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Xubuntu 21.10 Released

Xubuntu 21.10 Released

Xubuntu 21.10 "Impish Indri" was released on October 14, 2021. Check out the release announcement and release notes. I've expanded on both below.

New Features

GNOME Disk Usage Analyzer

GNOME Disk Usage Analyzer (baobab) scans folders, devices, and remote locations to provide an in-depth report on disk usage. It can quickly identify large files and folders wasting disk space and enable users to act on them. A tree-like and graphical representation are used to display disk usage.

Xubuntu 21.10 Released
Disk Usage Analyzer makes it much easier to recover lost disk space.

GNOME Disks

GNOME Disks provides an easy way to inspect, format, partition, and configure disks. You can view SMART data, manage devices, benchmark physical disks, and image flash drives using GNOME Disks. Another benefit is that it can mount partitions on-demand or automatically.

Xubuntu 21.10 Released
GNOME Disks is an all-in-one solution for managing physical disks and partitions.

Rhythmbox

Rhythmbox is a music-playing application. It features a media library, podcast feeds, and live internet radio stations. It integrates with the Xfce PulseAudio Plugin in Xubuntu, controlling playback and granting easy access to recent playlists. Xubuntu ships with the Alternative Toolbar plugin enabled, making the application layout fit in with the rest of the desktop. Additionally, the Music key on multimedia keyboards will now launch Rhythmbox instead of Parole.

Super Key Support

The Super (or Windows) key will now reveal the application menu, similar to Windows and other desktop environments. This is possible thanks to the inclusion of xcape. xcape is used to configure modifier keys to act as other keys when pressed. For Xubuntu, the left Super key is now mapped to trigger the Ctrl+Escape key combination used for the Whisker Menu. For a peek into the technical reason for this workaround, please see the upstream Xfce bug.

The Super key now works exactly as you'd expect.

PipeWire

PipeWire is now included in Xubuntu and the other flavors. PipeWire is a project that improves audio and video handling in Linux. It is used alongside PulseAudio to significantly improve hardware support, particularly for Bluetooth audio devices. For regular usage, PipeWire quietly works in the background. Audio devices are still controlled through the Xfce PulseAudio Plugin and PulseAudio Volume Control (pavucontrol).

Pidgin Removal

Pidgin, “the universal chat client,” is no longer included in Xubuntu. Due to an increasing number of chat services moving to proprietary and restricted protocols, the overall usefulness of Pidgin has diminished significantly over the years. However, if you still use Pidgin, it can be installed from the repository.

Late Night Linux Extra episode 32 featured Gary Kramlich, the lead Pidgin maintainer. In this episode, Gary explained that while many of these services are no longer available within Pidgin by default, existing plugins enable support for those services. Unfortunately, many plugins change rapidly, making it impossible to keep them packaged and up-to-date in Ubuntu.

UX Updates

In continuing our keyboard shortcut clean-up, the long-obsoleted Super+{1,2,3,4} shortcuts were removed. These shortcuts go way back to when Xubuntu had a two-panel layout and launched the first four pinned applications. For a complete list of keyboard shortcuts, click here.

We also made a minor change to our Thunar defaults, updating the title bar to always display the full path of the current directory. This should make navigating and managing the filesystem easier with multiple open windows.

Xubuntu 21.10 Released
Go layers deep in your filesystem and never forget where you are with the full path displayed in Thunar at all times.

About the Xubuntu Versions

Xubuntu has three installable versions. Using the main ISO (2.0G), you can pick from the Normal or Minimal installation option, whereas Xubuntu Core (1.0G) will result in a much smaller installation size. Normal includes everything you need to be productive and have fun with Xubuntu. Meanwhile, Minimal and Core are designed to provide the bare essentials, enabling you to tailor Xubuntu to your needs.

Xubuntu 21.10 Released
When installing from the main ISO, you have an option to perform a "Normal" or "Minimal" installation.

Core and Minimal seem to have the same purpose, but Core has a few advantages. For one, the download size is much smaller and more accessible for those with limited connectivity options. Second, the install size is quite a bit smaller due to how the different versions work. Core installs only the minimal set of packages. Minimal first installs the Normal Xubuntu version and then removes the excess packages. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to reliably identify and remove all of the extra packages, so you end up with another 1.0G of bloat.

Xubuntu 21.10 Released
Save nearly 2.0G of disk space by opting for the Xubuntu Core version.

You can learn more about Xubuntu Core here or view the spreadsheet I put together with the package and memory differences here.

