Ubuntu gets new installer made with Google Flutter

Canonical will replace the installer for Ubuntu. The current desktop installer Ubiquity will be replaced by an installer that is being developed together with Google. Google’s Flutter toolkit is used for this.

The developers behind Ubuntu want to replace the default Ubiquity installer with a new one, they write on the Ubuntu forum. The current installer has been around since 2006. It still works, but the developers say it hasn’t had any functionality added for a long time and the code is difficult to maintain due to age.

The code behind the new installer should be the same as that of the newly updated Ubuntu Server installer. It’s called Subiquity. The makers want to create a “consistent robust installation rendering” for all of Ubuntu, with only a single codebase to maintain.

The new installer uses Flutter, Google’s toolkit for building applications. Linux support for Flutter has been available since the summer of last year, although it is still in the testing phase. Canonical says it’s working with developers at Google to build on that. “We’re aligning that work on the desktop frontend with work on the new installer,” the developers write.

Details about the new interface for the tool are not yet available. For now, only two screenshots are available, which show the same functionality as the current installer does. The new desktop installer should appear in the 21.10 release of Ubuntu. It will be released in October this year. This is still a test version. A final version for the lts releases should be in the OS from April 2022 with Ubuntu 22.04.