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Release of Budgie 10.4

Joshua Strobl on August 18, 2017
2017/08/10 4/ Budgie10 4

We’re proud to announce the release of Budgie 10.4. Budgie 10.4 is considered a major release on our 10.x series, with significant improvements to applets, panels, and personalization of Budgie. This release also introduces polish to Alt+Tab, animations, and Budgie Menu!

Animations

Budgie 10.4 now has maximize and unmaximize animations for applications.

Alt+Tab

2017/08/10 4/ Alt Tab

In this release of Budgie, the alt+tab switcher will now prefer the theme icon instead of the X11 icon where possible. Shift+Alt+Tab support has also been implemented, enabling you to go backwards in the Alt+Tab dialog.

Applets

Night Light

2017/08/10 4/ Night Light

This release introduces a new applet, Night Light, which can help reduce eye strain by reducing your display’s blue light by making your screen “warmer”. This applet integrates into the Night Light functionality provided in Mutter 3.24.x and provides quick access to toggling Night Light on/off, as well as:

  • Changing the schedule between “Sunset to Sunrise” and “Manual” (which is configured in GNOME Control Center)
  • Temperature of the display when enabled
  • One-click access to launch your Display settings

Places

2017/08/10 4/ Places

The Places Indicator applet also received some love this release, with a new option to always expand the places section when the applet is shown. The whole Places section header is now a clickable button, making toggling the section easier. The Places Applet icon has also been changed to a more apt folder icon, better representing “places” rather than “disks” as previously presented.

Workspace

The Workspace applet has seen multiple improvements in this release. For each workspace, windows are now represented by icons in a grid layout, easily indicating where your windows may be. We now provide the ability to add and remove workspaces on the fly, dynamically create workspaces by dragging an icon over the + button, as well as rename them.

We provide three options for the displaying of the add workspace button:

  • Always show
  • Show on mouseover
  • Hidden

And More!

  • The Calendar widget in Raven will now remove the date selection if you change the month or year.
  • The Icon Tasklist applet no longer has a list of “derper” applications for which we’d override the icon. If a .desktop file is found, use the icon referenced in it.
  • The User Indicator now has updated and refined iconography thanks to Sam Hewitt.

Budgie Menu

2017/08/10 4/ Budgie Menu

Building upon the lessons learned when (and inspiration from) implementing the Brisk Menu for MATE, searching has been completely overhauled. We now support the use of keywords for searching and provide a predictable, sane search mechanism. Items that previously would not show up as expected, such as searching for “Displays”, are now resolved.

For items that would show up in excess, we now de-duplicate search results to only showing unique entries when we’re in “search mode” or “super compact” mode (in other words, no headers or sidebar categories).

We now dynamically compute scores for a given entry during search in relation to the search term. Assuming the entry is relevant, we’ll display results in a given order and allow terms to match and display higher up in the list depending on how close it is to the term, the contents, how much a string is matched, etc.

Panels

Vertical Panels

2017/08/10 4/ Left and Right Panels

In Budgie 10.4, you can now set vertical panels on the left and right sides of your display. Popovers will correctly indicate (with its “tail”) the point of origin, we’ve done extensive work to ensure all of our animations and applets will display and adjust depending on if they are on (or originating from) a horizontal or vertical panel, and Raven will account for right-side panels and slide out from underneath the panel, as well as anchor to left panels when no horizontal or right panel exists.

Transparency

With these new panels, you will now also be able to control the panel transparency (via our new Settings app) with three modes:

  • None: The panel is always opaque.
  • Dynamic: The panel is opaque when there is a maximized window on the workspace, or Raven is open, otherwise it’s transparent.
  • Always: The panel is always transparent.

Docks

2017/08/10 4/ Budgie Panel Dockmode

As if Budgie panels couldn’t improve more, we’ve also introduced a Dock mode for panels, enabling you to put a dock on any side of your display!

This Dock mode also uses a custom CSS class, which means theme developers have the ability to implement custom styling.

Popovers

For Budgie 10.4, we implemented the Budgie.Popover widget, enabling us to replace our usage of Gtk.Popover and fix a long-standing issue with inconsistent popover animations, for example Budgie Menu animating across the screen if the user’s panel (and the menu applet) was at the bottom.

Furthermore, this Popover widget enables more granular positioning regardless of its origin (top, bottom, left, or right). This granular positioning helped to provide us the opportunity to implement panels for all sides of your display!

Settings

2017/08/10 4/ Budgie Settings

Budgie 10.4 moves Settings out of Raven and into a dedicated application. This new Budgie Settings application enables us to improve the user experience of managing panels, applets, and their respective settings, as well as providing us the opportunity to describe what particular settings may do, with the classic example being “Disable unredirection of windows”. To open Budgie Settings, the behavior of the Settings button at the bottom of Raven has been changed to open Budgie Settings instead of GNOME Control Center. You can also pin our Settings application to your panel, like you would any application, and launch it via Budgie Menu.

2017/08/10 4/ Budgie Panel Applets

In the image above, you can see the management of the Bottom Panel. We have split panel management into two sections, with Applets being the primary section (as we anticipate users primarily making changes to applets) and Settings. Similar to the behavior of prior Budgie releases, you can move applets around using the up or down arrow buttons, or delete them. These buttons are positioned at the top of the list to make them more easily accessible for lower-resolution displays.

To the right of the applet list, you have a dedicated “Add applet” button and settings for the selected applet below.

2017/08/10 4/ Budgie Panel Settings

In the Settings section of a panel, a multitude of options are exposed, such as:

  • Position of the panel
  • Size of the panel (height for vertical panels, width for horizontal panels)
  • Auto-hide settings (including Intellihide, which is great for Dock mode)
  • Transparency settings (as discussed in the Panels -> Transparency section of this blog post)
  • Shadow (a decorative drop shadow)
  • Stylize region
  • Dock mode
2017/08/10 4/ Budgie Settings Autostart

Budgie Settings also enables you to manage the autostarting of applications, eliminating the need for a secondary tool such as GNOME Tweak Tool.

Other Fixes and Improvements

In addition to the above mentioned goodies, some other fixes include:

  • The Clock applet will now only redraw when the label contents would change. This resolves unnecessary redraws of the applet.
  • daemon: Fixed the order of left-side window buttons, ensuring that the window decoration style is consistent between native and CSD window decorations.
  • wm: Ensuring we purge old backgrounds from the cache.

Getting Budgie 10.4

Budgie 10.4 is immediately available for use in Solus 3 and we look forward to its arrival in the repositories of other distributions, including Ubuntu Budgie.