Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron Ending on May 12

Ubuntu will stop supporting Ubuntu 8.04 aka Hardy Heron on May 12th. That means no software updates and no security fixes for this old favorite. Hardy Heron was one of my favorite Ubuntu releases ever. I was with Hardy Heron for more than a year, mainly because it was very stable and had long term support. I continued to use Hardy even when 8.10 and 9.04 were out. I’m using Ubuntu 10.04 LTS now. Like they say, all good things come to an end. We will miss you, Hardy. Ok, now to Ubuntu 11.04. What’s up with this Unity interface?

Stuck on Ubuntu 8.04

I have to admit, I am stuck on Ubuntu 8.04. I have been an Ubuntu user since version 5.04 Hoary Hedgehog. Every six months, I have religiously upgraded to every version of Ubuntu that came along from version 5.04 Hoary Hedgehog, Breezy Badger, Edgy Eft, Feisty Fawn to version 8.04 Hardy Heron. And that is where it stops. I tried Ubuntu version 8.10 Intrepid Ibex, but there were a couple things that broke. I ended up putting back 8.04 Hardy Heron because everything seems to work fine with Hardy Heron. They don’t call it Hardy for no reason.

The biggest killer for me was screen rotation support. I have this HP w2207h widescreen monitor with swivel functionality and I need to have an Ubuntu version capable of rotating my screen by 90 degrees to support portrait viewing. Oh yes, Intrepid supports it, but not quite the way I wanted it. I need to be able to rotate it from the menu screen and not from the command-line or some third-party software.

So fast forward to today, I just heard that Jaunty Jackalope Beta was just released. Some of the new features being touted are: ext4 support, new login screen, some new wallpapers, faster boot-time and updated versions of software. Hmmm. For some reason, I am not so impressed. But still, I should upgrade. Well, not quite so fast. Why fix something that’s not broken. So, I’m stuck on Ubuntu 8.04 for the time being.

It’s a good thing Ubuntu Hardy Heron is under LTS support or Long Term Support. I don’t have to worry until April 2011 for support to end. Wow, that’s two more years from today. I will milk it for all its worth. You can almost guess what my next article will be, “I’m stuck on Windows XP.” I love Windows XP compared to Vista, but I digress. Well, that’s another story. In the meantime, the Ubuntu Update Manager is calling me to update my system. Well, you have to excuse me while my system is updating. And yes, there are no reboots required.

Firefox 3.0.4 in Ubuntu Hardy Heron

After a clean Ubuntu 8.04 install, Firefox 3.0.4 web browser was not working quite right. Flash plugins and MMS videos were not working on some websites that use them. A prime example is the MLS or Major League Soccer website.

This post provides all the details to in order to get your Firefox browser working after a clean Ubuntu install. Just follow the steps below.

1. Install the latest Adobe Flash player. Download it directly from Adobe’s website. Select the Ubuntu 8.04+ deb package. Choose Save to the Desktop. Once saved, go to your Desktop and right click the file. Open it with GDebi Package Installer. Click Install Package!

2. Next, remove the SWFDEC plugin; the open-source replacement for Adobe Flash.

$ sudo apt-get purge swfdec-mozilla

Or you can also use the “autoremove” option.

$ sudo apt-get autoremove swfdec-mozilla

3. Finally, install MPlayer for sites running MMS videos.

$ sudo apt-get install mozilla-mplayer

There you have it. 3 easy steps to get your browser running in no time.

Dell Upgrade PCs to Ubuntu 8.04

Dell recently started selling Linux laptops and desktops. I can’t understand why it took a better of four months to upgrade to the latest Ubuntu 8.04 release also known as Hardy Heron. Ubuntu 8.04 was released back in April 2008 by Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu. Dell is now making the latest release available on several systems: two laptops, the XPS M1330N and the Inspiron 1525N notebooks, and a desktop sytem, the Inspiron 530N. That’s a good four months later. I’m not privy why it took so much time to upgrade to 8.04. Were there issues? I guess we could expect Dell to be always behind after each Ubuntu release. Four months seems like eternity. The next Ubuntu release 8.10 will be in October 2008.