Ubuntu is an operating system like Microsoft Windows or Mac. It was first released on Oct 20, 2004 and is arguably the most popular free operating system. Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (codenamed Trusty Tahr) is the 20th release of Ubuntu and will be released on Apr 17, 2014. The support lasts for 5 years till April, 2019. No, you won’t be stuck with it because Ubuntu is always seamlessly upgradeable to a newer release if available and you do not need to install the OS twice and lose your settings or files. But LTS (Long Term Support) releases are considered stabler than interim releases.
In its core, Ubuntu uses the Linux kernel. If you haven’t heard about it, it is the same kernel that powers Android devices running on 80% of the smartphones today. Linux is a proven and stable open source kernel. The number of dedicated developers working on the Linux kernel all around the world is multiple times than on any other operating system.
Ubuntu comes with Unity as the default desktop environment which is beautiful, state of the art and powerful. You can search the local system as well as the Web straight from the desktop. You get notifications for all your social networks without having to install any extra software. Unity is a highly productive desktop environment. In case you are a minimalist you may want something else. You can simultaneously have multiple other desktop environments like KDE, XFCE, LXDE installed along with Unity. You can also go for an Ubuntu variant like Kubuntu, Xubuntu or Lubuntu. There are always options and ways with Ubuntu!
Ubuntu installs a wide range of software from compilers to multimedia players by default. And if you need more, they are always available for free in the repositories. All you need to do is to install them with a single click! Everyday more and more applications are coming up with Linux versions due to its growing popularity. So chances are great that your favourite applications will already be available for Ubuntu. If not, it has excellent alternatives and can run many Windows software through Wine, the Windows emulator. Many of them perform better on Ubuntu than on Windows! The same goes for games too.
Installation is as easy as it gets and needs a few clicks. If you want to test drive Ubuntu you don’t even need to install it on your system! You can run it from a USB pen drive. Here’s a guide we have written to help you out with installation. If you already have Ubuntu 13.10, here’s how to upgrade it.
All the desktop environments we mentioned above are as friendly and easy to use as any other desktop environment on any other OS. You do not need to learn a lot of things to get comfortable. But still, if you face any issues there is a huge community of millions of users and developers to help you out anytime. Ubuntu is open source and the tradition of community support is inherent to it. Here’s a step by step tutorial to know the alleys around Ubuntu. It was written for anyone who wants to introduce a new user to Ubuntu but it is quite detailed for self-learning too.
From our Beta tests we have found 14.04 to be exceptionally stable delivering an awesome performance. It never seemed like a Beta to begin with. It has the latest software, support for the bleeding edge hardware as well as the most ancient of them rigs like Pentium II. It can do anything that any other desktop OS can do plus much more because it is extremely flexible and tweak-able. You can open and see and modify all of it. It puts you, the user, in charge.
Are you in?