Few days ago the launch of the new version of the project postmarketOS 21.12 was announced, in which it is presented synchronized with the Alpine Linux 3.15 base, in addition to the fact that the number of devices with support, improvements and other things has also been increased.
For those who are unaware of PostmarketOS should know that this is a Linux distribution is a free and open source software operating system under development primarily for smartphones and tablets, based on Alpine Linux, Musl and BusyBox.
In compilations, whenever possible the vanilla linux kernel is used and if this is not possible, firmware kernels prepared by device manufacturers are used, plus KDE Plasma Mobile is offered as the main custom skins, Phosh, Sxmo, but it is possible to install other environments including GNOME, MATE and Xfce .
Main news of PostmarketOS 21.06
As mentioned at the beginning, this new version is presented with the batch database is synchronized with Alpine Linux 3.15, besides that with it the number of devices supported officially by the community has increased from 15 to 23.
From the list of supported devices Nokia N900 communicator PC support is temporarily removed that even the maintainers will be transferred from the category of devices supported by the community, in the category of «tests», which does not publish complete assembly.
The change It is due to the exit of the maintainer and the need to update the kernel for Nokia N900 and test builds. Of the projects that continue to build builds for the Nokia N900, Maemo Leste stands out.
For compatible smartphones and tablets, builds with user interfaces from Phosh, KDE Plasma Mobile and Sxmo have been generated optimized for mobile devices. For other types of devices, such as the PineBook Pro laptop, builds are prepared with stationary desktops based on KDE Plasma, GNOME, Sway, and Phosh.
The updated versions of mobile user interfaces, such as the graphical Sxmo shell, following the Unix philosophy, has been updated to version 1.6: the key change in the new version was the change to use the Sway window manager instead of dwm (dwm support remained as an option) and transferring the graphics stack from X11 to Wayland. Other improvements in Sxmo include a redesign of the screen lock code, support for group chats, and the ability to send / receive MMS.
While the Plasma Mobile Shell is updated to version 21.12, a detailed revision of which was proposed in a separate news story.
And the GNOME-based Phosh environment developed by Purism for the Librem 5 smartphone continues to build on version 0.14.0 proposed in postmarketOS 21.06 SP4, with new features like splash screen to indicate when applications are running, Wi-Fi indicator. Fi in point access mode, rewind buttons on the widget with a media player and stop playback when headphones are unplugged.
Additional changes added in postmarketOS 21.12 marcan updating many GNOM applicationsE, including gnome settings, to GNOME 41, as well as fixes for Firefox thumbnail display issues in preview window.
On the other hand, it is also noted that the TTYescape driver was added to switch to console mode with the classic command line in devices that do not have an external keyboard connected.
The mode is considered an analogue of the "Ctrl + Alt + F1" screen provided on classic Linux distributions, which can be used for selective termination of processes, analysis of interface interruptions, and other diagnostics. Console mode is activated by pressing the power key three times while holding down the volume up button at the time. A similar combination is used to return to the GUI.
Application postmarketos-tweaks has been updated to version 0.9.0, with the ability to control the Phosh applicator filter and change the deep sleep timeout. In postmarketOS 21.12, this default standby time was reduced from 15 to 2 minutes to save battery power.
Last but not least, it is mentioned that tools to generate boot files (postmarketos-mkinitfs) has been rewritten with improved script support to install additional files associated with the boot process (boot-deploy), which significantly increased the stability of the kernel update and initramfs.
Y a new set of configuration files has been proposed for Firefox (mobile-config-firefox 3.0.0), which adapts to changes in the design of Firefox 91. In the new version, the Firefox navigation bar has been moved to the bottom of the screen, the reader view interface has been improved, a default blocker has been added to uBlock Origin ads.
Finally if you are interested in knowing more about it about this new version, you can check the details in the following link.