some cool things about Launchpad, and even what socks is was wearing...?? If you still want to find out more, visit the link for the whole interview.

In The Press

  • The LXF Test: Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex) - Neil Bothwick of tests the latest incarnation of Ubuntu. Download options have increased, and the alternate install CD includes more options. A Mobile USB image option is now available for installation on netbooks, and installation includes tweaks to the partition manager. PPP, and 3G are now supported by NetworkManager. Intrepid uses Dell’s Dynamic Kernel Module Support (DKMS) allowing automatic rebuilding of any module required by the new kernel. Encrypted private directories are now supported, and a plugin for the Totem video player that supports BBC content is now included. According to Neil, overall Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex is a good, polished release geared toward improving the user experience.

  • Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex raises the bar - Jeremy LaCroix at gives his review of Ubuntu 8.10. Highlighted are the USB startup disk option, the desktop manager upgrades, and mobility and 3G support. Downsides include a 64-bit issue with gamepads & joysticks, and an Nvidia driver issue. His overall conclusion is that Intrepid is fast and stable. He also appreciates the new focus on mobility.

  • Shuttleworth in No Hurry to Make a Profit - Lesley Stones at comments on a press conference Mark Shuttleworth held last week where he confirmed that Canonical is not yet profitable. It was also brought up that Shuttleworth will continue to fund Canonical for another two to three years. Projections show that the company could become cash-positive within two years, by concentrating only on core operations like the server, however, this could result in cutting back development in other areas of importance

  • Ubuntu 7.04 to 8.10 Benchmarks: For their testing they used the final Intel 32-bit releases of the four most recent Ubuntu releases except for Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" where we used the Intrepid release candidate. They installed each of these releases with the same set of options, and identical configurations during testing. Several games, encoding sequences, and benchmarking programs were used to test the systems. Conclusion: In a number of these tests Ubuntu was slower with the newer releases on the same exact hardware and test configuration. There is quite a bit of testing going on within the free software community as it pertains to usability and compatibility, but not enough focus on performance.

    Note: The Ubuntu developers are already at work discussing this very issue. You can follow the link below to the developers mail archives and follow the discussion by clicking the "Next message" link after reading the current page.

In The Blogosphere

  • Ubuntu 8.10 First Tryout - Dj Walker-Morgan looks at Ubuntu 8.10, and finds some almost bleeding edge internals. Like the 2.6.27 kernel, and the latest graphics subsystem, but he also found some of the desktop components to be slightly older than he expected. For example, Canonical went with OpenOffice 2.4 in Ubuntu 8.10, but points out that this may be because Canonical uses an OpenOffice build from the Go-OO project. Dj then tested Ubuntu 8.10 on a Dell Dimension 530S desktop system, and ran into some problems with the stock video driver causing his screen to go blank. Upgrading to the restricted driver fixed the problem. Other problems continued to crop up on the Dell such as the inability to use guest mode, suspend and hibernate not working, and so on. These same functions however, worked fine for Dj on his Eee PC though.

  • Do you really need to install Intrepid Ibex (Ubuntu Linux 8.10)? - David M Williams says "Ubuntu fans rejoice, Intrepid Ibex is here. But what are the main differences between Ubuntu 8.04 LTS, and Ubuntu 8.10? Williams created virtual machines with a fresh install of Ubuntu 8.04 LTS on one, and Ubuntu 8.10 in the other. He compared the packages installed side by side to see what the true differences were. 8.10 uses the latest kernel, and there have been updates to GNOME, OpenOffice, Compiz, and others. An "auto sign in" option is now present when installing, and a pre-configured guest account is there for visitor access to your computer. There is also a built-it encrypted folder to protect sensitive data, and the latest NetworkManager with support for 3G connectivity. Overall, Williams finds that if you have hardware that is unsupported in Ubuntu 8.04 LTS, then you should upgrade to Ubuntu 8.10. Otherwise you may wish to stick with Ubuntu 8.04 LTS.

  • Ubuntu 8.10 Charges Up the Mountain - Justin Ryan tells us the hot story of the week is the release of Ubuntu 8.10, Intrepid Ibex, but this release comes with more than just a flashy name. It includes the new 2.6.27 kernel, and 7.4 which was released in September after months of delays. Improved hot-plugging for keyboards, mice, and other input peripherals, a fail-safe mechanism to troubleshoot start-up glitches, and for many people the end of the xorg.conf configuration file. The latest GNOME (2.24) which includes a tabbed interface for Nautilus, improvements to File Roller, XRandR 1.2, and the latest version of Empathy. Network Manager 0.7 brings the much-anticipated addition of 3G support. The BBC has teamed up with Canonical to provide a Totem plugin to allow Ubuntu users access to BBC content. The offerings from the BBC are limited at this time, but by teaming up with Canonical is a step in the right direction.

  • Ubuntu 8.10 - All Hail new Network Manager - Scott Gilbertson states that Intrepid Ibex isn't a long-term release, but for Ubuntu desktop fans, version 8.10 makes is a worthwhile upgrade. People who've upgraded from Ubuntu 8.04 LTS may be scratching their heads wondering what all the fuss is about, and it may take a few days before a Hardy user appreciates the small tweaks, and overall streamlining in 8.10. In his opinion, the big changes are to NetworkManager, and You can now manage wired, wireless, and 3G connections all in one spot. Another nice touch is that network setup via NetworkManager starts during boot up. The new NetworkManager is a huge win for Ubuntu, and it offers the slickest, simplest network setup tools that Gilbertson has seen in a Linux distro. Overall, this is a strong update for Ubuntu, and as with all Ubuntu releases, there's a new version of Kubuntu and other derivatives as well.

