Solus 4.2 Fortitude Linux distro is here with Budgie, GNOME, KDE Plasma, and MATE

So far, 2021 is a definite improvement over 2020, but it's not all great. Due to the ever-mutating COVID-19 virus, many of us remain isolated in our homes. Thankfully, we computer nerds have been training most of our lives for this -- we have experienced plenty of extended time away from other humans, instead tinkering with our computers.

One thing I have enjoyed doing to pass the time during the pandemic is installing Linux distributions. Distro-hopping isn't just fun, but educational too. Today, Solus 4.2 becomes available for download, and it is an operating system you should check out. It is offered with your choice of four great desktop environments -- Budgie, GNOME, KDE Plasma, and MATE.

This new version of Solus comes with Linux kernel 5.10.12, which the developers explain adds support for Intel and AMD's latest-and-greatest, such as Comet Lake and 5th gen Ryzen, respectively. Solus 4.2 comes with excellent pre-installed software too, such as Firefox 85.0, LibreOffice 7.0.4.2, and Thunderbird 78.6.1.

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The Solus developers share significant hardware changes and compatibilities below.

  • AMD RAPL MSR based Energy driver
  • AMD Renoir Audio Co-processor support
  • AMD SoC SPI controller driver support
  • Enabled ACPI and HID ambient light sensors
  • Enabled CONFIG_DRM_LOAD_EDID_FIRMWARE
  • Enabled NVMe hardware monitoring via CONFIG_NVME_HWMON
  • Enabled various modules required for software such as CTParental, Mininet, and ROCm
  • Enabled early KMS for amdgpu, i915, qxl, radeon, and virtio-gpu
  • Fast charge control for iOS devices.
  • Improved exFAT file system support
  • Intel Broxton PMICs
  • Intel Classmate accelerometer, backlight, and input device support
  • Intel Haswell and Broadcom support with I2S codec present
  • Intel Jasper Lake PCH pinctrl and GPIO drivers
  • Realtek 8723DE and 8821CD PCI wireless network adapters
  • Several new USB cameras
  • Support for setup / unlock / lock Locking ranges for SED devices using the Opal protocol.
  • Support for Solarflare NICs
  • Surface 3 battery platform driver support
  • XFS Online Repair
  • We have retained XFS v4 Format support to ensure compatibility with any existing XFS filesystems

If you want to try Solus 4.2 Fortitude for yourself, you can download an ISO here. While it is tempting to download the GNOME, KDE Plasma, or MATE variants because of familiarity, I urge you to give the Budgie edition a go. It is a surprisingly excellent desktop environment, and it seems to be the DE the Solus developers favor. Before you install the operating system, however, you should read the rather lengthy release announcement here.

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