This post was originally going to be about how happy I was with Kubuntu 13.04. However, I encountered a problem with kwallet that eventually made me look for alternatives.
I read about gnome 3.8 and thought to myself that I hadn’t looked at gnome in a long time. I installed v3.8 via extra repositories on my Kubuntu 13.04 laptop and played with it a bit. I liked it, so I downloaded gnome ubuntu. This has version 3.6 on it and I’ve decided to stick with it for a while rather than installing the 3.8 repositories.
Over all, I’m pretty impressed. I knew there was some things I was going to like from the start. Being back to using a file manager running on top of gvfs of course was going to make live easier when dealing with samba files at work.
The default desktop experience is nice. Very nice. So nice in fact I’m still using the default background. Pretty neat how it changes through out the day. When I fire up a new KDE desktop I usually have about 5 minutes of customizing widgets and panels ahead of me.
Big surprise is Evolution. That time I normally spend tuning a KDE desktop can be spent installing add-ons like evolution-ews. I don’t need davmail anymore. Evolution still isn’t the prettiest application, but man does it ever just work*. I added my google calendar and now when I click on that time display in the top bar I really do have a nice overview of my schedule.
* experienced an evolution crash shortly after typing that. uh?
Multi-display was simple to set up. I did change one keyboard shortcut, activities overview was changed to Super-A. That’s what it was on the 3.8 desktop I played with for a bit. Easier to remember. Speaking of which, the activities overview screen is great. In other desktops I’d have a shortcut I’d use to launch applications, ie: ALT-F2 in KDE or Ctrl-` in e17. Then there would be the various expose shortcuts. In gnome it’s all the same thing. I get a nice expose and the search menu is focused to find applications. Virtual desktop handling is on demand. Sure I’m going to miss the cube, but really, not that much. I liked this virtual desktop with Cinnamon.
I only had to install icedtea-7-plugin to get my juniper VPN working. Note though, that’s because I installed a 32bit version of Linux. I gave up on trying to get it to work with 64bit a long time ago.
It’s not all unicorns and rainbows (sorry, both my daughters are on a My Little Pony kick).
I can’t get HDMI audio to work out my display port. Extensive googling has me hoping that there is a kernel patch coming which may fix this.
Evolution did crash on me when I got a ton of alerts all at once while writing this. Sysadmins can get a whole lot of emails at once when something goes wrong.
It’s sluggish sometimes. I click on the time in the top panel and sometimes there is a noticeable delay before the pull down occurs.
What’s with the 2 online accounts in the system settings?
I can’t get guake to show up on my monitor. It’s stuck to the laptop panel. I liked how I could configure yuake to open on which ever display the mouse cursor was on.
Over all, especially with the kwallet bug it’s more usable that Kubuntu 13.04 right now. There is still a bit of polish missing to the experience though. Hopefully a lot of this will be improved as 3.8 rolls out and the 13.04 version of Ubuntu matures. I like the look and feel.
I did notice that pretty much everything is working. Birghtness and volume keys. The touchpad… I haven’t installed the sputnik kernel for my XPS Ultrabook. I may have to check out some other Gnome distros and see if everything just works with the 3.8 kernel.