Software

Ubuntu 7.04 with 3D support

Ubuntu 7.04 has been released today; right on time Feisty Fawn is available for download with the Ubuntu.com homepage being used solely as a link page for excited users wanting to take a look at the teams latest efforts.  New features include a Migration assistant (to migrate Internet Explorer bookmarks and alike), Kernel-based Virtual Machine support, easy multimedia codec installation and easy installation of unsupported/restricted drivers.

Much debate has taken place on the topic of whether or not Ubuntu should include support for hardware such as 3D Graphics cards or Win-modems through the use of proprietary closed source drivers.  While it would be nice to offer an alternative the developers feel that a large majority of users would only gain reasonable performance from their wireless card, graphics cards and modems if they used a binary driver.  The problem is that there are simply no ‘free’ or open source drivers available to support the hardware in question; it’s closed source or nothing!

Do you think Linux distributions should come with closed source drivers by default?  Is accepting these drivers an acceptable trade-off because of the features gained or does it go against the principles on which Linux is based?

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