I just updated the kernel for the desktop's Xubuntu install. I will not be doing that for the laptop. At least I'll have a fully working laptop that way.
When Xubuntu comes up, pardon, came up, it would offer a selection of boot choices with fallbacks for debugging and such. Those just disappeared. No, it was NOT an option I checked. Yes, I did do a 'grub-update' to attempt recovery. No luck.
That, by itself, would not matter too much on a system with only Xubuntu (currently) installed. But the SL client I use (Phoenix) and the one I expect I will eventually need to migrate to (Firestorm) are 32 bit... and while Xubuntu has 32 compatibility libraries that work fine - they work fine on -28 kernels and earlier. Everything after -28 has broken things. No, Google doesn't help. That tells me "the libraries are in the wrong place" -- except they can't be since booting with -28 works and anything after doesn't. Conclusion: Something is broken in everything after -28.
So? So before I had the option of booting into -28. Now I don't have any options at all. If I wanted Windows, I know where to look. I don't want Windows. I don't *buntu acting Windows-like at me. Naturally all this happens at the end of my "day" so I can try to sleep (and then not have things working when I wake up and want to use them) or I can lose sleep. Thanks, Ubuntu! Doesn't anyone test this stuff? Whose bright idea was it to remove choices??
I really don't care which bug is fixed or bypassed. If the kernel can do 32-bit compatibility right, no problem. If I can get to a kernel that can, no problem. Right now? Problem.
I can hardly wait for 64-bit PCLinuxOS. PCLinuxOS actually did all the stuff that *buntu tries to claim. The only reason I'm not already running it (and am using Xubuntu...) is that there is no released 64-bit version.
ADDENDUM: Evidently it's a (new to me) default misbehavior of grub2. If there is only one operating system, no choice is given unless one keeps SHIFT pressed from right after the POST. Why does it manifest now? I was always presented with that choice before, even on the initial install which had only the one OS and only the one kernel as such. I was still given a choice of the regular kernel and a failsafe version. I'd call this change a bug: It violates The Principle of Least Surprise.
Further, dropping back to -28 from -33
reveals confirms that -33 seriously broke video. Sure it would still make images, but the simple act of dragging a window across the screen result in weird stops & jitters that reminded me of Windows 3.x. That is not an upgrade.