Linux Mint 21.3 EDGE ISO to Ship with Linux 6.5, Addressing Hardware Issues

Some hardware issues were encountered with recent AMD GPUs, as well as wireless chips and SSD controllers used in some Acer laptops.
Linux Mint 21.3 Beta

While we were hoping to see the Linux Mint 21.3 “Virginia” release under our Christmas trees, the Linux Mint project has published a new monthly update to inform us about the status of the upcoming release and EDGE ISO.

First of all, it looks like not all the bugs that have been reported by users during the beta phase of Linux Mint 21.3 were addressed, which means that we will have to wait a little longer for the final release to hit the streets. Unfortunately, the Linux Mint team didn’t provide a release date at the moment of writing.

Another interesting update for the upcoming Linux Mint 21.3 release is the fact that the EDGE ISO, which usually ships with a newer kernel version than the regular ISO, will be upgraded to Linux kernel 6.5, which recently reached end of life, to address some hardware issues with recent AMD GPUs, as well as wireless chips and SSD controllers used in some Acer laptops.

“During BETA testing we identified compatibility issues between Linux Mint and new hardware devices (recent AMD graphics but also wireless chipsets and SSD controllers used in Acer laptops). These are solved by upgrading the kernel series from 5.15 to 6.5,” said Clement Lefebvre in the monthly newsletter for December 2023.

The EDGE ISO of the current Linux Mint 21.2 “Victoria” release shipped with Linux kernel 6.2 (HWE) from Ubuntu 22.04.3 LTS (Jammy Jellyfish). The upcoming Linux Mint 21.3 “Virginia” release will feature Linux kernel 6.5 for the EDGE ISO, which will probably be released at a later date than the regular ISOs.

For those not in the know, the EDGE version of Linux Mint is a variant that offers newer kernel and graphics stacks to offer increased hardware compatibility when installing Linux Mint on newer devices. The Linux Mint EDGE variant is only available with the Cinnamon desktop environment.

Linux Mint 21.3 “Virginia” is expected to ship with the latest Cinnamon 6.0 desktop environment on the flagship editions, as well as with the Xfce 4.18 and MATE 1.26 desktop environments on the Xfce and MATE editions. Worth noting is the fact that the Cinnamon edition will offer an experimental Wayland session.

Linux Mint 21.3 will also offer full support for SecureBoot, EFI mode for the GRUB bootloader, updated Hypnotix and Warpinator apps, as well as artwork improvements. Under the hood, Linux Mint 21.3 will be based on Ubuntu 22.04.3 LTS and powered by Linux kernel 5.15 LTS.

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