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Canonical Ubuntu 11.04 review

David Ludlow
28 Apr 2011
Our Rating 

Faster and easier to use than its predecessors, this is the best version of Ubuntu yet

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Specifications

The other new part of the interface is that applications no longer have their own menu bar. Instead, the Mac OS X method of putting the menu bar in the main shared title bar is used. To save on more desktop space, maximising an application inserts its title bar with the Maximise, Minimise and Close buttons into the shared title bar. We think it works pretty well and you'll be pleased the OS does this if you're working on a small, low resolution screen.

Ubuntu 11.04 maximised

Gone is the traditional applications menu, replaced instead with a new search facility. Clicking the Ubuntu icon at the top left of the screen opens a search bar. All you have to do is type in the name of an application or document you want to find and the results are displayed on screen.

There are also dedicated search menus for documents and applications on the Launcher. The Applications menu displays, by default, the most accessed applications, the first six applications alphabetically and six promoted applications for download. Using the search box finds applications installed on your computers, plus applications available for download. You can also browse applications by category, without searching; however, once you've got used to the search menu, there's little reason to do this.

Ubuntu 11.04 Applications

The Files&Folders menu lets you search for files only. You can filter the search by document type (music, video, presentations, documents, etc) to make it easier to find what you're after. This menu also displays recently accessed files, plus Favourite folders as denoted by the Bookmarks in the Nautilus file browser. Selecting a document from this menu opens it in the related application, while folders are opened in Nautilus. Again, this system works really well and makes it quick to find the program that you're after.

Ubuntu 11.04 Files & Documents

There's no way from this menu to connect to a network share or other server, as you could from Ubuntu 10.10 and earlier. Instead, you have to click the Home Folder button to start Nautilus and use its menus to do the same job.

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