If your Software Sources is set to “any new version”, you should be notified of the Quantal Quetzal 12.10 upgrade, unless your Software Sources is set to “Long-Term support versions“, in which case toggle it if you want the upgrade.
You can also do the usual force update and upgrade from the command line if you want as well:
~$ sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade
Over the years, we’ve become very cynical about Ubuntu upgrades, so let’s just come out and say it: What will they break this time?
Ok, maybe that was a little bit harsh so let’s narrow it down to what stopped working on my machine after upgrading to 12.10.
The answer is: Firefox
Yes, post upgrade, Firefox (16.0.1) refused to launch. The process was definitely running, but Firefox never actually launched, and trying to launch it again came back with “Firefox is already running…blah…blah…blah”. The process would hang every time.
I resolved this by disabling some extensions, which I had never enabled in the first place. Those extensions are:
Ubuntu Firefox Modifications 2.4.1
Unity Desktop Integration 2.3.5
Unity Websites Integration 2012.10.12.beta
I should mention that I do not use Unity, so the upgrade probably just assumed that I did, causing the conflict. Rule of thumb: never assume.
Aside from that, performance seems to be smoother than before and as for what’s new in Ubuntu 12.10, I’ve managed to avoid most of it simply by not using Unity and opting for a more minimal and functional workspace. There’s the usual controversy with Ubuntu becoming more and more corporate (OMG you mean they’re actually a business?), so integrating Amazon into search results has shown to be pretty unpopular. You can disable that in privacy settings anyway, and again, this is a more Unity based issue.
Other than that, pretty status quo. The Ubuntu image now officially does not fit on a CD anymore continuing the bloat-buntu tradition of getting fatter with success (does anyone still use CDs?). If you want a Debian based OS that is lighter, I’d probably recommend Linux Mint, again.
Finally, here’s a small list of some of the other new fixes/improvements in Ubuntu 12.10, most of which I don’t use:
Shopping Lens (in Unity)
Updates in Ubuntu One
Improved Window Management
Theme Tweaks (more themes would actually be nicer. In fact, an actual visually pleasing theme would be nice)
Built in Encryption in the Installer
Remote Desktop Login from Unity Greeter
P.S. If you’re wondering what the next version of Ubuntu will be called, it’ll be called Raring Ringtail.