Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Monday, September 16, 2019 at 17:33

(GNOME 3.34: it's now faster and smoother!)

Not too long after KDE Plasma 5.16 released this June, GNOME released its latest stable version 3.34 this Thursday, 12 September 2019. This release codenamed Thessaloniki and named after the Greece city where latest GUADEC conference took place. I tested 3.34 on Fedora since last Friday. This is my short report on my findings over this latest GNOME version. Let's go!

Subscribe to UbuntuBuzz Telegram Channel to get article updates directly.


Its Release Schedule

First, let's see latest GNOME Project's schedule.  As you can see at ThirtyPointThree (notice odd number) page, we can see the date planned to release 3.34 (ThirtyPointFour, notice even number) is Thursday 12 September 2019. For your information, the project has unique numbering for GNOME releases, where odd number is used for development (non-stable version) and even number is used for the actual release (stable version). We clearly see here that 3.34 is indeed planned after GUADEC being held.

 (Release plan of GNOME 3.34 from its official wiki)

Its Relase Announcement

I love GNOME announcements in their presentation! I like the design, the layout, and how short their words to describe multiple technical stuffs that are hard to describe. The announcement publication for GNOME 3.34 --as always-- divided into 5 sources: mailing list (first place), web announcement (simple), release notes (long), developer notes (long), and video (YouTube, Invidious). See the web announcement and I believe you will like it too.

(Epiphany browser showing Thessaloniki release announcement beautifully)

1. GNOME Thessaloniki

GUADEC 2019, the international GNOME conference, was held in Thessaloniki, Greece from 23 until 28 August. So GNOME 3.34 codenamed after GUADEC team this year, Thessaloniki. There were many, many interesting talks there as we could see here. Watch more than 40 videos of it at Ubicast!

(The cool badge --as always-- of this year's GUADEC conference)
(Badge license: Public Domain; badge source: PNG, SVG, more)

(The venue on its official website --via OpenStreetMap, of course--)

All and all, I like the badges. They are gorgeous!

2. New Wallpaper

The new wallpaper is adwaita-day. It looks modern, glossy, translucent for me and I like it. Somehow, it reminds me to Qubes OS's logo.

(A fresh GNOME 3.34 look on Fedora Rawhide)

3. Performance Improvement

Good news for us, it is better now! Try it! I ran 3.34 on Pentium 4GB laptop and it ran smoother and more responsive from LiveUSB. I felt the start menu worked far smoother both in overview and icons modes. See picture below, normally running 8 programs like these would be very heavy on my laptop, with much lagging to switch between programs and to show/hide overview like this. But on 3.34, I don't know why, it's so smooth. I'm glad!

(The system runs Firefox, Kdenlive, Krita, Inkscape, System Settings, and 3 Nautilus)

4. Music

Now, GNOME Music (package name: gnome-music) automatically scans ~/Music directory so whenever we put MP3s there it will instantly read it.

(Music --not to be confused with Rhythmbox-- reads my audio files automatically from my Home directory)

5. Epiphany and Firefox

Now, GNOME Web (package name: epiphany) features Pin Tab. Simply right-click a tab and select Pin Tab to keep it on the browser. Outside of official apps, if we run Mozilla Firefox on GNOME 3.34, its top bar joined with tab bar, you can see the close button is now at same level with tabs line, although originally both are separated. I don't think I'm accustomed to this, though. I tried version 66 (native RPM) and 69 (AppImage) and both run the same.

(GNU and GIMP websites pinned, while GNOME website opened on Epiphany)

(Left: with menubar on; right: without menubar; compare these to Epiphany above)

6. System Settings and My Night Light

It's now located under System Settings > Devices > Displays > Night Light tab. When GNOME included this since 3.24, I was very glad, as I was an active Redshift user (until now) and since then I do not need to install it anymore as my desktop already has that feature built-in.

7. Nautilus File Manager and Sysprof

Now, it reports "Could not paste files" whenever we press Ctrl+V on a protected directory.

(Nautilus 3.34)

On development side, GNOME 3.34 introduces new face of Sysprof (an advanced but user-friendly profiling tool for programmers) to profile performance of applications. It now can measure any application's usage of battery, energy, network, and disk.

(Sysprof main page)

9. AppImages

I believe some of you know that I like AppImage --portable application format for GNU/Linux-- more than Snap than Flatpak. I ran Kdenlive, Krita, and Inkscape from their portable executable files and they look okay on GNOME 3.34. The title bars (header bars in GNOME terminology) in my vision look very huge though, but I think that's okay.

(Running portable apps on GNOME 3.34)

10. My Comments

That's all for now. As always, I love how simple and beautiful GNOME release announcement was. After testing in 3 days, I immediately like this version more than the previous one for the speed improvement and I hope Ubuntu and other distros adopt it soon. Ah, I forgot, regarding Ubuntu, good news for us: next October's Ubuntu Eoan Ermine will feature 3.34! Regarding GNOME, I don't know if this is coincidence or what, but this year's KDE Plasma is faster and smoother and so is GNOME. I think next GNOME 3.36 will be faster and better as well. Finally I would love to say thank you GNOME developers! You all did well in last 6 month.

How do you think about 3.34? Let me know in the comment section!


You can help develop GNOME by donating to the project. See GNOME Friends page for more information.

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.