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Ubuntu possibly moving to a rolling release from 14.04

by Rob Zwetsloot

Could the six-month Ubuntu cycle be dropped in time for the next LTS in favour of a rolling release every two years?

Like clockwork, Ubuntu is released every six months, with a major LTS released every two years. Development priorities change over the cycles as well, and even if the LTS is in some way the flagship product, there’s always a desire for the cutting edge. In a broadcasted conversation today, Ubuntu Kernel Team Manager Leann Ogasawara mentioned how the kernel team were interested in switching to a rolling release for Ubuntu 14.04.

According to The H, this plan would involve Ubuntu releasing the LTS’s every two years as normal, however there’d be a bigger focus on maintaining the current LTS in the mean time. Ogasawara went on to speculate that users wouldn’t be happy with these changes.

What do you think? Are the LTS releases maintained fine as is, or would you prefer to have the LTS for two years with the latest software?

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    • Neil

      Bring it on! It’d save any pollution of my system from having to add PPAs to get the latest bits of software. I’d welcome a rolling release model at least for my personal machine, my server of course would run the latest LTS release, as it has always done.

      Count me as a user that would be happy with this change.

    • mpiter

      The present 2-year LTS / 6-month non-LTS model is broken (LTS means Long-Term Support which is supposed to be particularly stable and reliable in contrast to non-LTS version for more up-to-date features). Unity requires Compiz, and Compiz is so buggy on the current LTS version (12.04) that you cannot really use it for real work ( and many other bugs reported on launchpad). When you ask the Compiz team for a fix, they answer “Too difficult for library reasons. Upgrade to the non-LTS version 12.10.” So the last non-LTS version is currently more reliable than their LTS one which is exactly the opposite definition of what should be an LTS distribution! Maybe a rolling distribution would be less ridiculous than the current Ubuntu state.

    • Alex

      I agree with mpiter. The LTS versions typically don’t get some fixes they should get to get some things running correctly. The biggest thing as well as another user posted, it would cut down on hunting down a PPA to get the latest version installed on my system for those new inovative features coming into some open source projects which instead I get stuck with an older version. One example is comparing that would be installed of GIMP on ubuntu 12.10 versus 12.04 LTS. There are some neat features in the newest version of GIMP, and also, seems pretty stable to me.

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    • rohit

      i wud be happy

    • Psofa Dopoulos

      I would agree with a rolling release. I feel like 12.04 is a bit forgotten at the moment by the Ubuntu team :(