Ubuntu releases 12.04 Precise Pangolin LTS Linux

By Lee Kaelin on April 27, 2012, 11:30 AM

Popular Linux distribution Ubuntu announced the immediate availability of their latest release yesterday, bringing with it Unity and its file searching tool HUD to enterprise users as part of the long-term support release which distribution backer Canonical will offer security updates for until 2017.

"There's a significant set of aesthetic changes for users, and ultimately beauty is a feature," Steve George, head of communications at Canonical, told ZDNet. "Users enjoy their environments more when they look beautiful and modern." That said, it's also true that Unity continues to seriously divide loyal followers and this latest release is unlikely to be any different despite some major improvements.

It's an important change as well, since it is the first long-term release (LTS) to feature both the Unity interface now at version 5.10 as well as the heads-up display (HUD) context-sensitive searching tool which enables users to control programs by typing commands, as opposed to the more traditional method using a menu.

LTS releases are announced on a two yearly basis, with users receiving five years of security and maintenance fixes on the server editions. Desktop users traditionally get three years of support, but this release marks the first time Ubuntu has offered a uniform five year policy for all LTS releases. Those wanting a more bleeding edge experience can opt to upgrade to the next release in October, codenamed Quantal Quetzal.

Users can now resize the application launcher icons in the left-hand bar in the Appearance settings. The Workspace and Bin icons also now exhibit 'chameleonic behavior' and tint themselves to the background color. Also making a debut is a new video lense for the dash, enabling searches for video content contained online with the likes of BBC's iPlayer and YouTube as well as searching local video files.

Other than the obvious visual changes, the kernel has been upgraded to version 3.2, offering performance and stability fixes over the previous 3.0 version released with Ubuntu 11.10. Ubuntu 12.04 LTS now includes Metal-as-a-Service (MaaS), a provisioning tool which Canonical claims "brings the cloud experience to traditional hardware." Essentially it automates the installation of scale-out software like OpenStack onto physical nodes.

"I think we've been smart to try and link together what people are already doing but in a polished solution," Dave Walker, an engineering manager at Ubuntu commented. "Also I think it's currently difficult to scale what people are currently doing to a vast array of servers." MaaS has a theoretical scalability of up to 100,000 nodes, and one will be required per rack in a production environment.

Canonical's push into the enterprise market has been rewarded with HP certifying Ubuntu 12.04 to run on several Proliant servers,  in what is expected to be the beginning of a long-term alliance between the two firms as Canonical looks to take on Red Hat Enterprise Linux for both workstations and server infrastructure.

Looking to desktops, Dell, HP and Lenovo have also certified the new release for workstation environments, and ARM is on the way as well with the announcement that HP's new ARM-based Moonshot servers will use Ubuntu Linux.

The full list of changes in Ubuntu 12.04 can be read in the release notes.




User Comments: 42

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NTAPRO NTAPRO said:

Wow, I thought it was going to be released on the 29th...

Guest said:

The only thing holding me back from installing Linux as my main OS is the installation and performance of Windows games. Wine and PlayonLinux are simply just not built for the faint of heart and even after all these years, there are too many issues to overcome. Probably one of those forever unfinished projects. Such a shame that an undeniably superior OS has to suffer this loss. :(

Guest said:

As soon as Valve officially releases Steam for Linux, I'll install Ubuntu. However, it be release 12.10 or 13.04 by that time.

Guest said:

Games and Gaming should not be the reason to avoid Ubuntu. That is what gaming consoles are for. Besides Ubuntu supports dual booting so you can still boot windows when you want to be unproductive. My system boots Ubuntu 12.04 and Windows XP (although I rarely boot it) without a problem. And since Ubuntu is free the only excuse you really have for not checking it out is lack of technical skills to configure it, or the time and patience to learn them.

Guest said:

"The only thing holding me back from installing Linux as my main OS is the installation and performance of Windows games"

dual boot. run windoze to play games and ubuntu to use your computer.

