The Linux Mint project head, Clem Lefebvre, has officially announced the availability of Linux Mint Debian Edition (LMDE) 4, just days after Neowin reported that stable builds were appearing on third-party mirrors. With today’s launch, we get a detailed list of all the new features and instructions on how to upgrade LMDE 3 installations.
The biggest change in this update is that it’s based on Debian 10 meaning newer packages will be available to download and new hardware is supported. Other features include home directory encryption, NVMe support, SecureBoot support, support for Btrfs submodules, a new installer, improvements from Linux Mint 19.3 such as Cinnamon 4.4 and new default apps, and a few other smaller changes.
If you like to experiment with Linux operating systems in a virtual machine, LMDE 4 now defaults to a minimum resolution of 1024x768 in VirtualBox, making it feel a bit more like you’re running it on an actual computer. If you do decide to install this version, be sure to check out the release notes as there are a couple of issues with some programs and settings that you should be aware of.
For those running LMDE 3, it is possible to upgrade to LMDE 4 without performing a clean installation. To do this, closely follow the instructions of this tutorial to avoid making any mistakes. If you run into any issues, feel free to leave a comment on this blog post where you’ll be offered some assistance.
LMDE is the Linux Mint project’s backup plan should Ubuntu, the base for other Linux Mint releases, ever disappear. Aside from that, LMDE also ensures that any software that the project develops continues to be compatible outside of Ubuntu. If you already run Linux Mint 18.x, or 19.x and you’re happy with the performance, there is no need to switch to LMDE as it largely behaves in the same manner as the mainline releases.