Wrapping Up

Xubuntu 21.10 features the work of numerous contributors from the Xfce, GNOME, MATE, Ubuntu, and Debian communities. If you'd like to contribute, check out the following links:

Next up, we have the 22.04 "Jammy Jellyfish" LTS cycle. The next six months will be focused primarily on bug fixes and other improvements, building a solid LTS foundation for the next three years. As it is an LTS, we'll be running a Wallpaper Contest again, so keep an eye on the Xubuntu website and Twitter for updates.

xfce4-terminal 0.9.0 released

This is a development release.

  • Replace the deprecated GtkActionEntries with XfceGtkActionEntries (Issue #79)
  • Opening a dialog from a drop-down window closes the window (Issue #136)
  • Add Fill background image style (MR !23).
  • Improved options parsing (for both short and long forms)
  • Add a menu entry to send signals to the foreground process (Issue #59)
  • Fix keep window open preference being applied on restart.
  • Rework "–tab" and "–window" behavior (Issue #13)
  • Ignore unused modifiers for scroll wheel zooming
  • Add alternative shortcuts for zooming (Issue #126)
  • Expand scrolled window and make dialog size 70% of parent (!17)
  • Support libxfce4ui XfceTitledDialog new API

Unsafe Paste Dialog:

  • Update unsafe paste dialog text (Issue #73)
  • Fix paste button focus
  • Replace subtitle by infobar for Unsafe paste dialog
  • Fix the unsafe paste dialog to actually paste

Cleanup:

  • Update .gitignore, HACKING, AUTHORS, COPYRIGHTS
  • Update –preferences, –tab and –window documentation
  • Fix various typos
  • Fix compilation warnings
  • Remove unnecessary function call (!24)

Temporary changes (will be changed before the final release):

  • Add a "Do not warn me again" checkbox for the "Unsafe Paste" dialog (Issue #129)

Translation Updates: Albanian, Arabic, Armenian (Armenia), Basque, Belarusian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (China), Chinese (Taiwan), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Eastern Armenian, English (Australia), English (United Kingdom), Estonian, Finnish, French, Galician, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indonesian, Interlingue, Italian, Japanese, Kazakh, Korean, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian Bokmål, Occitan (post 1500), Polish, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazil), Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uyghur

xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin 2.6.1 released

  • Fix menu not toggling. (Issue #61)
  • Fix small icon in multi-row panels. (Issue #37)
  • Fix missing minimize and maximize buttons in settings dialog.
  • Replace deprecated code for grab check.
  • Translation updates: Greek, Slovak, Spanish.

ristretto 0.12.0 released

  • Dependency Changes:
    • libxfce4ui >= 4.16.0
    • libxfce4util >= 4.16.0
  • New Features:
    • Allow to choose the default scale (!29)
    • Keep the scale in memory for each loaded image (#7, #17, !28)
    • Toggle fullscreen mode by double clicking on the image
  • Performance Improvement:
    • Optimize directory loading (#20, #22, #32, #37, !31)
    • Optimize image viewer redraw: Disable overlay scrolling (#64)
    • Optimize image viewer redraw: Reuse source surface (#64, !26)
    • Avoid using Cairo Xlib backend to create surfaces (#60, #61, #62, !25)
    • Optimize image viewer redraw: Animation (#64)
    • Optimize image viewer redraw: Background color (#64)
    • Optimize image viewer redraw: Clock (#64)
    • Optimize image viewer redraw: Selection box (#64)
    • Don't redraw the main window when it loses focus (#64)
    • Remove the shadow of the toolbar buttons (#51, #64)
  • Appearance Changes:
    • Hide thumbnail scrollbar when unused (!24)
    • Use the same background for the image and the thumbnails (#36, !23)
    • Drop preferences-desktop-default-applications icon
  • Code Refactoring:
    • Flatpak build (!32)
    • Refactoring: Use only one file filter for the app
    • Refactoring: Icon bar adjustments
    • Cleanup: icon_bar.c
    • Cleanup: Pass orientation directly from file to viewer
    • Code refactoring: Image viewer adjustments, scale and drawing (!27)
    • Use integers for the image rendering rectangle
    • Code cleanup: Build sanitation, obsolete code removal, spacing, normalization (!22)
    • Transfer contents from dispose() to finalize()
    • Add debugging macros
  • Bug Fixes:
    • Protect asynchronous jobs from an application exit
    • Fix position of the active item in the icon bar when vertical (#34)
    • Take into account the device scale (#47, !30)
    • Properly load images via drag and drop (#67)
    • Delay GdkPixbufLoader "closed" signal handler
    • Use the same scale factor to zoom via action and scrolling
    • Fix a lack of centering when zooming via the menu action
    • Fix some memory leak (several commits of this kind)
    • Fix file creation monitoring
    • Try to display the image on GDK_PIXBUF_ERROR_CORRUPT_IMAGE (#39)
    • Always set adjustment upper bounds greater than page sizes (#35)
    • Scaling/zoom corrections (#30, !8)
    • Fix animated GIF display
    • Automate and sanitize memory management of sources (#65)
    • Fix rstto_icon_bar_rows_reordered() (#48)
    • Chain up to parent in dispose() and finalize()
  • Translation Updates: Albanian, Arabic, Armenian (Armenia), Basque, Belarusian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (China), Chinese (Taiwan), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Eastern Armenian, English (Australia), English (United Kingdom), Estonian, Finnish, French, Galician, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indonesian, Interlingue, Italian, Japanese, Kazakh, Korean, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian Bokmål, Occitan (post 1500), Polish, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazil), Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uyghur

