Lubuntu 14.04 LTS

Minimalist distros are an important option for many Linux users. Not everyone wants tons of desktop glitz and zillions of bells and whistles. Lubuntu has always been a terrific option for minimalists who prefer to stay within the Ubuntu family. Now Lubuntu 14.04 LTS is available and it follows in the footsteps of previous releases by providing a high-quality desktop distro that is light-weight and fast.

You should know that LTS releases like Lubuntu 14.04 are mostly geared toward providing a long term, very stable desktop. So this release is not chock-full of new features. Don’t let that disappoint you though because Lubuntu 14.04 is still worth upgrading to if you are using an earlier version of it.

If you are totally new to Lubuntu you can get a pretty good overview of it, along with a history of prior releases on the Lubuntu page at Wikipedia:

Lubuntu is a lightweight Linux operating system based on Ubuntu but using the LXDE desktop environment in place of Ubuntu’s Unity shell and GNOME desktop. LXDE is touted as being “lighter, less resource hungry and more energy-efficient”.

Like Xubuntu, Lubuntu is intended to be a low-system-requirement, low-RAM environment for netbooks, mobile devices, and older PCs. Tests show it can use half as much RAM as Xubuntu, making it an attractive choice for installing on older hardware being refurbished for charitable distribution.

More at Wikipedia

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Desktop
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Desktop

What’s new in Lubuntu 14.04 LTS
Here’s a sample of the new features in this release:

LTS support (three years)
PCManFM 1.2.0
Lxsession-default-apps has a new user interface
Artwork update (themes and icons have been updated)

The LTS support will be quite useful for those who want to upgrade to a distro and then stick with it for a long time. Distrohoppers will probably not care about that though, since they prefer to hop around from distro to distro regularly.

PCManFM is a light-weight file manager and version 1.2.0 includes a dual pane view, menu editing and folder settings (among other features). There’s quite a bit in PCManFM 1.2.0, far more than I can cover here. Be sure to read through the release announcement for more details on the changes and new features. It’s definitely worth checking out if you want to know more about what’s in PCManFM 1.2.0.

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS PCManFM 1.2.0 File Manager
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS PCManFM 1.2.0 File Manager
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS lxsession-default-apps
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS lxsession-default-apps new interface.

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS also comes with new artwork that should please most users. This release includes updates to the GTK and icon themes, along with some pretty new wallpapers to spruce up the Lubuntu desktop.

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS download and install
You can download Lubuntu 14.04 LTS from this page. You can get Lubuntu 14.04 LTS in 32-bit or 64-bit versions. You can check it out as a live distro before actually doing an install. The install itself is quite easy and fast, as is the case with Ubuntu and all of its various spins. You should not have any problems even if you are totally new to Linux.

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Install
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Install

Linux software included in Lubuntu 14.04 LTS
Here’s a sample of the software included in this release. As you can tell from the list, Lubuntu 14.04 LTS does not overload you with gobs and gobs of software. You get just what you need for most functions and no more.

Don’t worry though, there are thousands and thousands of applications available in the Lubuntu Software Center. So you can add whatever applications you need with just a couple of clicks. And you can easily remove installed software as well.

Graphics
Document Viewer
mtPaint graphic editor
Simple Scan

Internet
Firefox Web Browser
Pidgin IM
Sylpheed
Transmission

Multimedia
Audacious
GNOME MPlayer
guvcview
Xfburn

Office
AbiWord
Document Viewer
Gnumeric

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Software Center
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Software Center
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Installed Software
Lubuntu 14.04 LTS Installed Software

Where to get help for Lubuntu 14.04 LTS
If you’re having problems, please post your questions in the comments below or post in the Desktop Linux Reviews forum. Other readers might be able to assist you. You might also want to check out these Lubuntu 14.04 LTS resources:

Lubuntu Site
Lubuntu Forum
Lubuntu Wiki
Lubuntu Documentation
Contact Lubuntu

Please note that there are some known issues with Lubuntu 14.04 LTS:

Installation
Some keyboard layouts may have problems (such as UK ones). You can workaround the problem by removing all the ibus-* packages (see 1284635))
Graphics and Display

Applications
Network indicator on the panel may not start at login. You can start it manually by launching “nm-applet” in a terminal. Some others autostarted applications may also be affected (such as automatic updates). See 1308348 for the details and the ETA for the fix. To turn on nm-applet in autostart, follow these instructions It may need two reboots to fully work.

