LinuxTag 2009: Communtu Eases Ubuntu Installation

Jun 25, 2009

Communtu wants to give new installers and Windows converts an easier time with Ubuntu. They will present a webpage with a list of suggested programs to install as a metapackage, including multimedia and proprietary software, and then install it.

One of the first presentations in the morning of the first LinuxTag in Berlin was from Communtu out of Bremen. The project is based on the premise that there's yet an easier way to install Ubuntu. Be it multimedia codecs or proprietary thingies from, say, Skype or Google Earth, at a certain point users might have to post-install packages without having them readily at hand.

This is where Communtu comes in. Users who register on a webpage can select packages to download and Communtu does the rest. It puts a metapackage together and installs the programs. The left pane presents links that guide you through the process to enter certain key data. It wants to know your areas of interest (programming, games, systems), the desired Ubuntu version and if you want free or cost-based software or licenses. Communtu then presents two links that Ubuntu opens using the gdebi package installer. Behind the links are hidden two Debian packages, the first imports the necessary keys to get to the second one. The metapackages then assemble what you selected among the software.

In one respect you're spared aggravation, but the registration still takes time, and some of these metapackages are, theoretically, also feasible through Ubuntu's normal installation. The concept harkens back to Linspire's Click'n'Run service and openSUSE's One-Click-Install system. Yet to be seen if Communtu's Web version will find a following.

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  • English version at about 85 - 90 %

    As Till already mentioned, the English version of Communtu is nearly completed. All we have to do is to translate the last few strings, check if everything is correct and then we launch the English version for a productive use.
  • English version coming soon

    A prototype of the English version is available at Currently, it is not suited for productive use, but it will be completed soon.
  • german only

    I just send them some feedback offering my services translating this thing. If they wrote this with i18n on their minds it shouldn't be a problem to get Communtu translated quickly.
  • Communtu

    So far as I can see the site is in German only. Great for someone that can read German, but kind of hard to follow for those of us that don't.
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