Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue #48 for the week July 8th - July 14th, 2007. In this issue we cover the imminent release of the next Gutsy Gibbon alpha release, Tribe 3. Mark Shuttleworth also brings us some some fresh open alternatives with Gobuntu and a proposal for a pure free-software-only laptop, the Launchpad people have released and open sources their first component, Scribes Team is highlighted for the hard work, and much much more.

UWN Translations

In This Issue

  • Gutsy Tribe 3 expected this week
  • Gobuntu, free-flavored version launched
  • Willing to buy a free-software-only laptop?
  • Launchpad unleashes a Storm
  • Interview of the Week with Jerome Gotangco
  • In The Press and In the Blogosphere
  • Team of the week: Scribes Team
  • New weekly Translation stats!
  • Bug Stats

General Community News

Gutsy Tribe 3 expected this week

The Gutsy Gibbon Tribe 3 release, the 3rd alpha release in the development cycle for the 7.10 release should come out on Thursday of this week, the 19th. In anticipation of this release, Sarah Hobbs reminds developers to go squash bugs. The Marketing Team is also looking for volunteers with their Tribe 3 release page, which can be found at

Gobuntu launched

Mark Shuttleworth has announced the creation of a completely Free flavour of Ubuntu, called Gobuntu in his blog this week. He said it will contain no non-free firmware, binary drivers or similar non-free material, including content. The first test cd is out now and it is expected that Gobuntu will be released alongside all the other flavours of Ubuntu, such as Kubuntu and Edubuntu with the upcoming 7.10 release. You can read more at and download the first test iso at

Willing to buy a free-software-only laptop?

Mark Shuttleworth blogs this week:

"With projects like Gobuntu and gNewSense aiming to provide a platform that is zealous about free software, the obvious question is “where can I run it?”. And right now, as far as laptops go, there are no good answers. Pretty much any laptop you can buy today needs some sort of non-free bits to make the most of its hardware, putting you in the tricky position of having to choose between hardware usefulness and software freedom.". A wiki page has been started to sketch out the components and specifications for a laptop that would meet the requirements: and read the whole post at:

New in Gutsy Gibbon

GPG and S/MIME signing and encryption in Kmail

Kmail/Kontact will now install all required dependencies for e-mail signing and encryption. For new installations/users Gnupg will be configured to support this (existing users will still need to configure Gnupg to use-agent). Details are available in the community documentation:

Launchpad News

Launchpad unleashes a Storm

Canonical announced the release of the first open source component of Launchpad, Storm, a generic open source object relational mapper (ORM) for Python. Storm is designed to support communication with multiple databases simultaneously. "Storm is an ORM that simplifies the development of database-backed applications in Python, especially for projects that use very large databases or multiple databases with a seamless web front-end", said Gustavo Niemeyer, lead developer of Storm at Canonical. "Storm is particularly designed to feel very natural to Python programmers, and exposes multiple databases as stores in a clean and easy to use fashion." The Storm project welcomes participation, and has a new website at That site includes a tutorial, and links to allow developers to download, report bugs and join the mailing list.

Interview of the Week

This week we interview Jerome Gotangco, member of the Ubuntu Community Council.

UWN Reporter: Since when have you been member of the Ubuntu community?

Jerome Gotangco: I could say I've been formally part of it since early 2005 but I have been a regular user since 2004 and started contributing by the end of that year.

UWN: What do you think the next year will look like for Ubuntu?

JG: There have been many sub-projects within Ubuntu that is slowly gaining momentum and I believe these sub-projects like Upstart, the always improving Gnome-App-Install, Ubuntu Mobile, the revived Server initiatives among others will further establish the Ubuntu project as a whole, as a major factor in free and open source usage and development.

UWN: What do you think can be improved in the Ubuntu community?

JG: There have been many improvements within the Ubuntu community for the past 2 years, but if there is one thing that can be improved greatly is the relationship between the general Ubuntu community and the business backer which is Canonical. While there has been work to get community involved with a lot of things deep within the development of Ubuntu, there are still certain areas that need clarification on where the lines between community and business interests are vague. Fortunately, Mark (being the SABDFL) has been very open within us in the Council on how some areas of business will work with community and vise-versa. It's still a work in progress, but we expect to have something more solid in the coming weeks. Also note that non-Canonical employed Community Council members are now the majority compared before, so we're taking this one step at a time.

UWN: What are you most active in the community?

JG: I'm mostly involved with translation and bug triage now, but a year or two ago, I used to be very active in Edubuntu and the Philippine Local Community Team. Sadly, my new work has made me so busy, but I'm glad to say that my current career is one that involves R&D with Open Source as the development model (usually under Apache License 2.0) and an Apache project nonetheless, so hopefully we can make things easier for Ubuntu users in the coming months. However I still do test snapshots especially when its close to release and that is one of the very very good ways to contribute back to any free software or open source project - test, test and test!

