Still not tried the elementary OS 6 release ? Well, now there’s even more reason to.

Available to download from today is elementary OS 6.1, the first point-release in the 6.x series. This milestone rolls together all of the post-release updates, fixes, and encements dished out to the distro since its debut, resulting in a nice, new, shiny .iso image.

“With OS 6.1, we’ve focused in on addressing feedback with new features and fixes; making elementary OS more useful with office productivity features; [and] expanding compatibility with a wide range of hardware,” elementary project founder Danielle Foré writes.

And with the elementary OS 6.0 “Odin” release downloaded a deft 240,000 times (and counting) there will be a lot of folks looking to checkout elementary OS 6.1 “Jólnir”.

So let’s take a quick look at what’s new and improved.

elementary OS 6.1 ‘Jólnir’

screenshot of elementary OS 6.1 app center
App Center improvements feature in latest update

If you found the App Center in elementary OS 6.0 a little light on content you’ll be pleased to hear its’ stock levels are now greatly improved. A bevvy of thoughtful additions help improved app discoverability, while new report cards make it easier for users to get a handle on what an app can do once installed.

There’s also a new progress indicator when installing, removing, or updating apps; a redesigned payment dialog; and better signposting of the App Center’s side loading capabilities.

screenshot of elementary OS 6.1 app launcher
Right-click on app shortcuts

We previewed elementary’s simpler alt tab experience a few weeks ago. That’s included here, as are ‘refreshed dialogs’ which animate in from above their parent app and dim the view behind. Improved App Picker and File Chooser portals make opening the right file I the right app a little easier.

The Application Launcher now lets you search for bookmarked folders and locations; has a secondary-click for search results; and is much better at showing launchers for newly installed apps. It’s also been made easier to launch apps on dedicated graphics on hybrid graphics systems (e.g. NVIDIA Optimus).

Files is the default file manager in elementary OS and in the 6.1 update it gains improved drag-and-drop to the sidebar; drag-to-select multiple group of files using the ctrl key; and the “Connect to Server” dialog now allows blank passwords for remote connections, like connecting to an SSH server with a private key instead of a password.

Other changes:

  • Ability to ‘stash’ the picture-in-picture window off screen edge
  • Free desktop standard dark style preference
  • Login & Lock screen now uses accent colour (if set)
  • Improved IMAP authentication in Online Accounts
  • Videos now supports two-finger-swipe to go back
  • Web cam apps saves full-resolution pictures
  • Misc improvements to Calendar
  • Edit existing accounts in Online Accounts
  • Power indicator shows brightness level when scrolled
  • Battery percentage automatically shows when batter is low
  • Web 41 (aka Epiphany) included
  • Based on Ubuntu 20.04.3 LTS

Finally, to round out the release there are several tweaks to the elementary OS installer and initial setup tool that make it easier to set the name of a device; tweaks to make finding specific settings easier when using the Settings search feature; and more consistent styling of the Housekeeping section where shown.

Download elementary OS 6.1

You can upgrade to elementary OS 6.1 from the 6.0 release. You do not have to do a fresh install. In fact, if you currently use the distro and you stay on top of system updates, you’re likely running 6.1 already.

As usual, you can download elementary OS 6.1 from the elementary project website.

Although you’re presented with a pay-what-you-want modal you can enter ‘0’ as the value amount to download elementary OS for free. If you like what you find do consider popping back to the site to make a small donation to help support the distro and its developers.

Distros elementary