What’s New in Ubuntu 20.04 (Fantastic Focal Fossa)

Ubuntu 20.04, codenamed Focal Fossa, was released on April 24th, 2020. This long-term support (LTS) version brings several exciting changes and improvements. Whether you’re a current Ubuntu user or considering making the switch, here’s everything you need to know about the latest version.

Appearance Menu

One of the most noticeable changes in Ubuntu 20.04 is the new appearance menu. Thanks to the updated GNOME Desktop 3.36, users can now easily switch between three different themes: Light, Standard, and Dark. No more need for external tools like GNOME tweaks. Additionally, users have the option to scale icons, change the position of the dock, and auto-hide it.

More Dark Mode

While the appearance menu allows for easy switching to the Dark mode, some inconsistencies remain. To fully enable the Dark mode for the shell and pop-ups, users will still need to use the GNOME Tweaks tool. However, this is a minor inconvenience considering the overall improved dark mode experience.

Extension Manager

Good news for GNOME extension lovers! The GNOME extensions manager is now built-in, eliminating the need to install GNOME tweaks. Users can easily manage and enable/disable extensions right from the app launcher.

Application Drawer

The application launcher has undergone subtle cosmetic changes. The most noticeable improvement is the smooth scrolling. Additionally, search results now appear categorized, making it easier to find specific files, apps, or settings.

DND toggle

Distractions while working are a thing of the past with the new “Do Not Disturb” (DND) toggle. Located in the notification space, the DND toggle allows users to quickly turn off all notification pop-ups and focus on their work.

ExFAT Support

Ubuntu 20.04 brings native ExFAT file system support, eliminating the need for third-party utilities. This is excellent news for users working with cameras and SD card storage, as ExFAT is commonly used in these devices.

Feral’s GameMode

For gamers, Ubuntu 20.04 includes Feral’s GameMode, which provides optimizations for CPU, I/O, process niceness, kernel scheduler, screensaver inhibiting, GPU performance mode, GPU overclocking, and custom scripts. While there is no GUI, users can start or stop the daemon via the command-line.

WireGuard VPN

WireGuard VPN, an emerging VPN technology that offers better performance and security, is now integrated into the Kernel itself. This improvement will primarily benefit enterprise users working in the cloud scenario.

Fractional Scaling

Fractional scaling, introduced in Ubuntu 19.04, now has a graphical user interface (GUI) in Ubuntu 20.04. This feature allows users to scale their display from 100% to 200% in increments of 25%. Fractional scaling is especially useful for HiDPI laptops and displays.

Minor Changes

Several other minor changes have been made in Ubuntu 20.04. The lock screen now features a blurred version of the desktop wallpaper. The power menu includes options for log out, suspend, and power off. Better fingerprint support has been implemented, and the Amazon app has been removed. Python 3 is now the default version, as Python 2 is no longer supported.

In conclusion, Ubuntu 20.04 brings a host of improvements and new features that enhance the overall user experience. Whether you’re a casual user or a power user, these changes will make your Ubuntu experience more enjoyable. So, why not give it a try and see for yourself?

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