Linux Mint 20 will be released in June 2020 but what new features, changes, and other improvements will it include?
Well, that’s what this post is here to tell you. We keep this roundup of planned Linux Mint 20 features up-to-date as development continues, so bookmark it now to revisit at a later date.
What do we about Linux Mint 20 so far?
Well, quite a bit, so read on to learn more!
Linux Mint 20 Features & Changes
First things first: codename.
The Linux Mint 20 codename is ‘Ulyana’. Linux Mint codenames traditionally take a female name, and are alphabetical in sequence. All of the Linux Mint 19 codenames were based on the letter ‘T’ meaning the next release will use codenames based on the letter ‘U’.
Linux Mint 20 is based on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, the latest long-term support releases of Ubuntu. And, as you’d expect, three different desktop editions are planned based on Cinnamon, MATE and Xfce respectively, and will use the Linux 5.4 kernel.
A long-term support release, Linux Mint 20 is supported until 2025.
However, in a break with previous releases, Linux Mint 20 is 64-bit only. There will be no 32-bit release.
Like, at all.
Those who need Linux Mint 32-bit support can continue to use the Linux Mint 19 releases. These are supported until 2023 with key and critical app updates.
The Cinnamon desktop environment is at the heart of Linux Mint and —no surprises— it gains enhancements and refinement in the newest release.
The biggest new feature in Linux Mint 20? That’ll be the addition of fractional scaling support in the Cinnamon. Designed for high-resolution displays, this gives you access to new scaling values between 100% and 200%, including the 125% and 150% sweet spots.
Better yet, Mint lets you apply different scaling values to different monitors. This is especially useful for those who connect a HD or FHD laptop to a 2K or 4K display (as I do).
Fractional scaling isn’t the only treat planned for the tasty-sounding desktop environment, though. Mint 20 also comes with the ability change monitor refresh rate through an easily-accessible display setting (something Ubuntu 20.04 offers too).
And do you remember that new file transfer tool for Linux Mint we told you about recently? Well, it’s due to ship out-of-the-box in Linux Mint 20 and has been given the witty name Warpinator (pictured above).
Major performance improvements in Nemo, the default file manager of the Cinnamon desktop environment, also feature in this release. File thumbnail generation, a task which is at the cause of slows down when browsing folders and files, is being tweaked to deliver faster, more responsive navigation.
The solution: show generic icons prior to thumbnails loading. The impact on navigation is said to be considerable. Rendering file thumbnails in Nemo now happens after all the files have loaded into view.
Linux Mint 20 also improves its rather nifty ‘desktop colours’ option in three key ways:
Firstly, you can now pick the accent colour used in the default Linux Mint Y theme straight from the Mint Welcome app. You can choose between light and dark versions here as well.
Secondly, each of the various accent colours available have been reworked to look brighter than before, something that fans of this feature will appreciate.
Finally, you can now choose to set yellow coloured folder icons if the default green ones aren’t to your taste. Is this an essential enhancement? No, but a welcome one all the same.
The experience of installing software you download outside of the main repositories is improved, with the
gdebi GUI assistant having a number of rejigs. Though minor these tweaks should make installing well-known software like Google Chrome, Skype, and Steam less of a hassle.
A few things you won’t see in this release include native support for installing Mint atop the ZFS file system (something upstream Ubuntu now offers), and there’s no work towards Cinnamon Wayland support in this cycle.
Linux Mint 20 Release Date
At the time you read this there is no set release date for Linux Mint 20 — but that’s not unusual. Whereas Ubuntu developers tend to pick a date and work towards it, Mint developers tend to work until they’re satisfied, then release it.
That said we do know roughly when it’s appear.
Not that you’ll have to wait that long to try it! In May you will be able to download Linux Mint 20 beta for some early hands-on testing.