Even though Linux Mint 18.3, codenamed Sylvia, was released only recently to a huge applause of Linux fans around the world, the developers of this extraordinarily popular distribution of the Linux operating system are already working hard on the next version, Linux Mint 19. If you can’t wait for the official release date to be announced and would like to know right now when Linux Mint 19 is coming and what features you can expect to see, this article is for you.
Linux Mint Release Cycle
Because Linux Mint developers have yet to announce the official release date of Linux Mint 19, we need to take a closer look at the release cycle of Linux Mint and compare it to the release cycle of the distribution Linux Mint is based on, Ubuntu, to determine when Linux Mint 19 is likely to arrive.
Ubuntu follows a fixed release schedule, with one release in October and one release in April. To compensate for year-end holidays, April releases follow a 27-week schedule, instead of the 25-week schedule of October releases.
Unlike Ubuntu, Linux Mint doesn’t follow a fixed released schedule. Linux Mint developers publish new releases when they are considered ready, which has traditionally been approximately one month after Ubuntu releases. For example, Ubuntu 17.10 Artful Aardvark was released on October 19, 2017, and Linux Mint 18.3 was released on November 27, 2017.
Because Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Bionic Beaver is due for release on April 26, 2018, we can expect Linux Mint 19 to be released in either late May or early June 2018.
What to Expect from Linux Mint 19
There are many exciting goals on the Linux Mint 19 roadmap to look forward to. To start with, Linux Mint developers would like to make the distribution even more accessible to beginners by adding contextual hints and guides to the Mint Welcome Screen. For example, the hints could suggest popular applications and settings or recommend users to download codecs when they encounter a music or video file that cannot be played.
Linux Mint developers would also like to revamp some of the aging artwork that can be found throughout the distribution to increase compatibility with modern ultra-high-definition displays. This includes Mint Welcome Screen icons and Cinnamon startup application icons, both of which are currently blurry on displays with very high resolutions.
The most noteworthy under-the-hood changes include a new version of the Mint Update Manager, which is responsible for installing security updates and new versions of packages. Currently, the Mint Update Manager can remove sensitive packages to resolve dependency issues, potentially causing serious problems that can even break the entire operating system. Naturally, Linux Mint developers would like to prevent this from happening.
If you enjoy using Nemo, the official file manager for the Cinnamon desktop, you have a lot to look forward to as well. In Linux Mint 19, Nemo’s file search feature will be greatly improved, and so will be its general performance and ability to quickly render very large collections of files.
To summarize everything, Linux Mint 19 will likely be released in either late May or early June 2018, and it will feature numerous improvements intended to make this popular Linux distribution even better for beginners and seasoned Linux veterans alike.