Karmic Koala Alpha 2

Karmic Koala, the upcoming version of Ubuntu Linux, was made available as a second alpha release on June 14. As always, the warning is given: do not install it on production machines.

To upgrade from Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty) on a desktop system, press Alt + F2 and type update manager -d into the command box.

Some of the new features in Karmic have not appeared yet, since development recently started. Currently the changes include the new Linux kernel based on 2.6.30, the latest development release of GNOME (2.26.1) and the sync of packages from Sid (Debian Unstable).

Karmic uses GCC-4.4 as the default compiler. It also uses the new ext4 file system by default for new installations of Karmic.

GRUB 2 is the default boot loader for new installations of Karmic, replacing the previous GRUB boot loader. If you are upgrading rather than installing a fresh system, GRUB will not upgraded at this time.

Karmic Alpha 2 can be downloaded from here, if you wish a fresh install.

I personally have updated from Jaunty to Karmic. It took me some time to make the decision. I love the way Jaunty “just works.” I wasn’t looking forward to introducing breakage into a system which I had just set up to work perfectly. However, I told myself, testers are always needed.

So far, I am astonished at the low level of breakage. My screen resolution is correct. My mouse cursor works. The sound works. Guys, have you forgotten that this is supposed to be a freaking alpha? 😉

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