While the winter holidays are approaching so far it hasn't led to any reduced effort in the GNOME camp. In fact, fresh off the €1M in funding from the Sovereign Tech Fund, there are several new exciting initiatives moving forward along with other ongoing enhancements driven by GNOME developers.
GNOME News Archives
1,230 GNOME open-source and Linux related news articles on Phoronix since 2006.
The GNOME GTK toolkit is introducing support for graphics offloading within the toolkit. This new GTK "GraphicsOffload" support is Wayland-only at this time and not working either for non-Linux platforms.
As part of the effort to make GNOME Terminal and the VTE terminal emulator library render faster, the GNOME Terminal has been seeing more work lately in being ported over to using the GTK 4 toolkit. Additionally, the VTE terminal library has been working to overcome its long-standing 40 FPS rendering cap.
Ubuntu desktop developer Daniel Van Vugt has been working on enabling zero-copy support for discrete GPUs within GNOME's Mutter compositor to deliver faster performance. This appears to be working so far with the Nouveau open-source NVIDIA driver.
Back in September GNOME developer Christian Hergert noted how Linux terminal emulators have the potential of being much faster based on his experiments. While at the time he didn't plan to pursue it further, in the weeks since he's been making enhancements to GNOME's VTE code that is used by GNOME Console and other apps.
The GNOME Foundation has named a new Executive Director for overseeing the foundation responsible for this leading open-source desktop environment.
Daniel van Vugt of Canonical's desktop team for Ubuntu Linux has been on a spree recently tackling various GNOME bugs -- often performance issues -- while also continuing to work on the dynamic triple buffering support and other GNOME desktop enhancements. His latest discovery is around finding another performance bottleneck for multi-GPU setups.
A set of merge requests were opened that would effectively drop X.Org (X11) session support for the GNOME desktop and once that code is removed making it a Wayland-only desktop environment.
GNOME developer Christian Hergert recently demonstrated how Linux terminal emulators have the potential of running much faster. At the time it didn't sound like he would pursue the matter further but more recently he's begun working on folding some performance improvements into GNOME's VTE for a faster terminal experience.
A newly-opened merge request for GNOME's Mutter compositor adds hardware acceleration for the NVIDIA proprietary driver for secondary GPUs such as in the case of hybrid systems and other setups with multiple monitors whereby the NVIDIA GPU with proprietary driver is powering some of those outputs.
GNOME 45 released last week and while it has many interesting desktop improvements, a feature still not found upstream is the Canonical-led work on dynamic triple buffering for Mutter.
Prominent GNOME developer Christian Hergert announced he created a new terminal emulator that is twice as fast as the closest GPU-based renderer he's found yet so far on Linux, which was Alacritty. Unfortunately though he currently doesn't have any plans to develop this experimental speedy terminal emulator any further.
GNOME 45 is out as stable today as the latest six-month update to this open-source desktop environment that will be powering the likes of Ubuntu 23.10 and Fedora Workstation 39.
The GNOME 45 release candidate is now available for testing ahead of the desktop's stable release later this month.
The release candidates were tagged this morning of GNOME Shell and Mutter ahead of the "GNOME 45.rc" test release coming out within the next few days. With the release candidates are some last-minute changes worth mentioning.
In addition to GNOME's Sysprof integrating CPU scheduler data this week for GNOME 45, this system-wide profiling tool has also added support for FlameGraphs.
GNOME's Sysprof is a wonderful system-wide profiling tool for helping developers analyze bottlenecks and debug other challenging issues. This system profiler has covered both kernel and user-space but to date has not provided any insight around the CPU scheduler behavior and thus developers have had to resort to other tooling there. But for the GNOME 45 release, Sysprof has integrated CPU scheduler details.
The GNOME 45 Beta is out today as the latest development milestone ahead of its stable debut in September.
The GNOME 45 Beta release is imminent and this morning the "45.beta" milestones were tagged for the GNOME Shell and Mutter components.
Recently merged to GNOME's Mutter compositor development code is implementing a dedicated kernel mode-setting (KMS) thread and allows for pointer motions to bypass the main thread during cursor sprite movements. Ultimately this effort is around lower-latency cursor movements.
Tagged on Saturday was GTK 4.12 as the newest version of this open-source toolkit.
GNOME 46 or later will likely be seeing work to overhaul the default window management behavior of the desktop.
The GTK toolkit and GLib support for Apple's macOS may be taking a back-seat to other platforms moving forward and would fall into a "best effort" category.
It's already time for the first alpha release of the in-development GNOME 45 desktop.
Merged this week into the GNOME Mutter compositor codebase is what should be a beneficial optimization for those enjoying Linux gaming under the GNOME Wayland session.
It's been one month already since the debut of GNOME 44 and out today is the first point release.
Following this week's Qt 6.5 LTS and Slint 1.0 Rust toolkit, debuting today is GTK 4.11.1 as the first development release of the new toolkit series in leading up to GTK 4.12.
