Gnome 42 -> 43, update process

Hello all!

This is my first time being around the community for a new version of my Desktop Environment being released. Specifically I’d be going from GNOME 42 → 43. I have really liked what I’ve seen around the new features and am excited to try them out.

I’m new to Arch as well, but it has a reputation for being bleeding edge. That being said, about how long does it typically take for a new DE version to arrive on my pacman -Syu , and is it always a good idea to update right away? Can I expect glitches?

Also, if any GNOME vets could let me know how soon I can expect popular extensions I rely on to update so they will work for GNOME 43 (example: https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/4245/gesture-improvements/ ). I’m new to extensions as of like last week, but am already coming to rely on some of them!

Thanks :slightly_smiling_face:

Hi @IrateMonk welcome to the good ship :enos:
Join us here and you will get some good news on 43, freshly tested on different builds. (shameless plug for my post :laughing: ) GNOME 43 is Here. Now What?

I am on 42.4 and staying there until the only Arch maintainer for Gnome puts it in the repo. I don’t mind waiting though.

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I’m fine with waiting too, just honestly curious about how these sorts of upgrades typically go.

How long have you been using GNOME? Do your extensions always break from version to version, in your experience?

It takes a lot of time to update the Gnome stack and that all falls on one single Arch maintainer. Depending on their schedule (this is all volunteer work of course), in the past it has taken about 2-4 weeks after it is released before Arch gets it. In some cases, it’s not released on Arch until a point release, which would be a bit of a longer wait. Gnome 43 is not a huge step up, but nonetheless still requires time and work to update the stack. Remain patient and try to focus on familiarizing yourself with what you have currently have already.

For starters, I would suggest only update on weekends OR only update when you know you have the time to troubleshoot in case anything goes wrong. Also, always always have backups.

Expect bugs yes. Everyone’s hardware, setups, and workflow is different, so some may have less issues than others, but Gnome is a mixed bag sometimes. Gnome 42 was riddled with bugs on release, but Gnome 40/41 on the other hand upgraded with minimal issues. Gnome 43 is not reinventing the wheel, so I dare say the new release should be a smoother transition than the last.

Any of the top, most popular extensions are typically available from day one. General rule of thumb though, is not to rely on too many extensions. I typically use about 10 myself, but others use fewer. The more extensions you use, the more likely you may run into issues, like system lag, slowdowns, or occasional freezes, though these cases are rare. Some extensions that aren’t updated officially may still work with newer versions, it’s a hit or miss though in that case. And if there’s an extension you like or want updated but hasn’t yet, you can always visit the extensions GitHub or GitLab and ask if they will be supporting the new Gnome version or not.

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Also, always always have backups.

Are partition images via clonezilla enough on the backup front? I just discovered clonezilla, and disk imaging in general, recently but I found that clonezilla restored my windows partition perfectly.

I don’t have any sensitive data at the moment as it’s all cloud based but losing any week days setting up stuff isn’t acceptable as I’m a student.

Your best bet for extensions is to disable them before update, and renable relevant ones after. For instance, I know the new sound switcher is in 43, so I won’t need that extension anymore.

If you NEED them all to work, don’t update until you know they are working → check out the comments on AUR/gnome-extensions where you installed to see comments.

My last update from 41-42 was terribly uneventful to be honest. Everything on my particular computer just worked.

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Whoa Scotty, too many :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: Actually I have 16, but some are disabled in case I want a change. For example, I switch from Dash to Dock to Dash to Panel and still can’t decide.

At least it’s a real backup, as opposed to a snapshot with Timeshift. Also keep a copy of your dot files. They can save you a lot of time when you don’t need an entire image restore just to get working again.

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Good question, I used it 20+ years ago and it was klunky and slow, and I did not like it. I did not give it a chance to survive. When I first installed :enos: in February this year, I did the KDE version, and I found it too time consuming to get the workflow the way I needed it.

Then I tried converting to KDE to Gnome 41 on the same user account (that’s a no-no), but there were too many conflicting files with KDE remnants blocking things. Since I have everything backed up like you, I decided to bite the bullet and installed a fresh :enos: with Gnome 42 on a BTRFS system and have never looked back.

As Scotty said you might need some extensions, but I have a workflow for me that is die for. It saves me hours at the keyboard every day and everything is exactly where I want it.

So, once you have such a perfect system and its running super fast on a 7 year old Acer laptop with 8GB ram, I am pretty hesitant to dive headlong into 43 until at least the point release, and I work out what what extensions will be redunadant since Gnome is incorporating the good ones slowly, and which ones are breaking for other more adventurous folks.

I am already hearing stories from Fedora users with broken extensions, so just use what works for you and don’t jeopardize your studies with a broken working tool, just to try the latest.

Use a KVM if you are curious to try out Fedora with Gnome 43 default on btrfs, but I have firmly planted the flag on :enos_flag:

I did that, but with a perfectly working, fully setup, but un-backed-up, copy of
Ubuntu 22.04 LTS.Totally borked my system. Kind of salty about that one still.

Any resources or guidance on where exactly my dot files are located would be helpful. I wanna do the git branching backup method for those, customized per machine.

https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=278319

This was one of my first posts on this board:

Also, check out the ArchWiki:
https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/Dotfiles

Assuming the Maintainers are active they will likely be ready before or shortly after the new GNOME release is out. Usually by the time the GNOME maintainer is done for Arch the extension are too.

Usually conflicts are caused by user dotfiles so creating a user per major DE can avoid conflicts.

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I just checked my install right now. I only have 6 extensions installed.

This is a fantastic fail safe for a system backup. I use Timeshift in case I need to revert most things, but a regularly completed disk image from Clonezilla is an absolute, restore it like it was fall back that will get you running in 10 mins or less. I would use alternate means for data backup purposes but you already mentioned it’s all in the cloud (separate philosophical discussion on that front).

Some folks see how low they can get their RAM usage, some folks see how fast they can get their boot time, and some folks see how few extensions are needed for their DE to work! :bomb:

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I only use 2

User Themes
Just Perfection

And that handles moving the clock/notification and enabling themes. I think I might be able to cut out user themes as JP I think handles that too

It packs a lot of features. Maybe Gnome will incorporate it in 44.