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Elementary OS 0.2 "Luna" Released 117

First time accepted submitter kazade84 writes "Over the weekend the Elementary team released the stable version of Elementary OS, codenamed "Luna" which is based on Ubuntu 12.04. The new OS features an entirely custom desktop shell called Pantheon which has been developed from scratch using Vala and Gtk+ which allows for fast apps with a small memory footprint. Elementary OS has been years in the making, and the team have documented the process in their latest blog post."
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Elementary OS 0.2 "Luna" Released

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  • why (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:01AM (#44541183)

    I don't understand why everyone is making such a huge fuss about this. Do so many of us really desire an OS X themed window manager?

    • To go further with this thought... Is it any good regardless of "popular" consensus for an OS X alternative?
      • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

        Why is OSX an option at all?

        It lacks X conventions, customizability is a total joke, the only good thing about it is compositing. Honestly, it's second monitor support manages to be worse than most Linux Distros

        • Re:why (Score:5, Interesting)

          by iggymanz ( 596061 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:35AM (#44541537)

          My Mac at work makes a fine X terminal, of what X conventions are you speaking? my mac has in .xinitrc. some crazy people even install X11 based desktops on their mac osx.

          customizing? I have computer to do work, not fart around with desktop appearance beyond color or font.

          my three monitors are working well, get video hardware/drivers that are well supported by mac osx and there are no issue.

          • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

            font size and ui widgets size changing is a nice customization..

          • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

            Highlight Middle click copy paste for one.
            Using the clipboard is not the same.

            I want FFM. Find me that checkbox please.

            Try using a thunderbolt to HDMI adaptor. Welcome to the monitor resetting many times a day.

            • by berj ( 754323 )

              Highlight/middle click works for me in the OS X terminal. It's not *quite* the same as the shell on my Linux machine since you can only paste once but it's relatively workable. It's definitely not OS-wide but the functionality is there in a limited capacity (good enough for me personally)

              Generally I prefer using the clipboard since many times I have to highlight the text that I want to paste/replace.

              What's FFM?

              • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

                Focus Follows Mouse

                • by berj ( 754323 )

                  Ah. Again.. they've implemented that in the terminal but not much else.

                  It's something that would be nice but certainly not a dealbreaker for me personally. Certain things follow the mouse (scrolling, for example. I can scroll the window under my mouse even though it's not selected). I can see a number of stumbling blocks for this on the mac (mainly owing to the pervasive application menu) but I think they could all be overcome with a bit of design savvy.

                  I'd be happy to see the feature but I don't need i

            • by oPless ( 63249 )

              Middle click: Different OS, sorry.
              Clipboard: Oh wait ... it's a different OS, sorry.
              FFM: I'm sure if you talk to the barman at your local hotel, you'll be able to sort out a FFM. Might cost you though.
              Thunderbolt/HDMI: works fine for me, and I've got a random mini-displayport -> HDMI cable that now works with audio now I've upgraded from my old 2009 mbpro.

              I've had a bunch of monitors (Maximum three at the last count, though I probably could do four if I wanted to cope with bazillion cables attached to my

            • Highlight middle click copy paste is a bloody UI abortion. I applaud any application that breaks this convention. From []
              • 1. It's inconsistent with Mac/Windows;
              • 2. It's confusingly. Selecting anything overwrites the clipboard;
              • 3. It's not efficient with a tool such as xclipboard;
              • 4. You should be able to select text, then paste the clipboard over it, but that doesn't work if the selection and clipboard are the same;
              • 5. The copy menu item is useless and does nothing, which is confusing;
              • 6. If you t
          • my three monitors are working well, get video hardware/drivers that are well supported by mac osx and there are no issue.

            Yeah there is no issue viewing multiple monitors in MacOS, the Problem is working with them. The menus is what makes using multiple monitor in mac very anoying. I have not used it in a long time since I got rid of macos, maybe it has been fixed. I had 4 monitors and I had to put many miles all the time to get to the menus of the application I was using, because the menu only displays in the main monitor.

          • My company mandated use of the installed OS on our macbooks, so I've had to run OS X instead of Linux these last 2-3 years. No terminal program I've tried other than xterm seems to be able to support double-click to select, right-click to extend, middle-click to paste. Most support the first and third only. This is so basic if you've used an xterm any amount of time. Focus follows mouse is not supported by most tools either. If you install xterm/xquartz, the fonts are crappy on retina displays, and x didn't

    • Do so many of us really desire an OS X themed window manager?

      I don't much care for any OSX themed desktops, but the extended outing for Vala is much more interesting.

      Glib is a not bad dynamic object system which requires no more than the C runtime. So far almost all hacking is done in C. This is quite incredbly painful and I'm honestly surprised that the people developing with GLib persisted for as long as they did.

