Ubuntu 22.04 LTS new features and updates

While thousands of Linux distributions are available in the market but one of the most loved Debian GNU/Linux distributions is obviously Ubuntu. It’s a great entry-level Linux distribution that’s user-friendly for beginners, especially for those of you that have been using Windows or Mac OS.

Unlike Windows and Mac OS Ubuntu is completely free and open-source whether you plan to use it as your primary operating system or run it alongside windows and mac.

The most popular Linux distribution in the world gets a massive update, that is packed with stunning new features and major improvements. A new interface style, amazing performance boost, better customization options, and a host of new features.

Ubuntu 22.04 LTS brings more fluid to your Ubuntu Desktop. More features and customization options, more performance and power efficiency, and more ways to integrate with your existing enterprise management tools. On top of that, you get five years of update service.

Ubuntu 22.04 is a Long-Term Support (LTS) release and will receive ongoing app updates and critical security fixes for five years from release. New Linux kernel releases and graphics driver updates are also rolled out as software updates every six months or so.

I’ve been using Ubuntu 22.04 codenamed Jammy Jellyfish since its release and I’m really impressed as we’re getting many new things. And most of the new features and updates come along really well. Ubuntu is one of the most stable Linux distributions and the wonderful community works very hard to produce such a fast and secure desktop.

Whether you plan to use it as your primary operating system or run it alongside another you can download the ISO file directly from the Ubuntu website.

So let’s discuss some useful features and updates you get with this update…

Plenty Of Improvements:

The team behind the development always wants to create a complete OS and this time they are working very hard on the integration of other platforms with Ubuntu. So all users across all platforms can make use of these great features of Ubuntu 22.04 (Jammy Jellyfish).

We have the new technology that enables boosted performance, and stability, dealing with snap apps, UI changes, gaming, installation, and everything else on a single operating system.

User Interface:

Start off with the user interface and here, we see many fantastic changes and improvements. User Interface is one unique department that’s getting a lot of appreciation in this release.

First and foremost Jammy Jellyfish getting a hefty leap over the previous version from GNOME 40 to GNOME 42 on its shell and most Libraries.

The new workspaces, the new application grid, and the desktop are sleeker and better now. And obviously, we get that maroonish Ubuntu to feel with this new jammy jellyfish wallpaper.

And if you look closely, orange is the new accent color now. This system looks so modern and glossy. And if you don’t like orange then you can choose from an array of 10 pre-selected colors and give your desktop your own personal charm.

This version also brings a new system-wide dark mode that completely redefines how your desktop looks and feels.

GNOME 42 is getting a lot of attention because of this dark mode, this is so polished and every detail can be felt. All the apps look so gorgeous with this theme and there are no inconsistencies or irregularities of color in any application.

This time the team also ensures third-party apps are well synchronized with this dark mode. One area where Ubuntu 22.04 gets full marks. Even the light theme is refined with different ancient color options and they look great with new wallpapers.

The theme, animations, and fonts are always been top-class in Ubuntu and the same continues with 22.04. The folder icons, notification bar, buttons, and various other elements in your system will reflect the selected accent color.

Customization is also very good this time around. Along with additional accent colors, you can also turn off the panel and use it as a dock as you would in stock gnome. This is a very good option as I’m sure many people would love to use Ubuntu with more of a stock gnome.

Additionally, we have a feature-packed screenshot tool in GNOME 42 that records the screen too, so you can record your screen effortlessly and don’t need any additional app.

The user interface looks so elegant and the experience of using the new Ubuntu is just amazing. Ubuntu has had a long journey experimenting a lot with user interfaces, and I’m glad they continue the same tradition.

Performance and Accessibility:

Ubuntu 22.04 LTS brings good tidings in the performance department too. Most significantly, we get dynamic triple buffering which delivers dramatically improved responsiveness to the system. The user interface now runs visibly smoother because of this dynamic triple buffering technology.

To improve the GUI Canonical also added more options in the power settings menu. Now there are two power modes, balanced and power saver being added to bring the performance up at optimum usage.

Mid-range laptops and desktops will benefit hugely from this. If You use Intel-integrated or AMD graphics, GNOME now runs much smoother. This new technology makes stuttering and lags almost non-existent in the user interface. You get better frames per second in the UI.

You can try this out on your computer, if you previously had any lags or stuttering when opening the application grid or workspaces, these are gone now with Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. The interface feels smooth and responsive.

Dynamic Triple Buffering:

Dynamic Triple Buffering was supposed to be included in the GNOME 42 update but was canceled at the last minute. But Ubuntu included this tech in the 22.04 version.

This works with NVIDIA, AMD, and Intel Integrated graphics. If you use a high frame rate monitor, dynamic triple buffering makes it a visual treat. A fluid fast visual treat.

Ubuntu 22.04 LTS is the first Ubuntu version that works on Raspberry Pi 4 lineup with the full desktop environment. That too heavily utilizes this dynamic triple buffering.