Guest said:

Gaming for Ubuntu is increasing. Steam is making support for it, the Software Center's database of games is expanding and larger sites like dotdeb.com keep getting even larger.

fraggerron said:

what about dual boot to windows 7 and on a 2nd hd

Siavash Siavash said:

It's good news to hear gaming is increasing on Linux, this will probably make hardware manufacturers to provide better Linux support and improvements to the open source drivers.

lawfer, TechSpot Paladin, said:

The only thing holding me back from installing Linux as my main OS is the installation and performance of Windows games. Wine and PlayonLinux are simply just not built for the faint of heart and even after all these years, there are too many issues to overcome. Probably one of those forever unfinished projects. Such a shame that an undeniably superior OS has to suffer this loss.

Just like "peace" has many definitions to different people, so does "superiority" in this context.

I'd hardly call an OS that can't even support my router "superior." Or an OS that requires hours and hours of forum-digging to, maybe, find a workaround for such hardware.

Essentially, superior to me is, well, it works out of the box with whatever I throw at it, and does what I need it to do with as minimal effort as possible. Linux? Hardly.

(Alternatively, it's sad to think that the Linux kernel being known for its wide hardware compatibility and all, is being diminished in this very category due OEMs' complete negligence [or the low ROI, who am I kidding?] of the open-source model.)

Guest said:

How in gods name is a router not supported, the only interface a PC and router should have is through the TCP/IP stack and any "router" that requires more is a piece of cr@p.

Trillionsin Trillionsin said:

installed this new version. i got errors after install and no view of the cursor.

radeon hd5830

Guest said:

^^ Maybe check if your download/iso integrity is correct. Post install errors generally happen when something went wrong on the user side.

Guest said:

I have to agree with Lawfer here. Although Linux is improving it often does not "just work" out of the box. There are still hardware compatibility issues on many systems, particularly with things like ALPS touchpads and certain routers. There is still no official support for Nvidia Optimus which is a real pain to set up and even then has limited usability.

I can't speak for Ubuntu 12.04, having not tested it yet but I can verify that pretty much every recent Linux distribution is still riddled with problems. I actually tested Kubuntu just last night and had several errors on the first boot and immediately after that crashed during system update.

For a while I also believed that Linux was a superior OS but after my recent slew of testing, in my opinion it still has a very long way to go. A few years ago I would have given more points to Linux but at the moment I truly believe that Windows 7 is far superior.

Trillionsin Trillionsin said:

^^ Maybe check if your download/iso integrity is correct. Post install errors generally happen when something went wrong on the user side.

yea, typically things are user errors....

Apparently there is also some problem with linux and the hd5830

lawfer, TechSpot Paladin, said:

How in gods name is a router not supported, the only interface a PC and router should have is through the TCP/IP stack and any "router" that requires more is a piece of cr@p.

You're argument is flawed. It's widely known Linux still has a long way to go to reach Windows-like peripheral compatibility. And don't get me started with hardware that require proprietary drivers to work properly.

Guest said:

I also agree with lawfer. I play a lot of games on the Pogo website. Not one single flavor of Linux (I've tried around 9), with the exception of Zorin (and even though Zorin will play a game, there is no sound), will play those games out of the box. Firefox crashes every single time and in every flavor of Linux when I attempt to play a game. Opera, Midori, Sea Monkey, et al, do not work either. I can only assume it is some sort of Java issue. Want to install a new version of Java outside of Synaptic? One that the browser will access? Good luck following instructions right from the Java site that tell you to install it in the directory you want. Well, what directory would that be and where is it? Lawfer is correct in complaining about digging for hour after hour through forum after forum only to come up with a set set of incredibly long and ridiculously convoluted instructions on how to solve a problem. I had to laugh when one "solution" contained 67 separate lines of terminal-based instructions!

Running Linux is certainly not like running Windows. And yes, you need a certain level of expertise to deal with it. And yes, Linux is a magnificent achievement and yes, it is free. But even with all the complaints about Windows (and notice I didn't use the oh-so-clever and tired spelling, Windoze), you have to appreciate how simple it is to install software. Solving a Linux problem is not for the feint of heart and will turn you prematurely grey.

