Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue #58 for the week September 16th - September 22th, 2007. In this issue we cover the Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 beta release, new MOTU members, new Launchpad release, Software Freedom Day organized by the Ubuntu Nicaragua Team, and, as always, much much more!

In This Issue

  • Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 Beta Release
  • New MOTU Members: Cesare Tirabassi and Travis Watkins
  • Launchpad 1.1.9 Released
  • Launchpad Privacy Policy
  • Ubuntu Nicaragua Organizes Software Freedom Day
  • In The Press and In the Blogosphere
  • Meetings and Events
  • Updates and security for 6.06, 6.10, and 7.04
  • Translation stats
  • Bug Stats

General Community News

Gutsy Gibbon 7.10 Beta Release

We are now one week from the beta release of 7.10 and have just entered beta freeze. During the freeze, all uploads to main must be approved by a member of the release team, so if you have fixes which are important to get in, please do get in touch as soon as possible. Uploads to universe require a manual shove, but are not subject to release management approval. Issues which are important for the beta release will be tracked by the release team here: See

New MOTU Members: Cesare Tirabassi and Travis Watkins

The MOTU team is pleased to welcome Cesare Tirabassi and Travis Watkins as Ubuntu Developers. Both have put lots of work into Ubuntu. Cesare has helped out the MOTU team in various ways and Travis wrote alacarte (aka smeg) and is now busy with the compiz team.

Launchpad News

Launchpad 1.1.9 Released

  • New "remote" branches: register a remote branch if you want Launchpad to monitor it and link to its code-browser but you don't want Launchpad to import the branch itself. Ideal for security related branches.
  • bzr+ssh is now the recommended way to upload a branch to Launchpad. sftp is still available.
  • We've updated the PPA terms of service to allow for a wider range of free and open licences.
  • You can now search for Incomplete bugs based on whether they've had a response or not.
  • If you add a bug watch in an external tracker that Launchpad doesn't already know about, you can add the new bug tracker at the same time.
  • Upstream projects now have a view to show all bugs that need to be forwarded to that project from a distribution.
  • All of a project's translation files are downloadable in a single tarball.
  • KDE plurals and context strings are now supported in translation imports and exports.

There's plenty more in this release. Read the full details at: Subscribe to the Launchpad News blog to read about more about these new features:

Launchpad Privacy Policy

The Launchpad team have also introduced a new Privacy and Data Retention policy that covers the relationship between Launchpad and its users. The full thing is at: The policy describes the ways in which Launchpad uses and retains data, including:

  • gathering data
  • using cookies
  • collecting and using data
  • allowing for data removal and account closure.

The Launchpad team report that the policy formalizes what they already do and so is not a change to the way they use data. If you're a Launchpad user, they suggest you read the policy and send any questions to If you'd like to receive notifications of updates to the policy, you can subscribe to the Launchpad News notification feed at

