Ubuntu 24.04 LTS Beta Is Now Available for Download with GNOME 46, Linux 6.8

The final release of Ubuntu 24.04 LTS (Noble Numbat) is expected on April 25th, 2024.
Ubuntu 24.04 LTS Beta

Canonical released today the beta version of the upcoming Ubuntu 24.04 LTS (Noble Numbat) operating system for public testing ahead of the final release on April 25th, 2024.

With only two weeks left before Ubuntu 24.04 LTS hits the streets in a stable form, the beta is here to give users a glimpse of what to expect from the final version. Ubuntu 24.04 LTS beta comes with the latest GNOME 46 desktop environment by default and it’s powered by Linux kernel 6.8.

Some of the highlights of Ubuntu 24.04 LTS include an updated desktop installer with support for accessibility features, a new option to import autoinstall configurations for templated custom provisioning, as well as new default installation options, namely Default selection (previously Minimal) and Extended selection (previously Normal).

Additionally, the Ubuntu Desktop Installer now supports guided (unencrypted) ZFS installations, alongside the encrypted ZFS installation option. Both of these options are still experimental in Ubuntu 24.04 LTS.

Ubuntu 24.04 LTS also ships with an all-new graphical firmware update tool called Firmware Updater, out-of-the-box Raspberry Pi 5 support, Netplan 1.0 for state-of-the-art network management, and Mozilla Thunderbird as a Snap by default.

Other noteworthy changes include “Year 2038” support for the ARMhf architecture, vm.max_map_count was increased to 1048576 for better gaming, patches against the recent XZ backdoor, security-hardening improvements, and ADSys Active Directory Certificates auto-enrollment.

Ubuntu App Center also received several new features and improvements for better package management. Apt priority for the “proposed” repository is implemented as well in Ubuntu 24.04 LTS to prevent broken installations when users install potentially unstable updates from the “proposed” repo.

Under the hood, Ubuntu 24.04 LTS comes with an updated toolchain that includes GCC 14, GNU Binutils 2.42, GNU C Library (Glibc) 2.39, Java 21 as default, Python 3.12 as the default Python version, PHP 8.3, Ruby 3.2, LLVM 18 as default, and Go 1.22 as default.

If you want to take Ubuntu 24.04 LTS (Noble Numbat) for a test drive, you can download the beta version right now from the official website. However, please keep in mind that this is a pre-release version and it’s not recommended for use in production environments.

Of course, all the official Ubuntu flavors have been promoted to the beta channel as well, including Kubuntu (now features the Calamares installer), Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Edubuntu, Ubuntu Studio, Ubuntu Budgie, Ubuntu Cinnamon, Ubuntu MATE, and Ubuntu Kylin, all of which you can download from here.

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