Canonical recently released their newest version of Ubuntu distribution called Lunar Lobster on the 20th of April. Ubuntu 23.04 includes a lot of brand-new features and improvements. Flutter-based clean system installer, Gnome 44 Desktop Environment and of course, a set of new wallpapers are a few of them. As an interim release, Ubuntu 23.04 will get support for 9 months from its release date until January 2024. So let’s see what’s new and the improvements of Ubuntu 23.04.
Flutter-Based System Installer
Flutter is an open source SDK developed and maintained by Google and it is well known for its cross-platform and pleasing UI capabilities. Now, the very first thing that you will be able to notice in Ubuntu 23.04 is the all-new system installer which is built with Flutter SDK. As you might guess, the new installation wizard is absolutely clean and it delivers a simple system installation experience than ever before. Additionally, it has a notably improved partition manager and a completely revamped informative slideshow.
GNOME 44 Desktop Environment
Ubuntu 23.04 ships with the latest stable release of GNOME 44 open-source desktop environment. This time GNOME 44 introduces a lot of brand-new features in GNOME 44, including a new background apps section, a new Bluetooth sub-menu and an updated version of Nautilus.
The Quick Settings Menu
The all-new Quick Settings menu allows you to control system settings easily like toggling Wifi, Bluetooth, Power Mode, Night Light, Dark Mode and Airplane Mode. Also, it gives you the option to select submenu items like connecting to a particular Wifi network or Bluetooth device or selecting a power mode by clicking the arrow buttons next to the toggle buttons.
Additionally, now you can quickly mute the speakers by clicking the speaker icon in the Quick Settings menu. If you click it again, it will unmute and restore the volume level where it was before.
Furthermore, the Quick Settings menu now shows background applications like media players, chat apps, torrent clients and many others. So now you can quickly hide and send an app to the background or close them. If your media player supports this feature, you can even conveniently play/pause the media player right from the Quick Settings menu.
Notification Count Badges
The Ubuntu Dock now displays a count badge along with the app icon in the Ubunu Dock for unread notifications of currently opened applications.
System Settings Updates
- Built-in WireGuard support now available in the VPN network settings
- WiFi network sharing capability with QR code
- Completely redesigned and simplified mouse and touchpad settings with mouse acceleration toggle
Updated Nautilus File Manager
Nautilus File Manager also comes with a more improved and simplified UI.
In Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, we could not access the right-click context menu which has the option to create new folders due to the tight design of the file list in Nautilus expandable folders mode.
However, now we can see it is nicely redesigned in Ubuntu 23.04.
At the moment of writing this article, one issue we noticed is a bug in Nautilus in the expandable folders mode. It does not happen always, however, sometimes, Nautilus does not update its UI properly when moving and overwriting files. For example, when we overwrite files, there should not be duplicate file names. But in Ubuntu 23.04, sometimes it does not update the UI properly and displays duplicate file names in the list. However, the file operations will be done correctly regardless of the UI issue.
Hopefully, the developers will fix this issue soon. Other than that, everything is stable.
- Kernel 6.2.0-20-generic
- Bash 5.2.15
- Python 3.11.2
- Nautilus (Files) 44.0
- File Roller 43.0
- Firefox 112.0.1
- Totem (Videos) 43.0
- Thunderbird 102.10.0
- Shotwell 0.30.18 “Celle”
Ubuntu 23.04 Product Tour
Ubuntu 23.04 introduces new features and improvements which improve the overall UI and UX of the OS. Especially the notable improvements in the Quick Settings menu, System Settings and Nautilus.
However, it is difficult to introduce Ubuntu 23.04 as a complete revamp of Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. Ubuntu 23.04 is rather a more polished version of Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. So, if you are using Ubuntu 22.10, of course, you should consider this update. But if you are using Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, it might be worth waiting.