Ubuntu is one of the most popular and user-friendly Linux distributions in the world. It is known for its stability, security, and versatility. It offers a variety of flavors and editions to suit different needs and preferences of users, such as Ubuntu Desktop, Ubuntu Server, Ubuntu Cloud, Ubuntu Core, Ubuntu Kylin, Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Ubuntu Budgie, Ubuntu MATE, and Ubuntu Studio.
Ubuntu 23.10 “Mantic Minotaur,” the latest interim release, offers fresh features and enhancements for users who seek the latest updates and can tolerate frequent upgrades. It’s based on Debian Bullseye and supported until July 2024. In this article, we will provide a comprehensive guide” to Ubuntu’s new features and improvements in the latest release of the popular Linux distribution.
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What is Ubuntu 23.10 Mantic Minotaur?
Introducing Ubuntu 23.10 “Mantic Minotaur,” the second Linux update of 2023. Released in October, it’s the final short-term release before the highly anticipated LTS version in April 2024. With just nine months of support, Mantic boasts cutting-edge Linux tech and enhanced hardware compatibility.
The name Mantic Minotaur follows the tradition of naming Ubuntu releases after animals with an adjective that starts with the same letter as the animal. Some examples of previous Ubuntu releases are Bionic Beaver, Focal Fossa, Groovy Gorilla, Impish Indri, and Jammy Jellyfish.
Why Should you try Ubuntu 23.10?
Ubuntu 23.10 is a great release for users who want to experience the cutting-edge features of Ubuntu before they are polished and refined for the next LTS release, which will be Ubuntu 24.04 LTS. It is also a good opportunity for developers, testers, and enthusiasts to provide feedback and contribute to the development of Ubuntu.
Ubuntu 23.10 is a compelling choice with GNOME 45’s fresh interface, a user-friendly Flutter-based App Center, a dedicated Firmware Updater, the latest Linux kernel 6.5 for enhanced performance, and improved PPA management for added security and ease. Upgrade to a more efficient Ubuntu experience.
New Features and Improvements in Ubuntu 23.10
In this section, we will explore some of the new features and improvements that Ubuntu 23.10 brings to the table. We will focus on the ones that are most relevant and noticeable for Ubuntu Desktop users, but you can also check out the official release notes for a complete list of changes.
GNOME 45: A Fresh and Modern Desktop Experience
One of the most significant changes in Ubuntu 23.10 is the upgrade to GNOME 45, the latest version of the GNOME desktop environment that powers Ubuntu Desktop. GNOME 45 was released on September 22, 2023, and brings a host of new features and improvements to the desktop.
New Workspace Indicator
GNOME 45 introduces a handy workspace indicator in Ubuntu 23.10, situated at the bottom right corner of the screen. It streamlines workspace management, displaying your current workspace and the number of open apps, facilitating seamless navigation and even allowing drag-and-drop app transfers between workspaces.
GNOME 45 introduces full-height sidebars in various apps like Files, Settings, Photos, and Music. These sidebars create a sleek and consistent design, offering easy access to app sections, improving visibility, and enhancing functionality with more space for icons and information.
Tiling Assistant Extension
GNOME 45 brings the Tiling Assistant extension as a default feature in Ubuntu 23.10. This extension enhances window tiling in GNOME Shell, enabling various tiling options, easy resizing, moving, swapping, and closing of tiled windows via shortcuts or gestures. Ideal for multitasking, it streamlines window management, optimizing productivity and workflow, especially on larger screens.
Flutter-Based App Center and Firmware Updater: Fast, Friendly and Fun
Ubuntu 23.10 introduces two significant Flutter-based apps, App Center and Firmware Updater, showcasing the cross-platform framework’s potential. These apps offer responsive user interfaces and mark a leap forward in Ubuntu’s Flutter experimentation, enhancing the user experience.
App Center: A New Way to Manage Software on Ubuntu
Ubuntu 23.10 debuts the sleek Flutter-based App Center, replacing Ubuntu Software. It offers efficient management of deb and snap packages, featuring enhanced search, views, and user ratings for a user-friendly, enjoyable software experience, focusing on seamless installation, updates, and removal on Ubuntu Desktop.
Firmware Updater: A Separate Tool for Hardware-Related Updates
Ubuntu 23.10 presents the separate, Flutter-based Firmware Updater app. It’s a lightweight, user-friendly tool ensuring your system’s hardware-related updates, like BIOS and drivers, are easily managed. View update details, schedule, and enhance system security and performance effortlessly.
Linux Kernel 6.5: The Foundation of Ubuntu 23.10
Another important change in Ubuntu 23.10 is the upgrade to Linux kernel 6.5, the latest stable version of the Linux kernel that is the core of Ubuntu. Linux kernel 6.5 was released on September 26, 2023, and brings many improvements and enhancements to the Linux operating system.
MIDI 2.0 Support
Linux kernel 6.5 in Ubuntu 23.10 introduces MIDI 2.0 support, revolutionizing music production. This advancement, facilitated by a new ALSA driver, offers enhanced resolution, bidirectional communication, dynamic setup, and compatibility with MIDI 1.0 devices. It empowers users to connect and control a diverse array of MIDI devices with newfound precision and flexibility, amplifying the potential for music creation and performance.