      Really it's awful. It's the most astonishingly verbose system where you have to do *everythin

    • by The Cat ( 19816 ) *

      "Waah! Everything sucks. Back to the bong."

      That about cover it?

    • I'm not sure it's about the OSX theme per se, but I'm interested in the idea of having a stripped down desktop UI that's very simple, moderately attractive and modern looking, and doesn't do anything crazy.

      Examples of "doing something crazy" would be like replacing the Windows Start menu with a weird full-screen menu and trying to force desktop users to use tablet applications, like what Microsoft did. "Doing something crazy" would also include Gnome 3's overhaul, which still kind of confuses me.

      It seems

    • I definitely like the OSX theme that they showed, but there is no compelling reason, for me to switch to Luna from OSX. Because, under the hood, OSX is BSD.

      BSD allows you to do almost all the things you can do with Linux, albeit, some of the command line arguments are a bit different from UNIX, but since most Linux distro's support both versions of command line arguments, this is not such a big deal.

    • by wjcofkc ( 964165 )
      I've been giving a spin all day, and I can tell you it is much more than an OS X themed window manager. I know that's not much of a review, and if I have time maybe I'll put one together, but I suggest you try it before knocking it - it's actually pretty wonderful.
    • Well, OS X themed isn't bad, I like their UI look. However this Elementary OS doesn't seem to be that either. It seem oriented towards "apps". Ie, Linux underneath, applets on top ala tablets/phones, or at least simplified minimalist designed framework on top. It's incredibly hard to tell what it is without installing as their website is obtuse and lacking in solid information. Even Apple's web sites are more informative and down to earth.

  • YALDBOALD (Score:3, Funny)

    by Rosco P. Coltrane ( 209368 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:03AM (#44541195)

    Yet Another Linux Distro Based On Another Linux Distro.


  • What's new? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by pipatron ( 966506 ) <> on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:04AM (#44541211) Homepage

    So what's in there which isn't in Ubuntu?

    Judging the book by the cover, it looks like someone thought this new cool programming language of the week was the most awesome ever, wrote a few wrappers to some applications, and released it as a new distro.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      The new OS features an entirely custom desktop shell called Pantheon which has been developed from scratch using Vala and Gtk+ ...

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        and why the need to release and advertise an entire new desktop OS when just the desktop shell is novel? people don't know how to create software packages anymore?

        • This type of thinking is why mass adoption will never happen on the desktop. You are entirely correct of course, but the OS will continue to be a niche for people who know how to properly use a computer when you only think about things in their technical terms. The same reason the UX and design of open source software has always lagged behind property counter parts, because of thoughts like "If the option is available, then anything else to make it nicer is just wasted cycles, bloat or fluff"

          For proper adop

    • Re:What's new? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by AlreadyStarted ( 523251 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:14AM (#44541311)
      More like someone wanted something different from what was already available, and put their desire into a project that created something new. Good for them. Hacker spirit and all.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by geek ( 5680 )

      The distro itself is a joke. I've been battling these guys for a couple years on another Linux blog. They love to swarm it like flies on shit and tell everyone how great they are. They've done nothing but copy OS X's look and feel from the start and then go off on tangents about how "It can't be done any other way"

      There isn't an original thought in the entire group. They even have one guy that does nothing but hang out on social media and spam about Elementary. He went so far as to email me personally (how

      • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

        I thought from your comment it can't be that bad.
        then I opened their homepage.

        immediate result: burst out laughing.

        spent some time trying to find screenshots, couldn't find them. the fuckers even implemented a hidden end of page menu on their homepage, that wouldn't be too bad hipster design if on their journal they hadn't implemented automatic load more upon reaching end of page...

        I did gather as much as that they don't really understand why double clicking exists(to select an item vs. activating it).

        oh we

        • by geek ( 5680 )

          Watch their little Luna intro video. It's so Mac like as to be ridiculous. These guys are in complete denial of how much they copy from Apple. I think Samsung envies them for not being sued yet. Even the style of their website mimics Apple.

          They used to have a forum but it got shut down because they got so much hate on it about their inability to form original ideas. Now they have some blurb on there about "They feel social media provides the outlet needed" instead of a project forum.

          Just a complete joke.

      • I believe there are 269 patents on the Aqua interface elements. If you are right, given they sell this distro for $10, they better hope they are never successful enough to get noticed.

  • Sheesh (Score:4, Insightful)

    by JoeCommodore ( 567479 ) <> on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:14AM (#44541305) Homepage

    Can't you guys just let us have a menu where we can select a program from a list of all the ones already installed and let us put our crap on the desktop?