GNOME 42 desktop environment also brings in a lot of performance improvements. The new multitasking settings allow you to enable hot corners. With that, when you move the cursor to the top left corner, it brings the activities area. Otherwise, you have to go to the left corner and click the Activities option.

New updated 5.15 kernel:

By default, Ubuntu 22.04 has kernel version 5.15. Canonical even uses kernel 5.17 (Linux-OEM-22.04) on certified devices. So you get all the updated drivers along with the OS.

For example, you get a new Realtek RTL8188EU WiFi driver for connectivity, an Updated NTFS file system for better hardware support, and an Updated SAMBA driver for better storage allocation.

Return of Wayland as default display Server:

Ubuntu 22.04 LTS uses the Wayland display server by default. Wayland provides better performance everywhere. Mainly in the UI and web browsing, you’ll notice the improved performance.

Another noticeable advantage of Wayland is screen tearing issues on older computers are fully solved now. NVIDIA users will not be getting Wayland yet, but the performance is still good.

With the introduction of gtk4 and libadwaita, the performance of applications has also improved. So as more and more apps get updated to gtk4, we can expect better performance from these apps.

Thanks to a host of performance improvements, Everyday computer usage definitely feels smoother now. App switching, browsing, day to day tasks, all run very fast. Even for heavier things like gaming and compiling, you can expect a decent performance.

Overall in the performance section, the new update brings a major system boost over the last version, from day one you definitely feel a more responsive and faster performance.

Usability and Dependability:

Talking about usability, Ubuntu is a pioneer in this field. Ubuntu debuted as Linux for humans because of its ease of use and intuitiveness. And it has come a long way since then. Everything is so easy here. Even Linux newcomers will feel so easy to operate the desktop.

The settings are all easy to understand and Everything is made as simple as it could get here. That’s why Ubuntu is particularly appealing to Linux newcomers.

Overall, Ubuntu 22.04 LTS is a suitable computing system for students, software professionals, businesses, home users, and servers. You can use this virtually anywhere you want. It provides a dependable computing environment.

Software Availability:

One section where Ubuntu is far ahead in the competition, Software Availability is just phenomenal on Ubuntu. Ubuntu as the most popular Linux distribution gets a lot of special attention from software vendors.

Many top vendors test and publish their software with Ubuntu in mind. And software availability has only gotten better and better with snaps. Let’s talk about snaps in a minute.

Out of the box, Ubuntu 22.04 LTS comes with a good number of preinstalled applications. There is a browser, an email client, office software, and other utilities that make Ubuntu usable immediately after installation. Then you can download and install software from the Ubuntu Software Store.

We get thousands of amazing software. Lots of useful apps can be installed from here with a single click. In the Ubuntu software store, snap apps are prioritized over .deb packages. But you can easily select .deb packages from the drop-down list if you want.

Ubuntu software repositories contain around 50000 well-tested packages and they all are easily installable. Although Ubuntu is encouraging users to install and use snap software, they are not neglecting their .deb software repositories.

snap apps make their way:

Ubuntu 22.04 encourages you to use snap packages because you can easily install multiple software versions into the same system. Snap packages are easy to create than .deb or .apt packages because you can bundle the dependencies into the package, rather than define them after verifying the user’s system versions.

Yeah with snaps, you are not restricted to using older package versions, which can be an issue at times on distros like Ubuntu and Debian. You get the latest versions of all the software always, as these snaps are maintained by the software developers.

But snaps have received more than their fair share of criticism. And they have their issues like tediously slow first start-up times. Snaps also have a considerably larger footprint when compared to their .deb versions and so on. But they have come a long way since their inception.

Snaps look so much better now as they integrate really well with system theming. Snap apps have slow start-up times for the first time only. Then on, they open up instantaneously.  Canonical has recently announced that the snap core will be completely rewritten from the beginning.

So it’s only a matter of time before snaps take over the traditional package installation and I’m truly optimistic about this move.

Firefox shipped as a snap package:


Before we even talk about this, if you don’t like firefox snap then you can remove snap Firefox and install the .deb Firefox given below. Apparently, the decision to ship Firefox as a snap was a joint decision taken by the canonical team and the Firefox team.

Steps to remove Firefox Snap:

Open a terminal (ctrl+alt+t) and type-  sudo snap remove firefox
cd ~/snap
rm -r firefox

Install Firefox with apt:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mozillateam/ppa echo ‘ Package: *  Pin: release o=LP-PPA-mozillateam
Pin-Priority: 1001 ‘ | sudo tee /etc/apt/preferences.d/mozilla-firefox

(Copy and paste the whole above block. Not line by line)

sudo apt install firefox

This move by Firefox happened because they have to test, update, and maintain 4 actively supported Ubuntu versions right now. Sometimes it seems very exhausting and time-consuming.

Although I’ve been using Firefox snap since I installed Ubuntu 22.04 LTS and I haven’t had any bad experiences. It’s the same pleasant experience as usual, but the first start-up time is definitely noticeable, especially if you’re on a hard disk. On SSDs, you should be just fine.

