Karmic Koala, the next version of Kubuntu, is due to be released on October 29, 2009
The focus for 9.10 for the Kubuntu community will be refining the KDE desktop experience while at the same time reaching out to new, exciting features. The plan is to continue maintaining our excellent KDE packages while developing tools to make managing your desktop and communicating with your friends easier. Karmic is the first station on the way to a more sociable and powerful desktop seen nowhere else.
NOTE: This is the Release Candidate. Though it is a close preview of what the 9.10 will be, it is still a pre-release version. As such, it's use is NOT encouraged for anyone needing a stable system or for anyone not comfortable running into occasional, even frequent, breakage. Pre-release versions of 9.10 ARE recommended for Kubuntu developers and those who want to help in testing, reporting, and fixing bugs. Please do not use this in a production environment with data or workflows that you cannot do without.
Installing 9.10 Release Candidate
New or Improved In the Release Candidate
The Karmic Koala RC CD release brings with it a better integrated and more stable desktop, as well as many new features. For this latest release of Kubuntu 9.10, we are adding several interesting features to the desktop experience, building on the latest KDE. Besides these changes, there have been updates to many common applications as well as bug fixes to some of those annoyances you may or may not have run into. With every new pre-release, updates will be documented allowing you to thoroughly test your new Kubuntu test installation. Remember that all of these features are part of a pre-release version of Kubuntu, and may still have issues. We ask that any problems you come across that you file a bug, if one has yet to be filed for your problem.
KDE has recently released 4.3 of their amazing desktop environment. There are many changes including bug fixes, new functionality, and more. Some of these changes include, but are not limited to:
- Significant refinements of Plasma and KWin, the KDE workspace
- Many improvements
- Refinement of the Plasma desktop shell
- New features all around
- New and Improved Applications
- Many bug fixes
- and more...
For the Release Candidate, Kubuntu includes the second bug fix release of KDE 4.3, 4.3.2. For complete details, please consult http://kde.org/announcements/announce-4.3.2.php .
Netbook Technical Preview
Kubuntu Netbook Edition for 9.10 is the first release for this new Ubuntu variant. It is optimized for netbook systems (usually a 9 or 10 inch display) with a minimum vertical screen resolution of 576 pixels. It is built on the same KDE 4.3 base as Kubuntu, but uses a technical preview version of KDE's forthcoming Plasma Netbook to provide the basic 'desktop' environment. Kubuntu has worked with the Plasma Netbook developers to provide a basic first look at the initial, small part of KDE's vision for supporting netbooks.
Kubuntu Netbook Edition 9.10 will be useful for many, but is not for everyone. It provides an early look at the plasma shell that will enable people to interact with standard KDE applications in a way optimized for netbook systems. It is useful, functional, and reliable. It does have a few rough edges, but should be usable by many people without problems.
The complete version of the KDE netbook experience will be released with KDE 4.4 in January and as part of Kubuntu Lucid Lynx (10.04). The current preview is a first effort towards this completed vision for a radically better experience on mobile, low power, net oriented systems.
Plasma Netbook has most basic functionality now and is complete for this cycle. USB Startup Disk Creator should work to copy the ISO onto a USB disk for your netbook. You can also install by burning the image to a DVD. More details on Plasma Netbook can be found on the Kubuntu Netbook page.
Social from the Start
This release has an emphasis on connecting you to your online social networks.
New social features include:
The KDE Microblogging Plasma widget as part of the default desktop experience for your identi.ca and Twitter fix
The Google Calendar Plasma widget is available for adding to your desktop
The Facebook Plasma widget lets you stay up to date with your friends, also available for adding to your desktop
The Facebook Kopete plugin so that you can chat with your Facebook contacts from the comfort of the default chat client. This is still at an experimental stage, let us know how it works on the Feedback page below.
KDE Image plugins let you connect to Flickr and other photo sites from Gwenview and Digikam
Choqok is available to install for a full microblogging setup.
The OpenDesktop Social Plasma widget is ready for your desktop to connect you to your free software neighbours
OpenOffice KDE Integration
Written by our very own elite Kubuntu developers, OpenOffice 3.1.1 introduces KDE integration. This means that all OpenOffice applications will look at home with the default "Oxygen" KDE theme and use the KDE file dialog for opening and saving documents.
Ayatana Integration & Message Indicator
As part of the Ayatana initiative (and working with KDE upstream), KDE & Gnome desktop now share an official FD.o protocol for desktop notifications. The notification bubbles generated by KDE or Gnome applications are now compatible with both desktops.
A new message indicator has also been added which currently has a plugins for Konversation, Quassel, Kopete, Kontact/Kmail and many non-KDE applications. No need to be distracted by IRC pings, instant message chats, or new emails when you don't want to be, but easy to find out who has been leaving messages for you when you want to. Here again, the protocol and adoption spans both editions to allow users to pick their favorite applications and still enjoy a consistent integration with the rest of their desktop environment.
Our installer has a fresh new look.
Rediscover your Music with Amarok 2.2
Amarok's 2.2.0 release has been added to 9.10. It brings back some feature previously missing in Amarok 2 and adds polish & customisation possibilities to the user interface. Check out what's new from the Amarok site.
Install and Update software with Package Kit
Kubuntu 9.10 will include the latest release of KPackageKit. Key features added since Kubuntu 9.04 are new notifications, sweet animations, a history feature, usability fixes and a more robust overall experience with fewer bugs.
K3b now KDE 4 Compliant
One of the last KDE 3 mainstays of previous releases, K3b has now been ported to KDE 4.
Everybody's favorite user management tool from the KDE3 days has been resurrected for Kubuntu 9.10. Userconfig offers a simple user interface as well as integration with System Settings.
KUser, the application that handled this in the recent past, has been relegated to the DVD, as it still has LDAP tools that might be useful to some.
Network Manager applet
add image The NetworkManager applet has received some loving from its creators, and offers a more robust networking experience than it did in Kubuntu 9.04.
QtCurve 0.68.0 brings a refinement of the Oxygen-like widget style so that your GNOME apps will look more at home in KDE.
GTK+ widget style and fonts can now be configured from KDE.
For fans of Firefox, installing this excellent browser will be a piece of cake in Kubuntu 9.10. We have included a simple installer for Firefox that appears where Firefox would normally appear in the "Internet" menu. While we cannot provide Firefox by default due to CD size constraints, this is the next best option.
Screenshots for Ubuntu RC are available here http://www.thecodingstudio.com/opensource/linux/screenshots/index.php?linux_distribution_sm=Ubuntu%209.10%20RC
Screenshots for Kubuntu RC are available here http://jordanopensource.org/blog/kubuntu-910-screenshots
* Saving MS Word format documents using Open Office KDE can result in corrupted files. See Bug 452518 for details.
We want to hear what you think about the current release of Kubuntu 9.10, The Karmic Koala, Release Candidate. We want to know if it Rocks, if it is just OK, or it is flat out wrong. No matter the feedback, as long as it is in line with the Ubuntu Code of Conduct we would like to hear it.
So what are you waiting for, head on over to the Feedback Page and let us know!