Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue #65 for the week November 4th - November 10th, 2007. In this issue we cover the UbuntuWire Community Network, a Christmas marketing campaign, the Michigan Packaging Jam, and, as always, much much more!

UWN Translations

In This Issue

  • UbuntuWire Community Network

  • A Merry Ubuntu Christmas
  • Michigan Packaging Jam
  • Ubuntu Forum News
  • In The Press & In The Blogosphere

  • Meetings & Events

  • Updates & Security

  • Bug Stats
  • Translation Stats

General Community News

UbuntuWire Community Network

The UbuntuWire project provides hosting and support for many of the community developed tools, specifically those geared towards the Universe and Multiverse repositories. This is intended to be a resource for collaborating and sharing of simple scripts, interesting data files, and similar information in support of Ubuntu development. Developers will have access to shell scripts, cron, and Ubuntu-related file uploads without having quotas, bandwidth, or CPU restrictions. For quality assurance, there is access to regularly scheduled runs of many of the automated Quality Assurance scripts. A customized Google search is also available, covering the forums, wiki, and launchpad. UbuntuWire includes REVU, the package checking tool, for MOTU and new contributors. For more, see

A Merry Ubuntu Christmas

Philip Newborough has come up with an idea concerning Ubuntu, ShipIt, and Christmas. It occurred to him that there may well be other people out there struggling to come up with ideas for gifts — so he started thinking about a Christmas marketing campaign for Ubuntu. He believes that since the Countdown to Gutsy campaign has finished up, the Ubuntu community should maximize its gains by replacing it with a Christmas Marketing campaign. Before you start shouting, "It's only November!" he points out that the Shipit service can take anywhere up to 6-10 weeks to deliver. If you'd like to help get the campaign going then please consider replacing your current Countdown Campaign code with the code found at the link below. There are Ubuntu and Kubuntu images available, as well as German and Dutch editions.

Ubuntu Forum News

This week's interview features Matthew, one of the Forum Council members, admin on UF, and our troll expert. Please read the complete interview here:

In The Press

  • Dell: Ubuntu PCs still available - Dell has denied that it will no longer offer Ubuntu on Inspiron systems sold in the UK, and has maintained that a problem which meant that some customers were unable to buy the software pre-installed has now been fixed. The issue arose on Tuesday when a Dell customer reported to the Inquirer that he had been told the Dell Inspiron computer with Ubuntu pre-installed was no longer available. The news spread quickly before a Dell executive stepped in to clarify the situation. According to Lionel Menchaca, Dell's digital media manager, there had been a problem with a link on the company's website, but the problem was only temporary.,1000000121,39290670,00.htm

  • 10 Things Ubuntu Needs To Improve On - Ubuntu has been a force to be reckoned within the Linux world for a couple of years now. It’s undeniably the path to Linux gaining mainstream acceptance. In this article, Matt Hartley examines ten areas where he thinks Ubuntu could go still further; that is, really improve and even gain back those who abandoned it out of frustration. Wireless consistency, Multimedia Codecs, GRUB as the bootloader, No automatic fstab backup, No automatic xorg backup, No restoring files from the trash, PPPoE is a mess, IPV6 enabled, No GUI-based recovery mode, and Common sense distribution of documentation.

  • Ubuntu Server: Attractive Choice, Paltry Documentation - Carla Schroder writes: "Whatever anyone may think of Ubuntu, you can't deny they're busy little critters, stuffing all manner of new things into every release. Which is a splendid thing, but what would make it even better is if they documented all of these wonderful new things, and also the old things." "It's the worst of the major Linux distributions for documentation." She has spent a considerable amount of time trying to find out what makes Ubuntu's server kernel different from a desktop kernel, what exactly is the OEM installation, where is the online package search page, what's new in this release, and what's included in this release. is poorly-organized and seems more marketing-oriented than informative. The Ubuntu release notes are quite sparse, and they lump the server and desktop editions together. Just cruise the Debian and Fedora release notes to see how it should be done. In fact you can check out older Ubuntu release notes—the farther back you go, the more complete they are, though they're still short of what they should be.