PPC
PPC has several issues and workarounds, please refer to the documentation on the wiki.
Slideshow on PPC Desktop ISO was removed because of a bug on webkit (996568)
Installer on Desktop PPC (Ubiquity) is enable to resize and split partitions. you can use Gparted before launching the installation to make the modifications to your partitions (1307994)

More at Lubuntu Release Notes

Final thoughts about Lubuntu 14.04 LTS

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS performed very well for me. It was fast and quite stable while I was using it. I had no problems running any applications and the system as a whole lived up to its reputation as a great choice for Ubuntu minimalists. Overall, I think most current Lubuntu users are going to enjoy this upgrade.

If you haven’t used Lubuntu before but you are curious about it, I recommend downloading it and giving it a try. The LXDE desktop environment is very different than Unity for Ubuntu or GNOME 3 in Ubuntu GNOME. It’s a traditional desktop which means it’s very quick and easy to learn how to use. And if you are someone that doesn’t like Unity or GNOME then LXDE in Lubuntu 14.04 LTS might be just what the doctor ordered. You’ll get all the benefits of Ubuntu, but without the discomfort of the Unity interface.

Lubuntu 14.04 LTS is suitable for beginner, intermediate or advanced Linux users.

What’s your take on Lubuntu 14.04 LTS? Tell me in the comments below.



Comments

  1. says

    I recently installed Lubuntu 14.04. I just found what sequence to click to get 4 virtual desktops. I spent 2 hours last night creating custom wallpapers for the two I had. It has been nearly 5 years since I quit using Mepis Linux and have been able to have 4 separate wall papers for each desktop. I just upgraded from Ubuntu 10.04. I haven’t upgraded because of Unity.

    Finally a decent looking system again.

  2. says

    Started off installing Lubuntu on an old Dell laptop. Was pleased with the performance. Also set up is reminiscent of windows 7 so easy to use due to familiar interface. Liked it enough to install on a new ASUS SX200 touch screen which originally had Windows 8. Win 8 was extremely sluggish, possibly due to the 2Gb RAM. With Lubuntu the ASUS became usable. Touch screen also works well. Battery life could be better. Note: Installation on the UEFI ASUS required some tricks to boot from the USB stick.

  3. Bob Willams says

    My wife likes the simple Lubuntu interface so I’m stuck trying to get it to print.

    Major Problem:
    Old cups ppd downloaded files in user/lib/…. so no ppd (brlpdwrapperHL2270DW) for the Brother HL 2270DW printer. Mint and Peppermint has them but not Lubuntu 14.04LTS.

    Major Irritants:
    Two sets of identical up down arrows icons in right hand corner of menu bar.
    A time date program in the right hand corner menu bar that insists that the seconds must be visible. This might be fixable if I spend a lot of effort.
    No automatic update notifier in the menu bar. I have to manually update it.
    No true Lubuntu forum.
    Probably a few more irritants but I do not have to use this distro and she can worry about no printing.

  4. Stone Forest says

    ‘Fast, Lightweight and Stable’, it may have been at first release, but this LTS version looks to be more like a bug-ridden unstable version not yet ready for release.

    Too much software that worked in 12.04 simply no longer does.

    BASICS:
    PCManFM, hangs, crashes, and simply does not give any running feedback (e.g. there is no file transfer progress dialogue until the entire transfer has completed).
    Solution: Install Thunar, which works and gives feedback.

    GRAPHICS:
    It is not possible to print pictures/images, regardless of format, from any of the programs. I have installed every image viewing/printing system, and none of them work.
    Solution: Convert images to pdf format (but see ‘OFFICE’ below).

    INTERNET:
    As usual, Firefox becomes slower & slower, until it freezes by default, overloads the CPU and crashes the machine.
    Solution: add the ‘proprietary’ Opera repository and install Opera browser, which just works.

    MULTIMEDIA:
    XFBurn cannot burn a data compilation.
    Solution: Install Brasero and the relevant plug-ins.

