Introducing GNOME 41
GNOME 41 is the product of 6 months’ work by the GNOME project. It includes a number of significant improvements and new features, as well as a large collection of smaller enhancements.
The most notable changes this release include an improved Software app, new multitasking settings, and enhanced power management features. With these changes, GNOME is smarter, more flexible, and offers a richer and more engaging experience than ever before.
GNOME 41 also comes with significant improvements for developers, including a new developer documentation website, a major new version of the Human Interface Guidelines, new features in the Builder IDE, GTK 4 enhancements, and much more.
GNOME 41 is the second release to use GNOME’s new version numbering scheme, which has replaced the old odd/even point release approach with a simpler, single integer. The next release, version 42, is planned for March 2022.
New power profiles were actually introduced in GNOME 40. In GNOME 41, those profiles are now accessible within the desktop.
- Balanced is the default profile. This profile offers a standard balance between performance and power consumption.
- Performance increases the CPU performance, allowing many applications and activities to run faster, but at a cost of power consumption.
- Power Saver reduces the GPU performance, slowing down applications in order to reduce power consumption and conserve battery life.
With GNOME 41, these power profiles can be changed quickly from the
System Status menu. The
Power Saver profile can be configured to automatically enable itself when the system is on battery power and the battery level is low. It also dims the display sooner and fades the screen faster before suspending the device.
Initial support has been added that allows applications to request a power profile in certain situations. For example, a game can request the performance profile. The active requests are listed in the
Settings > Power section.
Overhauled Software Install Experience
Software has been given an overhaul for GNOME 41. It’s now easier to browse available apps, thanks to the inclusion of descriptions in app tiles, as well as a new, smaller set of application categories.
Application pages also have a new design, with bigger screenshots and new information tiles with information about each app.
Almost every part of the application has been polished or improved in some way. This includes redesigned settings, more attractive layouts in the installed and updates view, enhanced OS upgrade banners, and much much more.
The changes aren’t skin deep, either: there have been many fixes and improvements under the hood, to make the experience faster and more reliable.
The new Multitasking section in
- Enable or disable the Activities hot corner.
- Enable or disable the Active Screen Edges.
- Configure Workspaces to be either dynamic or a fixed number.
- Show workspaces on all displays or on the primary display only.
- When switching applications
Tab, whether to include applications from all workspaces or only the current workspace.
New Connections App
Connections is GNOME’s new remote desktop client. It 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.
Cellular Settings Panel
GNOME 41 introduces a Cellular section in Settings. This section is displayed if the system detects a compatible cellular modem. The Network Mode, Data Roaming and other options related to cellular connectivity can be configured here.
GNOME is continually working to improve performance, responsiveness and smoothness, and GNOME &gnomeversion; 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 display server, 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 consistenty.
- The transition when switching between workspaces is now more seamless, thanks to ensuring that there is a focused window on the workspaces that are being moved between.
- The GL renderer in GTK 4 has been rewritten, resulting in better overall performance and correctness.
- Finally, a major code cleanup has happened in Mutter, GNOME’s window manager, which will improve long-term maintainability and efficiency.
Music has been given a round of UI polish 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 also includes lots of other, smaller improvements, including:
Getting GNOME 41
GNOME’s software is Free Software: all our code is available for download and can be freely modified and redistributed according to the respective licenses. To install it, we recommend that you wait for the official packages provided by your vendor or distribution. Popular distributions will make GNOME 41 available very soon, and some already have development versions that include the new GNOME release.
The GNOME Project is an international community supported by a non-profit Foundation. We focus on user experience excellence and first-class internationalization and accessibility. GNOME is a free and open project: if you want to join us, you can.