In The Press

  • Preview: Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon, GNOME 2.20 (By: Thom Holwerda) - I upgraded my laptop's Ubuntu Feisty installation to Gutsy a few days ago. The upgrade process went completely awry, though, so I was forced to do a fresh install. Not a bad thing, as it gave me the opportunity to take a look at Ubuntu's soon-to-be-released Gutsy Gibbon with GNOME 2.20. This new release of course comes bundled with the latest GNOME release (2.20), and hence, many of the changes are courtesy not of Ubuntu, but of the GNOME team. And even though I often criticize the GNOME team for not having a plan for the future, that does not mean I do not like GNOME the way it is. And with the recent 2.20 release, they have done a really good job at introducing more polish into the desktop environment. The first thing I like about the new GNOME release is the stunning new version of Clearlooks. Even though Ubuntu does not use it by default (it of course defaults to Human), it does include it in the default installation. Couple the new Clearlooks with Compiz Fusion (now included by default in Ubuntu, and configurable via that same Appearances dialog), and you are looking at a desktop which easily rivals both Vista and OSX when it comes to bling. If you want to add more bling, or want more control, be sure to do a sudo apt-get install compiz-config-settings-manager. A recommended plug in (and now a personal must for yours truly) is the Expo plug in. This will show all sides of your desktop cube in a row, with a nice subtle reflection, allowing you to switch between them, and drag applications from one desktop to another. GNOME 2.20 also finally fixes a very, very, old bug: the buttons in the task bar applet would change size at will, dependent on how many windows you had open, the names of the windows, the position of Jupiter compared to Venus, and so on. This bug has now finally been fixed, and the buttons will not resize at will anymore. In addition, there is now an X configuration applet in Ubuntu. If there is one thing many people have been begging for ever since Ubuntu began its march to the top, it is this one. Apart from configuring drivers for your video card and monitor, you can also manage dual-screen properties from this panel. Overall, I am simply extremely impressed by the new GNOME and the upcoming Ubuntu release. You can see the developers have put a lot of effort into not just cramming in new features, but also making sure that existing features work and look better.

  • SUPERGUIDE: The Open Source Challenge. How to replace Windows completely with Ubuntu - We all know how far open source software has progressed, but has it come so far to not only challenge Windows, but replace it? Can you really install Linux and open source software in place of Windows, and want for nothing? Ashton Mills takes on the challenge of using nothing but Linux and open source software... for absolutely everything. Will he find nirvana in the process, or lose all his hair in frustration? Follow him in and find out.

  • Divining from the Entrails of Ubuntu's Gutsy Gibbon - According to the 2007 Desktop survey, Ubuntu is the distribution of choice for 30% of GNU/Linux users. The exact figure is questionable, but Ubuntu's dominance is not. For an increasing number of people, Ubuntu is GNU/Linux. Yet, looking at the pre-releases of Gutsy Gibbon, Ubuntu 7.10, I found myself becoming disturbed by the degree to which this popularity has translated into uncritical acceptance. Make no mistake -- due to the energy that the Ubuntu community and Canonical, its corporate arm, have put into improving the desktop, this popularity is well-deserved. Yet, at the same time, I find myself wondering whether user-friendliness must inevitably mean discouraging users from exploring their systems or taking firm control over them. This question keep nagging me each time I installed, went through the selection of preloaded software, explored the desktop, installed new software, or examined security. Only once or twice did I find a balance between accessibility to newcomers and a feature set for advanced users. At times, too, I wondered whether the popularity might be preventing Ubuntu from finishing some rough edges.

  • Getting Started With Linux - Linux is hot again. In fact, there's never been a better time for Microsoft Windows users to give Linux a whirl. The OS is more usable than ever, easier to install, and more compatible with PC hardware. It still helps to be somewhat tech-savvy to get the most out of Linux, but that's no longer a major requirement. This year, something else has happened that always seems to spur interest in alternative OSs: Microsoft released a new OS of its own. Possibly because upgrading to Vista costs money, or maybe just because getting a new OS reawakens PC users' enjoyment of experimenting with new software, Linux is cool again. With the tips and resources we give you in this story, you'll be better acquainted with Linux and have the guts to get started. We'll set you up with the right distro for beginners, a slew of apps, and valuable tips to keep you on track. For this article, we've chosen the popular Ubuntu — the same Ubuntu that now comes installed on some new Dell systems — as a demonstration distro, but several others are easy to recommend.,2933,297501,00.html

  • Six Top Linux Distributions - You want distros, you got 'em. In fact, you've got more than you can possibly handle. Ultimately, you'll stick with only one, but while you're figuring out which one that is you have nothing to lose. Do yourself a favor and install only one at a time, unless you have a good third-party boot manager and you know how to use it. Ubuntu: Our recommendation for beginners, this extremely popular distro has a default GNOME front end, installs quickly and easily and comes with reliable partitioning software. It's also available as Kubuntu if you prefer working in KDE. Available as a single-CD installation. Next 5 in order of appearance: Mandriva, Fedora Core, Slackware, Freespire, and OpenSUSE.,2933,297509,00.html

