- It includes a new piece of software called “Ubuntu One”:
- Ubuntu One currently gives you 2GB of free cloud storage via a folder called “Ubuntu One” in your home directory or via a URL (https://one.ubuntu.com/).
- Ubuntu One allows you to sync your Tomboy notes between PCs – see this setup tutorial: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/UbuntuOne/Tutorials/Notes
- Ubuntu One allows you to sync your Evolution contacts between PCs – seet his setup tutorial: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/UbuntuOne/Tutorials/Contacts
- The Desktop icons have been improved and now use a vector format (i.e. svg instead of png). I was able to use my own icons, created in inkscape, very easily.
- Updated software. Firefox was updated from version 3.0.11 to 3.5 which is faster, supports the video and audio tags and has a private browsing mode. Geany was updated from version 0.17 to 0.18 which handles long filenames better in the Documents pane. Meld has been updated from version 1.2 to 1.3.0 which has better search functionality and no longer seems to lose it’s scroll synchronisation when the window loses focus. The kernel was updated from 2.6.28 to 2.6.31.
- The headphone and microphone sockets now work. So does the DVD eject button on the laptop chassis. Only the 2 user programmable buttons and AV-mode keys still do nothing.
- Startup and shutdown seems slower! This is odd seeing as it uses newer startup software called Upstart that is supposed to be faster! I even installed Grub 2 via https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Grub2 but it didn’t help.
- At shutdown I sometimes get an error: “CIFS VFS: server not responding” which hangs the system sometimes for a while. This is because I have mounted Samba shares in /etc/fstab and when using Wireless, Ubuntu tries to unmount Samba shares after shutting down network services. The bug tracking number is #211631.
- The webcam (MotionEye – Ricoh USB r5u870) didn’t work after the upgrade: /dev/video0 no longer existed!
Fixing the webcam:
The Sony VGN-AR51E laptop comes with a integrated Ricoh webcam. The webcam model number is 05ca:1839 as seen via:
> lsusb Bus 001 Device 002: ID 05ca:1839 Ricoh Co., Ltd Visual Communication Camera VGP-VCC6 [R5U870]
Current kernel info:
> uname -a Linux psyduck 2.6.31-16-generic #53-Ubuntu SMP Tue Dec 8 04:02:15 UTC 2009 x86_64 GNU/Linux
Useful commands and logs that give info about the problem:
> dmesg | less (or less /var/log/kern.log) [ 19.367070] uvcvideo: Found UVC 1.00 device
(05ca:1839) [ 19.367573] uvcvideo: UVC non compliance - GET_DEF(PROBE) not supported. Enabling workaround. [ 19.367786] uvcvideo: Failed to query (129) UVC probe control : -32 (exp. 26). [ 19.367789] uvcvideo: Failed to initialize the device (-5). [ 19.367824] usbcore: registered new interface driver uvcvideo [ 19.367828] USB Video Class driver (v0.1.0)
The problem seems to be that the webcam drivers were not packaged for Ubuntu 9.10. In the previous version (Ubuntu 9.04) the webcam used the r5u870 V4L2 driver but it was deprecated and replaced in Karmic by a kernel module called R5U87x. R5U87x should be better because it is a set of userland tools that loads the firmware for all UVC compliant devices and makes them work with a more standard uvcvideo driver. Unfortunately, the R5U87x tools were not packaged in time for Karmic because the firmware images contained in the package didn’t have a suitable license to allow redistribution. i.e. the original working r5u870 driver was not packaged but nor was the newer R5U87x driver! This is all documented in Bug 120434.
Current (Dec/09) fix:
- David Jarenkas has created r5u87x-loader (which doesn’t contain any non-free pieces) to load the webcam drivers. Add the following Personal Package Archives (PPA) to your sources list:
sudo emacs -nw /etc/apt/sources.list add: deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/r5u87x-loader/ppa/ubuntu karmic main deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/r5u87x-loader/ppa/ubuntu karmic main
gpg --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv 9711AB5F gpg --export --armor 9711AB5F | sudo apt-key add -
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install r5u87x
In Skype, audio works but video still doesn’t until you add yourself to the “video” group (the file permissions of /dev/video* is group read and writtable for the “video” group):
sudo usermod -a -G video tom
The Ubuntu splash screen is nice but I prefer to see what the computer is doing. To turn off the splash screen do:
sudo emacs -nw /etc/default/grub
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash" to GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT=""
- Update grub: