Ubuntu Hardy Heron release candidate flies
The Ubuntu development team today made available a release candidate version of the soon-to-be-released Ubuntu 8.04, codenamed Hardy Heron. The release candidate is the final testing release of Hardy ahead of next week’s final release. What we like: A better selection of default desktop applications, much-improved CD and DVD burning interface and much-needed audio improvements. What we don’tÂ like: Boot speed is still a little slow.
Features of this release include:
Improved application selection: the GNOME desktop sports a number of improvements to the default applications, including more feature-full clients for BitTorrent and VNC, as well as an advanced UI for mastering CDs and DVDs.
File browsing: an enhanced filesystem layer brings greater performance and flexibility to Nautilus, the GNOME file browser.
Pluggable audio and video output: the PulseAudio sound server is integrated in the GNOME desktop for more flexible sound output, and a new Screen Resolution utility allows easier configuration of multiple video displays.
Wubi installer: a new Windows-based installer option makes it easier than ever to try out Ubuntu, letting users install a full desktop on Windows systems without needing to partition their hard drive.
AppArmor profiles: a greater number of server applications are now protected by default with AppArmor, a kernel technology that limits the resources an application is allowed to access, providing added protection against undiscovered security vulnerabilities.
Memory protection: additional protection now prevents direct access to system memory through /dev/mem and /dev/kmem, and the lower 64K of system memory is no longer addressable by default, changes which help to defend against malicious code. The kernel now also loads Position Independent Executables at randomized addresses, making it harder for application security vulnerabilities to be exploited.
Virtualization and iSCSI: KVM is now an officially maintained option, which combined with libvirt (CLI) and virt-manager (GUI) management tools allows for a simple and efficient virtualization option on hardware that supports virtualization extensions (AMD-V or Intel-VT). Mounting iSCSI targets is now supported (including in the installer), allowing Ubuntu to interoperate with this class of cost-efficient Storage Area Network solutions.
Ubuntu Education Edition
Add-on configuration: Edubuntu is now provided as an add-on to Ubuntu rather than a separate stand-alone flavor, permitting even greater reuse of Ubuntu technologies.
Kubuntu comes with the rock solid KDE 3 for those who want a commercially supported desktop.
For those who want something more exciting, a KDE 4 Remix is available bringing this cutting edge new version to you first.
Please see https://wiki.kubuntu.org/HardyHeron/RC/Kubuntu for details.
Xubuntu comes with the light-weight Xfce 4.4.2 desktop environment for those who want to a desktop that is easy to use, but places particular emphasis on conserving system resources.
New additions to the family
Two new variants join us for this Ubuntu release. UbuntuStudio and Mythbuntu have done releases separately in the past, and with Hardy Heron we’re happy to be able to welcome these fine community projects into the main Ubuntu release process.
For a more in-depth tour of the features new in 8.04 LTS, see http://www.ubuntu.com/testing/804rc
Download Ubuntu Hardy Heron release candidate here.