GNOME 41 beta is here -- the best Linux desktop environment is getting better

There are a lot of great desktop environments for Linux, such as Cinnamon, KDE Plasma, and Xfce to name a few. With that said, only one can be the best, and that is GNOME. If you prefer a different environment, you are simply wrong or ignorant on the subject. You know what? That's fine. As they say, ignorance is bliss, so if you are happy not using GNOME, more power to you.

For those of us superior Linux users that prefer GNOME, it is time to get excited. You see, as of today, the GNOME 41 Beta is officially here! Keep in mind, the Beta tag is quite literal -- unless you are a Beta tester or Linux developer, you shouldn't be bothering with it just yet.

"GNOME 41 Beta is now available. It also marks the start of the UI, feature and API freezes (collectively known as The Freeze). Any string changes need to be announced to the i18n mailing list in advance of the string freeze which should start next weekend. If you'd like to target the GNOME 41 platform, this is the best time to start testing your apps or extensions. You can use the 41 beta branch of the flatpak runtimes, which is now available on Flathub beta," says Abderrahim Kitouni, GNOME.

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Kitouni further shares, "This branch is based on the 21.08 branch of freedesktop-sdk and as such has quite a few ABI breaks. In addition, this release removed zenity and librest. The additions of this release are libmanette and sysprof-capture. The release team has agreed to pre-announce removals at least one cycle in advance. Starting with GNOME 42, all removals have to be announced at least one cycle in advance. As such, the following are deprecated and will be removed in a future release: clutter and friends (cogl, clutter-gtk and clutter-gst) and libsoup version 2.x (to be replaced with version 3.x)."

The GNOME developers share updated packages below.

  • calls (41.alpha => 41.beta)
  • eog (40.2 => 41.beta)
  • epiphany (41.alpha => 41.beta)
  • evolution-data-server (3.41.1 => 3.41.2)
  • gdm (40.0 => 41.alpha)
  • gjs (1.68.1 => 1.69.2)
  • glib (2.69.0 => 2.69.2)
  • glib-networking (2.70.alpha => 2.70.beta)
  • gnome-autoar (0.3.3 => 0.4.0)
  • gnome-calendar (40.2 => 41.beta)
  • gnome-control-center (40.0 => 41.beta)
  • gnome-desktop (41.alpha => 41.beta)
  • gnome-disk-utility (41.alpha => 41.beta)
  • gnome-initial-setup (41.alpha => 41.beta)
  • gnome-maps (41.alpha => 41.beta)
  • gnome-music (40.1.1 => 41.beta)
  • gnome-shell (40.3 => 41.beta)
  • gnome-shell-extensions (40.3 => 41.beta)
  • gnome-software (40.3 => 41.beta)
  • gnome-user-docs (40.3 => 40.4)
  • gnome-weather (40.0 => 40.1)
  • gsettings-desktop-schemas (40.0 => 41.alpha)
  • gsound (1.0.2 => 1.0.3)
  • gssdp (1.3.0 => 1.3.1)
  • gtk (4.3.1 => 4.4.0)
  • gupnp (1.3.0 => 1.3.1)
  • gupnp-av (0.13.0 => 0.13.1)
  • json-glib (1.6.2 => 1.6.4)
  • libhandy (1.2.3 => 1.3.90)
  • libnma (1.8.30 => 1.8.32)
  • libsoup (2.99.9 => 2.74.0)
  • mutter (40.3 => 41.beta)
  • nautilus (41.alpha => 41.beta)
  • pango (1.48.7 => 1.48.9)
  • vala (0.52.4 => 0.53.1)
  • yelp (40.3 => 41.beta)
  • yelp-tools (40.0 => 41.beta)
  • yelp-xsl (40.2 => 41.beta)
  • zenity (3.32.0 => 3.41.0)

It will be quite a while before GNOME 41 is stable and available to use in your favorite Linux distribution, but you can check out the beta now in any virtual machine that has EFI support. To do so, you can grab the GNOME 41 beta ISO here. Current GNOME users can simply run it in the Boxes VM app.

Image credit: Steven FrameShutterstock

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