Endless OS 3.4.8 was released on Monday 15th October, available for download from https://endlessos.com/download/ for new installations or to download as an OS update in the App Center.
This release includes a one-off step which moves 59 applications from the older versions provided by Endless, to versions provided by the open source Flathub project. The 59 apps includes almost all of the third-party applications that we install by default which are not published by Endless ourselves.
On a regular Endless OS install which has nearly 100 apps pre-installed, the first time you power on your computer after upgrading to 3.4.8, it will take significantly longer to start than usual - up to 8 minutes. It will only happen once after the upgrade. During this process, your computer will sit at the normal startup screen with the Endless logo, but you will notice more disk activity if your computer has an indicator light for this. If you lose power during this process, do not worry as it will be resumed safely next time you start your computer. Please relax, grab a coffee, tea, chai or mate and wait for the process to complete - new and updated apps with significant improvements will be available for you once the startup process is completed!
You will notice all of the migrated applications will show in the Updates tab in the App Center or will be gradually updated automatically if you have automatic updates switched on. Once you have upgraded to the Flathub version of each app you may notice some changes in the icon and description. Most of the app versions published on Flathub are far newer, and are often published by the original app developers, with new features and bug fixes made available quickly compared to the older versions previously provided by Endless.
Continuing from the work we started in 3.4.7 to improve the system performance while the OS or apps were being updated in the background, we’ve enabled a new Linux feature (called bfq I/O scheduler) to try and better balance access to the disk so that programs running in the background don’t slow down the app that you’re currently using. Our testing showed that even on systems with slower hard disk drives, using this new scheduler together with our previous work to run the OS updates in the background meant that our test app (LibreOffice) launched just as quickly during an OS update as when the system wasn’t being used. We’re really excited about this change and during beta testing we found that systems “feel” more responsive.
Various bug fixes:
- Add a check to prevent automatic app updates from being started if you do not have enough free disk space to download and install the updated app.
- Don’t allow the brightness to be set to 0 in the control panel, which can turn some LCD screens completely off.
- Fix a bug on Intel Gemini Lake systems where Endless apps and some others would appear completely white, rather than with any text/images.
- Enable automatic clearing of some folders to save disk space used by temporary files which are no longer needed/used by the OS.
- Fix a Chromium browser bug which was still causing problems with Netflix on ARM-based devices such as Endless Mini.
- Updated the built-in Chromium browser to version 69.
- Updated the Google Chrome app to version 69.
- Update the list of available apps on ARM systems such as Endless Mini, adding some 14 more apps.