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Ubuntu Linux Desktop Released

The latest version of the popular Ubuntu Linux distribution was officially released to the public today after the routine beta-test period. This version is designated “LTS,” for “long-term support,” which should make it attractive to business customers who prefer a longer upgrade cycle for their operating systems.

Ubuntu 8.04 is available in a version tailored for server systems, but in the past it has been the desktop version that has garnered the most attention.

The new release includes a number of improvements for desktop users including a new installer that allows the OS to coexist on a Windows computer without partitioning or re-formatting the hard drive.

As is ordinary for Linux distributions, Ubuntu 8.04 includes incremental updates to many of the software packages that make up the system, from low-level details like the window manager and graphics subsystem, all the way up to the bundled OpenOffice productivity suite.

The new release is also the first to ship with the Firefox 3.0 browser, which is currently still in late-stage beta testing.

Some technical experts have tested Ubuntu 8.04 which they say is remarkably stable and a well-polished Linux desktop.