Today wasn’t just release day for Ubuntu. Oh no. It was also release day for the ever-growing family of Ubuntu flavours.
From the lightweight Lubuntu to the gorgeous Ubuntu GNOME. Whether you’re looking for a Unity-alternative, something lightweight for a netbook, or want to get the best KDE experience money can’t buy (cos it’s free), there’s an *buntu release for for everyone.
Variety is, according to someone, the ‘spice of life’.
Ubuntu GNOME 13.04
This is the first official release of Ubuntu GNOME since it joined the Ubuntu family earlier this year.
- Firefox is now the default web-browser
- Ubuntu Software Center and Software Updater added
- LibreOffice 4.0 replaces Abiword and Gnumeric
The “drawback” for anyone seeking a great GNOME experience with Ubuntu 13.04 is that it’s a release behind, using the GNOME 3.6 releases rather than the newer 3.8 update. That doesn’t mean jot to its performance or functionality; it works fine as it is.
But if you like having the latest features and improvements – of which GNOME 3.8 brought many - then you’ll need to add a few extra PPAs after installing.
Lubuntu is a lightweight LXDE-based flavour with a more ‘traditional’ desktop layout, some handy core apps, and puts emphasis on running well on older hardware.
New features in the release of 13.04
- Updated artwork, including new theme & wallpapers
- New installer slideshow
- File Searching added to File Manager
- Updated version of Chromium
Minimum system requirements are an Pentium II or Celeron CPU with PAE support, 128 MB of RAM and a couple gigs of hard-drive space for installing.
Lubuntu is one of the few remaining distributions to support PPC. A G4 running clocked @ 867MHz or higher with 640MB RAM is the minimum metal needed to run the desktop properly.
The Xubuntu team describe their latest update as more of a ‘maintenance release’ update than a full-fledged upgrade.
- Theme tweaks, including a new wallpaper
- Gnumeric spreadsheet app & GIMP re-added
- Updated versions of Catfish file search & Parole media player
- Duplicate partitions are no longer shown on desktop or Thunar
This is the first release of Xubuntu that will not fit on a standard blank CD. To install it you’ll instead to burn it to a blank DVD or make use of USB installation.
Everyone’s favourite KDE distribution ‘Kubuntu’ is also available in a Raring Ringtail flavour. Amongst it’s many, many changes (most of which come from the recently released KDE 4.10) are a:
- New look installer
- Unity Dash-like ‘Homerunner’ menu alternative
- Improved multi-monitor handling
- Improved version of Muon software installer
Kubuntu 13.04 can be downloaded from the official Kubuntu website. Like most of the other releases, Kubuntu 13.04 is too large to fit on a standard 700MB CD.