  • Ubuntu migration: the sweet taste of freedom at a price - Well the Linux desktop is certainly here and Stan Beer can prove it because as of today he is officially an Ubuntu user and even though things aren't perfect, he feels like he's finally escaped from jail. Those of you contemplating the move from Windows, however, had better be prepared to make some compromises and even a few sacrifices. At this stage of his Ubuntu trip, the more sophisticated a user is, the more difficult the migration is going to be. For the home user who has little or no stake in using Microsoft products, like Office, and who uses the Outlook Express, there will be little or no pain. If however, you're a home office or small office user, using Outlook, or a student using Excel and Power Point, there will be some issues. The problems become magnified as you move into medium sized and large organizations where legacy Windows applications have become entrenched. Thankfully, however, virtualization does provide the prospect of some salvation. Running Windows XP in a virtual window on top of Ubuntu or another Linux desktop using VMWare or Xen Source could be the way to go. That's the bad news, but there is just so much good news, that it's hard to know where to begin.(See article)

  • We're only Human after all: a review of Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon - Ubuntu 7.10, codenamed Gutsy Gibbon, emerged from the jungles last month and has been beating its chest ever since. Touted as the easiest-to-use desktop Linux distro yet, 7.10 hopes to bring the power of Linux to the masses. Testing Ubuntu 7.10 was done on several different computers, including the Dell Inspiron 1420n that we recently reviewed with Ubuntu 7.04. The verdict: it's impressive. How impressive? Despite the minor issues that impact some of the new technologies, Ubuntu 7.10 is still a very solid improvement over Ubuntu 7.04. Current Ubuntu users will benefit considerably from upgrading, and users of other Linux distributions should give it a spin to see what they're missing. Ubuntu is also increasingly becoming a viable platform for regular users who don't have previous exposure to Linux. Distributions have improved at an astounding pace, and Ubuntu leads the pack in the desktop market.

In The Blogosphere

  • Ubuntu 7.10: Inflection Point or Tipping Point? - Dave Shields has just upgraded two of his Ubuntu boxes from 7.04, “Feisty Fawn,” to 7.10, “Gutsy Gibbon.” In the past, he has almost always done major upgrades in Linux by doing a full reinstall. However, this time he decided to try the upgrade option, and within a half hour or so the update was complete. It took only a few minutes for him to realize that … Something Had Changed. Though it was impressive that Ubuntu was able to upgrade a major level, he was even more impressed to find that his box was qualitatively different. Ubuntu just looked better, more professional and more polished than Windows XP. A couple of the most impressive things he noticed right off, were the newer version of Amarok, and Ubuntu 7.10 noticed that MP3 support wasn’t available … and then offered to install it! "These Ubuntu/Linux folks are getting better and better."

  • Mandriva 2008 VS Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon - Mitch Meyran is a Mandriva user. Recently though, he took an interest in Ubuntu: He installed version 7.04 on a laptop, and it did look interesting, enough to make him doubt his commitment to Mandriva’s products. Thus, when 7.10 came out with a bang in the media, and he got another laptop to de-borgify, he downloaded the Ubuntu 7.10 ISO along with the install CD for Mandriva 2008.0 Free. Installing Ubuntu 7.10 from the LiveCD was indeed comfortable and felt very stable. Both distributions have their pros and cons. Mandriva has recently consolidated its product lines and offers, allowing users afraid to be on their own the reassurance of paid for support while leaving a very convincing offer available to free software users, while Ubuntu is appearing more and more often pre-installed on consumer computers—and version 7.10 should be even easier to pre-install.

  • The Ubuntu Plunge - Day 3: Epiphany! - A funny thing happened to Randall Kennedy on the way to the web this morning. He had justed booted back into Vista x64 to check on a couple of schedule items when he noticed an alert coming from Windows Defender. It seems that the anti-spyware utility had been unable to download new malware definitions for over a week. It also noted what it believed to be some “suspicious” behavior on the part of a particular executable. So, naturally, he did what most veteran (i.e. been burned before) Windows users do when faced with a potential malware infection: Panic! How could this have happened? It's a nearly fresh (2 weeks old) install of Vista! He had UAC enabled and all the security patches in place! He even installed the SP1 Beta! Then it hit him: he had just wasted over an hour of his life chasing down a phantom malware infection. It was a disturbing sensation, more so since he hadn't experienced anything like it in several days...ever since he started his odyssey into Linux-land. And, he couldn't help but think of all the things he's missing since booting back into his “Gutsy Gibbon” install: spyware; viruses; and (most importantly) fear.

  • The Ubuntu Plunge – Day 4: A Small Detour - Randall Kennedy has been exploring the use of Ubuntu as a Windows Vista replacement, and has become quite enamored with it. The ability to “skin” almost every aspect of the UI – combined with the simplicity of the package management system (application “tire kicking” is now a pleasurable experience) – makes it ridiculously easy to explore the wide world of FOSS. However, they say the “grass is always greener” somewhere else, and he couldn't help but admire the snazzy looking screen shots of openSUSE 10.3. He decided to take a side trip into SUSE-land to see what all the fuss was about. It was a short trip. First-off, the installation process is far more involved than Ubuntu. At the end of his first week running Ubuntu he's managed to carve out a very functional, and highly personalized, workspace. His goal is to completely master Ubuntu and to reach a point where, at the end of his 30 day odyssey, he not only no longer needs to go back to Windows, but he doesn't want to, either.

