Improved handling of 32-bit compatibility on amd64 systems
Ubuntu 11.10 Beta 1 enables "multiarch" support for installing 32-bit library and application packages on 64-bit systems. For all amd64 installs and upgrades, select 32-bit software, including skype and flash, will be installable directly using the same 32-bit packages that are used on i386 installations, without the need to install the ia32-libs compatibility package. For users this means 32-bit libraries will always be available at the same time as their 64-bit counterparts, even in the case of security updates, and users will only need to install those 32-bit libraries needed by the applications they have installed.
Enabling multiarch if you upgraded before Beta-1
amd64 users who upgraded to oneiric prior to August 16th or who installed oneiric prior to alpha-3 will need to manually enable multiarch support on their systems to ensure they get the same experience (and see the same packages) as other users. This is as simple as running the following command:
$ echo foreign-architecture i386 | sudo tee /etc/dpkg/dpkg.cfg.d/multiarch
An apt-get update later, and you'll have access to the full array of i386 packages in addition to the amd64 ones.
Installing the correct skype package
As a result of this change, work has begun to deprecate the ia32-libs package, which no longer ships all the libraries that it did previously. Most 32-bit software will either be automatically transitioned to i386 packages on upgrade or will continue to work with the ia32-libs package in oneiric. However, the skype package has not yet been updated for this in oneiric. If you have the skype package installed you will need to manually switch to the i386 package by running:
$ sudo apt-get install skype:i386
For the final 11.10 release, this will be resolved by providing an automatic upgrade to an i386-only skype package.
Beta 1 includes the 3.0.0-9.15 Ubuntu kernel which is based on the v3.0.3 upstream stable kernel. Some of the most notable changes since Ubuntu 11.10 Alpha3 with respect to the kernel include:
Rebase to v3.0.3
Enable missing IPv6 options
Ivy Bridge: KVM support for SMEP
Fix integer math bugs in panel fitting
Turn on extra EAPDs on Conexant codecs
Deliver more Atheros, Ralink, and iwlagn NIC drivers to d-i
Package macvlan and macvtap for virtual
Package x86_energy_perf_policy and turbostat
dell-wmi: Add keys for Dell XPS L502X
hfsplus: ensure bio requests are not smaller than the hardware sectors
Ecryptfs: Add mount option to check uid of device being mounted = expect uid
Update ideapad-laptop to v3.1
mac80211: be more careful in suspend/resume
xen-blkfront: Drop name and minor adjustments for emulated scsi devices
xen: Do not enable PV IPIs when vector callback not present
Native driver support for changing backlight intensity on i915
Numerous config updates
Revised DVD content
With 11.10 Beta 1, we're introducing a revised smaller DVD based on community feedback over the last few cycles. This new DVD has a more manageable size of 1.5G. The new DVD image is an extension of our current CD image to include all the language packs and some other useful applications, such as Inkscape, GIMP, Pitivi, and a more complete LibreOffice suite. All the packages that used to be on the DVD are still available from the archive.
A new release of compiz and Unity has been included with this milestone. Highlights of this release are:
A new Alt+Tab switcher.
"Places" were renamed to "Lenses", now integrating multiple sources and advanced filtering like ratings, range, categories…
A new music lens linked to Banshee is also installed by default.
The restructuring for getting some new features has been done. Known bugs and regressions are documented below.
Better performance of launchers and panel, ported to GTK 3 and GTK 3-based indicator stack.
Unity 2D reduced the delta with Unity, shares more code with it and has almost complete accessibility support.
The indicators got a visual refresh which includes a refactoring of the session indicator and a new power indicator.