xfce4-cpugraph-plugin 1.2.5 released

  • Lower peak memory consumption in case of a long CPU load history
  • Fix OpenBSD codepath (issue #28)
  • Initially hide run-in-terminal checkbox if the command is empty (#23)
  • Translation Updates: Albanian, Arabic, Armenian (Armenia), Basque, Belarusian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (China), Chinese (Taiwan), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Eastern Armenian, English (Australia), English (United Kingdom), Estonian, Finnish, French, Galician, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indonesian, Interlingue, Italian, Japanese, Kazakh, Korean, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian Bokmål, Occitan (post 1500), Polish, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uyghur

Xubuntu Development Update September 2021

Funding the Xubuntu Development Server

Xubuntu Development Update September 2021

Thanks to the Ubuntu Community Fund, the Xubuntu web server has been funded for another two years. Elizabeth announced the news on Twitter early in September. If you want to sponsor Xubuntu and the other flavors, the community fund is the way to go. Other options are available on the Xubuntu website.

Wallpaper Update

On September 30, Pasi uploaded the new wallpaper for Xubuntu 21.10. This cycle's wallpaper features overlapping teal geometric shapes, continuing the tradition of calm and clean backdrops. The updated xubuntu-artwork package has been submitted and is currently awaiting acceptance into the 21.10 archive.

Xubuntu Development Update September 2021
Featuring teal geometric shapes, the Xubuntu 21.10 wallpaper gives off a relaxing vibe.

Package Updates

In September, the Xubuntu packageset saw only a few updates to Xfce and Xubuntu components.

Xubuntu Development Update September 2021
Greybird-dark was updated with a much smoother gradient for non-CSD window titlebars, better aligning with the CSD version.

In other package-related (semi-Xubuntu-related) news, Ayatana indicators have replaced the original libappindicator and libindicator in Ubuntu, with the originals demoted from main to universe. libappindicator and libindicator have been removed entirely from Debian.

Xfce 4.17 PPA Update

Xfce 4.18 is still very early in its development, with Xfce 4.17 as its development series. Our Debian package manager, Unit 193, has started publishing Xfce 4.17 builds to the Xubuntu QA Experimental PPA for testing and development. There's not much to see here yet, but if you're curious (and don't mind the occasional breakage), check it out! If you prefer not to install bleeding-edge packages on your system, you can also use the XFCE Test docker image to try out the latest changes.

Xubuntu Development Update September 2021
Xfce 4.17 packages are now available for 21.10 (featured), 21.04, and 20.04.

Upcoming Dates

If you're following along with the Release Schedule, you know that Xubuntu 21.10 "Impish Indri" is just around the corner! The BETA release notes are up on the Xubuntu Wiki. More than ever, please take the time to test Xubuntu to help us catch some last-minute bugs.

Thanks for reading! Join the conversation with @Xubuntu on Twitter, the Xubuntu Users group on Facebook, or IRC!

xfdashboard 0.9.5 released

xfdashboard-0.9.5 "Have beat the daemon" was released on 2021-10-02.

This is a development release.

  • Fixed signal definition of "can-suspend" at XfdashboardCore which prevented it to return the correct value if suspend is supported. It always returned FALSE even if xfdashboard is run in daemon mode and stopped to run background and activating some plugin. (GH#197)
  • Updated translations: be, bg, ca, da, de, el, es, et, eu, fr, gl, he, id, it, ja, ko, lt, nb, nl, pl, pt, pt_BR, ru, sl, sq, sr, sv, tr, zh_CN

xfce4-cpugraph-plugin 1.2.4 released

Besides the bug fixes and feature updates listed below, this release migrates the source code from C to C++ in order to increase type-safety, to use reference counting and containers for semi-automatic memory management where possible, and to slightly improve source code readability.

