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Ubuntu 21.04, the next version, will replace the traditional X.Org graphical server with Wayland

Canonical has announced that the next Ubuntu edition 21.04 will use Wayland as the default X server. But what does this mean?

Unix systems can work strictly in text mode, but if they use a type of application known as 'X server', they can display their own graphical system: desktop, windows, etc. So on Mac, your X server is XQuartz, while in Linux the predominant system is X.Org.

X.Org was born in 2004 as an evolution of the old XFree86. However, voices were quickly raised in the developer community proclaiming the need for have an X server written from scratch and that it does not load with the load of the legacy code and of obsolete components.

The first try

So, in 2008 the Wayland project started. Mark Shuttleworth, CEO of Canonical, stated just two years later Ubuntu's intention to get on this new ship. But the development of Wayland ended up facing more hurdles than expected, delaying its adoption.

This is how awesome and fun the Linux desktop was 10 years ago

Finally, four years ago, Canonical launched Ubuntu 17.10, an edition that came with several new features in its graphical system: although the most commented on was its abandonment of the Unity desktop in favor of GNOME Shell, it also highlighted the change from to Wayland.

However, despite the advances, Wayland was still not a product fine-tuned enough for Ubuntu's needs at the time, so decided to return to X.Org in its next version.

A new opportunity

But now, facing the launch of the future Ubuntu 21.04, they announce that have decided to give Wayland a new chance:

"Since some of the obstacles back then [de Ubuntu 17.10] have been resolved, we think now is the right time to try again - it should give us enough time to get the proper feedback before the next LTS release. "

However, Wayland is still limping in one respect: its support for Nvidia cards, so Users of these will see how X.Org is still installed by default on their systems, an aspect that they hope to have solved within a year.

The truth is that Wayland has been advancing very slowly but steadily, and it has been two years since Red Hat, one of the great code contributors to X.Org, proposed to the Unix community slow down the development of this X server (limited to bug fixes) to definitely bet on Wayland as your substitute. Its adoption by Ubuntu could help take that step.

Via | OMG! Ubuntu