Xubuntu 14.04 Beta 1 (Trusty Tahr) is now available for download, and just like the other flavors that also got a Beta release, it also comes with a generous amount of changes and improvements.
Ubuntu no longer has development releases, but that hasn't stopped the official flavors to release Beta version. Xubuntu is among those distros and this latest iteration if full of very interesting features.
The changes that have been implemented include the replacement of xscreensaver (used to screen locking) with Light Locker, the addition of the Mugshot that can be used to edit personal preferences, the replacement of Alacarte (the application used to edit menus) with MenuLibre 2.0.1, and the addition of a new community wallpapers package (includes the work of the five winners of the wallpaper contest).
Also, the Xubuntu developers have explained that the panel now supports GTK3 indicators and the Whiskermenu (the launcher in the top left part of the screen) is now used as default.
“While many of the improvements in Xubuntu since the last LTS are, indeed, not directly visible. Some of the major improvements have been in design and theming, and as such we hope that you don't see them – good design should be invisible,” reads the announcement from the developers.
It’s also interesting to note that a number of application have been updated, like gmusicbrowser 1.11.1 (we did an extensive review of this application only recently), Catfish 1.0.0, Parole 0.6 (it was ported to Gtk3 and gstreamer 1.0), Xfwm4 4.11, and Xfdesktop 4.11.
Probably the most exciting of the bunch is Xfdesktop 4.11 because it provides users with support for individual wallpapers on each workspace, it comes with a chronological option which will sort the available wallpaper pictures according to their filename, and even an option to enable tooltips that will show up on mouse hover.
As usual, the Beta versions are not spared from bugs and problems. The developers have explained that it’s possible for xfdesktop to crash after logging in to the desktop, Thunar doesn’t automatically mount removable devices and media, network shares are not displayed on the desktop, and the wallpaper selection dialogue is sometimes empty.
Users have been encouraged to install and test this version, and report any problems that they encounter.
Download Xubuntu 14.04 Beta 2 (Trusty Tahr) right now from Softpedia. Remember that this is a development version and it should NOT be installed on production machines. It is intended for testing purposes only.
Xubuntu 14.04 Beta 2 (Trusty Tahr) is scheduled to be released on April 17 and it will feature three years of support.