Guest said:

Indeed, windows is really easy to use... c'mon, don't make me laugh! Just try to do a lan with winxp and win7! Or what about certain hardware that it used to work under windowsxp and it does not under windows 7 (canon scanner)! Something that never happens at linux.

At least, under linux, when you get a problem there is almost always a way to resolve it. In windows... better forget it. Once you get used to work with linux, only then you'll realize how slow windows make you work!

Oh, and almost forgot. About installing software. Just tell me, how difficult is to open synaptic manager, select the program you want and click "Install" :eek: Plus, if you want to get best performance for your hardware, you can always download the source, compile it and install it.

Oooh, another (last) thing. I've never seen in my life an OS to give you an update which tell you:"If you install it your computer may not start"... WHAT?!?!?!?! And it happened on two of my computers! Only on windows can happen this thing! And people pay for this OS! Get serious!

Phraun said:

When I have to edit driver source code to get my wifi adapter to work, that's when any claim to usability goes out the window. I haven't given up on it entirely, but every time I've tried to use Linux there's been at least one show-stopping hardware driver issue that was nigh-on insurmountable. It's probably due to my proclivity for running extremely strange hardware configurations, but rarely in Windows has a fix been required beyond a basic registry hack or cfg edit. Certainly I've never had to break out a c++ compiler and read through API references to fix anything.

Guest said:

Usability in Windows is crap. An upgrade from XP to W7 requires days of work, searching for your applications on the net, juggling with software dvd's, registering again and again, installing 3rd party antivirus, crapcleaner, 3rd party firewall, deinstalling or disabling crappy built in features, setting up everything in the control panel, AND the occasional trouble with hardware drivers in Windows is more common than on Ubuntu (just did an upgrade of my W7 NVidia drivers which completely hosed my system.). If you call that great usability you must be joking. Setting up Ubuntu otoh takes mostly two hours, all the apps come with it, you can cearch in a central app database, no need for cleaners or antivirus bloatware, firewall is already set up, and if you do an upgrade your user setttings are still there. I'm using Linux for 12 years now and honestly I always had more fixing and configuring to do on Windows than on Ubuntu.

Guest said:

Really? You would upgrade from XP to 7? Why would you even bother? It's not rocket science to backup your data and format the hard drive. There must be a million posts all over the internet saying that a fresh install is preferable to doing an upgrade. Last time I checked Windows firewall is already setup after a fresh install (inorightlolwut) and is quite adequate protection alongside an antivirus unless you're a complete muppet and click on any files or links that you encounter without a second thought.

Also all the shouting about "but it's free!!" - if you take a look around, there's almost as much free software for windows these days as there is for Linux.

But all that is irrelevant. Until the day comes when I can play the latest and greatest games on Linux (Tux racing doesn't quite cut it I'm afraid) there will always be a Windows partition on my system.

Guest said:

Still trying to figure out what I'm going to do when 11.04 goes off support.... Don't really like unity or gnome 3.... may have to switch to xfce. Mint is ok, but it still seems a bit buggy.

Guest said:

And don't get me started with hardware that require proprietary drivers to work properly.

Whereas in windows I suppose you don't use any proprietary driver at all...?

Guest said:

Everyone always has their horror stories about this OS or that OS. I've been involved with computers for 45 years and have never seen an OS upgrade tell me that my computer might not start. And I've done about a million OS upgrades. I think you are getting confused when the OS tells you to reboot after an upgrade.

Opening up Synaptic and choosing software is indeed easy. What happens though when the installed software doesn't do what you need it to do, or what you need is not in Synaptic? Poke around trying to find the source code and download it and then finding a compiler and downloading that? And then dealing with all the problems that will invariably come from trying to compile source code? Are you kidding?

An XP to W7 upgrade requires a clean install. Always has. And one of the other posters is correct in saying that modifying source code then recompiling the whole mess is beyond the scope of many users.