While WebKitGTK already provides accelerated compositing support, there are different code paths depending upon whether Wayland or X11 are used and various other complexities involved as well as differences between using the GTK3 and GTK4 toolkits. WebKitGTK developers have been working to instead shift their multiple different code paths toward one route by way of DMA-BUF.
GNOME 44 is now officially out as the latest half-year update to this widely-used open-source desktop.
The GNOME 44 release candidate was officially declared today as the last test version ahead of formally releasing the GNOME 44 desktop later this month.
The GNOME Shell and Mutter release candidates ahead of this month's GNOME 44 desktop update are now available for testing.
While GNOME 3.32 saw initial work on fractional scaling support for the GNOME Shell and Mutter compositor, the upcoming GNOME 44 release is bringing support for Wayland's fractional_scale_v1 protocol.
Yesterday saw GNOME Shell and Mutter drop the last of their GTK3 dependence while today there is another interesting change to mention on the Mutter compositor side... An experimental option for enabling some HDR modes with supported high dynamic range displays.
The GNOME Shell and the Mutter compositor have completed their migration off GTK3.
The Clutter OpenGL "Cogl" code within the GNOME Mutter compositor has removed legacy OpenGL driver support ahead of next month's GNOME 44 release.
For the past few years Ubuntu developer Daniel van Vugt at Canonical has been working on dynamic triple buffering support for the GNOME desktop so that it will switch from double to triple buffering when the GPU is running behind in order to ultimately ramp up the GPU clock speeds / performance state in order to get back to delivering a fluid desktop experience. These triple buffering patches still haven't been upstreamed as of the GNOME 44 release due out next month, but the patches continue to be carried within Debian and Ubuntu among other distributions. An updated version of the code is now on the way to Debian and for April's Ubuntu 23.04 release.
It's GNOME 44 Beta week and today marked the tagging of the beta updates for the GNOME Shell and Mutter.
A ten month old merge request to GNOME's Mutter for adding implicit grabbing to the Clutter code was finally merged last week.
A new GTK blog post summarized a recent meet-up of GTK core developers for better sorting out active GTK4 work as well as some planning toward GTK5.
A pending change to the GNOME Shell will make it easier to monitor running background applications that otherwise are not visually presented currently on the desktop.
For over two years Canonical has been working on dynamic triple buffering for the GNOME desktop with the Mutter compositor. This triple-buffering-when-needed can dramatically boost the desktop performance especially in cases like Intel integrated graphics and Raspberry Pi boards. The triple buffering work hasn't been upstreamed yet but the hope is that it may finally be ready for upstream inclusion with GNOME 44.
GNOME's Mutter now allows disabling XWayland support at build-time if so desired. This is part of the broader GNOME effort for making X11 support optional and ultimately allowing for a modern Wayland-only environment if so desired and without carrying legacy X11 cruft.
Earlier this year AMD-Xilinx announced a Linux-powered robotics starter kit making use of Xilinx's Kria KR26 SOM featuring a Zynq Ultrascale+ with four Cortex-A53 cores and Mali graphics. While robotics focused, there is a DisplayPort output and over the summer Canonical has been working to get this board playing nicely with a Wayland-powered GNOME desktop.
GNOME 43 is out today as the newest version of this popular open-source desktop environment used by Fedora Workstation, Ubuntu, and many other Linux distributions.
The release candidates are out today for the GNOME Shell and Mutter updates ahead of this month's GNOME 43 desktop debut.
Earlier this summer was the patch series for GNOME's Mutter to make use of the Linux DRM/KMS "max BPC" property for the drivers exposing the maximum bits per color supported. That code has now been merged in time for next month's GNOME 43 release and in turn will help deal with some scenarios where users may encounter screen flickering, brief blackouts, and other problems related to available monitor bandwidth.
For the past decade going back to the early GTK3 days there has been the "Broadway" back-end that allows for GTK interfaces to be rendered within HTML5 web browsers. Aside from demos and other toys, there hasn't been too much widespread use reported with this GTK HTML5 back-end and some distributions like Ubuntu and Debian haven't been shipping the Broadway support with the newer GTK4. However, that is changing now for Debian and with this autumn's release of Ubuntu 22.10.
The beta of GNOME 43 is now available for testing ahead of the stable release next month.
GNOME's Shell and Mutter components have released their beta versions for this GNOME 43 milestone. Particularly on the Mutter side are some very exciting changes from improvements to direct scan-out, high resolution scroll wheel support being completed and merged, various Wayland improvements, and more performance optimizations.
Going back years has been an effort to get 30-bit deep color support on the GNOME desktop under Wayland. Ubuntu and others have been interested in getting 30-bit color support working nicely for the Linux desktop, but while that milestone hasn't yet been crossed, thankfully there is some renewed work in that direction.
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