    OFFICE:
    AbiWord: the cursor randomly disappears (and reappears somewhere else), and text gets moved around at random.
    Solution: Install LibreOffice Writer, which just works; AND it’s produced by a dedicated team.

    (HINT to all these individual developers: How about collaborating with others to produce ONE decent piece of software, instead of thousands of semi-functional, bug-ridden ego-trips? Ubuntu may well have 33,333 packages in its repositories, but 22,222 of them are either non/semi-functional, or, dependency broken/dependencies no longer available, or, in irrevocable conflict with another application).

    Evince cannot read many pdf documents, and it cannot print any, either.
    Solution: Install ‘proprietary’ Adobe Reader (Acroread), which can read and print pdfs, and can print booklets, etc. (This will also save time otherwise wasted on non-functional booklet generator/printer programs).

    All this may sound harsh, but this is my experience of 14.04.

    My advice to anyone is, wait until at least the 2nd ‘point-release’ before even considering 14.04. Alternatively, consider installing Debian 7.x LXDE, or, if you want something a bit more technical, then try CrunchBang.

    My personal solution: I’m returning to MadBox 12.04, which really is minimal, and LTS (according to GRUB/terminal); doing a custom build for what I want, not what some distro guru has decided everyone needs. It takes a bit of work, and it’s very organic, but it’s worth the effort and a good learning process. Kudos to ADcomp for MadBox: it’s the ONLY Ubuntu-based distro (that I can think of) that actually qualifies as ‘lightweight’. (N.B. I don’t recommend MadBox 14.04, which I have tried, for heretoaforementioned reasons relating to 14.04.)

  5. Galib Hasan says

    Hi!
    Recently I have got one and it was working well with the pre-installed lubuntu 12.04 LTS. But the kernel was older. So I wanted to upgrade to 14.04 LTS and run the command “sudo do-release-upgrade -d” and after half-day long upgradation process the whole thing now messed up! Now I want to install either the previously installed version or the upgraded 14.04 LTS version if available. So where can I get the appropriate image of lubuntu 14.04 for my pcDuino3S? From here (http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/lubuntu/releases/14.04/release/) I don’t understand which one will work for the pcDuino3S. Any help??

    • Stone Forest says

      Galib, see my more recent post. The latest is not always the best, especially if you want a stable, working system. Why do organisations that use Linux favour ‘old’, stable versions? Lubuntu 12.04 was not LTS; support expired in October 2013.

  6. sheldon cwinn says

    I have 3 netbooks and a pretty powerful desktop. I run Linux Mint on my desktop. Lots of eye candy. Great extensible theming, etc. I USED to run Xubuntu on the netbooks. I now run Lubuntu. It is fast, lightweight, and is easy to configure, customize, and use. The app store I love. Unlike Ubuntu, it is simple and does a great job of getting me what I need without bloat and advertising. I find that Mint’s app store hangs if you try to install too many things. Lubuntu is wonderful and I am going to try to produce a respin of it with a different collection of applications and some tweaking.

  7. Stone forest says

    Having been using a MadBox (Ubuntu) based custom build since 12.04, but finding 14.04 wouldn’t download because of server failure, I installed Lubuntu 14.04 on my Acer ZG5 (1.5GiB RAM). It has everything I needed, out of the box, and has saved me considerable time on configuration than would have been necessary with MadBox; yet the ISO is scarcely bigger than MadBox, which intentionally comes with very few default applications. Apart from a couple of glitches (e.g. Network applet not appearing on LXpanel by default, but easy to add, even if it does now show 2 icons), I am more than happy with it.

    Featurewise, PCManFM is now excellent and much faster, AbiWord has been sorted out, etc., etc., and FireFox by default (and FireFox is fast n Lubuntu 14.04, een with multiple tabs open). I have had no problems with my UK keyboard. My only negative criticism is the lack of a Conky to show the main keyboard shortcuts.

    I’ve also installed it on a friend’s (ex-XP) Samsung netbook, which has introduced them to Linux in a comfortable, familiar way.

    I’d recommend Lubuntu 14.04 as a replacement for XP, especially for netbooks, especially for charitable refurbishments: it’s fast, light, feature-rich, and almost as pretty as W7, but without the constant updating and MSW-related extra hassles and requirements.

    • Stone Forest says

      Less than a month down the line, no surprises, Lubuntu screws up, yet again!

