In an unexpected move for an LTS release Ubuntu 14.04 is to trial a beta version of GRUB, the GRand Unified Bootloader used in virtually all Linux distributions.
Writing on the Ubuntu developer mailing list, Ubuntu Foundations Team lead Colin Watson proposes its adoption, stating that the release ‘…represents a year and a half of upstream development, and contains many new features’.
Among those features is experimental 64-bit ext2 support, better handling of DM-RAID partitions, and numerous improvements to core boot and EFI platforms.
But with Ubuntu’s LTS releases prized for their stability Watson is well aware that he has to be ‘very careful with substantial upgrades’ to core features like the default boot loader.
Ahead of its migration from beta to stable later this spring, GRUB 2.02 Beta has been pushed to the ‘proposed’ repositories of the Trusty Tahr where it will undergo ‘a reasonable amount’ of manual testing.
If no major issues, bugs or regressions are highlighted during this period it will likely be pushed to Ubuntu 14.04 main in the near future – but at this early stage this is far from being a foregone conclusion.