Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

The Linux Kernel’s Impact on the Desktop User Experience

Filed under
Linux

It’s a cliché that most computer users care more about bells and whistles than how software performs “under the hood.” And while there may be some truth in such a view, it’s also clear that the backend affects users in important ways, whether they realize it or not. To illustrate this point, let’s take a look at some recently introduced features in the Linux kernel, and what they mean for the desktop user experience.

The overall experience for all but the geekiest of Linux users, of course, has a lot more to do with which distribution they choose and which desktop environment they run than with the kernel itself. The kernel mostly only provides a platform for everything else, and doesn’t define the way the computer is used.

But that doesn’t mean the kernel is irrelevant, not even on the desktop where graphical applications are much more important to most people than process tables and module interfaces. Indeed, consider the following recent developments in kernel code destined for release in the near future, and their impact on end-users:

Process Groups




More in Tux Machines

Native Netflix, Ts'o on Systemd, and Fedora 21 Alpha a Go

In today's Linux news OMG!Ubuntu! is reporting that Netflix is coming to Linux, this time natively. Jack Germain reviews Opera 12.16. Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols talks to Theodore Ts'o about systemd. A preview of new Kmail show radical redesign. And finally today, Fedora 21 Alpha was approved for release! Read more

Ubuntu gets closer to debut in Meizu MX4 phone

The Ubuntu project announced a stable build for Ubuntu Touch phones, a week after Meizu tipped an Ubuntu version of the Meizu MX4 phone due in December. The Ubuntu for Phones team at the Canonical’s Ubuntu Project announced the arrival of the first image from the Ubuntu-rtm (release to manufacturing) distribution for phones. The announcement followed last week’s tease from Meizu, saying a version of the Android-based Meizu MX4 was on schedule for shipping with Ubuntu in December. Read more

Android L Will Keep Your Secrets Safer

Hard on the heels of increased security measures in Apple's newly released iOS 8, Google this week confirmed that encryption will be turned on by default in the next release of Android. Android has offered encryption for more than three years, and keys are not stored off the device, so they can't be shared with law enforcement, Google said. In the next Android release, encryption will be enabled by default. Read more

WHAT THE GNOME RELEASE TEAM IS DOING

At the release team BoF at this years Guadec, I said I would write a blog post about the whats and hows and ifs of release team work. I’m a little late with this, but here it is: a glimpse into the life of a GNOME release team member. We are in the end phase of the development cycle, when the release team work is really kicking into high gear. Read more