Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Beta released for official flavors, download now!

Ubuntu's official flavors Ubuntu Budgie, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, and Ubuntu Kylin has released 18.04 (Bionic Beaver) Beta 1 builds!

If you are a Ubuntu user, you may know that Ubuntu doesn’t release the first Beta build of the in-development version. While this is entirely true, it’s kind of strange to understand the Canonical’s decision because anyway, Beta 1 does make into the officially supported flavors. The upcoming Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, dubbed as Bionic Beaver development, is at full speed. Its first Beta build is now released to the supported flavors, including Ubuntu Budgie, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, and Ubuntu Kylin.

Looking at the Ubuntu 18.04 LTS development schedule, the original Bionic Beaver straight from Ubuntu is supposed to land on April 5th, 2018, which is the second Beta release. It is typical for Canonical to release Final Beta to the public. Here is the detailed schedule of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS development.

Toolchain UploadedOctober 26th, 2017
Feature Definition FreezeNovember 30th, 2017
Alpha 1 Build ReleaseJanuary 11th, 2018
Alpha 2 Build ReleaseFebruary 1st, 2018
Feature FreezeMarch 1st, 2018
Beta 1 Build ReleaseMarch 8th, 2018
User Interface FreezeMarch 22th, 2018
Documentation String FreezeMarch 29th, 2018
Final Beta Build ReleaseApril 5th, 2018
Linux Kernel Version FreezeApril 12th, 2018
Final Release CandidateApril 19th, 2018
Ubuntu 18.04 ReleaseApril 26th, 2018

All the official Ubuntu flavors will have features carried from the base Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, but we will see new features specifically crafted for their homegrown builds. All the flavors will feature Linux Kernel 4.15 and the new “Minimal Installation” option. In this new option, only the OS and its utilities, its themes, and Firefox are installed. All the other applications such as office suite, email client, video player, audio manager, etc. are not installed, making it super-light, and you have a chance only to install the apps which you want.

Minimal Installation Option in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS
Minimal Installation Option in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

Let’s take a brief look at each of the official Ubuntu flavors. Note that Beta builds are not meant to be used on production machines or for use as a daily driver. These builds are pre-development builds that may be broken, unstable, and crazy things can happen, such as sky can fall on your head. You have been warned.

Ubuntu Budgie 18.04 LTS

The gorgeous looking Ubuntu Budgie 18.04 is getting some seriously great features. The most significant feature is the addition of several desktop applets, which sounds exciting and fun!

Ubuntu Budgie 18.04 Window Preview
Ubuntu Budgie 18.04 Window Preview

Quick Note, DropBy, Showtime, Clockworks, CountDown, Keyboard Autoswitch, Wallpaper Switcher, and Workspace Overview are few of the coolest ones I noticed. Check out what’s new in Ubuntu 18.04 LTS for complete details.

Apart from desktop applets, Ubuntu Budgie 18.04 LTS will provide support for OpenVPN connections via the network-manager-applet, will be able to play MP3 files out of the box, including enhanced keyboard shortcuts, and support for color emoji for GNOME Characters.

Ubuntu Budgie 18.04 LTS will also sport a new exciting GTK+ theme by default called Pocillo. It includes visually appealing features such as Dynamic panel coloring, Ripple effect buttons, and Dark, Light, and Standard theme variants.

Download Ubuntu Budgie 18.04 LTS Beta 1

Kubuntu 18.04

Kubuntu is based on KDE desktop, and 18.04 increment will feature the updated next-generation Plasma 5 desktop.

Kubuntu 18.04 Plasma 5 Desktop
Kubuntu 18.04 Plasma 5 Desktop

Apart from that, the team also announced the change in the default media player from Dragonplayer to VLC. KTorrent is updated to the Qt5/KF5 version 5.1. Cantata Qt5 music player replaces the unmaintained KDE4 based Amarok as default for this beta.

Also, Telepathy instant messaging client is axed from the new build as the app is no longer maintained.

Download Kubuntu 18.04 Beta 1

Xubuntu 18.04

Xubuntu 18.04 will see an updated Greybird GTK theme, which has three styles, a new dark theme, smaller switches, and improved scales. Also included are updated panel plugins PulseAudio and Status Notifier. Since Xubuntu is based on Xfce desktop, they decided to swap out a few pieces of GNOME with corresponding bits from MATE. Hence, some default applications are changed. Document Viewer is changed from Evince to Atril, Archive Manager will be Engrampa instead of File Roller, and the GNOME calculator will be replaced with the MATE calculator.

Download Xubuntu 18.04 Beta 1

Ubuntu MATE 18.04

The new build will sport MATE Desktop 1.20 and supports HiDPI displays with dynamic detection and scaling. And not to forget the emoji input support by default setting. It also lets you toggle HiDPI modes between auto detection, regular scaling, and forced scaling. Marco now supports DRI3, and as a result, frame rates in games are significantly better.

Ubuntu MATE 18.04 will use Indicators by default in all layouts.  Another major update is the patched version of Brisk Menu that is carried from the Solus project! It will have this new dash launcher.

Ubuntu MATE 18.04's new Brisk Menu
Ubuntu MATE 18.04’s new Brisk Menu

Download Ubuntu MATE 18.04

Exciting, isn’t it? Stay tuned for more updates. Do you use any of the above Ubuntu flavors? Let us know in the comments below.

Kiran Kumar
Hi there! I'm Kiran Kumar, founder of FOSSLinux.com. I'm an avid Linux lover and enjoy hands-on with new promising distros. Currently, I'm using Ubuntu as a daily driver and run several other distros such as Fedora, Solus, Manjaro, Debian, and some new ones on my test PC and virtual machines. I have a day job as an Engineer, and this website is one of my favorite past time activities, especially during Winter ;). When I'm not writing for FOSSLinux, I'm seen biking and hiking on scenic trails. I hope you enjoy using this website as much as I do writing for it. Feedback from readers is something that inspires me to do more and spread Linux love!. If you find a time, drop me an email or feedback from the 'Contact' page. Or simply leave a comment below if you found this article useful. Have a good day!


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