  • Why I liked Ubuntu (and my thoughts on Gutsy Werewolf, aka Fedora 8) - One of the reasons Colin Charles likes Ubuntu is because they have a really swanky commercial repository, and they make it easy for him to get some commercial software, without pulling an RMS-styled “Freedom is a feature”. When Gutsy Gibbon got released, he couldn’t wait to update. He expected things to move forward, never regress right? Sun’s software still works, as does Opera, but VMWare, has since, stopped working. Kernel 2.6.22-14 does not come with appropriate VMWare modules. He moved to using Ubuntu daily, and did it to get away from the frustration of having to build things himself. He did it, for the “Just Works”(tm) experience. Now he realizes that he's going to have to do things manually, if he wants them to work. This is irrespective of if he runs Ubuntu or Fedora.

  • Episode 84 - Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon(Podcast) - In this shortened and downloadable episode: a brief discussion of upgrades and installs of the newest release of Ubuntu Linux, 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon; Listener Tip on the bash shell’s double-exclamation point history operator; email feedback.

  • When it comes to releasing operating systems, Ubuntu has it figured out - Adrian Kingsley-Hughes knows that it might not seem like it at times, but he's a big Ubuntu fan. When it comes to trying to make the right technology choices, surprises aren’t so good because they create too much uncertainty and doubt. When looking at both Leopard and Vista, one thing stands out - both were highly anticipated, but once they were released the disappointment set in pretty quickly. With Ubuntu things are different. Rather than a whole pattern shift with every release, you get small, incremental changes on a regular basis. Things get better, but the learning curve and disruption to workflow is kept to a minimum. The Ubuntu model has some huge benefits, the main one being that the wheel doesn’t have to be reinvented for each release. The programmers can stick with what works, fix what doesn’t and add features at a more controlled and leisurely pace.

  • The Ubuntu project: By Dean Guistini - Open Source 'Linux' Software - Since his post earlier about Ubuntu, Dean Giustini has had a few questions about what Ubuntu is. Ubuntu is often translated as "I am because you are" or, “I am a person because of you”. Ubuntu (the software), in fact, is influenced by the unique digital context in which it is developed. This suggests both the project and the eventual 'product' are related to larger social concepts, even social movements. Ubuntu software can easily be uploaded over the web by anyone, anywhere. It is a form of digital humanity. It reflects a global community as well as the specific communities that use it. It incorporates ideas in an electronic realm, but transcends that by getting workers together to meet face to face occasionally to work out problems. This larger sense of community and shared humanity is what uniquely defines Ubuntu. The Ubuntu project is funded by South Africa's Shuttleworth Foundation to "[unlock] the creative and intellectual potential in people" (Shuttleworth, 2007). His Foundation promotes the ideals of "open source, open standards and open information access". The goal is to develop computer operating systems to help teachers provide access to computer resources in underprivileged areas. Ubuntu helps educators with limited technical knowledge to design computer labs and online environments for learners and aims to centralize the management of computers for collaborative learning in classrooms.

Meetings and Events

Wednesday, November 13, 2007

New York Loco Meeting

Community Spotlight

Michigan Packaging Jam

The Michigan Team put on a Packaging Jam on Saturday, November 3rd. The purpose of the Jam was to get people together in one place who are interested in learning how to package applications for Ubuntu. The event went very well with good attendence and amazing leadership by former MOTU, Aaron L. and host Rick H. More information can be found on the Michigan Team wiki page:

Updates and security for 6.06, 6.10, 7.04, and 7.10

Security Updates

Ubuntu 6.06 LTS Updates

  • None Reported

Ubuntu 6.10 Updates

  • None Reported

Ubuntu 7.04 Updates

  • None Reported

Ubuntu 7.10 Updates

Bug Stats

  • Open (37080) +397 # over last week
  • Critical (19) +/-0 # over last week
  • Unconfirmed (20176) +290 # over last week
  • Unassigned (28432) +326 # over last week
  • All bugs ever reported (134699) +1065 # over last week

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

Translation Stats

  1. Spanish (16413) -141 # over last week
  2. French (37555) +503 # over last week
  3. Swedish (48083) -1666 # over last week
  4. English-UK (50455) -607 # over last week
  5. German (65372) -25 # 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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