A look at Ubuntu 23.10 Mantic Minotaur

Nowadays, I mostly use Arch-based distributions (especially with EndeavourOS). So I haven’t been using Ubuntu for a while and decided to try it again now that the brand new release, 23.10 “Mantic Minotaur”, is available.

I tested it on my Dell XPS 13.

Here we are in the live environment:

Let’s start the installation. This new version of Ubuntu features a new installer, which looks nice. I still feel comfortable with this new installer having already installed Ubuntu many times.

The initial steps are the language, keyboard, and network connection:

In the next step, the installer detected a new version available to download. I said yes. Then, you have to restart the installer, starting from scratch.

By default, Ubuntu proposes a minimal installation when choosing the installation type. However, I prefer to have most of the things installed during this stage, so I chose the “Full Installation”:

Then, we get to the partitioning. As usual, I prefer manual partitioning since I have several Linux distributions installed on my computer. I chose EXT4 as the file system. On Arch, I use BTRFS. However, Ubuntu does not come with good defaults for BTRFS. I dealt with such problems in the past, but now I prefer to stick with EXT4 in Ubuntu and give up on BTRFS snapshots.

Then, we get to the timezone selection (the installer automatically detected my location) and user details. This is as usual.

Interestingly, you can select during the installation the theme and the color accent (that’s nothing special, but it is a nice surprise):

The installation starts; by clicking on the small icon on the bottom right, you can also enable logging on the terminal:

The installation only took a few minutes on this laptop.

Time to restart. Of course, at the first login, you get some updates to install:

The touchpad is already configured with tap-to-click, but it defaults to “natural scrolling” (which I don’t like). That gave me the chance to see the new nice-looking Gnome setting for the touchpad:

I installed Dropbox, and with the Ubuntu extension for “app indicator”, the Dropbox icon appears in the tray bar. It works (mostly: sometimes it always shows as if it is synchronizing, though everything is up-to-date).

Remember that the current icon theme does not show the “Dropbox” folder in Nautilus with overlay.

Connecting an external HDMI monitor works perfectly (so Wayland is not a problem); I prefer to mirror the contents:

Also, GNOME extensions work fine. Despite the new GNOME Version (45), known to have broken all extensions due to an API breakage, the ones I use seem to have been ported and work correctly.

I don’t like the fact that, despite a SWAP partition already present on my disk, the installer did not pick it up: the result is the usage of a small SWAP file, which I don’t like.

I removed this line from the “/etc/fstab”:

I added the line to refer to my existing SWAP partition.

I also enabled ZRAM, which will automatically have precedence over the SWAP partition:

I don’t like the wallpapers shipped with this version (in the screenshot, you can easily tell the GNOME wallpapers from the Ubuntu ones):

However, I typically use Variety for wallpapers, so it’s not a big problem.

IMPORTANT: as I have already blogged, you need additional fonts for “Oh-My-Zsh” with the “p10k” prompt.

All in all, Ubuntu 23.10 seems pretty stable and smooth. I’m using it (not as my daily driver), and for the moment, I’m enjoying it.

2 thoughts on “A look at Ubuntu 23.10 Mantic Minotaur

    1. Lorenzo Bettini Post author

      Thanks for the suggestion!
      However, as far as I know, the XPS 13 does not support battery charge limit, so I don’t think I could use that package.
      Or does it support that?


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