It's been 3 months since the last Snapshot, so... if you don't know what that means: It calls for a New Feren OS Snapshot, and it's now released for the 64 Bit Architecture and the 32 Bit Architecture... Also, what irony it is that this released the same day as Ubuntu's first ever release turned 14. Happy birthday, Ubuntu! (Again, didn't realise until I finished writing this and scheduled it... :v)
This release comes with a series of improvements, though most of these concern bridging the way to the Feren OS of the future, including but not limited to tweaks in the theming of the OS, adding more modularisation to the software added to Feren OS by me, and overall allowing for a more seamless transition to what will be Feren OS in the future, when it comes.
Updating to the October 2018 Snapshot
Simple. Just go into the Update Manager, hit Refresh, and install any updates that might be there, once you've done that, congrats, you're now on the October 2018 Snapshot! This should also be true for users of the 16.04-based Feren OSs, though, seriously, do the Major Update if that's so, there's plenty of improvements waiting for you on the other side...
Changes from July 2018 to October 2018:
Changes-wise, there isn't that much to talk about regarding the Feren OS front-end, as most of the work has been done improving the backend of many applications Feren OS has of its own, and more. Here's a few of the noticeable changes however:
New Background Set... and a New DE supporting the easy viewing of this and newer background sets
Just like every other Feren OS Snapshot before it, the October 2018 Snapshot contains a new background set. However, the main thing that strikes this apart from previous updates is that the location of the backgrounds has changed to /usr/share/wallpapers, meaning...
...they now appear in KDE! (hint hint)
Over time, the wallpaper sets of previous snapshots AND previous releases will be updated and/or released if not done so already in order to make them usable on KDE as well as Cinnamon and XFCE (you'll see why they work in Lite, eventually), starting from the oldest release to the newest, so be sure to keep an eye out for those, and don't be surprised to be getting some big package updates in the near future if you have more than one wallpaper set installed. I'll also be working on the removal of duplicate default wallpapers, by putting them into a the wallpaper set in which the version of said wallpaper came from, as well, too, so expect that in the future.
Feren OS is now upgradable to Non-LTS Ubuntu Versions
As per the 'feren-os-ppa-settings' package (it will be updated in the future for its real purpose), there's now a new application in town in the System Tools menu called 'Manage Base Update Channel' which allows you to now switch Feren OS's update channel between LTS (in line with Mint Releases' Ubuntu Base) and Non-LTS (in BETA currently until Ubuntu 18.10 is released). This is currently in BETA as said already until Ubuntu 18.10 releases, however if things go good enough this will allow people who want the latest Ubuntu changes on their Feren OS Machine before the Mint Users to then receive their new changes... HOWEVER, since Ubuntu 18.10 is a BETA at the time of writing this, there can be issues, such as an already discovered issue being that Ubuntu 18.10 doesn't supply a package the Cinnamon Desktop needs for installation (this will only affect users of Feren OS KDE unless you deliberately then remove said package that 'cinnamon' needs to install from your system once on 18.10), so do it at your own risk before 18.10 releases. This comes with a catch, however, being that YOU NEED have a Major Update twice a year, compared to the once per two years that LTS Users get, as compensation for the way shorter lifespan of Non-LTS Ubuntu Releases and the Release frequency for the Non-LTS releases, AND you can ONLY go back to just LTS bases once you're on an LTS base again, if you aren't on an LTS, it won't be safe to go back to LTS-only yet. Either way, the option is now there for the adventurous.
Feren Theme Tweaks
The Feren OS Theme has also seen some noticeable tweaks, for those who can tell when certain things have changed a noticeable amount, since the release of the July 2018 Snapshot, and these changes boil down to two things:
- Gradients are now colour-neutral - using some transparency tweaks, the blue gradients of Feren GTK are now just one colour but with different transparencies to give off the effect of a lighter gradient, meaning that while that may not be such a huge change in itself, it means that themes made in Theme Colouriser are now always going to have button gradients no matter the colour, making the OS more aesthetically pleasing when custom accent colours are used
- Scrollbars are now designed after the Breeze Theme (hint hint) - using the code from the Breeze GTK 3 and GTK 2 themes, the scrollbars in the Feren GTK Themes are now designed to look like the ones you'd find on KDE's default theme. This is really just a cosmetic change to improve consistency with the Breeze Scrollbars made available by the Plasma Browser Integration extension available for Vivaldi, Chrome, Firefox, etc, and also with the scrollbars in Feren OS KDE.
Theme Colouriser will now support community-made theme colouriser scripts
Speaking of Theme Colouriser, the Theme Colouriser has seen a massive update which not only adds an easy means of adding support for multiple Desktop Environments, but it also modularises the program a considerable amount meaning that the application now supports community-made scripts. While it's in its early days of implementation, people can currently add their scripts to the 'theme-colouriser' system folder under a specific DE, with support for user-wide script installation and improvements to the ability to use community-made scripts coming down the pipeline in the future. Right now it only supports scripts made for the Cinnamon Desktop, but over time it'll also support scripts for Lite and KDE.
Backend Fixes and changes
As well as all those, the backends of many Feren OS Applications have been improved and had a few bugs squished with time, as well, giving the user a better experience than ever before.
Now here's the part where things get interesting, here's the main agenda for the future:
So, for those who may not have heard, or taken the hint, most of the work this snapshot has been done regarding the implementation of Feren OS Features and the core Feren OS Experience to other Desktop Environments, mainly being KDE. Why? Well, if you haven't seen it already...
Either way, enjoy, and be sure to check out the Experimental KDE Feren OS, noting that it is still a Work In Progress. Hopefully Feren OS will be a serious contender past that point for the spot of the 'Newbies Distro', due to the many improvements having KDE as your DE brings.
Enjoy Feren OS October 2018 Snapshot though too!
The Feren OS Dev
It's great making something for the community that might become quite big and remain for a very long time to continue serving the community and helping Linux as a result.