Here you can see the default login screen for Ubuntu 8.10. You simply add username and password and you have access to the Desktop. Simple, however, as you will see there are many options that can go with this login process.
If you will go to System/Administration and select Login Window you will find that you have a lot of options available for login. You will need to supply the administrator password to gain access to the Login Window Preferences. You can see that it has 6 tabs for options.
The General tab allows you to hide black dots when you type your password in the login. By making the password invisible, no one can guess the length of your password. By default users can only login once at a time. The Default session will determine your which Desktop you will use. The default is the Gnome Desktop. However you can add many different Desktops inclduing KDE, OpenBox, BlackBox, etc. Actually, some of these are just window managers but the look and feel is much different. If you wanted all users on your machine to use a lighter weight Desktop like BlackBox you could set that here. Automatically Ubuntu 8.10 uses the 24 hour clock.
Your local login has a number of options which you can set with the Local tab. You are able to set the theme, colors and determine the Menu bar.
The Remote tab by default will disable the graphical login. This is surely a security decision as you will want to be careful if you enable this option. You still can login using SSH for example, this option only controls the login for the Xwindow.
Ubuntu 8.10 has a stronger focus on Accessibility features which is a great enhancement. Having worked with individuals who have disabilities this is surely a focus that should be made by every Linux distro…thanks. The options are clear and easy to modify.
The Security tab allows you to automatically login, which is a nice feature if you are not worried about intruders on your desktop. You can place a timeout so that a user has limited time to login to stop people trying to hack into the system. The Login Delay is one second….you could increase this if you have a problem with others trying to get into your box. The minimal UID is a security option that will only allow normal users to login, not system users that are created by programs or daemons on the machine. Users are created by default with UID or User Ids over 1000. By default you can only login if you have a home directory. This may sound strange but many times users are created for mail services who do not have home directories as a security feature, they only pick up mail from the server with no local account.
The face browser can be used to choose a user when you login. With this tab you can select who is able to login with the face browser. You can add pictures of users in the face browser.
Ubuntu 8.10 beta desktop and server versions have been released. I Download the .ISO file and looked at some of the new desktop features which turned out to be impressive. Some of the Ubuntu 8.10 beta features include Gnome 2.24, X.org 7.4, Linux Kernel 2.6.27, an encrypted private directory, guest session, Network Manager 0.7, Samba 3.2, and more.
I was particularly impressed with:
I’ve experienced a need for a feature like guest session many times in both student and work environments. When starting a Guest Session you create a temporary password-less user account with restricted privileges. This allows other people to use you computer but restricts them from doing things like accessing the home folder or saving a bunch of files permanently.
Encrypted Private Directory
The Encrypted Private directors comes to us from the ecryptfs-utils package recently promoted to Ubuntu “main”. This gives Ubuntu support for a secret encrypted folder withing the home folder.
Gnome 2.24 has some new fixes and features of it’s own. Now in Gnome 2.24 Nautilus file manager includes tab support and a few other features. The File Roller archive manager now support ALZ, RZIP, CAB, and TAR.7Z file types.