Ubuntu 19.10 has been crowned the best Ubuntu release of the past ten years.

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And that’s not just my opinion but that of your fellow omg! ubuntu! readers.

Two weeks ago I put all twenty versions of Ubuntu released between 2010 and 2019 to a public vote — and Ubuntu 19.10 came out on top.

Not that it was an easy win, mind.

The share of the vote was super close among the top three entries and a mere 0.25% separated the winner (19.10) from runner up (16.04 LTS):

  1. Ubuntu 19.10 (22%)
  2. Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (21.75%)
  3. Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (20.53%)

Did “recency” play a part in helping ‘Eoan Ermine’ win? Ubuntu 19.10 is the latest version so arguably the one freshest in peoples minds. Trying to recall the pluses of releases prior to Eoan requires a fair bit of chin scratching, particularly when going back as far as Ubuntu 10.10 and 10.04 LTS.

That said I think the win is well earned.

When Ubuntu swapped Unity for GNOME Shell back in 2017 there was no guarantee that the implementation and integration of the GNOME desktop stack would be anywhere near as finessed and fine-tuned as it was.

In fact, many had been expecting the worst.

GNOME Shell has issues (performance related mostly) but once Canonical set its software engineers to work, things improved improved greatly — and not just for Ubuntu users, either.

And nowhere are those performance improvements more keenly felt than in October’s Ubuntu 19.10 release. It was a terrific one, arguably the best in many, many years.

screenshot of ubuntu showing applications

For “Eoan Ermine”, upstream work on better performance and enhanced features combined expertly with downstream touches like USB mount support in the Ubuntu Dock and icons support on the desktop.

The success of Ubuntu 19.10 bodes well for the upcoming release of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS ‘Focal Fossa’, which is due for release in April 2020.

Eoan’s excellence aside, do spare a thought for the Ubuntu releases duking it out at the bottom of the poll. Prize for the least loved version of Ubuntu was claimed by Ubuntu 13.10, which got a lowly 5 votes.

Let’s just hope the Saucy Salamander isn’t a Sore loser!

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