Gutsy Feature Plan

Scott James Remnant scott at
Tue Jun 19 12:59:58 BST 2007

Now that the set of feature goals planned for Ubuntu 7.10 ("Gutsy
Gibbon") has been largely finalised, it seems like an appropriate point
to announce the plan to the world.

While this is based on the approved blueprints for gutsy[0], which are
expected to be implemented in time, we do release according to a
time-based schedule[1] rather than a feature-based one.  It is not
unusual for some planned features to be delayed to later releases;
happily it is also not unusual for our developers to introduce neat
features we weren't expecting either.



Ubuntu 7.10 will ship with the latest edition of the GNOME desktop,
2.20, released a few weeks before our own release.  Kubuntu 7.10 will
ship with KDE 3.5.7, and should also include packages of KDE 4.0 rc 2
available for optional side-by-side installation.

We are aiming for Ubuntu to be one of the first distributions to ship
the newly merged Compiz and Beryl projects (compcomm/OpenCompositing);
and enable it as the default window manager on systems with a supported
combination of hardware and drivers.

Systems which do not support compositing, or those with it disabled by
user option, will use the existing metacity window manager.

Hardware Support

Ubuntu 7.10 will use the 2.6.22 Linux kernel, along with our usual
selection of updated and additional drivers.

We will also use Xorg 7.3, giving better graphics hardware support and
the option of hotplugging monitors (RandR 1.2) and input devices
(xserver 1.4).

As well as the easier configuration for hotplugging-supported drivers
("no xorg.conf"), we also aim to have better configuration for other
drivers and fallback settings for when there is a problem.

Some "winmodem" chips will be supported out of the box, where drivers
are available; though this may rely on the use of restricted drivers.
Improvements to the Restricted Driver Manager are expected, allowing
drivers to be disabled by default and proposed by the manager.  As
previously announced, an edition of Ubuntu without restricted enabled by
default is in the works.


As announced, Ubuntu 7.10 will be first release to include a new Mobile
and Embedded edition targeted at hand-held devices and other
mobile/embedded form factors.

This integrates the Hildon UI components developed by Nokia into Ubuntu,
on top of the existing Ubuntu platform.


Development of the Ubuntu 7.10 Server Edition has received a new boost
with a dedicated development team at Canonical working on it.  Features
aiming to improve the experience for new and hobbyist administrators are
expected, as well as features desirable for small businesses and

For increased security, the AppArmor security framework will be
available as an option for those that want it.

Stability and Performance

Ubuntu 7.10 should function significantly better when the filesystem is
full or otherwise not writable, allowing the user to make room and then
continue working without undue interruption.

Improvements to our "apport" bug and crash reporting infrastructure are
planned, in particular integration with our software installation and
upgrade tools so that problems installing or upgrading packages can be
easily reported with relevant information attached.  Kernel crashes will
also be intercepted on reboot, and may be reported using the tool.

Our efforts to improve boot reliability and performance continue;
unlimited and reliable stackability of software raid (MD) devices, LVM
volumes and software-managed (devmapper) devices will be supported with
no runtime ordering issues.

Ubuntu 7.10 will ship with Upstart 0.5, which will provide flexible and
reliable service supervision.  We expect to harness this for suitable
core services, and some boot process tasks, as appropriate.

Scott James Remnant
Ubuntu Development Manager
scott at
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