Canonical to release Ubuntu server update

Ubuntu 10.04 Long Term Support Server Edition -- the first version of an LTS server to feature the Eucalyptus cloud platform -- will ship April 29

Linux distribution vendor Canonical will soon release an updated version of its production-ready server operating system, the company announced Monday.

Ubuntu 10.04 Long Term Support (LTS) Server Edition will be ready for downloading, for no charge, beginning on April 29, along with the desktop edition of 10.04.

[ Canonical will also offer a new version of its Ubuntu OS for the desktop. | See InfoWorld's report on the netbook OS Cannonical also offered a last fall. | Track the latest trends in open source with InfoWorld's Open Sources blog and Technology: Open Source newsletter. ]

Like other Canonical LTS releases, this Linux kernel-based OS has been designed for users who require long-term support and maximum stability, said Matt Asay, the company's chief operating officer. It will be supported with free maintenance and security updates for five years. (Canonical's non-LTS releases typically are supported for 18 months.)

Typically, Canonical releases a LTS server edition every two years, the last one being Ubuntu 8.04.

This will be the first version of an LTS server to feature the Eucalyptus cloud platform, which is part of the company's Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud, Asay said. This software allows an organization to run a cloud service from an internal server rather than go with a public cloud provider.

This release will also feature a number of other new packages, such as the CouchDB document-oriented database, Puppet configuration management software and Django Web framework.

Updates to almost all the existing packages will be in the new release as well.

The LTS edition also features some enhancements that should appeal to enterprise users, such as pre-configured AppArmor settings for some packages, kernel hardening measures such as address space layout randomization, and encrypted home directories.

Server versions of Ubuntu 9.10 or Ubuntu 8.04 LTS can be upgraded directly from the command line, also starting on April 29.

Ubuntu is not the only Linux distribution getting an update. Last week, beta versions of both Fedora 13 and OpenSuse were released.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.