box of apps
A selection of small app updates

With FOSDEM 2017 in session over the weekend you might have had better things to do than monitor the web for minor updates to popular Linux apps.

Well, we didn’t ;)

So, skim on down for a concise post-weekend roundup of recent Linux app updates, including minor bumps to system optimizer Stacer and VoIP service Skype.

Skype for Linux Alpha 1.17

skype for linux logo

Yup,everyone’s least favourite Skype app has been furnished with another batch of minor features that no one is particularly clamouring for.

Skype for Linux Alpha 1.17 introduces:

  • Persistent zoom level
  • Using backslash (\) doesn’t trigger Skype chat commands
  • Whitespaces and linebreaks are no longer removed form pasted messages
  • You can now send !! or {code} macros (but not XML snippets)

Who needs video calling or the ability to dial out, right?

If you already have Skype for Linux Alpha installed you will receive this update via the Ubuntu Update Manager.

If you don’t already have it, Skype for Linux Alpha is available to download and install alongside the native Qt Skype desktop app on Ubuntu, Mint, KDE Neon and other Linux distributions using this link:

Download Skype for Linux Alpha

Stacer 1.0.3

We featured Stacer, an all-in-one system optimiser app for Ubuntu, last week — and the reception to it has been incredibly positive!

Since that initial article appeared the developer behind the app has buffed, buf-fixeds and bumped the version number a couple of times.

The app now uses native window borders, received some visual polish, a new loading screen, and now integrates with gksudo. This means you’ll only be prompted to enter your sudo password when attempting to run a task that requires root privileges, and the password is handled in a more secure way.

Check out the latest release of Stacer for Ubuntu by downloading it from the link below.

Download Latest Release of Stacer for Ubuntu

QupZilla 2.1.0

qupzilla tab strip with audio indicators on show
audio indicators in tabs

I don’t quite know why I have such a soft spot for Qt web-browser QupZilla, but it’s clear that I do.

Whatever the reason, I was pleased to hear that QupZilla 2.1.0 is available to download.

This is the second major release of the browser since its switch to QtWebEngine. The update patches some pesky bugs, polishes and improves performance, and brings back a few fan-favourite features that were found in earlier versions of the app.

Among the change-log:

  • Spellcheck support
  • Option to delete cookies on close
  • Per-domain user agent settings
  • Audio playing indicator in tab + option to mute
  • Background activity indicator in pinned tabs
  • Native scrollbars option
  • Option to delete cache on close
  • Improved HiDPI experience

You can download the source of QupZilla from the official website, or add the official QupZilla PPA.

If you’d rather not wait around for someone to stuff the release in a PPA you don’t have to: take the latest release for a spin on pretty much any Linux distro using the App Image below:

Download QupZilla (64-bit AppImage)

WINE 2.1

wine logo
Fresh Wine, aah

Following on from the successful release of Wine 2.0 last month, there’s a new Wine development release ripe for testing.

Wine 2.1 fixes 62 bugs and improves various features, including:

  • More Shader Model 5 instructions
  • Direct2D rendering improvements
  • Better MIME message handling
  • HID bus service now running by default

Wine 2.1 is available to download as source, while binary packages will be made available through traditional channels as and when they’re ready.

For details on how to switch to Wine development releases see the official Wine website.

Apps qupzilla round up Skype stacer