      I changed the system language, and now it cannot/will not change back. I have tried several times, using all the proper methods, to no avail.

      Not that I will give up on Linux, but it does demand the rhetorical question: Why do people give up on Linux?

      • Stone Forest says

        My bad:

        I forgot that Lubuntu is a dependency-shackled and therefore effectively closed system that’s not really designed to be customised. Changing any default settings can easily mess it up. You can add applications, but try altering settings, removing any default applications, or hacking it it any way, to change it from the original install, and it WILL malfunction and churn out error messages and bug logs, and it WILL crash on a regular basis.

        It’s just how Lubuntu is designed, and if that’s kept in mind, it’s a fine replacement for XP, and given that most XP users didn’t hack at their systems (although XP could be heavily customised), Lubuntu should be comfortable enough.

        From experience, I’d sooner recommend straight Lubuntu as an XP replacement, than one of the Lubuntu-based XP or Vista lookalikes that are even more dependency locked, to the extent that removing a ppa or software source can break such a system.

        Hmmm, MadBox?

  8. Dave98407 says

    I have been using Ubuntu and distro-hopping for over a year. I settled into using Lubuntu about 3 months before the 14.04 release, and upgraded to that when it became available.

    I am using a Gateway E265M laptop with an Intel core duo processor, 2 gb of memory and a 42 g HD. I have had “zero” issues with this disto, most especially with WiFi connections which always seemed to be a bugaboo in the past across almost all distros I tried. Initial connection on start-up was fine; sleeping the computer would cause a disconnect that could not be re-connected without a full restart.

    One thing I didn’t use in the Lubuntu package was Sylpheed; I installed Thunderbird. I use Firefox for my browser.

    I’m altogether satisfied with Lubuntu, and am overjoyed to keep my aging laptop functional.

  9. Brian Masinick says

    I have not yet installed the final LTS release of 14.04 for Lubuntu. I have done so for Xubuntu and Kubuntu.

    I ran an upgrade to go from 12.04.4 LTS to 14.04 with Kubuntu and experienced a clean upgrade.

    I had an issue attempting the same with Xubuntu. The issue was a subtle change in wireless firmware packaging that affected the way to configure my Broadcom 4311 wireless firmware driver.

    I know that I have at least one instance of Lubuntu installed on a test system and when I am ready to perform more evaluations I will check it out again.

    The most recent version of Lubuntu installed works quite well.

    I use antiX more often as my light, small system. Lubuntu compares favorably in performance. AntiX has configuration tools that I am familiar with so I tend to prefer it. Both are similar in size.

  10. PBJ says

    “Not everyone wants tons of desktop glitz and zillions of bells and whistles”
    Problem is that Unity does not give that – it just consumes resources like does. Basing on my experience with AMD C-60 powered netbook also Lubuntu, Xbuntu and many other “lighweight” pretend they remove all FX to work faster but what they really do is giving you more customizing possibilities (Unity have no of them unless you install some software) use less resources but still work quite slow. As for me the only really lightweight in terms of “not only low resources but also fast” was DSL. I installed DSL 3.4 on P200MMX with 32 MB of RAM and still had free memory and no SWAP usage. Had also good experience with Slackware. All “?buntu” failed “quick response test” which is funny because Mint with Mate works quite OK. But that just my experience.

    Cheers.

    • sheldon cwinn says

      After customizing Lubuntu and really getting to learn its foibles, I gave up on it. In fact I gave up on Ubuntu entirely. I have a work desktop, a development laptop, and two netbooks all running different versions of Linux Mint. I really have tried out many different versions of Ubuntu based distros but Mint is wonderful. The XFCE version on my smallest machine, is able to run with 1mb of memory quite happily. Cinnamon is so user friendly and is far more flexible and provides a better out of the box experience than Unity. But, all things being equal, Mate is the Linux Mint version that I like best. The environment is really stable and Mate is not that resource hungry. What amazes me is that although I am working on 4 different machines with 3 different versions of Mint, each machine is so similar to one another, that they all feel the same to work on.

      Ubuntu would be better off to do what Mint has done. Provide a single set of tools and packages accross the board. That works best for me in the real world.

      Try Mint XFCE. It may be the answer that you are looking for.

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