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The Rising Star Of Ubuntu

I had a good time reviewing Ubuntu Linux version 6.10 (64-bit), a week or so ago.

As reviews go, the story produced a virtual flood of feedback, mostly from the Ubuntu community. Quite a few readers made entries in the talk backs. I also received about a dozen additional emails. The remarks ran the gamut, from “thanks, good article” to “why did you write this?”. I welcome any and all buzz from an article. People definitely are reading. That's good for LinuxToday.

Given the recent Novell+Microsoft, RedHat vs. Oracle, and Sun Java Open Source news, Ubuntu is out there marching to it's own drummer. It is a grassroots effort that seems to be growing. That's a good thing for the Linux and Open Source community.

The decent amount of feedback showed that Ubuntu definitely has a strong following in the LinuxToday readership. I haven't had quite the same interest from SUSE reviews that I've done. The last few that I did covered getting 64-bit Linux running on an AMD Athlon 64 laptop. Most of the comments were seeking help with 64-bit anomalies, the nVidia/DVD playing issues, or the Broadcom WiFi chip.

In contrast, the Ubuntu feedback offered fixes to problems that I had during installation. I didn't have that many. Most commenters completely ignored the fact that I was a Ubuntu newbie, choosing simply to outline ways I could move toward computing bliss.

My work computers have run SUSE for a few years and it works well for me. I think it takes a little time to get to know all the nuances of a particular flavor of Linux. Ubuntu looks like a great package for the new user with fairly standard hardware. Everybody has their favorite.

So, how will Ubuntu do in the rough and tumble world of Linux and commercial support? It seems to have a strong following. It seems stable and well supported. What challenges will it face, on the IP and service to customers side? Will people still contribute and continue the “helpful” feedback.

We'll see.

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