Long Term Support (LTS) releases, such as Ubuntu 14.04 LTS 'Trusty Tahr', are not expected to present radical changes, as these should be made in the interim releases. Instead, an LTS release should add stability and polish to interim changes. Ubuntu 14.04 LTS was suggested almost three years ago by Mark Shuttleworth as the release that would see convergence across all hardware formats. In retrospect, this goal could only have been reached if the elements required for convergence — Mir and Unity 8 — had been successfully introduced in earlier releases. Although Canonical made some effort to do this, development was eventually refocused on Ubuntu for phones and tablets and convergence is now unlikely to happen until 2015. As it stands, Ubuntu 14.04 is left running X window server and the Unity 7 shell.
Ubuntu 14.04 was released today, so let's take a look at the most important new features and changes in this LTS release.
Ken Miller, Makulu forum moderator, wrote this weekend to announce the release of MakuluLinx 6 MATE. This release, based on Debian Testing, features MATE 1.8, Linux 3.13.7 PAE, and systemd support. MakuluLinux 6 also introduced a new installer that Jamie Watson calls much improved.
MakuluLinux Mate Imperium Edition has been released a few hours ago, and being based on Debian Testing, I took it for a test drive. This is a good opportunity to have a look at the latest MATE 1.8, since Ubuntu Trusty only includes the 1.6 version in the repositories, and for the Mint release we’ll probably have to wait for about another month.
But except for MATE, some very interesting choices make MakuluLinux Imperium Edition stand out: it comes by default with applications like Steam, Wine, PlayOnLinux and even the Kingsoft Office suite instead of LibreOffice. Upon installing MakuluLinux, you have the possibility to choose which components will be installed and which not.
The MATE Live desktop is shown below, it is exactly what I expect from Makulu — beautiful wallpaper, bright colourful icons, and lots of interesting-looking additions scattered around the screen. The Installer icon and an Installation Guide are on the upper left corner of the screen.
The previous version of Ultimate Edition was a more down-to-earth variant that came up with some interesting features. It was one of the few distros out there that chose to keep Unity as a desktop environment, but the current version is a complete mess.
The really interesting and important thing about the AVLinux distribution, of course, is the Multimedia capability included in it. The Audio menu is shown to the right, above. Well, at least part of it is; it has so much in this category that it doesn't even fit on one screen! Audio players, mixers, editors, synthesizers, analyzers, and pretty much anything and everything you can think of in this category are included.
This is where AVLinux really shines, and where Linux in general really shines in my opinion. Almost all of these are FOSS projects, and the few which are not at least include DEMO versions of their licensed products (Mixbus, Pianoteq and Renoise).