Canonical has made Ubuntu 23.10 ‘Mantic Minotaur’ available for download with a new App Center that makes it easier to find new apps and preview support for hardware backed full-disk encryption where keys are stored in the Trusted Platform Module (TPM). The company said that Ubuntu 23.10 lays the foundation of the next long-term support (LTS) release due in April 2024.
The main change that users will see is the new App Center. Canonical has made sure that it’s fast, intuitive, and user-friendly and supports snap and deb package formats. The App Center grabs rich metadata from the Canonical Snap Store to better inform users about the apps they want to download.
The other major change in this update is the preview support for hardware backed full-disk encryption. Canonical expects to deliver broader hardware support for this feature and more configuration and management options in Ubuntu 24.04 LTS.
Another security change in this update is that the Ubuntu kernel now supports an additional mode that forces programs to have an AppArmor Profile to use unprivileged user namespaces. The company said that this will reduce kernel interfaces that normally require root privileges and create significant security vulnerabilities.
Canonical said that many common applications like web browsers use unprivileged user namespaces and expose normally restricted kernel interfaces; this is dangerous so it has made changes. Applications in the Ubuntu archives now come with AppArmor profiles to make sure they adhere to this new policy when it’s enabled.
As a non-LTS release, Ubuntu 23.10 will only be supported for nine months. For most people, it’s best to just stick to the LTS versions but if you are running Ubuntu 22.10 or 23.04 then you should upgrade to Ubuntu 23.10.
To download Ubuntu 23.10, just head over to the Ubuntu downloads page and scroll down to the Ubuntu 23.10 section. According to that page, if you can run Ubuntu 22.04 LTS then you can run Ubuntu 23.10 as the system requirements are the same.