  • All Macedonian students to use Linux desktops - The One Laptop per Child's XO, better known as the $100 laptop, gets most of the headlines but NComputing is showing in Macedonia, with its Ubuntu Linux based servers and virtual PC terminals, that there's more than one way to get inexpensive Linux desktops into students' hands. NComputing announced this week that its multi-user virtual desktop software and low-cost virtual PC terminals will be used to equip every school child in the Republic of Macedonia, formerly part of Yugoslavia, with a Linux desktop. The national undertaking will standardize all schools around a single technology platform, the "Computer for Every Child" project of the Macedonia Ministry of Education and Science. All together Macedonia will deploy 180,000 NComputing-enabled workstation seats, enough to provide virtually every elementary and secondary school student in the nation with his or her own classroom computing device. When completed, Macedonia's Computer for Every Child initiative will have deployed approximately 160,000 NComputing virtual PC terminals and 20,000 NComputing enabled PCs (which each also support a student on the attached monitor) running Ubuntu. Besides Ubuntu 7.04, each NComputing server/PC comes with NComputing's Terminal Server software and Open Office, Firefox, Thunderbird, Evolution, and Wine.

  • Ubuntu Mobile gets ready to roll - Can't wait until the middle of next year to get your hands on a Linux-powered ultra-mobile device? Then track down one of Samsung's Q1 Ultra UMPCs and you can load up an alpha build of Ubuntu Mobile. It's actually a ‘pre-alpha' release - the official alpha will arrive on October 18, alongside Ubuntu's 7.10 ‘Gutsy Gibbon' edition, while the final release will accompany Ubuntu 8.04 ‘Hardy Heron' on April 24, 2008. The timetable was revealed during one of Intel's many Linux-UMPC sessions at this week's IDF techfest, where the Ubuntu Mobile alpha was already running on almost all UMPCs and ‘mobile Internet devices' seen around the floor. The Ubuntu Mobile core is based on the primary Ubuntu core, with additions by Intel's set of ‘Moblin' Linux core tweaks for mobile Internet devices plus the GNOME Mobile desktop environment (as opposed to the traditional GNOME desktop intended for, well, desktops and their kin). This in turn builds on the Hildon UI and ‘widget' layer which Nokia developed for their N770 and N800 Internet tablets and subsequently pushed upstream to GNOME, to deliver a consistent look and fee, hopefully shaped by Intel's own MID UI guidelines.

In The Blogosphere

  • Dell's Desktop Linux Strategy: So Far, So Good - That statement sums up Dell's (DELL) current desktop Linux strategy, which focuses heavily on the Ubuntu operating system from Canonical. Dell insiders tell me customer reaction to the company's Ubuntu PCs, introduced in June, has been good. Even so, Dell representatives are careful not to hype the machines. Here's why. "You've got to crawl before you can walk and run," says John Hull, a Linux OS development manager at Dell. "We're still at the crawling stage with consumer [Linux] systems." As a result, speculation about Dell preparing an Ubuntu marketing campaign appears premature. Hull is quick to note that Dell focuses on multiple desktop Linux distributions. While Dell introduced its first Ubuntu PCs this past summer, the company also offers Red Hat Linux on workstations and recently announced plans to offer Novell's SuSE Linux on PCs in China. But in the US, most of the recent desktop Linux buzz has focused around Ubuntu. Overall, the user reaction to Dell's Ubuntu PCs and notebooks "has been good," says Hull. "There obviously are some bugs and it is rough around the edges" when it comes to some drivers and selected application issues. In fact, Hull sounds like he largely agrees with Walt Mossberg's recent analysis of Ubuntu for The Wall Street Journal, in which Mossberg credited Ubuntu for its recent advancements but concluded the operating system wasn't ready for broad consumer adoption. Looking ahead, Dell is testing Gutsy Gibbon -- a major Ubuntu upgrade slated for delivery in October. "We have weekly calls with Canonical," says Hull. "We're actively involved in testing the Tribe release and we're looking at hardware support and the overall customer experience." The bottom line: Give Dell credit. The company is taking baby steps in the consumer Linux desktop market with Ubuntu before most of its major US rivals. And Dell embraced Ubuntu the very same year Microsoft shipped Windows Vista. Michael Dell is making a strong statement that Dell wants to support customer choice. Even though Dell isn't quite ready to market the heck out of the Ubuntu PCs, the company's decision to support Ubuntu is a win for shareholders, consumers and the PC industry as a whole.

