Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Tuesday, March 26, 2019 at 20:44

(GNOME 3.32 "Taipei" on Ubuntu 19.04 development version)

Although the 19.04 is still not officially released this March, but even today we can download the development version and run it (LiveCD) on our computer. We find that it includes the 3.32, the latest version of GNOME desktop environment. I want to highlight some interesting aspects of it on Ubuntu as we saw it on Fedora Rawhide few days ago. I suggest you to download the 19.04 daily-live ISO and quickly test it, I believe you can feel the performance improvements especially how quick it's now to open the start menu and it's now even quicker to search files on Nautilus. Here we go. Happy testing!
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1. Basic looks

This is the desktop with original wallpaper of Ubuntu 19.04. You can start paying attention to the left vertical panel, icons on desktop area, and of course the new wallpaper. By the way, 19.04's codename is Disco Dingo.

2. Compared to vanilla GNOME

Default GNOME 3.32 as we saw on Fedora Rawhide is not equipped with vertical panel on left. And, vanilla decoration theme is grey (Adwaita theme) not black (Ubuntu's Yaru theme). If you look closer, control buttons are also different, default one shows only close button, while 19.04's one shows fully close-maximize-minimize.

(Vanilla GNOME desktop on Fedora)

(Canonical-modified GNOME on Ubuntu 19.04 Beta)

3. Start menu

Start menu animation is now smoother and quicker. I can say I don't feel same slowness like before compared to 3.30 and 3.28 as my laptop now renders it better. Try it and confirm this yourself.

(Start menu on GNOME 3.32 on Ubuntu 19.04)

Hot corner (top-left) is disabled by default on GNOME on 19.04 but it's actually enabled on the vanilla one. If you push mouse cursor to that corner, on the 19.04 nothing happens, but on Fedora Rawhide it opens desktop overview (same as pressing Super key).

(Hot corner on 3.32 on the Rawhide while pushing mouse cursor to it)

(No hot corner on 3.32 on the 19.04, you can only click that 'Activities' button) 

4. Icons on desktop

Fortunately, GNOME 3.32 on the 19.04 is already paired with Desktop Icons extension (by Carlos Soriano). This way, we can put our favorite apps, documents, folders on desktop once again (just like KDE, Windows, macOS, and Android). However, vanilla GNOME today (i.e. on Fedora Rawhide) does not allow you to put icons on desktop.

(Default icons on desktop)

5. Nautilus

Once again, Nautilus changed, there is no toolbar anymore. Now all buttons are placed on title bar ("header bar" in GNOME terminology) right on left side of control buttons. When you run Nautilus, you will not find "Preferences" button anymore on desktop top panel as it's also moved into hamburger button on title bar. So, now, it's one button (Search) plus one toggle (Thumbnail/List) plus one pull down menu (Zoom, Sort by, Reload) plus one hamburger button (New Tab, Copy/Cut/Paste, Preferences).

(Nautilus 3.32 on Ubuntu 19.04 Beta)

(Nautilus 3.32: sorting button's menu)

(Hamburger button's menu)

File search is now faster than before. Try it. The search bar is also repositioned now on the title bar rather than toolbar below it.

(Nautilus 3.32 performing search (Ctrl+F) with its search options opened)

And, personally I didn't know 'right-click to format' feature for Disk Drive was available in Nautilus File Manager since a long time ago. See Nautilus changelog for version 3.7.90. By this, of course we now can easily format our USB Flash Drive right from our beloved file manager by a click. I can imagine how interesting to work (at home and office) with Ubuntu 19.04 GNOME 3.32 next time.

(Right-click a mounted USB Drive and select format to reformat it)

(Disk formatting dialog)

6. LibreOffice

Edited: added 27 March 2019

Of course LibreOffice is not a part of GNOME. But LibreOffice looks good on GNOME 3.32 with Ubuntu's Yaru theming.  See screenshot below: Writer showing with a lot of toolbars (I enabled them) to show no conflict with the desktop theme.

(See Writer and Impress icons on left vertical panel; see menu bar on black top title bar; see how visible are all icons on that 5 level toolbars)

7. Detailed information

Based on daily built ISO Image I downloaded, these are GNOME Apps included. Please keep in mind that these might change over time as the 19.04 is still in Beta.
  • Baobab 3.30
  • Calendar 3.32
  • Control Center 3.32
  • Disks 3.32
  • Eye of GNOME 3.32
  • Fonts 3.30
  • GDM 3.32
  • Gedit 3.32
  • Help 3.32
  • Mahjongg 3.32
  • Screenshot 3.30
  • Seahorse 3.32
  • Shotwell 0.30.2
  • Software 3.30.6
  • Sudoku 3.32
  • Terminal 3.32
  • ToDo 3.28
("About" dialog showing details about this system I'm using)

(By the way, the 19.04 already uses kernel 5.0.0)

My Comments

I am really glad I can find latest GNOME on Ubuntu (LiveCD) without waiting for any repository so I can run and test it immediately without changing my computer. I just need to go to cdimage and download the daily-live current ISO and run it from my USB Flash Drive. I love it! I would like to say thank you to all Ubuntu developers and GNOME developers who made this reality.

My personal comment is that this 19.04 daily ISO I tested is pretty stable on my laptop (Acer Aspire One 756: Pentium, 4GB) both in LiveCD mode and permanently installed. GNOME runs smoothly. I like how this GNOME running less heavier today on my laptop compared to the previous Stable versions.

I feel happy with this version on 19.04 and I am waiting for the final release next April. I hope you enjoy GNOME 3.32 just as I enjoy it! Happy testing!


This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.