OpenMandriva ROME 23.08: A Superb Rolling-Release Distro

Powered by Linux kernel 6.4 and shining with the latest Plasma 5.27.7, OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 is a dream come true for any distro hopper.

OpenMandriva is a desktop-centric distribution that often stays out of the spotlight – completely undeserved. With roots traced back to the once legendary Mandrake, it has much to offer even to the most discerning Linux users.

In recent years, OpenMandriva has relied on the established point release model. However, at the beginning of 2023, the project decided to bet also on the rolling release approach with its ROME releases.

The just-released OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 is the third in ROME’s series, bringing many updates. So, let’s take a look at them.

What’s New in OpenMandriva ROME 23.08

OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 with Plasma 5.27.7 desktop.
OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 with Plasma 5.27.7 desktop.

Referring to the official announcement, the rolling OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 gives us a great insight into what we can expect from the upcoming stable major point release OpenMandriva Lx 5.

Under the hood, users will find the most up-to-date Linux kernel, 6.4, accompanied by systemd 253.8. In addition, PipeWire, the server for handling audio on Linux, has been bumped to its latest 0.3.78 version, Wayland to v1.22, and Mesa to v23.2.

Installation of the distribution is a breeze, thanks to the Calamares 3.2.62 installer.

OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 Installation
OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 Installation

Although the distro offers GNOME 44.3 and LXQt 1.3.0 on the desktop, KDE Plasma is the distribution’s flagship desktop environment. In this light, OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 gives users the latest and greatest, namely KDE Plasma 5.27.7, accompanied by the KDE Frameworks 5.109.0 and the app set provided by KDE Gear 23.04.3.

It is essential to add here that since KDE Gear 23.08 was released literally on the same day as OpenMandriva ROME 23.08, the developers plan to make it available as an update to users within the next few days, making users of the distro the first to enjoy the updated KDE apps collection.

Continuing with the other client applications, unlike the widely used Firefox browser, you will find Chromium 116 with JPEG XL support patched back in and Falkon 23.04.3 in the default installation.

In keeping with the rolling release approach, users also get the latest version of the office suite, LibreOffice 7.6, released just a few days ago.

LibreOffice 7.6 & Chromium 116
LibreOffice 7.6 & Chromium 116

In addition to those mentioned so far, in this release, you will also find:

  • Firefox 116
  • Krita 5.1.5
  • Gimp 2.10.34
  • Calligra Suite 3.3.0
  • Digikam 8.1.0
  • SMPlayer 23.6.0
  • VLC 3.0.18
  • Virtualbox 7.0.10
  • OBS Studio 29.1.3

Finally, OpenMandriva ROME includes out-of-the-box Flatpak support, adding the distro to the growing family of Linux distributions that bet on Flatpak as an additional software source.

You can refer to the release announcement for detailed information about all changes. If you want to give OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 a try, the installation ISO images are available on SourceForge.

Bottom Line

Embracing the OpenMandriva ROME 23.08 is an exciting and worthwhile endeavor for newcomers and seasoned Linux enthusiasts. Its seamless blend of bleeding-edge software, stability, and reliability could be the last stop for any distro hopper.

In addition, unlike many other Linux distributions, OpenMandriva belongs to the so-called original distributions, i.e., those created from scratch without being based on others. This only adds more value to it.

Would we recommend it? Absolutely, yes! Give it a well-deserved try, and you won’t be disappointed. It is ready to exceed your expectations.

Bobby Borisov

Bobby Borisov

Bobby, an editor-in-chief at Linuxiac, is a Linux professional with over 20 years of experience. With a strong focus on Linux and open-source software, he has worked as a Senior Linux System Administrator, Software Developer, and DevOps Engineer for small and large multinational companies.

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