Well, I now know what I’m going to be doing over the weekend. Just a couple of days ago, I posted a video of Ubuntu running on the Nexus 7, which although short, seriously piqued my interest in the project. At the time, I was worried that the software in the video would end up being vaporware, but this time the Ubuntu for Nexus 7 developers really came through. Although it is still a few days until the beginning of the Ubuntu Developer Summit, the instructions for flashing Ubuntu 12.10 on the Nexus 7 have just been posted on the official Ubuntu Wiki page.
The installation process actually appears quite easy, as a graphical application called Ubuntu Nexus7 Installer has been made to do most of the work. Naturally, users will need to unlock the bootloader on the Nexus 7 before installing, but this can be done with a simple fastboot command. Provided they are running Ubuntu, users can then install the previously mentioned Nexus7 Installer, click a couple of buttons, and watch the magic happen. According to the Wiki, the flashing should take only a couple of minutes once the images has downloaded, at which point the tablet will reboot and take about 15 minutes to complete the installation.
I don’t know yet how well this build actually works, but based on the previously posted video it should be at least somewhat usable. Still, the fact remains that this is clearly experimental, and not meant for general use. If, however, you are the type of user who is inclined to install experimental Linux distributions on your tablet, then installing Ubuntu on your Nexus 7 might be fun, if only for the novelty factor. If not, I’ll hopefully have a video of the OS in action by early next week, so stay tuned.