These snaps make the work of software developers really easy. Snaps eliminate the process of packaging and testing their software for so many different Linux distributions. And dependencies bring in a strong element of complexity. Snaps really make the whole process simpler.

Slowly but many major software vendors like Google, nextcloud, and slack have brought their software to Linux with snaps. So snaps do have their positive attributes and I hope the best for it.

Gaming with Steam:

Gaming on the new Ubuntu is amazing too. Not just Ubuntu, but Linux as a whole has become recommendable for gaming because of some huge advancements in the proton.

Proton is a fork of wine that is being developed at a rapid pace by valve. Valve is the parent company of the gaming giant, Steam. Steam has done extraordinary work in making gaming on Linux what it is today.

Many top games are now available on Linux natively. And even games that are not available on Linux can be played on Linux with steam play. Games like cyberpunk 2077, GTA 5, The Witcher 3, and many more amazing top titles can be installed from steam and they run like they are Linux natives.

The performance is great and without any installation hassles. So gaming did pick up on Linux, thanks to steam. And since we’re giving credits, wine deserves a huge thanks. Proton, steam play, gta5 on Ubuntu is all made possible only because of the amazing contributions done by wine.

There are also many amazing games available in the software store. Xonotic and Oad are my absolute favorites. You can also install steam from the software store or get it from steam’s official website. Enable steam play from the settings to run non-Linux games.

On top of that, you get all the latest GPU drivers automatically installed so you’ll be getting the best experience while gaming. NVIDIA users might check if the official drivers are installed or not, just to make sure. Overall gaming on the new Ubuntu is very good. Both for casual gamers and enthusiasts.

LTS (long-term support) is always beneficial:

Ubuntu 22.04 is an LTS release. This version will be supported till 2027 and will receive security and maintenance updates for the next 5 years. These LTS versions of Ubuntu are the highest used Linux distributions in the world. Because
they have some clear advantages like superior stability and a high degree of dependability.

Ubuntu 22.04 LTS comes with very high-security standards. That’s why this is used in servers and critical computing situations. For people coming from a Windows background, Ubuntu does not need an antivirus or any other defensive or maintenance software, so it’s very low maintenance.

All the updates are very well tested and confirmed to work 100 percent fine so that brings peace of mind to the users. Install Ubuntu once and forget about it.

Wonderful Community Support:

Community is one of the biggest strengths of Ubuntu. Ubuntu has a huge community and they are very helpful. You’ll find an exhaustive list of community-written troubleshooting guides, how-to articles and so many questions answered.

This makes the experience of using Ubuntu very convenient as any issues you might face can be easily solved with a single google search.

Especially for non-Linux user community support is very essential as, in many areas where you can stick, even any new questions you might have will be answered very quickly. Community support can mean life or death for a Linux distro and Ubuntu has an amazing one.

AskUbuntu forum is an amazing resource where even most hardware-specific issues are solved. And everything is so beginner-friendly, so even Linux newcomers can use Ubuntu easily.

Installation just Get-Set-Go:

  • Ubuntu has a very simple and straightforward installation. Everything is easy to understand and very beginner friendly. Installing the new Ubuntu takes around 15-20 minutes and is a very simple process.
  • You can directly go to ubuntu.com or you can use the below link to download the software. On the download page, you find many options like Ubuntu Desktop, Server, Cloud, IoT, and Cloud then choose accordingly.
  • First, you have to download the proper ISO file, flash it onto a USB stick, live boot into it and start the installer.
  • Ubuntu gives us simple automated options like erasing the disk and install ubuntu and install ubuntu alongside other operating systems. (Be mindful that the erase disk option completely wipes your data. There are advanced options like manually partitioning your drives too, which I tend to use most of the time.)
  • After installation, on the first bootup, the welcome app helps you get started with Ubuntu quickly by configuring some settings and installing some apps.
  • All the drivers including NVIDIA GPU drivers are automatically installed when you select the install 3rd party software option.

Should I update to Ubuntu 22.04 LTS?

Ubuntu 22.04 LTS Jammy Jellyfish is a gold standard operating system. In every department, whether in the user interface, performance, stability, or everywhere, it scores top points. Ubuntu has had its criticisms and if we criticize something means we really care about it.

And there’s nothing wrong with calling something slow if it’s slow. Feedback is very very crucial for growth. But I absolutely
hate it when someone tries to do something new, something innovative, and gets chastised for it.

Everything has its own flaws and nothing is perfect and that’s the beauty of creating something wonderful and keep improving the same day by day.

There is room for improvement but today I’m happy with jammy jellyfish. As for snaps, we have a choice not to use them or perhaps use them.

All in all, This is a major release that’ll be used in millions of systems across the globe, and Ubuntu developers have put out a product that’s high quality and deserving. If you currently use an older version of Ubuntu, such as Ubuntu 20.04 LTS or 21.10, you can upgrade to the new release directly.

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