Ubuntu Studio is the popular official version of Ubuntu, created for creators of creative content engaged in the production of audio, video, graphics, photographs and book publishing. It offers many applications for creating multimedia content out of the box with the best possible experience.

Following the recent release of 20.04 LTS, the Ubuntu Studio team emphasized something very important in its official announcement. And probably not everyone noticed the key information, that is, the future of Ubuntu Studio.

Ubuntu Studio 20.04 will be the latest version to ship with the Xfce desktop environment. All future releases will use KDE Plasma.

Why is Ubuntu Studio abandoning XFCE?

According to their explanation, Ubuntu Studio is not focused on any specific appearance, but seeks to provide the maximum possible user experience. And KDE is the best option.

Plasma has proven to have the best tools for graphic artists and photographers, which can be seen in Gwenview, Krita, and even the Dolphin file manager. In addition, it supports the Wacom tablet better than any other desktop environment.

And everything became so good that most of the Ubuntu Studio team now uses Kubuntu with the addition of Ubuntu Studio via the Ubuntu Studio Installer as a daily driver.

Of course, every desktop environment has been adapted for something else. And here they think that KDE Plasma will be the most suitable work environment, replacing XFCE, to provide the best user experience for all users.

Although I’m not sure how users will react to this, since each user has their own set of preferences. If existing users have no problems with KDE, this will not be a big problem.

It is worth noting that Ubuntu Studio also mentioned why KDE is their best choice: the Plasma desktop environment without Akonadi has become as easy to use as Xfce, possibly even easier. Other Linux-based audio distributions such as Fedora Jam and KXStudio have historically used the KDE Plasma desktop environment and worked well with audio.

They also highlighted Jason Evangelo’s article on Forbes, where some tests show that KDE is almost as light as Xfce. Although this is a good sign, we still need to wait for users to test KDE-based Kbu-Ubuntu Studio. Only then can we see if Ubuntu Studio’s decision to abandon the XFCE desktop environment was correct.

What will change for Ubuntu Studio users after the transition?

The update process (from 20.04 to 20.10) will lead to system failure. Thus, a new version of Ubuntu Studio 20.10 or later will be the only way out.

They also noted that they would constantly evaluate the presence of duplicates with preinstalled applications. Thus, I believe that more detailed information will follow in the coming days.

Ubuntu Studio is the second distribution that has recently changed the environment of its main desktop. Previously, Lubuntu switched to LXQt with LXDE.

What do you think of this change? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.