Canonical's Ubuntu 15.04, also known as Vivid Vervet, has been recently launched and it comes with the notorious systemd project.
This latest edition of the standard Linux distro does not boast of any user interface changes as it still has the Unity 7 desktop environment. It includes some minor tweaks like the ability to set application menus to always appear instead of only popping up when you hover your mouse over them. Most of the changes feature revamped menus, some important desktop improvements and new versions of default apps like LibreOffice and Firefox. This operating system should be faster and more stable thanks to updates to the underlying system, such as the Linux kernel and Unity desktop.
What makes Vivid Vervet visually different from the previous version is the purple default wallpaper and the marginally improved locally integrated menus as they now consume less screen space with this arrangement.
When the desktop is aware of the integrated menus, it empowers Unity's HUD. Hit the Alt key and then start typing to search through existing application menus for an option and activate it quickly, by simply using your keyboard.
There is also an option to always show the new menus instead of auto-hiding them. You'll have to install the Dconf Editor application, then launch the application, and then go to com > canonical > unity, and lastly, enable the "always show menus" option.
Ubuntu 15.04 uses systemd instead of Ubuntu's own Upstart system. This is an under-the-hood matter, and systemd has been verified comprehensively. Do consult Ubuntu's "systemd for Upstart users" guide if you're a system administrator or if you've created your own Upstart jobs.
This Ubuntu release also includes LibreOffice 4.4, which has seen a lot of user-interface tweaks. LibreOffice 4.4 has a more updated interface than its previous versions.
Ubuntu 15.04, or Vivid Vervet, is nearly like a placeholder version. It seems like Canonical, owned by South African entrepreneur Mark Shuttleworth, is strategically taking its time and applying temporary updates while really working toward the more intense revision that will supplement Unity 8, the next generation of its desktop environment. Like Microsoft, the company is really aiming to unify its OS across all platforms, which means building one core system with a consistent user interface across mobile phones, tablets and desktops. This converged version of Unity 8 is still scheduled for a future release.
Photo: Andrew Mason | Flickr