It's that time of year when Canonical gets to release the first of two Ubuntu operating systems. Canonical releases two Ubuntu operating systems every year and this year is no different. This year sees the release of a non LTS (Long term support) version of Ubuntu which means it will be commercially supported and will offer free security updates for up to 18 months after release.
Ubuntu 11.04 was released on 28th April 2011 and it continues to remain the most popular Linux desktop distribution today.
The first noticeable difference, is the default theme used in this particular distribution, the task bar and it's icons are aliened on the left-hand side, and have the look and feel of almost the task bar of windows 7 icons. This kind of approach is a move in the right direction towards attracting new users to Ubuntu, the icons that are displayed on the task bar are basically the most frequently used icons plus there is room for additional icons if need be.
Another noticeably new feature in Ubuntu 11.04 is the introduction of Libre Office 3, which is an Office suite application program that replaced the Open office program. Libre Office 3 performs as well as any MS Office version, be it Office 2007/2010 and can read any document from MS Office and vice versa. As per the release of Ubuntu, they are program (s) that can be installed onto Ubuntu that can run any windows based application programs including the entire MS Office suite plus other Microsoft Windows based programs. Therefore, whatever program that can run in Windows can also run in Ubuntu, with the look and feel of working from Windows.
In terms of speed, Ubuntu 11.04 has turned out to be quite fast as compared to Ubuntu 10.10, and in my view it is even much faster than windows 7. All I can say is, this is the fastest Ubuntu release to date.
As Ubuntu slowly and progressively gains more market share for desktop operating systems, which is dominated by Windows, the release of Ubuntu 11.04 is a step in the right direction, but only time will tell how far Ubuntu is willing to go and how much more user friendly they intend make the Ubuntu Operating system.