A management application that is accessible from System Settings, is User Accounts. In Ubuntu 11.10, the types of user accounts that can be created has been reduced to two – Standard and Administrator. On previous version, you could create Desktop, Custom and Administrator accounts. The problem with user accounts is it does not have a facility that could be used to modify the privileges assigned to a Standard account. Also, it lacks password-aging and password-expiration features.
How Secure Is The System?: Out of the box, only one port (631 – Internet Protocol Printing) is open, but listening locally. Ufw, the Uncomplicated FireWall, is active, but a graphical interface is not installed. Aside from the firewall, AppArmor (Application Armor) is active, with 12 profiles and three processes in enforce mode. So, as far as network security goes, the system has a good default security profile. But security is more than about network security. Physical security has to be considered too. That is why it is better to use an Alternate Installer ISO image. With its support for disk encryption, you can install a system with a comprehensive (physical and network) security posture.
Final Thoughts: For the first time, I am actually beginning to like the Unity Desktop, which now has a better look and feel than the GNOME 3 desktop I tested on Sabayon 7 GNOME. It no longer gets in the way, like it did when it was initially released. Kudos to Canonical. They have got me convinced, not about the distribution, which I do not care much for, but about the Unity Desktop. Now, if only other distributions (Debian, Mint) could start offering a Unity Desktop version of their distribution.
What security-conscious users are still waiting for, is an updated Ubiquity installer, one with support for disk encryption and LVM, especially disk encryption.
Screenshots: View more screenshots from test installations of Ubuntu 11.10.
The login screen after the guest session has been disabled.
The desktop showing the entry for Guest Session in the session indicator.
This shows the desktop minus the profile indicator, after the guest session had been disabled.
A screenshot of the Software Center showing the regular scrollbar after the over scrollbar had been disabled.
Default updates settings.