In The Press

  • "Kubuntu - easily the best operating system from the Linux stable" says Times of India - Saying that while there is a lot of talk about Vista and OS X, more people should look into the many improvements made to the Linux operating systems in the past few years. They point out that Kubuntu is easy to install, has a great multimedia player in Amarok, and other features such as Katapult and AdeptManager. They are also eager to point out that while there are around 60,000 know virus threats to Windows, only around 40 are known for Linux, and most of those are in the laboratory and not widespread. So Anti-Virus programs are unnecessary.

  • "First Open Source component of Launchpad!" On July 9, 2007 Canonical Ltd announced the release of Storm, an object relational mapper or ORM for Python. This generic open source mapper is designed to support communications with multiple databases simultaneously, and is the first open source component of Canonical's development program, better known as Launchpad. Development took more than a year and is now publicly available under the LGPL license. Steve Alexander, Launchpad Product Manager at Canonical says that Storm's API is clear and well designed, making it a joy to work with. The ability to scale Storm's architecture are important to ensure that Launchpad continues to grow in proportion to the number of Launchpad users, which now numbers in the tens of thousands of developers, translators and other free software contributors. The Storm project has a new web site here: Storm and includes a tutorial and links to downloads, bug reporting and of course the mailing list.

  • Implemented from Dell's Ideastrom: Ubuntu Dell is Le$$ Than Windows Dell Similarly equipped Dell Insprion 1420 notebooks, one loaded with the Ubuntu operating system and the other loaded with Vista, show a price difference of $50. The Ubuntu model is priced at $774 and the Vista model at $824. The Dell ideastorm was implemented to get input from the public on what they wanted to see from Dell. The response was that more of us wanted to see the option of Ubuntu as an operating system instead of Windows.

  • Ubuntu: Taking Over the Linux World! As submitted by Matt Hartley in madpenguin, it's going to be an Ubuntu future. While he likes other distros, the numbers show that Ubuntu has won the hearts of the common users. The three closest competitors are Debian, Fedora and SuSE, but he questions whether they are moving forward at a quick enough pace to keep up with Ubuntu. And even though Ubuntu hasn't gotten everything right, it has completely eclipsed the competition as a user friendly desktop alternative.

  • Ubuntu is built with proprietary software! But Ubuntu is open source, right? Jem Matzan of The Jem Report tells us that most of Ubuntu is, but there are small parts that are not. Proprietary hardware drivers are necessary no matter what hardliners tend to say. But one thing that stands out as hypocritical, to this author, is the Ubuntu stance on its developments tools known as Launchpad, which are proprietary. To make money and protect against others developing a private or modified version is, according to the author, a sanguine viewpoint.

  • Chief Executive Officer of Canonical, Mark Shuttleworth, has announced the availability of a test version of Gobuntu. This new version from Ubuntu will be free of proprietary software such as video drivers that until now were needed to enable accelerated 3D graphics. In his blog he calls for developers who are interested in pushing the limits of content and code freedom to join the team. Identifying where to separate the pieces that don't belong in Gobuntu, from the standard Ubuntu build, will be one of the teams first tasks.

  • Totally "free" Ubuntu? That's the plan for Gobuntu. Shirl Kennedy of writes that on his blog, Mark Shuttleworth who founded Ubuntu, announced a new "freedom-focused flavor of Ubuntu". The goal will be to deliver an operating system that is devoid of any proprietary software. Shuttleworth's blog calls for developers who are interested in pushing the limits of content and code freedom, including firmware, content, and authoring infrastructure, to join the team. The initial focus of the team will be to work on hardware drivers that are in many cases closed source in the standard Ubuntu builds. While some in the Ubuntu community are skeptical, Mark Shuttleworth says that he sees Gobuntu becoming more distinct from Ubuntu as the project evolves.

  • A brief review of Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 Tribe 2 by says that although he received some error messages during install, the end result was a smooth and sexy installation. Something he has come to expect from Ubuntu releases. Video codecs and internet connectivity, also got a thumbs up. He goes on to state that the new Xorg. 7.3 should support monitors on a plug and play basis, thus simpliflying the process of multiply monitor setups. Like most people, Seopher is really looking forward to the inclusion of Comp-Fusion, the 3D desktop that comes from the merger of Compiz and Beryl.

  • Steven Vaughan-Nichols of writes that a recent pricing oversight by Dell caused an outrage by Ubuntu Linux buyers. It seems that a price comparison of the Ispiron 1420 laptops showed the Ubuntu version was $225 more than the same laptop with Vista Home Basic Edition. The week before Dell had announced that the Ubuntu systems would be $50 cheaper than similar Vista systems. A Dell spokesman stated that the problem occurred when they offered several free upgrades with the Vista System and didn't adjust the Ubuntu system to correspond with this free offer. He also said Dell would reset the pricing to reflect the appropriate levels.,1895,2158045,00.asp

  • According to Alexander Wolfe of Information Week, the argument that Linux is really better than Windows, is a myth that should be filed under the heading of 'urban legend'. He goes on to state that while Linux has most if not all of the key business apps necessary for the transition, the configuration and maintenance needed are simply to difficult for the average person to deal with. That Windows is good, or at least good enough, is a compelling argument for not making the transition according to Wolfe. He links another article he authored titled Ubuntu Linux's Achilles' Heel: It's Tough To Install On Laptops. In that article, he devotes 5 pages to the trials and tribulations of trying to install Ubuntu on a Dell laptop.

