Linux in The News 1-10-22

Last Updated on January 10, 2022 by KC7NYR

PostmarketOS 21.12 Brings Support for More Devices, GNOME 41 Apps, and Sxmo on Wayland

It’s been six months after postmarketOS 21.06, so it’s time for another hefty update that brings support for more devices, the latest mobile desktop environments, improvements, bug fixes, and up-to-date components. Here is postmarketOS 21.12, based on Alpine Linux 3.15.

The wait is over, and the great news is that you can now install postmarketOS on nine new devices, including the Arrow DragonBoard 410c, ODROID HC2, and RockPro64 development boards, PineBook Pro laptop, Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.0 and Samsung Galaxy Tab A 9.7 tablets, as well as Lenovo A6000, Lenovo A6010, and Xiaomi Pocophone F1 smartphones. On the other hand, the new release drops support for the Nokia N900 smartphone.

Probably the main attraction is PINE64’s PineBook Pro ARM laptop, which now has official postmarketOS images with different interfaces, including the KDE Plasma and GNOME desktops, as well as Sway, Phosh, and Console interfaces.

postmarketOS 21.12 ships with the usual mobile-optimized Phosh (GNOME), KDE Plasma Mobile, and Sxmo interfaces. As expected, these have been updated to support the latest and greatest upstream releases.

For example, the GNOME-based Phosh interface now supports the latest GNOME 41 apps, the Plasma Mobile UI is now backed by the latest Plasma Mobile Gear 21.12 software suite, and the Sxmo interface has been ported to Wayland.

New features in this release include TTYescape, a handy tool that uses hardware keys on devices with a physical keyboard to quickly send you to a second TTY so you can launch an on-screen keyboard. This is useful when you need to perform recovery from situations where your only choice was to force reboot the device. TTYescape works with all three interfaces, KDE Plasma Mobile, Phosh, and Sxmo.

Other than that, postmarketOS Tweaks has been updated to version 0.9.0, a release that lets you control the app drawer filter in the Phosh interface and promises much-improved battery life on devices that can go into deep sleep if setting the suspend timeout, which now defaults to 2 minutes.

Also updated are the postmarketos-mkinitfs boot file generator tool, which is now more reliable when updating the kernel and initramfs, as well as the mobile-config-firefox tool, which now features a bottom navigation bar and ships with the uBlock Origin add-on installed by default.

postmarketOS 21.12 is available for download from the official website for a total of 23 officially supported devices. Of course, this is for new installations as existing postmarketOS users can perform an upgrade following these instructions.

Apart from the newly added devices mentioned above, you can also install postmarketOS on ASUS MeMo Pad 7, BQ Aquaris X5, Motorola Moto G4 Play, OnePlus 6, OnePlus 6T, PinePhone, PineTab, Purism Librem 5, Samsung Galaxy A3 (2015), Samsung Galaxy A5 (2015), Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini Value Edition, Wileyfox Swift, Xiaomi Mi Note 2, and Xiaomi Redmi 2.

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Truly Optimized

DietPi is an extremely lightweight Debian OS, highly optimised for minimal CPU and RAM resource usage, ensuring your SBC always runs at its maximum potential.

Simple interface

DietPi programs use lightweight Whiptail menus. Spend less time staring at the command line, more time enjoying your Pi.


Quickly and easily install popular software “ready to run” and optimised for your system. Only the software you need is installed.


Quickly and effortlessly customize your device’s hardware and software settings for your needs, including network connection and localisation setup.


Quickly and easily backup or restore your DietPi system.

Logging System Choices

You decide how much logging you need. Get a performance boost with DietPi-RAMlog, or, rsyslog and logrotate for log critical servers.

DietPi-Services Control

Control which installed software has higher or lower priority levels: nice, affinity, policy scheduler and more.

DietPi-Update System

DietPi automatically checks for updates and informs you when they are available. Update instantly, without having to write a new image.


Allows you to completely automate a DietPi installation with no user input. Simply by configuring dietpi.txt before powering on.



With DietPi 7.8, DietPi-Dashboard was initially added. This lightweight web dashboard allows you to take advantage of some features offered by your DietPi system, all from your browser.


The main features of the DietPi Dashboard are

  • Display the load (CPU, RAM, disk, network) and show a time series line chart
  • Display and control the services and running processes
  • Installation and removal of software packages (like dietpi-software)
  • Have a terminal session
  • System information with shutdown and restart control
  • File browser
  • Dark/Light theme
  • Viewing of multiple devices on the same page


The main page shown to you by the dashboard, it lets you see many basic statistics about your system, including swap, RAM, CPU, disk, and network usage.

DietPi-Dashboard statistics page


This page lets you view, sort, and control currently running processes.

DietPi-Dashboard processes page


This page lets you view and control running and stopped services.

DietPi-Dashboard services page


This page lets you install and uninstall software (like dietpi-software). Note that, currently, only software that can be installed without interaction can be installed through the software page. If you need to install software that does require interaction, open the Terminal page and run dietpi-software from there.

DietPi-Dashboard software page


This page gives you access to a root terminal from your browser.

DietPi Dashboard Terminal page


This page lets you edit, rename, delete, and create files and directories.

DietPi Dashboard file browser page


DietPi Dashboard has a dark and a light mode.

DietPi Dashboard dark mode


You can also use the dashboard for multiple different devices, on the same page. This requires the other instance to be installed as “backend only”, which can be selected from DietPi v8.0 on, currently in beta:

DietPi Dashboard multi node selection


Since DietPi v7.9, password protection was added to the DietPi Dashboard.

DietPi Dashboard password prompt


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Source code contributor, creator of the DietPi-Dashboard and many software implementations.

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