Enhanced Support for Rust
Linux kernel 6.5 enhances support for Rust, a language prioritizing safety and performance. Developers can now compile and link Rust code as kernel modules, enhancing security and reliability. Though experimental, this marks a substantial stride in fortifying the kernel. Expect continued growth in future releases.
Support for ACPI on RISC-V and Loongarch Architectures
Linux kernel 6.5 introduces ACPI support for RISC-V and Loongarch architectures via a versatile ACPI driver, offering improved power management and device compatibility. This advancement enhances Ubuntu’s usability on emerging RISC-V and Loongarch devices, contributing to a more diverse and adaptable ecosystem.
Improved Power Management Features for Intel Devices
Another new feature of Linux kernel 6.5 is the improved power management features for Intel devices. Linux kernel 6.5 includes several patches that improve the energy efficiency and performance of Intel devices, such as CPUs, GPUs, laptops, tablets, and smartphones. Some of the improved power management features in Linux kernel 6.5 are:
- Support for Intel Speed Select Technology (SST), which allows users to dynamically adjust the performance and power consumption of individual CPU cores based on workload requirements.
- Support for Intel Adaptive Voltage Scaling (AVS), which allows users to dynamically adjust the voltage of CPU cores based on workload requirements.
- Support for Intel Dynamic Platform Thermal Framework (DPTF), which allows users to dynamically adjust the thermal and power policies of Intel devices based on temperature, power, and performance constraints.
- Support for Intel Graphics Frequency Scaling (GFS), which allows users to dynamically adjust the frequency of Intel GPUs based on workload requirements.
Major PPA Changes: A More Secure Way to Handle Personal Package Archives
Another notable change in Ubuntu 23.10 is the major PPA changes that affect the way PPAs (Personal Package Archives) are handled. PPAs are repositories that allow users to install software packages that are not available in the official Ubuntu repositories. PPAs are often used by developers, testers, and enthusiasts to distribute and access the latest versions of software.
What are PPAs and How Do They Work?
PPAs are hosted on Launchpad, a web platform that provides various services for Ubuntu development and collaboration. Users can create their own PPAs or subscribe to other users’ PPAs using the
PPAs work by adding a new entry to the
/etc/apt/sources.list file or a new file to the
/etc/apt/sources.list.d directory, which contains the URL of the PPA and its GPG key. The GPG key is used to verify the authenticity and integrity of the packages downloaded from the PPA.
How Does Ubuntu 23.10 Change the Way PPAs are Managed?
Ubuntu 23.10 changes the way PPAs are managed by using deb822-formatted. sources files instead of the old .list file method. deb822 is a format that uses RFC 822-like syntax to describe Debian packages and sources.
The new. sources files are located in the
/etc/apt/sources.list.d directory and contain both the URL and the GPG key of the PPA in a single file. The new. sources files have a. sources extension instead of a. list extension.
The new. sources files are created automatically when users add a new PPA using the
add-apt-repository command or when they upgrade from an older Ubuntu version. The old .list files are still supported for backward compatibility, but they are discouraged and will be phased out in future releases.
What are the Benefits of the New PPA Format?
The new PPA format has several benefits over the old one, such as:
- It is more secure, as it prevents malicious actors from tampering with or replacing the GPG keys of PPAs.
- It is more convenient, as it reduces the number of files and commands needed to manage PPAs.
- It is more consistent, as it follows the same format as other Debian sources.
- It is more flexible, as it allows users to specify additional options and parameters for PPAs.
You can also check out our blog, How to Upgrade Linux Kernel in Ubuntu for more tips and tutorials on How to Upgrade Linux Kernel in Ubuntu.
Frequently Asked Questions
When will Ubuntu 24.04 LTS be Released?
Ubuntu 24.04 LTS is expected to be released in April 2024.
How Long will Ubuntu 23.10 be Supported?
Ubuntu 23.10 will be supported for nine months, until July 2024. After that, you will need to upgrade to a newer version of Ubuntu or switch to an LTS version if you want to receive security updates and bug fixes.
What is the Significance of Ubuntu 23.10 Mantic Minotaur?
Ubuntu 23.10 Mantic Minotaur is the last interim release before an LTS (Long Term Supported release) and is a particularly exciting time as it aims to land as many major changes as possible to ensure that the community has the chance to take them for a spin and provide feedback for further refinement ahead of Ubuntu 24.04 LTS.
What is the Default Installation in Ubuntu 23.10 Mantic Minotaur?
The default installation in Ubuntu 23.10 Mantic Minotaur is the minimal installation, but users can still install the traditional “fully-loaded” Ubuntu if desired.
In conclusion, Ubuntu 23.10 “Mantic Minotaur” is a compelling release that ushers in an array of exciting enhancements. With GNOME 45, the App Center, Firmware Updater, Linux kernel 6.5, and improved PPA management, it caters to users seeking the latest innovations before the LTS version.
For developers and enthusiasts, it’s a chance to engage, provide feedback, and shape Ubuntu’s future. To experience this release, download it from the official website, upgrade your current Ubuntu version, or try it in a virtual environment. Ubuntu 23.10 offers a blend of usefulness and fun for all users.