We can start with the system nomenclature and version, which is still based on Jun 5, keeping the same repositories and libraries. According to the elementaryOS blog announcement, version 5.1 is an important update, but not a new version, which occurs every 2 years, but that this major update deserved a proper name and an identity.
Another point addressed in their post was to classify as important Greeter (greeting the login screen) and Onboarding, which would be the first contact of users with the system.
As we can see on the screen above, the login and lock screen (Greeter) have been redesigned, making them clearer and with HiDPI problem solved. With this new Greeter update, it was possible to add new features, such as showing the names of one user to others, the wallpaper the user chose now shown on his card, notification of when Caps Lock and Num Lock are enabled and between Other enhancements you can check out here. Another improvement announced by the elementaryOS folks, Onboarding, an application that shows the main news and features present in the system for every new user created. It would be like a tutorial of the first steps in the system, so to speak. For more technical details about it, you can check it out here.
The other new thing about flatpaks packages is how they are handled within the distribution. Now, officially, flatpaks packages are natively supported by the system. So when you install any apps in the format, they can be managed through the elementaryOS store, AppCenter.
A tool has also been developed that facilitates the installation of downloaded Flathub files, thus eliminating the need for terminal or PPAs for this purpose. The tool is Sideload, which does all this installation work for you when the .flatpakref file is downloaded. It gives you all the information regarding the app to be installed.
Speaking of AppCenter, it has received several improvements in the Hera version, and according to the staff of elementaryOS, it is 10x faster than the previous version.
When an app is installed via flatpak, updates will also appear in AppCenter. Now you can choose which font you want to install the app from either the elementaryOS or Flathub repositories. It will also be possible to browse offline, thanks to the system cache system, so you can uninstall unconnected applications as well.
|Option to change installation source|
|Offline Browsing on AppCenter|
In addition to these new features, the sound configuration has also been improved, especially if your computer has multiple audio outputs.
Another point that received a redesign and improvements, was in the management of mouse and touchpads, now offering more possibilities of settings and adjustments.
There have also been improvements and updates to the native elementaryOS apps, such as Calendar, Camera, Photos, Music and Videos. The system indicators have also been improved, thus making it more harmonious and easy for users to understand.
These were just some of the many new features that elementaryOS 5.1 Hera has brought, which for more technical details and some more new features, you can check out in this blog post of the official project.
To download elementaryOS 5.1 Hera, go to this link, and in the section that appears Pay what you want, you can pay or not through the system. If you choose not to pay, simply go to Custom and enter the number 0 (zero), thus downloading the system at no cost.
If you are already using Juno 5.0, just check AppCenter and click the Check for Updates button and install them. If you need more enhanced support on your hardware, simply install the HWE LTS suite with the following command:
sudo apt install –install-recommends linux-hwe-18.04 xserver-xorg-hwe-18.04
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