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Ubuntu is Working on a Brand New Installer

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The Canonical Design Team and the Ubuntu Desktop Team are collaborating on new install utility for use in Ubuntu desktop. The tool will use Flutter, leverage Curtin, and take advantage of the effort put into Subiquity, the new Ubuntu Server installer and set-up tool.

But why is a new installer needed? What’s wrong with the current one?

Age, mostly.

Ubuntu uses the Ubiquity installer in its desktop images (as do many of the official Ubuntu flavours). First introduced in 2010, Ubiquity is functional and moderately fast, but it is very much of its time; i.e., its ancient codebase is said to be ‘cumbersome’ to work with.

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Canonical is working on a new desktop installer for Ubuntu 21.10

  • Canonical is working on a new desktop installer for Ubuntu 21.10

    After being in service for well over a decade, Canonical is getting ready to retire Ubuntu’s Ubiquity installer.

    “While still functional, Ubiquity hasn’t seen significant feature development for some years and due to its legacy is becoming cumbersome to maintain,” wrote Ubuntu's desktop lead, Martin Wimpress, while unveiling plans for the new installer.

    He shared that Canonical has been working on developing a new desktop installer built around Google's Flutter toolkit, and they aim to introduce it later this year with the release of Ubuntu 21.10.

Ubuntu Linux Finally Gets A New Installer After 16 Years

  • Ubuntu Linux Finally Gets A New Installer After 16 Years

    As a rabid distro-hopper with a ton of machines and bottomless curiosity, I’m 95-percent positive I’m way more critical of installers than most people. But the installer also happens to be a person’s first taste of a Linux distro.

    It needs to be effective and intuitive. It needs to make a great impression.

    16 years after debuting on Ubuntu (and later becoming the installer for dozens — if not hundreds — of additional distros), Ubiquity has certainly proven its worth. It does its job and does it consistently well.

    But Canonical believes it’s finally time to freshen things up with a refreshed Ubuntu Desktop installer.

Ubuntu getting a new installer, desktop lead to leave Canonical

  • Ubuntu getting a new installer, desktop lead to leave Canonical

    Two big bits of news from Canonical and Ubuntu to cover today and both about the future of the Linux distribution.

    Firstly, the sad news to get it out of the way: the current desktop lead for Ubuntu, Martin Wimpress, will be leaving Canonical and moving over to Wimpress wasn't in the role particularly long, taking over from when Will Cooke stepped down in October 2019. However, it's not all sad news. Wimpress will be continuing to lead Ubuntu MATE which is a passion project so you can expect that to continue as normal.

    We wish Martin Wimpress all the best and continued success with life and Ubuntu MATE.

Canonical turns to Google framework for new installer

  • Canonical turns to Google framework for new installer, but community asks why not have a Flutter on GTK?

    Canonical is building a new installer for Ubuntu using Google's cross-platform Flutter framework – but is facing questions about use of a non-native toolkit for such a key component.

    Martin Wimpress, Canonical's director of engineering, said that "the current Ubuntu Desktop installer, Ubiquity, dates back to 2006," and that it had become a maintenance burden.

    There is a newer installer for Ubuntu Server, called Subiquity, that is written in Python and wraps a bare-bones installer called curtin.

    Wimpress said the intention was to create a single consolidated installer for both server and desktop, and that the desktop frontend for the new installer will use Google's Flutter framework following work Canonical has already done to give Flutter Linux support. Work has started and can be found on GitHub here.

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