The new version brings updated applications and various under-the-hood improvements, along with bug fixes. As expected, Compiz and Unity have only received minor improvements and bug fixes.
On the other hand, Ubuntu 17.04 includes the GNOME 3.24 stack for the most part (GTK3 along with Totem, Disks, Calendar, and so on). There are some missing bits, but this is still pretty important, as Ubuntu didn't use the latest GNOME since around Ubuntu 11.10 / GNOME 3.2.
Unity and Compiz in Ubuntu 17.04
- keep the screen locked if autologin or nopasswdlogin is enabled;
- if scale-factor is not set, find and set right scale for HiDPI displays;
- dropped click scope from the default list of favourites;
- fixed lock screen not covering the entire desktop on HiDPI display with draw-user-backgrounds unchecked;
- fixed issue that made it impossible to exit screensaver if a menu or application grabs the screen;
- fixed bug preventing switching to the copy / move dialog;
- fixed bug that caused users to be asked to unlock the screen twice after closing the guest session;
- Compiz Move plugin: add options for only showing the window shape (outline, rectangle);
- Compiz: added option to disable blend in grid plugin.
Complete changelogs for Unity and Compiz.
Defaults and other changes
Besides the applications mentioned above, Ubuntu 17.04 ships with Firefox 52.0.1, Thunderbird 45.8.0, LibreOffice 5.3.1, Transmission 2.92, Shotwell 0.22+git, Rhythmbox 3.4.1, Totem 3.24.0, GNOME Disks 3.24.0, GNOME Calendar 3.24, GNOME System Monitor 3.24 and Evince 3.24, on top of Unity 7.5.0 (+17.04.20170407) and Compiz 0.9.13.1 (+17.04.20170109).
Here's a quick list of changes in the Linux Kernel since the version used in the previous Ubuntu release (Linux 4.8 for Ubuntu 16.10):
- Linux 4.9 (more information: Kernel Newbies | Phoronix):
- AMDGPU virtual display support;
- better AMDGPU GPU reset support;
- shared data extents and copy-on-write support for XFS;
- support for new ARM machines, including Raspberry Pi Zero and LG Nexus 5;
- Linux 4.10 (more information: Kernel Newbies | Phoronix):
- initial Intel Graphics Virtualization Technology support;
- improved writeback management;
- Nouveau Boost support, which allows new graphics cards to go up to their "boost" frequencies, and not just the highest standard frequency;
- support for Intel Turbo Boost Max 3.0 and Intel Cache Allocation Technology.
Other changes in Ubuntu 17.04:
- Ubuntu now includes support for printing without printer-specific drivers. Among the supported printers are IPP Everywhere and Apple AirPrint printers, but also some PDF, Postscript, and PCL printers;
- the default DNS resolver is now systemd-resolved;
- for new installs, a swap file will be used instead of a swap partition;
- gconf is no longer installed by default;
- this release does not include 32bit powerpc.
Download Ubuntu 17.04 (Zesty Zapus)
(includes instructions for upgrading from older Ubuntu versions)
- Kubuntu: release notes | download
- Ubuntu MATE: release notes | download
- Xubuntu: release notes | download
- Lubuntu: release notes | download
- Ubuntu GNOME: release notes | download
- Ubuntu Studio: release notes | download
- Ubuntu Kylin: release notes | download
- Ubuntu Budgie (first release as an official Ubuntu flavor): release notes | download