atlanta-linux-fest-ubuconMore than 600 people registered to attend Atlanta Linux Fest, which was held Sept. 19. Many of the standing-room-only sessions focused on Canonical and Ubuntu. Here are nine Ubuntu-oriented highlights from the event.

9. New ISVs in 2010?: Software Partner Manager John Pugh focuses on Ubuntu Server Edition. He's certainly upbeat about the October 2009 release of Ubuntu 9.10. But Pugh is already looking forward to Ubuntu Server Edition 10.04 -- which is a Long Term Support (LTS) release. Pugh says Canonical is speaking with major closed source ISVs (independent software vendors, Oracle among them) and Canonical hopes to generate some more ISV support as part of the Ubuntu 10.04 launch.

Still, Pugh also cautioned readers not to focus too much on any one particular ISV, since Canonical's efforts involve discussions with multiple companies.

8. Moving Between Public and Private Clouds: Pugh's late-day presentation on cloud technologies attracted a standing-room-only crowd. He described how customers will be able to move Ubuntu applications between public and private clouds using such technologies as Ubuntu on Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud (public) and Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud powered by Eucalyptus.

7. Rugged Ubuntu Devices: EmperorLinux Inc. President and CEO Lincoln Durey showed me a small, rugged Panasonic Toughbook device running Ubuntu. Durey mentioned the device is ideal for such vertical markets as real estate, health care, and insurance. Watch for a FastChat video featuring Durey to debut on WorksWithU later this week.

6. More Cellular Devices Coming: Pete Graner, Canonical's kernel team manager, told me to expect cellular and mobile broadband-type companies to offer more Ubuntu-oriented devices.

5. Small Business Server Remix? Nope: Pugh said Canonical wasn't currently working on any type of Small Business Server version of Ubuntu. But he said Ubuntu in the cloud and Ubuntu Server Edition could certainly meet small business needs. Plus, Pugh noted groups like Amahi are working on Ubuntu for home servers.

4. Ubuntu Server GUI? Nope: Pugh told me Canonical has no plans to introduce a GUI (graphical user interface) on Ubuntu Server Edition. For novices who are looking for a server GUI, Pugh recommends running Ubuntu Desktop Edition as a server.

3. Staffing Up: Several Canonical employees mentioned to me that the five-year-old company now has 300 employees. Sounds like Canonical has pushed beyond the small business stage of its existence.

2. Ubuntu 10.04 Gets A Name: Canonical CEO Mark Shuttleworth via video announced Ubuntu 10.04's code name is Lucid Lynx.

1. The Ubuntu 9.10 Compatibility Test: Will Ubuntu 9.10 work on your current notebook, netbook or PC? Canonical has developed diagnostics software (installed on a USB flash drive) that allows you to quickly discover whether your systems' WiFi, sound, graphics and other variables will continue to work under Ubuntu 9.10.

It's a slick little test that requires about 20 minutes of your time. I suspect Canonical will share more news about the testing software around the time of Ubuntu 9.10's launch.

I'll post more highlights from Atlanta Linux Fest in the days ahead.

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