It's Been Three Years Since "GNOME 4.0" Was Proposed

Written by Michael Larabel in GNOME on 28 July 2015 at 07:00 PM EDT. 58 Comments
Three years ago this week was GUADEC 2012 where GNOME 4.0 was proposed along with GNOME OS. While GNOME 4.0 was supposed to materialize in 2014, that obviously didn't happen, but at least GNOME 3.x has matured a lot and garnered much better support than it had years ago.

GNOME on Fedora 22.

This day in 2012 was when writing about the GUADEC session concerning a proposal for GNOME 4.0 in 2014 along with having a "GNOME OS" to also premiere in 2014. The proposal for GNOME 4.0 was to have it be an evolutionary upgrade over GNOME 3 with the GNOME Shell and Core apps to ne "mature and polished" while focusing heavily on the touch-enabled mobile experience. Another talked about GNOME 4.0 item was having a proper "GNOME SDK" for easing application development.

GNOME on Fedora 16.

The boldest parts of these 2012 plans for "a bright future for GNOME" involved coming up with a Linux-based GNOME OS. As part of this was a goal to have 20% of the worldwide population using GNOME by 2010, based on the failed GNOME 10x10 plan for having a 10% global market-share by 2010.

GNOME on Fedora 15

You can read more about the 2012 information (and the slides) in GNOME 4.0, GNOME OS Coming In 2014 & Other Crazy Plans. There hasn't been much talk about "GNOME 4.0" since then and the most we've heard in recent years have been goals for the GTK+ 4 tool-kit with sporting a scene graph API and other big improvements.

GNOME 2 on Fedora 13.

While GNOME 4.0 probably won't be here for a while, at least GNOME 3.x is continuing to make strides in application improvements, sandboxing tech, GNOME on Wayland is now in rather good shape, etc. In fact, earlier this year I switched back to using GNOME on Fedora rather than Unity/Ubuntu with being happy over the progress made on GNOME 3.x and restoring my level of confidence in it since the GNOME 2 days.

What's your hopes for GNOME 4.0 when it does materialize? Share with us your thoughts by commenting on this article in our forums.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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