  • Is Ubuntu killing other distributions? - Sam Varghese of ITWire responds to a blog entry by Mandriva employee Adam Williamson. It appears there are other distributions who are trying to guise their envy under a veil of concern for GNU/Linux as a whole. One could dismiss such sentiments as baloney, which is probably the right thing to do, but a cursory examination is needed, if only to highlight some of the peculiarities of the FOSS community. Varghese states that he is not a great fan of Canonical and Ubuntu, but he finds Williamson's reasoning to be silly.

  • Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex raises the bar - Each new Ubuntu release has raised the standard by which other Linux distros are judged. With the new Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex, the focus is on mobility and 3G network support. Ubuntu's new focus on mobility seemes to have paid off. The integrated wireless network adapter, audio, volume keys, and even the video card were all detected perfectly, and worked without a hitch right from the first boot. There were no problems hibernating, or suspending. Intrepid ran very fast on this bloggers laptop and desktop, with speed equal to or slightly greater than the previous release. Intrepid had big shoes to fill after Hardy, and ended up doing a pretty decent job. Overall, Intrepid is fast and stable, and the new focus on mobility is well appreciated.

  • Taking a Break with Ubuntu 8.10 - Sometimes its nice to take a break, and goof around with an OS according to Tarn Aeluin. He had used RedHat, SuSE, and Fedora, but there’s a lot of buzz around Ubuntu. Visually, the graphics are pretty nice, and from a usability perspective its really a very nice system - easier than Windows or Fedora. He quickly figured out how to change his desktop, and get his WiFi and bluetooth device working. Power management functions, and battery indicators are all working right out of the box. The Add/Remove Applications program is pretty slick, and works well. He was able to easily install programs correctly, and without the usual dependency nightmare common to other linux distros. According to Tarn, if you’re looking for a top-notch user friendly distro to replace a Windows license, or to put on a new machine, then look at Ubuntu first.

In Other News

Ubuntu Podcast: Episode #11

Josh Chase and Nick Ali, members of the Ubuntu Georgia US LoCo have been publishing a videocast.

The current episode includes:

  • 8.10 is out!
  • Ubuntu Georgia 8.10 Installfest
  • Order your Ubuntu 8.10 CDs from ShipIt

  • Matt Zimmerman, Canonical CTO interesting post about bugs
  • Ubuntu get slower?
  • Mark Shuttleworth interview with media and analysts
  • 8.10 includes a totem plugin to play BBC audio
  • Spread Ubuntu Alpha .1
  • Obama campaign using Ubuntu?
  • Dell 12” Mini Inspiron released in Japan

IBM Lotus Adds Ubuntu Support To Symphony Apps

Expanding its efforts to offer an alternative to Microsoft's Office desktop applications, IBM is making its free Lotus Symphony office productivity suite available for Canonical's Ubuntu Linux. Michael Karasick, director of IBM Lotus China Development Labs, says that support for Ubuntu is a good example of IBM's long-term commitment to the open source community, and to critical standards like the Open Document format. IBM also unveiled a roadmap for Symphony for 2009, that includes developing the application set entirely on the OpenDocument Format 1.2, and OpenOffice 3.0 code base. They also intend to add more than 60 new features to the software.

TimeVault Simplifies Data Backup for Ubuntu Users

Kurt Edelbrock on reviews TimeVault, a backup utility specifically for Ubuntu. Users are able to define which directories to include and/or exclude, and the rest is taken care of via a snapshot of your data. Snapshots can be automated, and can be set to expire given specific conditions. Data restoration can be accomplished via the Snapshot browser, allowing the user to display the time line of all snapshots, and the data included in each. TimeVault is integrated into Nautilus, allowing a user to right-click on a file, then select the previous version tab under properties to restore an older version of a file.

Upcoming Meetings and Events

Monday, November 10, 2008

LoCo Council Meeting

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Server Team Meeting

Kernel Team Meeting

  • Start: 17:00 UTC
  • End: 18:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: Not listed as of publication

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Ubuntu-us-pa LoCo Team Meeting

  • Start: 12:30 UTC
  • End: 13:30 UTC
  • Location: IRC channel #ubuntu-us-pa
  • Agenda: None as of publication

QA Team Meeting

Platform Team Meeting

  • Start: 22:00 UTC
  • End: 23:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: None listed as of publication

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Ubuntu Mobile Team Meeting

  • Start: 12:00 UTC
  • End: 13:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: None listed as of publication

Desktop Team Meeting

Ubuntu Java Meeting

  • Start: 14:00 UTC
  • End: 15:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: None listed as of publication

Friday, November 14, 2008

South Dakota LoCo Team Meeting

Updates and Security for 6.06, 7.10, 8.04, and 8.10

Security Updates

Ubuntu 6.06 Updates

Ubuntu 7.10 Updates

Ubuntu 8.04 Updates

Ubuntu 8.10 Updates

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Additional Ubuntu News

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UbuntuWeeklyNewsletter/Issue116 (last edited 2008-11-10 14:34:13 by c-71-56-103-64)