Like I said in my original post, Linux is not Windows and requires a certain level of expertise when you run into problems. I stand by my assertion that having to poke around for hours through forum after forum, for what many times is an overly complex, ridiculously long fix is nuts. The problem with these overly long fixes is that invariably one or several of the instructions don't work. That leads you to poke around in forum after forum trying to find a fix to the fix to the fix, if you get my drift.

Don't get me wrong. I love what the open-source community does. But face it, this is a Windows world. Windows even runs the International Space Station computers. Given the large variety of Linux flavors out there, only Zorin comes close to mimicking Windows. Even it has a problem with embedded Java software. Trying to fix it exposes you to the very issue about which I first complained. Rooting around for hour after hour through forum after forum for an answer that many times creates additional problems. It's like an endless loop.

Guest said:

Seriously.. don't ever compare linux with windows OS anymore, people who use their computer/s daily in windows does end up on an mental hospital sooner or later, windows should be named game os cause there is the only drawback in linux, but that day when developers open their eyes a little bit more and make the games to run 100% with opengl / native linux executable i will celebrate by sending my leavings to bill gates himself, windows is for gamers and people who can't figure out what 1+1 actually is (in binary it's 3, don't beleive me.. look it up ;) ) linux is for people who actually wants to have an computer and learn something about it, don't complain on linux os if you don't want to learn something about computers, install windows, play games and shut up..

Guest said:

Ah, this is getting into a fanboys debate, Windows and Linux fans,

Just use OS you feel it suitable for you, you like it, use it, you don't, then don't use :)

Another option: dual boot is always there,

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

....[ ]...windows is for gamers and people who can't figure out what 1+1 actually is (in binary it's 3, don't beleive me.. look it up )
Well, I looked it up and you're not going to like what I found. There is no "3" in binary math, just zeros and ones. So, that would make "1 + 1, actually 01! ( No ones, and one 2)
linux is for people who actually wants to have an computer and learn something about it, don't complain on linux os if you don't want to learn something about computers, install windows, play games and shut up..
You know, it's disturbing to run across posts such as this one. You can't spell, you don't understand binary math, nor the correct tenses of English verbs, yet you think we should, "shut up" because you're working under the delusional impression that what you have to say matters. Guess again.

Marnomancer Marnomancer said:

Someone tell me this is below 500MB...

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

After many many (I couldn't bother adding few more manys) years I decided to have another go at linux. TBH I am not really disappointed this time around. Getting things to just work is still a hastle especially if someone is not experienced (or rather hardware support is still light years behind windows).

Marnomancer Marnomancer said:

That's exactly my problem.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

After many many (I couldn't bother adding few more manys) years I decided to have another go at linux. TBH I am not really disappointed this time around. Getting things to just work is still a hastle especially if someone is not experienced (or rather hardware support is still light years behind windows).
The last time I tried to do a live run of Ubuntu, (forget the version}, my Gigabyte board loaded it's backup BIOS. So, good luck with that. But sorry, I really don't care to join in the fun though.

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I hear you Captain, I am just 'exploring' what all the fuzz is about after so many years. Guess what I am unable to get HD6770M work with it so far, I suspect even IF I get it to work, I can't dynamically switch between IGP or discrete GPU, basically it means I have two problems here ........... so as I said it is still light years behind windows.

Secondly, when they are aiming to gain consumer market share, they better improve the OS's hardware support + ease of installation/configuration, enabling most things to work right out of the box (if not everything); unfortunately they haven't made much headway in this respect as well.

