What’s new with Linux this month? We have a lot of news to talk about, including some big releases from Ubuntu, Windows 11 vs. Linux performance benchmarking, some great news for gaming in Linux, and a cool Linux-based Raspberry Pi project. Read on for more!
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Ubuntu 21.10 (Impish Indri released)
Ubuntu 21.10 (Impish Indri) has been released. The latest version of Ubuntu brings exciting new software, such as Gnome Version 40 and the 5.13 based kernel. It also features the latest Firefox, version 93, as a snap.
There are a few small visual differences in Gnome 40, such as the dock being moved to the bottom of the screen and rounded corners on windows.
There’s also an activities overview that shows your workspaces organized horizontally. Multiple workspaces have been around for decades, but Canonical is putting a new twist on it. Because they’re horizontal and you can bring them with a hotkey, this enables you to switch between workspaces easily. This is helpful for software developers, for instance, who keep debug screens up while the IDE is on the other screen. It can also be helpful for media production, when you need to organize your workspaces to match your process.
Wayland is the default display server in Ubuntu, and it has some changes too. It now has advanced support for NVIDIA users, which means more performance and benefits folks gaming on Linux.
For those who are putting Ubuntu on a Raspberry Pi, there’s some additional community support, and Ubuntu Impish Indri will now support the Sense Hat, which is a popular device used for the development of IoT. It supports a number of sensors and has an LED matrix.
5 Linux distros show sizable lead over Windows 11
Windows 11 is out and considered stable. Phoronix ran some tests to see how it stacks up against a few Linux distributions. And who wins when it comes to performance in Windows 11 vs Linux?
As it turns out, five Linux distributions outperformed Windows 11 by a good margin.
They ran tests and found Ubuntu 21.10 — which we just mentioned — along with Ubuntu 20.04.3, Arch Linux, Fedora, and Clear Linux, all outperformed Linux 11 on their tests. Clear Linux, which is a distribution built by Intel with performance in mind, made the biggest gains against Windows 11.
These gains are focused around the CPU, GPU, and memory.
This kind of performance matters when you’re gaming in Linux, but it’s even more important when doing work on your machine — things like compiling, rendering video, or working with AI/ML projects. This extra performance could mean you can save valuable time.
Now when Phoronix ran these same tests with Windows 10, the gap was not as wide. Meaning you could use Windows or Linux without much difference. But against Windows 11, it shows using Linux will be a notable change.
With this increased performance, we could see more people migrating to Linux for tasks that require better CPU and memory speed.
It’s worth noting that Windows 11 is brand new, so we can expect they’ll improve performance and narrow the gap. If they don’t, we may continue to see more migration to the Linux Desktop.
Redcore Linux release
Redcore Linux is a distribution you probably haven’t heard of. The group released version 2102 Polaris, and it’s mostly a bugfix release but shows great potential.
Why? Because Redcore Linux is based on Gentoo, which focuses on performance and low resource usage. However, Gentoo usually has to be compiled by hand and requires a lot of configuration. Redcore does much of that for you. It’s a rolling release system like Gentoo.
What this means is you get the latest version of software packages continuously. You don’t wait six months to a year for a new version of the operating system. This is a trade-off: if you want to use the newest versions of software packages, it can sacrifice stability.
KDE Plasma 5.24 Desktop Environment to Introduce Support for Fingerprint Readers
KDE, one of the most popular desktop environments for Linux, has recently released a fingerprint authentication feature. This means users can use fingerprint authentication on their machines and enroll and de-enroll fingerprints for access. This is great news for folks wanting to secure their Linux machines even further.
You can download Ubuntu Linux 22.04 LTS (Jammy Jellyfish) daily builds right now
We talked about Ubuntu 21.02 Impish Indri release, which is Canonical’s stable release of Ubuntu. You can now download the next version, which is in beta. Ubuntu 22.04, Jammy Jellyfish, is now available for download.
If you’d like to test out the bleeding edge version of Ubuntu set to be released next year, check it out. It will feature Gnome 42, which takes some hints from Elementary OS. There’s a system-wide dark style preference and day and night scheduling options. There are new power profiles available to help save battery on laptops. It has a new multitasking panel with hot corners to help you navigate your desktop in a fast, productive manner.
NVIDIA 495.44 stable drive is out for Linux, adds GBM API support
The NVIDIA 495.44 stable driver is out for Linux. This is great news for gamers and folks using the GPU for things like video rendering, AI, and ML.
You can squeeze out better performance and additional features from your hardware. It has a better Wayland experience, which will be smoother, and they’ve also fixed some X server bugs.
The driver now works with GBM API, which allows developers to take advantage of the hardware for smoother experiences there as well.
9 Raspberry Pis power this entire office
The Raspberry Pi is a low-cost way to make your office a smart office, and Monterail did just that.
They built a network with Raspberry Pis to control lighting, meeting room occupancy, security for the office doors, and more. They even have color-changing LED lamps in the kitchen — all controlled by a Raspberry Pis running Linux. Exciting!
May your sources remain open and your code compile. Keep being awesome, cloud gurus!