Version 41 of Gnome has been released. This comprehensive, easy-to-use, open source desktop environment is available for operating systems belonging to the Unix family, such as Linux and the various BSD variants. The name is short for GNU Network Object Model Environment. Gnome consists of a desktop environment and a development platform for creating other applications, which can be integrated into the desktop environment. It is similar to the KDE in that respect. The most important improvements made in version 41 are listed for you below.
More Power To You
GNOME 40 introduced a new power mode setting. This allows switching between three power modes, which affect both performance and power consumption:
- Balanced: the default power mode, which provides standard performance and power consumption.
- Performance: increases CPU performance and power consumption, allowing many applications and activities to run faster.
- Power Saver: slower performance and lower power consumption.
Performance mode is only available on hardware that supports this feature. On hardware that doesn’t have performance mode, the performance mode option is not shown.
With GNOME 41, the power mode feature has been improved. Power modes can now be quickly changed from the System Status menu, and Power Saver mode has been enhanced, so that the screen dims and fades more rapidly when it is active. Power Saver will also automatically turn on when the battery level is low.
Initial support has also been added to allow applications to request a particular power mode. This will be most relevant for allowing performance sensitive apps, such as games, to request performance mode.
New Look Software
Software has been given an overhaul for GNOME 41, making it look and work better than ever before.
- The updated explore view makes it easier to browse and discover apps, with descriptions of each app and more attractive tiles.
- A new set of categories helps with browsing and exploring available apps.
- Details pages have a new design, with bigger screenshots and new information tiles, which provide a better overview of each application.
Almost every part of Software has been polished or improved in some way. This includes redesigned settings, more attractive layouts in the installed and updates views, better OS upgrade banners, and much more.
The changes aren’t skin deep, either: there have been many fixes and improvements under the hood, which make the experience faster and more reliable.
GNOME 41 includes a new Multitasking settings panel, which includes window management and workspace options. These allow:
- Disabling the Activities hot corner.
- Disabling Active Screen Edges.
- Configuring a fixed number of workspaces.
- Showing workspaces on all displays, instead of just the primary display.
- Restricting app switching to the current workspace, when using the Super+Tab keyboard shortcut.
New Connections App
GNOME 41 includes Connections, a new remote desktop client. This provides a modern, easy to use experience for connecting to other desktops, and automatically handles as much of the complexity for you as possible. VNC and RDP connections are both supported.
Connections replaces the remote desktop functionality that was previously found in Boxes.
GNOME 41 includes a new Mobile Network settings panel. This allows configuring mobile network connections, and works with 2G, 3G, 4G, and GSM/LTE modems.
The new Mobile Network settings are only shown when a supported modem is present. They allow setting the network type, selecting whether mobile data should be used, and whether data should be used while roaming. They also support using multiple SIMs and modems, and allow easy switching between networks.
The new settings replace the previous mobile network settings.
GNOME is continually working to improve performance, responsiveness and smoothness, and GNOME 41 includes a collection of improvements in this area.
- Efficiency improvements in GNOME 41 mean that the screen will update faster in response to keyboard and pointer input. This change only applies to those using the Wayland session, and the effects will be more noticeable with some displays rather than others (the improvement is more significant on displays with lower refresh rates).
- System-level multitouch gestures now behave more reliably and consistently.
- GTK 4 has a new default GL renderer, which provides faster rendering and reduced power consumption.
- Finally, a major code cleanup has been carried out in Mutter, GNOME’s window manager, which will improve long-term maintainability and efficiency.
Music has been given a round of UI updates for GNOME 41. Artwork is now larger and has rounded corners, the artist list includes images, a new album view includes a handy play button, and the redesigned player bar is more spacious. Music also has new welcome artwork.
That’s Not All
GNOME 41 includes lots of other, smaller improvements. These include:
- The ability to create encrypted .zip archives in Files (these require a password to be opened).
- A new Calendar feature that allows importing events from .ics files.
- Improved support for dark mode in Web, along with faster pinch to zoom (on heavy websites), and better handling of unresponsive websites.
- Better window resizing in Calculator: enlarging the window will now reveal additional controls, and the window will also shrink down to fit on mobile displays.