  • A rating of 7.3, or very good, was what Robert Vamosi of CNET gave Ubuntu 7.04 in a software review published by zdnet. His verdict states that while this Ubuntu version is a great leap forward for Linux, and a wonderful operating system, many day to day users will still have problems with the incompatibility of certain popular software applications. On the pro side of the equation, he states that being free, the ability to read and save Windows or Mac office files and the preinstalled applications for web browsing, multimedia, VoIP and OpenOffice weigh heavily in Ubuntu's favor. On the con side, the inability to run some of the most popular software applications, experimental 3D desktop effects, wireless and web cam driver problems and inconsistent day to day reliability on their desktop machine were problems.,1000001098,39288016,00.htm

In The Blogosphere

  • Ubuntu Member - Aaron Toponce, gives us a helping hand at managing IRC Client irssi, which is a very powerful command line IRC Client. Aaron has adapted a script that helps him more easily control of his op functions in IRC Channels. This script uses alias to help simplify op commands in irssi. He hopes that others will help him extend the script to make it more useful. If you are a IRC Channel op, who uses irssi, you should should be sure to follow the link to Aaron's blog and consider bookmarking it since it is very informative. irssi script by Aaron Toponce

  • Ubuntu Member - Steve Stalcup (aka Vorian), brings us installation instructions on the newest and greatest in 3D desktops, Comp-Fusion. Comp-Fusion is the merger between Compiz and Beryl and will be a feature in the Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon release. But who wants to wait, when you can have it now! I've been using Comp-Fusion and Vorian's repositories for a couple of weeks now, and it is solid on my machine. So, if you can't wait, click on the link below to visit Steve's blog (don't forget to bookmark it!) and start having some fun. The Machine Crusade - Comp-Fusion - By Steve Stalcup

Developer News

Daniel Holbach reminded all package uploaders of the requirements for uploading completely new source packages, saying that the archive admins, who process new packages are quite pleased with the overall quality and that license and copyright issues were among the biggest issues. You can read the full requirements at

Lucas Nussbaum, a MOTU and a Debian Developer, asked on ubuntu-devel if bug reporters from Ubuntu to Debian could tag with a BTS (the Debian bug tracking system) usertag. He mentioned that it would help remedy the concern that "Ubuntu never submits patches" and "Debian never merges Ubuntu patches" as these things could be tracked. Further, it would provide a "soft incentive", according to Lucas, for Ubuntu to contribute back to Debian. You can read the full proposal at

Daniel Holbach further reported on a new tool for maintaining packages in bzr, called bzr-unpack, which allows the packager to change files and then have the changes automatically created into a /debian directory. You can read more about how to use it at

Meetings and Events

Monday, July 16, 2007

Forum Council Meeting

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Ubuntu Server Team

  • Start: 15:00 UTC
  • End: 16:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC Channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: Server Team Agenda

Technical Board Meeting

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Edubuntu Meeting

  • Start: 20:00 UTC
  • End: 22:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC Channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: Edubuntu Agenda

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Ubuntu Development Team Meeting

  • Start: 20:00 UTC
  • End: 22:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC Channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: No agenda set as of this publication

Saturday, July 27, 2007

Ubuntu US Teams Meeting

  • Start: 16:00 UTC
  • End: 18:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC Channel #ubuntu-us
  • Agenda: US Teams Agenda

Community Spotlight

Team of the week: Scribes Team

The aim of the Scribes Team is to help augment and enhance the archiving of Ubuntu community meetings/events, and provide summaries of meetings in a consistent and concise format. They work to make easy summaries from available irc logs, and create central repository of all logs and summaries. The Scribes Team has developed "Mootbot", which was designed as a Chairperson for meetings. A chairperson can flag parts of the meeting for specific topics, actions, and agreed resolutions, which will be outputted into a HTML, Plaintext, or Wiki Formatted document to enable easier browsing of the IRC chat logs. They need more help, so if you have some spare time, check out their launchpad page:

Updates and security for 6.06, 6.10, and 7.04

Security Updates

Ubuntu 6.06 LTS Updates

Ubuntu 6.10 Updates

Ubuntu 7.04 Updates

Bug Stats

  • Open (30531) +166 # over last week
  • Critical (23) -1 # over last week
  • Unconfirmed (15145) +162 # over last week
  • Unassigned (22785) +183 # over last week
  • All bugs ever reported (109445) +1622 # over last week

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

Translation Stats

  1. Spanish (26816) +0 # over last week
  2. French (38825) +0 # over last week
  3. Swedish (54498) +0 # over last week
  4. English(UK) (60225) +0 # over last week
  5. German (63107) +0 # over last week

Remaining string to translate in Ubuntu 7.10 "Gutsy Gibbon", see more at:

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Additional Ubuntu News

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Thank you for reading the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter.

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