Ubuntu 20.10 releases with full desktop support for Raspberry Pi

The release also includes a new version of Gnome, additional support for Ubuntu certified devices, and support for micro-cloud infrastructure.

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Image: uriz, Getty Images/iStockphoto

Canonical has announced the release of Ubuntu 20.10, which brings a number of user improvements, new images optimized for Raspberry Pi devices, and micro-cloud support for edge computing infrastructure.

Most of the new features in Ubuntu 20.10 center around added support for, and feature availability on, Raspberry Pi devices. In addition to Pi-optimized Ubuntu images, some of the more advanced Raspberry Pi models (specifically those with 4GB or 8GB of RAM) will support the full Ubuntu desktop experience. 

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"From the classic Raspberry Pi board to the industrial grade Compute Module, this first step to an Ubuntu LTS on Raspberry Pi with long-term support and security updates matches our commitment to widen access to the very best computing and open source capabilities," said Raspberry Pi Trading CEO Eben Upton.

Raspberry Pi models 2, 3, and 4 are also joining the list of Ubuntu certified hardware, putting them on par with other OEMs like Dell, HP, and Lenovo, who also certify devices for Ubuntu support. 

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Ubuntu 20.10 is also introducing new software that will allow developers to deploy micro clouds, which Canonical describes as "small clusters of servers providing VMs and Kubernetes on demand at the edge, for remote office, branch office, warehouse, and distribution-oriented infrastructure."

Canonical's micro cloud stack on Ubuntu 20.10 combines MAAS provisioning capabilities, LXD container management, MicroK8 Kubernetes, and the Ceph network file system "to deliver resilient pocket clouds hardened for mission-critical workloads in 5G RANs, industry 4.0 factories, V2X infrastructures, smart cities and healthcare facilities," Canonical said.  

In the Ubuntu desktop realm, 20.10 is adding GNOME 3.38, which brings a number of UI improvements to the Ubuntu experience. The app grid has been tweaked to remove the frequents tab and allow apps to be reorganized, battery percentage display can be toggled in power settings, easy private Wi-Fi sharing through auto-generated QR codes has been added, and a restart option has been added next to the logout and power down menu options.

Along with those new features, Ubuntu certified devices are getting additional support as well, which means major OEMs like Dell and Lenovo will have more hardware features enabled out of the box. Specifically mentioned by Canonical is biometric identification hardware support and full support for onscreen keyboards in 2-in-1 devices like the Lenovo Yoga and Dell XPS 2-in-1.

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Ubuntu 20.10 is available for download now on the Ubuntu website. Canonical is also hosting a YouTube livestream noon EDT Friday, Oct. 23, covering the Ubuntu 20.10 release, so be sure to tune in if you want to learn more. 

Those interested in learning more about Ubuntu 20.10 in the data center, specifically regarding Ubuntu Server, Charmed OpenStack, and MAAS and Charmed OpenStack, can register for a Nov. 4 webinar.

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