EndeavourOS Galileo rolled out, switching from Xfce to Plasma as the default desktop, and dropped some community editions.
EndeavourOS is a user-friendly Linux distribution based on Arch Linux, renowned for combining Arch’s flexibility and cutting-edge software with a more user-friendly approach.
Unlike Arch, which requires users to configure the system from the ground up, EndeavourOS provides a more straightforward setup with a GUI installer, making it an ideal entry point for newcomers to the Arch ecosystem.
These characteristics have rendered it a preferred choice among many Linux enthusiasts eagerly anticipating its newest version. And now, it has arrived – introducing EndeavourOS Galileo.
EndeavourOS Galileo: Pushes the Boundaries of Awesome
Powered by Linux kernel 6.6.1, working with EndeavourOS Galileo is a true delight for the senses, as the attention to detail is evident. But before we move on, we need to share something important.
As we informed you at the beginning of October, the Galileo release was expected to appear earlier but was slightly delayed by its developers. It has now come to light that one concerning reason for this setback is the departure of some of the original developers from the project.
Unfortunately, most of the original devs left the project and there’s nobody who picked it up from them to make them work with each Calamares update.
This is why the Galileo release is the first to discontinue the Sway, Qtile, BSPWM, Openbox, and Worm editions. Fortunately, they are still available for manual installation through this GitHub page.
Hopefully, the stars above the Linux astronaut station will shine bright again, and these challenges will become history as new developers come aboard this fantastic project. Now, back to the release itself.
KDE Plasma Takes Center Stage
EndeavourOS Galileo has moved by replacing Xfce with KDE Plasma as the default desktop environment in its Live mode and offline installation, offering the latest and greatest Plasma 5.7.29 accompanied by KDE Frameworks 5.112 and KDE Gear 23.08.3 apps collection.
This decision, aimed at simplifying development and maintenance, provides a more native experience for developers using the Calamares installer. Of course, Xfce remains an option in the online install.
Enhanced Network Features and Security
The new release has responded to community feedback by enabling local hostname resolution in new installations and simplifying the setup of network printers.
Additionally, with the Galileo release, the distro has strengthened its security measures by implementing more robust LUKS2 encryption (argon2id) when LUKS with systemd-boot is chosen. This change ensures that users opting for LUKS encryption benefit from enhanced data protection.
Speaking of security, we’ll also mention that EndeavourOS comes with a preconfigured Firewalld that you can easily manage via a handy GUI app.
Streamlined Installation and System Improvements
To prevent package conflicts, EndeavourOS Galileo has removed the option to install multiple desktop environments during installation. Users can now only select one DE/Window Manager in the Calamares installer. The package selection screen has also been restructured for clarity and discoverability.
On top of that, improvements extend to system configurations as well. The EFI partition permissions have been made stricter, particularly benefiting dual-boot users. In addition, the “fstab” file no longer contains unnecessary default options, and SELinux warnings during installation have been removed to prevent confusion.
Welcome App Improvements
In this release, the Welcome App received some nice improvements. For example, one of these is the support for KDE in both the installer and the installed system. Additionally, it now includes a language selection feature in the installer.
Lastly, the app has undergone a visual revamp with streamlined icons, contributing to a cleaner and more intuitive user interface. These refined icons align with the modern aesthetic that the distro aims to provide, enhancing the overall look and feel.
Refreshed Package Base
Finally, we’ll mention that EndeavourOS Galileo comes with a refreshed package base, with the more important updates including:
- Calamares 23.11.1
- Firefox 119.0.1
- mpv 0.36.0
- Mesa 23.2.1
- Xorg-server 21.1.9
- nvidia-dkms 545.29.02