Pop!_OS Linux 21.04 Released with the COSMIC Desktop, Based on Ubuntu 21.04

Pop!_OS Linux 21.04

System76 announced today the release of the Pop!_OS Linux 21.04 distribution featuring the brand-new COSMIC desktop environment.

Based on Ubuntu 21.04 (Hirsute Hippo), Pop!_OS Linux 21.04 is the first release of System76’s distribution to ditch the GNOME desktop environment and ship with a GNOME-based desktop environment called COSMIC (Computer Operating System Main Interface Components), which I previewed earlier this month.

The highlights of the COSMIC desktop include a fully customizable dock, split Activities Overview into Workspaces and Applications views, the ability to open the launcher with the Super key, as well as various trackpad gestures. Of course, there are many tiny details about COSMIC, so check out the video below to see it in action.

“The new COSMIC workflow introduced in Pop!_OS 21.04 is the culmination of years of user research and feedback,” said System76. “We’ve streamlined launching and switching between applications and made the interface simpler and more straight-forward while introducing numerous options to adjust the desktop to personal taste.”

Without a doubt, the main attraction of the Pop!_OS Linux 21.04 release is the COSMIC desktop, but the distribution also comes with optional minimize and maximize buttons for windows, the ability to tile windows with the mouse by clicking and dragging tiled windows to rearrange them, the ability to ugrade the recovery partition, an improved search feature, and a plugin system for the launcher to let you create your own plugins.

Of course, Pop!_OS Linux 21.04 also includes all the updated components and a newer kernel (Linux 5.11) from the upstream Ubuntu 21.04 (Hirsute Hippo) release. You can download it right now for Intel or AMD/NVIDIA systems using the direct download links below or from the official website.

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