Meetings and Events

Monday, September 24, 2007

Screencast Team Meeting

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Server Team Meeting

Kernel Team Meeting

Technical Board Meeting

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Edubuntu Meeting

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Gutsy Beta Release

  • Start: 00:00 UTC
  • End: 23:59 UTC

Desktop Team Development Meeting

  • Start: 12:00 UTC
  • End: 13:00 UTC
  • Location: IRC channel #ubuntu-meeting
  • Agenda: No agenda set as of this publication

Community Coucil Meeting

Community Spotlight

Ubuntu-ni Loco Team Report

The Ubuntu-ni LoCo Team together with the Nicaraguan GNU/Linux Users Group organized our first Software Freedom Day on September 13th in Managua, Nicaragua.


  • The opening conference; "Free educational software" by the youngest members of the Ubuntu Nicaragua Loco Team (Sharon Gómez [1] and Elkrin Mayorga [2], both 12 years old) was one of the highlights of the whole event. They presented G-compris and Tux Paint.
  • Gerald Lanzas from Ubuntu Nicaragua presented "Linux in the education". This conference had the participation (via VoIP) of Luis Sepúlveda from the Edulinux project in Chile.
  • Edgar Guzman [3] (16 years old), from Ubuntu Guatemala talked about the "Linux Terminal Server Project" and presented some thin clients with Ubuntu.
  • In the afternoon there were several conferences on programming languages; Aldo Villagra from Ubuntu Nicaragua with "Ruby on Rails", Celvin Rivas from Ubuntu El Salvador with "Java" and Edgar Martinez, also from Ubuntu El Salvador, with "Python". The last conference was presented by Alejandro Rodriguez, "LDAP + Postfix" from NUI Nicaragua.
  • The closing event was an open discussion about technology, particularly the implementation of free and open source software in Central America.

Other activities

  • There was an installfest area, distribution and burning stations, testing area with some Ubuntu computers, a multimedia area and an infoscreen.
  • The first meeting of the Central American Ubuntu LoCo Teams (mini-Ubucon) was held on the same day with the participation of team members and leaders from El Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua. The discussion centered around the situation of the Ubuntu teams and the FOSS community in Central America and agreements to continue working together to grow the respective communities.

Some numbers:

  • 500+ people attended the SFD Nicaragua 2007
  • 500+ Ubuntu flyers were handed out
  • 150 Ubuntu CDs
  • 20 installs of Ubuntu

We had some media exposure as well [4]

  • 4 TV interviews
  • 5 articles in local newspapers
  • 2 radio interviews
  • links and banners in 32 Nicaraguan web sites

Photo gallery (work in progress):

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 (31038) -1413 # over last week
  • Critical (17) -4 # over last week
  • Unconfirmed (16077) +197 # over last week
  • Unassigned (23161) -1404 # over last week
  • All bugs ever reported (121254) +1289 # over last week

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

Translation Stats

  1. Spanish (20043) -1760 # over last week
  2. French (40238) -895 # over last week
  3. English-UK (55835) +1435 # over last week
  4. Swedish (52199) -2179 # over last week
  5. German (64230) +58 # over last week

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

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