Ubuntu publishes its new installer design

Canonical announced last month its intention to develop a new, modern installer for its Ubuntu operating system that will replace the current installer that has been using in the desktop version of Ubuntu since 2011, taking advantage of Flutter, Google's open-source web-based UI framework, which Canonical announced last week that will be their default choice for creating future mobile and desktop apps.

And now, the Ubuntu developer Sebastien Bacher has shared  a series of images hosted on a website by Canonical that illustrate the different stages Ubuntu installation will go through with the new installer when becomes ready.

These stages are not much different from the current Ubiquity installer and offer almost the same installation process with a few new changes. The new installer starts with a "Welcome" page where you can choose the language to use during the installation process, then you will see a "Try or install" page where you can choose to install the OS on your hard drive, try it without installing it, or a new installation repair option that will reinstall Ubuntu on your computer without touching your documents and settings.


If you are planing to install Ubuntu alongside Windows, you will see a new page telling you that you should turn Intel's Rapid Storage Technology (RST) in Windows before installing Ubuntu. If that’s not the case, you see the same old "Keyboard Layout" page where you can select and test your preferred keyboard layout, and the usual "Detect Keyboard Layout" button on the bottom.

The next page that will appear to you is the new "Connect to internet" page that as its name indicate allows you to configure your internet connection to be able to install the multimedia codecs and drivers during the installation and helps you to choose your timezone. If the operating system does not load your Wi-Fi drivers during the boot, the installer, at this stage will allow you to install the needed drivers to permit configuring your internet connection.

The next page "Updates and other software" will ask you as before to choose what either you want to install the full Ubuntu installation or just the minimal one that contains only a web browser and a few other tools, with an option at the bottom of the page to check if you want to install some additional third-party software for drivers and codecs. If you've selected to install that third-party software, a new page asks you to disable the Secure Boot or to proceed without installing the additional driver software.

The next page in this new installer is the "Installation Type" page which has not changed from the one in the current installer. It allows you to wipe the entire hard disk and install Ubuntu, upgrade from a previous version, or manually partition the hard drive and create custom partitions, and if you choose to erase your hard drive, you will have an option to use the ZFS file system and encrypt your entire installation, and you will be able to choose a security key to protect your computer in the next page.

If you choose to install Ubuntu alongside Windows, a new page called ‘Turn off BitLocker” will appear next asking you to turn off the Windows BitLocker encryption before continuing the installation, with a button tiling "Restart into Windows" to help you with that. While if you choose to do a custom or manual partitioning on the “Installation type” page, you will see a newly revamped "Allocate disk space" page where you will find an overview of your hard disk partitions, and you will be able to manage it: You can create, delete and modify your partitions, choose which file system to use for the installation, and select where to install the bootloader.

After you finish partitioning the disk, a new page summarizing the operations you performed on the hard disk will appear before writing the changes to your disk. 

Next, you'll have to choose your timezone on the "Where are you?" page, enter your name, computer name, username, and password on the "Who are you?" page, and then, a new  "Configure  Active Directory" appears to test Active Directory integration (optional).

During the installation process, you will see the same installation slides as before, and when the installation completes, you will see a whole new page called “Installation completed” containing the options to Restart and Shut Down the Computer, while the option to continue using the live session appears to be no longer available.

This new installer is still under active development, however, Canonical hopes that the installer will be ready to ship by default in the upcoming 21.10 release expected in October this year, and if all goes well, this installer is expected to be also the default option to install  in The next long-term support version of Ubuntu coming out next year.

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