Fedora 34: New Features and Release Dates

3 min


Fedora 34 released on April 27, 2021. We give you a sneak peek of Fedora 34 new features. Take a look.

Following the previous release of Fedora 33, the team is busy incorporating changes and finalizing many new components for Fedora 34. Most of the new features are almost final but still can change before the final release. The Fedora 34 brings some of the “first time” changes in the history of Fedora in its offerings and desktops spins.

Fedora 34 Desktop
Fedora 34 Desktop

Fedora 34 Release Dates

Fedora 34 beta releases between March 16, 2021 and March 23, 2021
Fedora 34 final release was expected on April 20, 2021. It is delayed due to blocker bugs.

Fedora 34 released on April 27, 2021.

Fedora 34 New Features

Fedora 34 features Linux Kernel version 5.11 which has been released with numerous updates.

Desktop Environments

GNOME 40

The default workstation edition of Fedora 34 offers the latest GNOME 40 desktop which overhauled the desktop experience. GNOME 40 changes the way you interact with your GNOME desktop until today. The major changes we covered here in detail. In summary GNOME 40 brings the following key changes which are available with Fedora 34.

  • Multiline Icon Labels in GNOME Shell Grid
  • App Grid Scrolls Horizontally
  • Search Feature in Native Extensions App
  • Workspace Navigation is now horizontal and more productive
  • Sorting of Wifi Connections
  • GNOME Calendar – reminder time changes

It is worth mentioning that, Fedora 34 is the first official mainstream Linux distribution to offer GNOME 40 out-of-the-box. Because Ubuntu 21.04 Hirsute Hippo will not feature GNOME 40. Unless you install GNOME 40 from scratch in Arch Linux, or, use rolling distributions, probably Fedora 34 is the only option to experience GNOME 40 until the end of 2021.

KDE Plasma 5.21

The KDE Plasma flavor of Fedora 34 features the latest KDE Plasma 5.21. KDE Plasma 5.21 is now BETA stage and will be released before Fedora 34 is ready. KDE Plasma 5.21 brings a huge list of changes.

ARM installer image for KDE Plasma

Not only the KDE Plasma 5.21 is the only change. With this release, Fedora 34 also brings some of the interesting changes only for KDE Plasma. The KDE Plasma installer image is now available for AARCH64 ARM devices. This is already available from earlier for Xfce, and server images. Now with this, ARM enthusiastic now install Fedora KDE Plasma flavor with Fedora as well.

Wayland defaults to KDE Plasma

Fedora is defaulting the Wayland display server with KDE Plasma desktop in this release. Wayland display server is at a stable stage mostly and a lot of work is done over last year by the Plasma team on Wayland. This brings us to a point where we can see the default Wayland in Plasma. It is worth noting here that recently Ubuntu also decided to default Wayland in GNOME desktop with its Ubuntu 21.04 Hirsute Hippo release.

Xfce 4.16

The latest Xfce 4.16 desktop is available with Fedora 34. Xfce 4.16 brings many new features such as GTK2 is completely dropped in favor of GTK3, Settings dialog uses CSD, new icon set, fractional scaling, etc after years of development. And you can take advantage of this lightweight Linux distribution with its features. Check out the Xfce 4.16 feature roundup here.

LXQt 0.16

LXQt recently releases its latest version LXQt 0.16. And it is stable now. So, the Fedora team decided to upgrade the LXQt base to the latest LXQt 0.16. LXQt 0.16 brings new features which we covered here. Take a look.

New i3 tiling window manager spin

For the first time, Fedora 34 provides a new Tiling Window Manager – i3 flavor. This is a major step in the right direction where you get a ready-to-use Tiling Window manager flavor available with mainstream Linux distribution. Today, if you want to enjoy the tiling window manager, you have to install it manually via dnf and then configure many options such as display server, etc. With this, you get ready to use Fedora spin. This definitely increases the Tiling Window manager user base with Fedora.

Core Updates

Many core features and package upgrades arrive with Fedora 34. I have summarised some of the important ones below.

Zstd compression

In the last Fedora 33 release, btrfs is already made as a default file system when installing a fresh system. In this release, the zstd compression is made as default when using btrfs. This enables faster read, write performance while saving disk space significantly.

Pipewire as default sound daemon

Today all the audio in your Linux desktop is handled by PulseAudio. Fedora 34 now routes all audio from PulseAudio and JACK to the Pipewire daemon. That means they need the PulseAudio package and the daemon is gone now. PipeWire daemon provides more flexible, high-performance audio management in Linux, better than PulseAudio.

Systemd-oomd as default

Fedora 34 enables the systemd-oomd daemon by default for all variants. Earlier it was enabled only for a few. This daemon provides better resource handling of processes during Out-Of-Memory (OOM) situations. The idea of OOM is to recover from out of memory situations sooner than a hanging system. The daemon keeps assigning scores to processes based on certain criteria. For example, if your system RAM goes below 4% free and swaps below 10% free, the SIGTERM is issued to those processes with the largest oom_score.

Package and toolchain updates

The entire Fedora 34 toolchain and other packages upgraded to their latest releases. Here’s a quick rundown of the updates.

  • Binutils 2.35
  • Gcc 11
  • binutils 2.35
  • glibc 2.33.
  • Golang 1.16
  • IBus 1.5.24
  • LLVM 12
  • OpenSSL3.0
  • Ruby 3.0
  • BIND 9.16
  • MariaDB 10.5
  • Ruby on Rails 6.1

Download

You can download the Fedora 34 .iso from the below link. And then try it in a virtual machine or do a fresh install.

Spins and other desktop flavors are available in this link.

Closing notes

That said, Fedora 34 following the promises to feature the latest packages and desktops from all respective variants. It is one of those legacy distributions, perfect for a development machine while enjoying a stable system with regular updates. Fedora 34 brings indeed the very best of applications and the latest available across modules.


Arindam

Creator of debugpoint.com. All time Linux user and open-source supporter. Connect with me via Telegram, Twitter, LinkedIn, or send us an email.
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