  • Update README
  • New icons
  • Lower the number of false positives in sub-optimal SMT scheduling
  • Account for irregular core IDs in CPU topology (issue #25)
  • Increase type-safety of the return types of callback functions
  • Fix CPU topology initialization memory leak
  • Replace author nicknames with real names
  • Update and sort the list of authors
  • Use C++ λ-functions for widget signal handlers
  • Slightly improved CPU count detection in case some CPUs are offline
  • Bump requirements to version 4.14
  • Enable close button translations (issue #24)
  • Fix compiler warnings on FreeBSD and SUN
  • Bump properties dialog to Xfce 4.14 API
  • Avoid FreeBSD "string.h" include file issue
  • Translation Updates: Albanian, Arabic, Armenian (Armenia), Basque, Belarusian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (China), Chinese (Taiwan), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Eastern Armenian, English (Australia), English (United Kingdom), Estonian, Finnish, French, Galician, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indonesian, Interlingue, Italian, Japanese, Kazakh, Korean, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian Bokmål, Occitan (post 1500), Polish, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uyghur

exo 4.17.1 released

[Please note that this is a development release.]

Providing another exo dev-release majorly to give proper trusted flag-support for testers

Changelog:

  • Add typecheck to prevent Gtk-CRITICAL (Issue #63)
  • Initialize modifier at the time of declaration
  • Remove redundant code
  • Fix AC_LANG_SOURCE macro
  • Fix G_UNLIKELY check
  • Fix memory leak
  • exo_strdup_strftime: Support additional encoding (Issue #66)
  • exo-die: Add trusted flag support

Translation Updates: Catalan, Galician, Indonesian, Kazakh, Spanish

MenuLibre 2.2.3 Released

What's New?

New Features

  • Added diagnostics for failed menu loading
  • Added support for GNOME-specific categories (#56)
  • Added support for PrefersNonDefaultGPU (#50)
  • Added support for unprefixed applications.menu (#67)
  • Added support for X-GNOME-UsesNotifications (#79)
  • Added support for XFCE-specific categories (#54)
  • Enabled opening a root editor for root-owned files with pkexec (#62)
  • Enabled searching for Exec key and desktop entry (#52)

General

  • Added AppData file (#61)
  • Documented intltool build requirement (#59)
  • Switched to the MenuLibre Wiki for key descriptions (#48)

Bug Fixes

  • Added valid types to validator, reducing false positives (#66)
  • Fixed builds with newer versions of GTK (#77)
  • Fixed history state when editing Name and Comment (#57)
  • Fixed running with newer versions of GTK (#82)
  • Fixed selection leaving screen while moving items (#25)
  • Fixed typo in desktop file processing error
  • Fixed msgfmt errors

Updated Translations

MenuLibre 2.2.3 Released

Arabic, Catalan, Chinese (China), Danish, Dutch, English (United Kingdom), French, German, Japanese, Lithuanian, Malay, Malay (Arabic), Polish, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, Ukrainian

Deep Dive Into New Features

Newly Added Keys

PrefersNonDefaultGPU was added to the FreeDesktop.org Desktop Entry Specification in version 1.4. It's a hint for the desktop environment to use a non-discrete, more powerful GPU, if it is available. Support for this key was recently added to Xubuntu and elementary, and is making it's way to other desktop environments as well.

X-GNOME-UsesNotifications is used by GNOME, elementary, and other GTK desktops (possibly others as well) to inform the environment that an app can send notifications. This enables management of those notifications through a single interface. This feature is seen in GNOME and elementary.

Improving Cross-Platform Support

Support for GNOME-specific and Xfce-specific application categories has been added. When running in a supported desktop environment, these categories are now available and should enable a tighter integration and more advanced menu management features.

Un-prefixed applications.menu files, as seen in Manjaro KDE, are now supported. Typically, a desktop environment will use prefixed versions of the applications menu to have separate menu options for different desktop environments. If a prefixed version of the menu cannot be found, the un-prefixed version will be used instead.

If you're using a desktop environment or distribution that is still unsupported, the new diagnostics dialog will help report the issue and get it resolved sooner. Everything I need to add support is included in the dialog, so just copy and paste or take a screenshot and report a bug on GitHub.

MenuLibre 2.2.3 Released
When MenuLibre fails to load your menu, you are now given more details about the failure.

Find and Edit Faster

MenuLibre's search entry can now search using the Exec key and .desktop filename. This is in addition to the Name and Comment keys that were previously used. It should now be significantly easier to track down a long-lost launcher.

Menu validation received some much needed improvements. Valid types such as Link, Directory, and Service are no longer flagged for review. Invalid files that are owned by root can now be instantly edited with a root editor. pkexec is used to launch the editor will superuser permissions to make any needed adjustments.

Downloads

Source tarball (md5, sig)