    Every GUI OS designer wants to present stuff stylishly and enforce some good file housekeeping paradigm, must of us users just want to be able to select (not find) our installed programs and store files were we expect them.

    Screen organization and the other stuff of elementary is nice, if you are going to be inspired by Apple, include letting us put stuff on the desktop and give us a thing like "applications folder" were we can quickly browse installed programs.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Linux Mint

    • Can't you guys just let us have a menu where we can select a program from a list of all the ones already installed and let us put our crap on the desktop?

      Every GUI OS designer wants to present stuff stylishly and enforce some good file housekeeping paradigm, must of us users just want to be able to select (not find) our installed programs and store files were we expect them.

      Screen organization and the other stuff of elementary is nice, if you are going to be inspired by Apple, include letting us put stuff on the desktop and give us a thing like "applications folder" were we can quickly browse installed programs.

      xfce in pure form without some cludged up distros' customizations. Nothing around runs faster than good old slackware and a pure xfce DE. Simple mouse activated menu anywhere on the desktop and easily customizable. Zenwalk was great at one time but seems to have gone down hill.

      Patrick has it nailed, keep the OS clean as a whistle and avoid too much ln -s crap built in the install scripts. This is the whole problem with most distros, you spend way too much time trying to find how the linked libs work and

    • Doesn't KDE still follow the traditional click-the-menu paradigm? As does XFCE, Cinammon, MATE, LXDE, and most of the "lightweight" ones.

      Gnome might not (I haven't tried Gnome 3 in ages). Unity presents a big text search by default, but the clickable list of all applications (filterable by category, as in Gnome 2) is only 2 clicks away. And this new fella (from TFA) is just an OS X clone- same paradigm Apple have been plugging for decades.

      In other words, you worry too much.

    • The launcher can easily be switched to a menu mode.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Why not release pantheon as a package for any old ubuntu user who wants his computer to look like a Mac? Do they plan to contribute such a package upstream?

    All I see is another attempt to set up yet another "app store" with a bunch of bullshit jargon about being "faster and more lightweight". It's still just ubuntu and x-windows, but with worse support and a fairly useless and uninformative website (obviously not reaching out to technical users).

    If they want to clone MacOS, they should start with Darwin,

  • 927

    That is all....
  • by Luthair ( 847766 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:24AM (#44541409)
    You copied OSX.
    • by spikeb ( 966663 )
      Great design isn't new, it builds upon prior success. also, a dock on the bottom != copying OSX
      • by wjcofkc ( 964165 )
        They also blatantly copied expose and a host of other OS X functions. This is so brazen I'm a little shocked.
        • As an OS X users, what features are these? Basically there's a dock at the bottom (auto hide to get rid of the ugly thing), plus menu bar up top, plus no borders on windows, plus rounded corners. Really, that's all that would differentiate it at a glance from Windows 7 or KDE or traditional Gnome.

          • by wjcofkc ( 964165 )
            I made another post discussing this in slightly more depth further down, read it here:

            A brazen copy of OS X []

            Be sure to read the follow up where I reply to myself too. And be sure to give it a spin when you get the chance, it's really very good.
  • by dgharmon ( 2564621 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:36AM (#44541549) Homepage
    How do I dual boot with Ubuntu ..
  • by mothlos ( 832302 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:37AM (#44541559)

    Time for my occasional rant on grids.

    Grids are terrible for displaying sorted lists of item collections. Almost all of the time, we sort a collection along a single dimension; a grid positions items across two dimensions, but that second dimension holds no information about the sort being performed. If you have more than a few items, your brain has to bounce back and forth and conform to the line breaks that the computer has chosen in order to find items in the collection. Displaying a collection in a table with each collection item taking up one row and attributes of that item can be displayed in table fields (a.k.a. columns) allows for easier, more intuitive searching of the list based on those field values. It also leaves plenty of room for textual display, which fits quite well in a long, horizontal space.

    Grids of icons have been a blight upon GUIs for decades. Why do they persist?

    • Grids of icons have been a blight upon GUIs for decades. Why do they persist?


      Because you can put more square icons in a grid of a certain area than you can in list form. Duh.

    • Information density when browsing for images or applications? When all you care about is the filename and a preview of the file in question (where appropriate, such as for images or movies; for applications substitute the application's icon) you have two choices:

      1. Use a list view, which uses most of the application's real estate to display a bunch of metadata you don't care about. In other words it's horribly inefficient, wasting the X dimension. Depending on how large you want your preview icons to be y
      • by mothlos ( 832302 )

        When, exactly, does the increased information density of grids really help? Grids obscure organization, making navigating through information-dense views worse. Sure, you have more stuff, but it is more difficult to find what you want. More does not immediately mean better and increasing the cognitive load required to solve a problem is not a reasonable solution to utilize 'wasted space'.

