Wow! Who knew Canonical would drop Unity? It goes to show the best vision doesn’t always make it to market.
The fact that Unity Desktop got swallowed up in the convergence mission is sad, a truly great desktop environment beaten down by perceived market conditions.
This is a post by Mark Shuttleworth, Founder of Ubuntu and Canonical
We are wrapping up an excellent quarter and an excellent year for the company, with performance in many teams and products that we can be proud of. As we head into the new fiscal year, it’s appropriate to reassess each of our initiatives. I’m writing to let you know that we will end our investment in Unity8, the phone and convergence shell. We will shift our default Ubuntu desktop back to GNOME for Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.
I’d like to emphasise our ongoing passion for, investment in, and commitment to, the Ubuntu desktop that millions rely on. We will continue to produce the most usable open source desktop in the world, to maintain the existing LTS releases, to work with our commercial partners to distribute that desktop, to support our corporate customers who rely on it, and to delight the millions of IoT and cloud developers who innovate on top of it.
We care that Ubuntu is widely useful to people who use Linux every day, for personal or commercial projects. That’s why we maintain a wide range of Ubuntu flavours from both Canonical and the Ubuntu community, and why we have invested in the Ubuntu Phone.
I took the view that, if convergence was the future and we could deliver it as free software, that would be widely appreciated both in the free software community and in the technology industry, where there is substantial frustration with the existing, closed, alternatives available to manufacturers. I was wrong on both counts.
In the community, our efforts were seen fragmentation not innovation. And industry has not rallied to the possibility, instead taking a ‘better the devil you know’ approach to those form factors, or investing in home-grown platforms. What the Unity8 team has delivered so far is beautiful, usable and solid, but I respect that markets, and community, ultimately decide which products grow and which disappear.
So now that this is happening within the next year, it’s time to get Gnome set up now however possible (near future article!), or review what possible versions of Linux might be then suitable for your business or personal use.
Here’s a list of current Linux distributions as of 2017:
It’s a Debian-based Linux distribution thus keeps in line with those who prefer the apt-get tools and the general state of affairs within Debian, which has emerged as the most robust in recent years due to Ubuntu.
I will be testing this one very soon, and publish the report here on U.T.N.
Yet another distro based on Debian, in this case Lubuntu LTS.
One issue is that it needs to install a more modern browser.
Linux Mint: This is one of the most popular distros aside from Ubuntu, and comes in many flavors suited for a wide range of uses.
Most of my Udon Thani expat and San Francisco geek friends use some version of this, where I have always stuck with Ubuntu.