Siavash Siavash said:

Guess what I am unable to get HD6770M work with it so far, I suspect even IF I get it to work
Just get the Catalyst driver from AMD website and follow the installation instructions, just a few simple clicks and you are ready to go

Secondly, when they are aiming to gain consumer market share, they better improve the OS's hardware support
This isn't their duty and this kind of issues won't be solved until hardware manufacturers share their hardware drivers, they can't just achieve proprietary drivers quality with reverse engineering, etc

ease of installation/configuration, enabling most things to work right out of the box (if not everything)
Check out Leeky's Ubuntu Linux installation guides in tutorials section, it's a piece of cake BTW, regards to having most of things working out of the box, you should give Sabayon Linux (and Linux Mint) a try, they come with all of required hardware drivers, audio/video codecs, games, java, flash, utilities and a coffee maker ^^

ihaveaname said:

Any idea on battery life increases/decreases? 11.04's been great on my netbook which even Windows 7 Starter has trouble with.

Morgawr said:

....[ ]...windows is for gamers and people who can't figure out what 1+1 actually is (in binary it's 3, don't beleive me.. look it up )
Well, I looked it up and you're not going to like what I found. There is no "3" in binary math, just zeros and ones. So, that would make "1 + 1, actually 01! ( No ones, and one 2)
linux is for people who actually wants to have an computer and learn something about it, don't complain on linux os if you don't want to learn something about computers, install windows, play games and shut up..
You know, it's disturbing to run across posts such as this one. You can't spell, you don't understand binary math, nor the correct tenses of English verbs, yet you think we should, "shut up" because you're working under the delusional impression that what you have to say matters. Guess again.

Actually, you are both wrong. 1+1 in binary is 10. It is a base 2 system..... (ie the first place has value 2^0, second place is 2^1.... so 1+1 = 1*2^1+0*2^0 =10) There are places where 1+1=0. For example modulus 2 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modular_arithmetic) or if '+' is not addition in the normal sense.

Morgawr said:

One should note that 10 in binary is simply 2 in base 10.

All in all this if off topic... most people I know (myself included) use linux because of the amazing amount of high quality opensource applications and libraries. For doing heavy duty math or scientific computing, linux is pretty amazing.

Guest said:

the only thing keeping me from installing ubuntu is the fact that I am not a complete dweeb. Move out of your moms basement and get a real life. Unproductive with Windows? Please. Some of us want to play games, not read about them on a crappy safari or opera browser. Everyone knows consoles are for teenagers and sports games only. Linux blows almost as hard as you do

Guest said:

It's a pity that every article about 'buntu has to turn into the usual "windows vs linux" fanboy rant?

I'm a long term Linux user (coming on to 10 years) and I'd just like to make it clear that the 'buntu fanboys and their puerile rants and raves most certainly do not reflect the opinions of every Linux user. Many of these are ex windows users who jumped on the 'buntu bandwagon just to be part of the "leet anti-windoze kewl kids club". buntards tend not to let the facts get in the way of a good rave... but in a few months when something breaks that he can't fix, he'll be ranting at 'buntu forums and then back to windows...

It's horses for courses - use what you like, most serious Linux users couldn't care less about windows or who uses it, I know I certainly don't.

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

@Siavash I have done that, but it doesn't seem to do the trick, and having spent many hours, I have given up for the time being as I need to focus on some other important stuff.

I've also noted that battery life is worse on linux for some odd reasons, and I plan to get to the bottom of it during next week.

Anyway, my conclusion is, for a 'relatively less knowledgeable' user if someone sets up a linux box for you, it will work just fine, otherwise they should stay with windows without a question.

Guest said:

I've also noted that battery life is worse on linux for some odd reasons, and I plan to get to the bottom of it during next week.

It's a power management issue. If the laptop (I'm assuming it's a laptop?) has an Nvidia or AMD graphics chip, you will need a proprietary driver to get the best power management. The FLOSS drivers are reverse engineered - and in the case of the FLOSS Nvidia driver (nouveau) developed with no support whatsoever from the hardware vendor (when you consider that - nouveau is very good).

Guest said:

Really? You would upgrade from XP to 7? Why would you even bother? It's not rocket science to backup your data and format the hard drive. There must be a million posts all over the internet saying that a fresh install is preferable to doing an upgrade. Last time I checked Windows firewall is already setup after a fresh install (inorightlolwut) and is quite adequate protection alongside an antivirus unless you're a complete muppet and click on any files or links that you encounter without a second thought.

