Monday November 19, 2018

Ubuntu 18.04 Gets 10 Year Lifespan Ahead of Canonical IPO

At a keynote in Berlin, Canonical's founder Mark Shuttleworth said that Ubuntu 18.04 LTS is getting a 10 year support period, which is 5 years longer than normal. This extension is specifically aimed at the IoT, financial services and telecommunications market, where products will often operate for many years without significant changes. He also reiterated "Canonical's promise to easily enable OpenStack customers to migrate from one version of OpenStack to another," and promised to support versions of OpenStack from 2014 and on. Interestingly, these promises come ahead of Canonical's planned IPO in 2019. Mark seems to think that Ubuntu is a real competitor with Red Hat now, which IBM just recently acquired, and he's quite enthusiastic about the future of Ubuntu. The full Canonical keynote can be seen on Ubuntu's blog here. Thanks to dgz for the tip.

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He also disclosed that Canonical is still aiming at an Initial Public Offering (IPO) in 2019. This is not on a set schedule. Instead, it will happen when the company meets the metrics he's set. "We have work to do. The team knows what work we still need to do. We're growing up at a company. Recent changes in the market is bringing this time closer." Before Canonical IPOs, he plans on bringing in growth equity from private-equity companies. Shuttleworth has started talking with private equity advisors to get things ready to bring in a cash infusion.

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