GNOME 43 is available with a new Device Security Panel and continues the transition to GTK 4. It also brings improvements to the file manager

The GNOME Project Team released GNOME 43 on Wednesday. similar to those you’ve probably seen on Android devices or the latest Windows 11 and macOS systems. GNOME 43 also improves support for web applications and continues the transition to GTK 4.

After 6 months of development, GNOME 43 is finally available. In many ways, it’s a continuation of the path blazed by the previous release, and GNOME 43 brings improvements in everything from a new quick settings menu to an app Files redesigned, including the integration of hardware security. All of these changes are intended to make using GNOME easier. Here are the most notable changes.

Quick Settings

GNOME 43 comes with a redesigned system status menu, which allows you to quickly change the most used settings. Settings that previously required delving into menus can now be changed with the click of a button. Quick settings give you general access to network, Wi-Fi, performance mode, night light, airplane mode, and even dark mode. The new design also makes it easy to see the status of your settings at a glance.

In addition to making it easier to use existing settings, the new settings menu includes a few notable new features:

  • a UI style setting is included in the menu for the first time, to allow switching between light and dark styles. Previously, this parameter was only accessible from the application Parameters ;
  • a new screenshot button is included, which complements the built-in screenshot functionality that was introduced in GNOME 42;
  • when several sound devices are present, it is now possible to switch from one to the other from the menu, which avoids having to rummage through the application Parameters ;
  • when VPN is off, you can press the VPN button to connect to the last used network.

File manager improvements

GNOME 43 comes with an improved file manager in the form of Files (aka Nautilus). Refreshed using GTK 4 and libadwaita, Files has a responsive design that allows you to use all the features of the file manager when resizing windows to a reduced width. Other changes resulting from the transition to GTK4 include revamped file and folder properties windows, revamped menus, and a massively improved list view that adds file bookmarking.

You will also find additional integration with the utility Discssuch as the ability to access a “format” option when right-clicking on an external drive in the sidebar of Files ; and there’s a new Open With dialog that lets you choose which application is used to open different file types. Here is a non-exhaustive list of changes made to the Nautilus file manager:

  • file and folder properties have been given a modern new design, which gives a better overview of each item. They also include new features, such as a button to open the parent folder;
  • the application is now adaptive, which means that it can be used in reduced widths and that it automatically adjusts its layout when its windows are resized;
  • the menus have been reorganized, so that they are more logical and easier to use;
  • the search results, recent files and starred files lists have a new layout, with a better indication of the location of each file;
  • the new dialog box Open with makes it easy to control which applications should be used to open different types of files;
  • In list view, opening the context menu of the current directory is now much easier, thanks to the gutters on either side of the list.

Main application updates

Besides files, other core GNOME applications have also received welcome changes. App fans Calendar will be delighted to discover the new sidebar of the application. This always visible panel gives an overview of the month and lists upcoming events. Application resizing Calendar a reduced width hides the “main” canvas to display only the sidebar. A refreshed color scheme helps ensure that the application is as perfectly readable at a glance as possible.

The Maps app looks much nicer now that it uses GTK4 and libadwaita. The pinch-to-zoom gesture is more robust, a benefit stemming from the app’s move to a new map rendering library. Developers who launch the latest version of builder will notice a major UI overhaul including tabs, a new status bar, support for rearranging panels to create custom layouts, revamped and refined preferences, and a new command editor.

New security warnings

GNOME warns you if certain security features are disabled. Starting with GNOME 43, you will receive warnings on the splash and lock screens if secure boot is not enabled. This isn’t a bad implementation, because it warns you and doesn’t force you to take action. Additionally, a new “Device Security” screen in Settings shows you the status of various hardware-level security features. Here are a few :

  • safe start;
  • TPM;
  • Intel Boot Guard;
  • IOMMU protection;

Web apps

GNOME 43 provides the ability to install websites on the desktop as applications. This feature is a new and improved version of the web applications feature that was available in previous versions of GNOME. In Web, websites can be installed as applications, using the “Install site as web application” menu item. A selection of web applications are also included in Software : When browsing app categories, look for the “Picks from the Web” sections.

In both cases, when a web application is installed, an application launcher is added to the activities overview, just like for regular applications. Web applications also launch in their own dedicated windows. Where possible, offline functionality is supported, so that some web applications can be used even if you are not connected to the Internet. Web applications can be removed in the usual way in software, and Web also includes its own page for managing web applications.

Other Changes

GNOME 43 includes many other small improvements, including:

  • the virtual keyboard now displays suggestions as you type. It also displays the Ctrl, Alt, and Tab keys when typing in a terminal;
  • the web screen capture function is now easier to use: it is now in the context menu of the web page, or is triggered by the keyboard shortcut Shift+Ctrl+S ;
  • Also in Web, the style of web page interface elements has also been updated to match modern GNOME applications;
  • the app Characters now includes a much wider selection of emoji, including people with different skin colors, genders and hair styles, and more regional flags;
  • some of the animations in the activities overview have been optimized to be smoother;
  • the “about windows” of GNOME applications, which display details about each application, have been reorganized;
  • in software, application pages have an improved selector for source and format selection;
  • improved dark UI style used by GTK 4 applications, so bars and lists look more harmonious;
  • when connecting to GNOME with a remote desktop application (using RDP), it is now possible to receive sound from the host;
  • GNOME’s range of alert sounds has been updated and includes a new default alert sound.

Source: GNOME 43

And you?

What do you think of the changes introduced by GNOME 43?

See as well

Fedora Linux 37 beta release is available with GNOME 43 and Raspberry 4 support, and adds new editions for specific user needs

GNOME 42 is released, but its new design does not yet include the whole environment, this is already causing dissatisfaction

GNOME 40 released with GTK 4 toolkit support and major changes in Nautilus and workspaces

The article is in French

Tags: GNOME Device Security Panel continues transition GTK brings improvements file manager

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