Fresh install or upgrade doesn't matter. You still have to reinstall and configure all your applications. Compare it with an upgrade of Ubuntu 10.04 LTS to 12.04 LTS. It took a few clicks and after an hour and a reboot all my apps and configuration were still there. No hiccups whatsoever. A fresh install is not necessary and so I did not need advice on the internet about how to do that. That's hard to beat imo.

The default firewall in Windows is inadequate. First thing I do is disable it and configure the advanced firewall. Even with a firewall and antivirus prog you are NOT adequately protected because a default windows user account gives you admin rights which can be easily exploited by malware. I learned that the hard way, believe me.

It is not only about clicking suspect files, there are myriads of other ways, that your system can get infected. Especially if you visit dodgy PHP based blogs a lot.

Also all the shouting about "but it's free!!" - if you take a look around, there's almost as much free software for windows these days as there is for Linux.

That's not the point. In Linux software is centrally accesible from a software center. In Windows you have to search the internet for the right app.

Guest said:

Still trying to figure out what I'm going to do when 11.04 goes off support.... Don't really like unity or gnome 3.... may have to switch to xfce. Mint is ok, but it still seems a bit buggy.

Try LMDE with XFCE. Or vanilla Debian Testing/XFCE. I'm using it for about half a year now as my main system. It's stable and XFCE can be configured so that you can almost not distinguish it from Gnome2.

Guest said:

Opening up Synaptic and choosing software is indeed easy. What happens though when the installed software doesn't do what you need it to do, or what you need is not in Synaptic? Poke around trying to find the source code and download it and then finding a compiler and downloading that? And then dealing with all the problems that will invariably come from trying to compile source code? Are you kidding?

I think I have had to compile one (1) driver in five years time, namely a realtek module for an usb Wifi dongle. It took me half an hour. I searched the forum, found the link in five minutes, clicked on download, extracted the archive, clicked on install.sh and voila, after a minute my wifi dongle was working without even a reboot. What is so hard about that? And in many instances you can just click on a .deb package from a browser and install it with gdebi. What is so hard about that?

Like I said in my original post, Linux is not Windows and requires a certain level of expertise when you run into problems. I stand by my assertion that having to poke around for hours through forum after forum, for what many times is an overly complex, ridiculously long fix is nuts. The problem with these overly long fixes is that invariably one or several of the instructions don't work. That leads you to poke around in forum after forum trying to find a fix to the fix to the fix, if you get my drift.

Have you ever had the pleasure of searching hours on forums for another cryptic windows error? Sometimes there's not even a solution, you have to wait for the next service pack.

Guest said:

I hear you Captain, I am just 'exploring' what all the fuzz is about after so many years. Guess what I am unable to get HD6770M work with it so far, I suspect even IF I get it to work, I can't dynamically switch between IGP or discrete GPU, basically it means I have two problems here ........... so as I said it is still light years behind windows.

Secondly, when they are aiming to gain consumer market share, they better improve the OS's hardware support + ease of installation/configuration, enabling most things to work right out of the box (if not everything); unfortunately they haven't made much headway in this respect as well.

You are barking up the wrong tree. It is not Linux but ATI itself that doesn't produce adequate HD667M drivers for Linux. For comparison: Windows does not make drivers for ATI and nor do the Linux kernel developers (except reverse engineered drivers). ATI should make its drivers compatible but it does not. In that respect one could say you bought an inferior product (like a washing machine with the software missing).

Guest said:

I've also noted that battery life is worse on linux for some odd reasons, and I plan to get to the bottom of it during next week.

Maybe this will help you out: http://www.jupiterapplet.org/

Anyway, my conclusion is, for a 'relatively less knowledgeable' user if someone sets up a linux box for you, it will work just fine, otherwise they should stay with windows without a question.

I've seen a lot of "relatively less knowledgeable" windows users hose their system. Being a n00b is platform-agnostic.

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