Since the beginning the Linux desktop era, users and pundits have been asking when the year of the Linux desktop would be here. This past week saw three different answers to that question with the release of Linux Mint 15, Fedora 19 beta and the closing Ubuntu bug #1.
1) Linux Mint 15 Olivia
After much anticipation the official final release of Linux Mint 15 debuted last week.
“Linux Mint 15 is the most ambitious release since the start of the project,” Mint founder, Celment Lefebvre wrote in his release announcement. “MATE 1.6 is greatly improved and Cinnamon 1.8 offers a ton of new features, including a screensaver and a unified control center.”
With Cinnamon 1.8 in particular there has been a lot of work done to improve the Linux desktop user interface.
“Cinnamon 1.8 represents 7 months of development and 1,075 commits. It features a lot of bug fixes but also brand new features and many improvements,” Linux Mint 15’s What’s New page states.
2) Fedora 19 Beta
Fedora is one of the most popular Linux distros around, primarily though due to its server heritage. With Fedora 19 the browser is making new inroad to try and court developers, makers and desktop users alike
“Developer’s Assistant is great for those new to development or even new to Linux, this tool helps you to get started on a code project with templates, samples, and toolchains for the languages of your choice,” the Fedora 19 Beta release announcement states. “Bonus: It lets you publish directly to GitHub.”
On the desktop side, GNOME 3.8 as well KDE 4.10 top the list of supported interfaces. Though others include LXDE and even MATE are supported with Fedora 19 as well.
3) Ubuntu Bug #1
With Linux Mint 15 and the Fedora 19 beta, the best of the Linux Planet is on display for desktop users. They both represent alternatives to Microsoft’s desktop dominance, which was identified back in 2004 by Ubuntu Linux founder Mark Shuttleworth as bug #1.
It’s a bug that has now been closed. Not because Ubuntu (or any other desktop distribution) has displaced Microsoft, but rather because the game has changed.
“Android may not be my or your first choice of Linux, but it is without doubt an open source platform that offers both practical and economic benefits to users and industry. So we have both competition, and good representation for open source, in personal computing,” Shuttleworth said.