• Pop!_Planet is still very much under development. Data for the wiki is being sourced from the Arch Linux and Ubuntu wikis, along with a bunch of completely unique content specific to Pop!_OS, and sourcing, converting and updating that content takes time; please be patient. If you can't find what you're looking for here, check the Arch Linux and Ubuntu wikis.

Popaganda: Differentiation

derpOmattic

Pop!_Muse
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While the original vision System76 had for Pop!_OS was remarkable, they probably didn't foresee just how versatile or formidable it would become. An operating system uniquely designed to enable software development and computer science is indeed a lofty goal. From the Pop!_OS website the following quote indicates the direction Pop initially headed down;

"We believe the computer and operating system are the most powerful and versatile tools ever created. We're building an OS for the software developer, maker, and computer science professional who uses their computer as a tool to discover and create.

Their website also makes it apparent that System76 caters to machine learning and artificial intelligence by including toolkits with native access, which is no small feat. Further down we find this gem;

"We're focusing on you in a different way than anyone else. Our approach centers on user testing and careful analysis with the singular goal of delivering the most productive and gorgeous platform for developing your next creation. It's not just about making the easiest tool, it's about making the best tool. And we're just getting started.

Seeing praises from both new and experienced Pop!_OS community members, it's clear System76 has delivered by creating one of the best stable Linux distributions in existence. Pop!_OS is designed to enhance your workflow and the Pop theme indeed makes it gorgeous, and a pleasure to use.

One of the reasons that Pop!_OS has skyrocketed in popularity is the introduction of an install image that includes proprietary NVIDIA drivers. This inclusion is a genuine game-changer in the Linux universe, particularly for those in the gaming community. As pointed out in the review linked below, Pop came out on top against several popular Linux distributions in a multi-faceted test to establish which platform is easiest to set up and play your favorite games;


For me, though, one of the most impressive and outstanding benefits of using Pop!_OS is the speed at which System76 fixes bugs, updates packages, and patches Linux security concerns! System76 developers are enthusiastic about keeping Pop!_OS on the "extremely stable edge," a phenomenon I've never experienced with Ubuntu, or most other distributions for that matter. System76's lead desktop developer Michael Murphy has begun a series of weekly news updates on Pop!_Planet, aptly named 'This Week In Pop', or otherwise known as TWIP, which keeps the community informed on Pop's current projects, added packages, updates, and plans – effectively a ‘rolling road map'. An excellent example of System76's ability to stay on top of issues occurred recently when eight security vulnerabilities were announced in the NVIDIA driver. As reported in TWIP #3, System76 decided to;

"skip packaging of the latest 410 driver, and instead opted for packaging the new 418.43 driver, with transitional packaging to migrate everyone to the new release. As a result, we're perhaps the first binary Linux distribution to offer the 418 driver in our repos.

Lightning fast fixes are almost a common occurrence with Pop!_OS and ensure that it is always in an optimal state.

A staggering amount of work has just gone into improving the Pop!_OS upgrade daemon and installer, despite the fact it was already an excellent product. These additions will enhance the stability of the processes, making them 'out of this world.' For example, the added features like "Refresh OS" will simplify maintenance and troubleshooting, while the almost complete "Install Alongside OS" will make Pop!_OS much more straightforward to install in a dual boot scenario. You can read more TWIP here and here.

"Refresh OS Refresh Install allows you to reinstall Pop!_OS without losing Users and any data in your Home directories. This feature is available from the recovery partition on new installations (not upgrades) of both 19.04 and 18.04. For more information on how to do this, see our article on using the recovery partition.

The addition of the features mentioned above happened to coincide nicely with the upgrade from version 18.10 to 19.04. The release of 19.04 brought the newly available GNOME 3.32 desktop environment which brought some long-awaited functionality to the GNOME Control Center. Among other patches, GNOME 3.32 introduced a new menu to control applications through the Control Center and an option in "Appearance" which allows quickly switching to Dark or Slim modes. I find the reintroduction of the "Network Manager Connections Editor" under the guise of "Advanced Network Configuration" to be a welcome change. Unlike its predecessor, Advanced Network Configuration is a standalone application which can be found in the All Applications menu under "System." There were too many changes in this upgrade to list in such a brief rundown, but if you want to learn more, it is worthwhile to read the recent TWIP posts.

I've been advocating for some time now that Pop!_OS is a quantum leap different to Ubuntu despite their undeniable connection. Right from the get-go, I could tell Pop was snappier, more stable, and usable for everyone, experienced or not. Searching for an explanation, I soon discovered that the System76 developers were rewriting critical system components in a modern and powerful code language called "Rust." I've seen some people refer to Pop!_OS as a re-skinned Ubuntu, but that description is unequivocally erroneous because Pop!_OS also has its roots in elementary OS, and would be more accurately described as: 'The best bits of both, with the crud removed!" An excellent example of how Pop!_OS is more user-friendly is the fact that they remove Canonical's data-collection patches.

"I've seen some people refer to Pop!_OS as a re-skinned Ubuntu, but that description is unequivocally erroneous..."
Another giant leap towards being thoroughly independent of Ubuntu is the buzz around the effort to re-write Launchpad. For those who aren't quite sure what that means, I should mention that Pop_OS and Ubuntu both share a heritage with the iconic Debian operating system, and Launchpad helps manage Debian packages. Why re-write it though? What benefit could a re-write give that would require a monumental project like this? It would result in Pop!_OS not relying on an outdated, proprietary service, for managing Debian packages. Also, Launchpad doesn't support generating DEP-11 AppStream metadata from packages that already contain AppStream metadata. DEP-11 YAML conversion of XML files is currently necessary for software to show in the Pop!_Shop, Pop's software manager, which is based on elementary OS' App Center. To top it off, Launchpad doesn't support RSS, and the interface is outdated and difficult to navigate. The newly created Launchpad replacement would be open source, which aligns with System76's philosophy.

Pop!_OS is indeed a unique and timely modern operating system for professionals and hobbyists alike. The Gaming community loves it! Software developers along with artificial intelligence enthusiasts are utilizing it. The only thing better than having such an excellent operating system is if it comes in one of System76's Laptops, or open source desktop machines!
 
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