        Icons are not incompatible with list views and neither are pictures. Scrolling through a list of icons means that the use

        • Again, it's possible to scan a grid of images without focusing on each one in turn. (Of course this depends on the image in question and how similar it is to other images in the grid.) If what you're looking for is the mostly-red icon in a directory full of mostly-blue icons or the image with three people in it in a folder mostly filled with landscape pictures you're not gaining anything by displaying those things in a list.

          You don't need to bring each picture to the exact center of your vision in order t
    • by dargaud ( 518470 )
      A hundred mod points to you sir. The first thing I change in any finder/explorer/dolphin/file manager is to set it in list form for easy sorting. In addition to that you need to be pretty visually-oriented to be able to find the icon you are looking for on a 1920x1080 screen full of icons. And I'm not. Also why I LOATHE UML, but that's another story.
  • by Serif ( 87265 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @10:51AM (#44541719)

    Methinks someone needs to learn the difference between an OS and a Linux distribution.

    • by wjcofkc ( 964165 )
      We call Android an OS.
      • by geek ( 5680 )

        We call Android an OS.

        Because it is.

        • by wjcofkc ( 964165 )
          Considering it's running the Linux Kernel, and from what I've seen of the filesystem layout with the terminal I have on my phone, it looks to me like it is overall a linux distro, just very different and funky. Can we not also call Elementary an OS based on that rather than confining it to the category of yet another distro? I'm not talking back, I really am asking this as a question that perhaps has a less obvious answer than I realize. So... enlighten me.
  • If everything worked out of the box, now that would be revolutionary. I'm still struggling to get integrated webcams and broadcom wifi drivers working on some older platforms.
  • by wjcofkc ( 964165 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @11:24AM (#44542029)
    It's not just the docks behavior or the slightly less similar menu bar across the top. They actually went so far as to copy expose functions and the music player looks exactly like the version of iTunes before the most recent update, even the file browser is an obvious and direct clone of the Finder. For crying out loud, the default wallpaper that the video starts out with is even the default wallpaper in OS X. And all that just from the video. Since I'm going to install it, I'm willing to bet the similarities don't even come close to stopping there. I am really super surprised at what a brazen OS X clone this is, even shocked they would go this far.

    With all that said, and myself as someone who is a long time dedicated Mac user, I think it looks really freaking cool! I have been waiting for something like this and will be giving it a spin today. As someone who is also a long time Linux user, I'm about as excited as a six-year old on christmas morning to play with this new distro. Now if only I can drop that interface onto Slackware.

    Also, as I scroll down their page, even that flows and looks exactly like an apple website product page, even the navigation bar at the top comes close to a clone of - interesting. They should steer this in the direction of making it a platform that integrates with Edge, much like iPhone (disclaimer: I use an Android) is integrated into Apple's platform. Anyway, going to download and install now, hope it lives up to what they are advertising.
    • I've been using it since I made the original post and it really is a big accomplishment. If I ever went back to using Linux full time, this would be my choice. There are a lot of naysayers here who haven't even taken the time to try it. Download it, fire up VirtualBox, run the ISO as a virtual live DVD, and be impressed. Interestingly enough, it even has drivers for every last little bit of hardware on my MacBook (yes, even wifi). I'm going to be installing a dedicated install on my Win 7 laptop and use it
      • The trashing isn't because it's a linux product, but because the web page is so vague. Ie, to get even a hint of what it's about we must first download the image and actually run it. Screenshots would be nice, or a list of features that don't sound like marketing, but no video.

  • by Blaskowicz ( 634489 ) on Monday August 12, 2013 @12:24PM (#44542765)

    I thought it looked like Gnome 3, with maybe a custom dock they've written.
    A top status bar, zooming windows, GTK3 and otherwise featureless design, that must be Gnome 3 right? At least it looks pleasing.

    I'm not too familiar with the Apple OS so I don't get why everyone jumps on it and say this copies Apple. I don't give a shit thanks. A bar on top, well, it was copied in the 1980s by the Atari ST and Dosshell already and the dock, a bunch of icons, available before OSX.. who gives a shit?
    I'm waiting for LXDE-Qt, now using a boring-looking Xfce 4.8, I'm not into the GTK3 stuff much but it doesn't hurt me too much some people are playing with it.

  • Totally thought this was pony related until I read it.
  • Another Linux distro is launched. What news!
  • I see two common trends to the comments here:

    1) Only negative comments, not a single positive comment about this distro.
    2) Not a single person appears to have actually used it.

    I'd be very interested in an old-school, actually informed comment from someone who has actually installed and used it.


Can anyone remember when the times were not hard, and money not scarce?