Linux Mint’s vision showcases a continued reliance on Xorg. Wayland’s on the horizon, but full readiness is projected for 2026.
Linux Mint has always been lauded for its user-centric approach to operating system design. From its inception, Mint has aimed to provide a solid, reliable, intuitive desktop environment for its vast user base.
So, it is not surprising the recent announcement regarding the continued reliance on Xorg in future releases, despite the ongoing work on Wayland, emphasizes this commitment to their users.
Wayland: The Future, but Not Yet
Xorg has been the backbone of countless Linux distributions for nearly three decades. But every technology becomes obsolete and is replaced by a new, better one at some point, as with Xorg and Wayland.
The drive to move to Wayland has been especially strong in recent years. Leading open-source projects like GNOME and Fedora have announced their vision and intentions to drop X11 support and be Wayland-centric in future releases.
However, above excitement about the capabilities and innovations brought by Wayland, Linux Mint chose to continue relying on Xorg for the sake of the foundation around which the entire distribution is built – the user-centered approach.
In its monthly newsletter for October, the project leader, Clement Lefebvre, gives clarity on the subject:
We don’t expect it to replace Xorg as default any time soon, not in 21.3, not in 22.x, but we want to be ready all the same.
Given the release cycle, this means that for the next two years, Linux Mint will stick with Xorg for the main graphics server. But as Lefebvre reveals, Wayland is approaching, and the Mint has already started preliminary preparations.
Cinnamon 6.0, planned for Mint 21.3 this year, will feature experimental Wayland support. In terms of timing we don’t think we need Wayland support to be fully ready (i.e. to be a better Cinnamon option for most people) before 2026 (Mint 23.x). That leaves us 2 years to identify and to fix all the issues.
As we said, this cautious approach reflects their philosophy: user care first. So, instead of rushing into new technology to be on the cutting edge, Mint is focused on ensuring that when they do make the shift, it will be as smooth and beneficial for the end-user as possible.
As a final note, the planned upcoming release, Linux Mint 21.3, which is expected to be released around Christmas, will include some improvements to Hypnotix – a free and open-source IPTV streaming application with live TV, movies, and series support.
Specifically, channels will be able to be saved as favorites. On top of that, the Mint devs will enable Hypnotix to download and update its local version of yt-dlp to guarantee that YouTube channels remain operational in case the yt-dlp package is outdated.
And last but not least – the big news. Linux Mint 21.3 will provide users with the new (still in development) Cinnamon 6.0 desktop environment, promising to improve the user experience.
So, get ready for a wonderful Christmas because among the gifts will be the new release, running Cinnamon 6.0, and continuing to rely (and the few after it) on good old Xorg.