What's new in September: Windows Subsystem for Linux, SteamOS 3.5, and more

New Steam Deck OS updates, web version of Photoshop with AI tools, introduction of Unity Runtime Fee, and much more in the September News Digest.

is*hosting team 3 Oct 2023 4 min reading
What's new in September: Windows Subsystem for Linux, SteamOS 3.5, and more

The introduction of a commission for installing projects on Unity, access to the beta version of Chat Copilot from GitHub for more efficient work with code, the introduction of blockchain in Telegram and crypto wallets for each user, a web version of Photoshop with artificial intelligence and other September news in the monthly digest from is*hosting.

Microsoft released Windows Subsystem for Linux 2.0.0

Microsoft released Windows Subsystem for Linux 2.0.0

Microsoft has updated the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) to version 2.0.0. The new version includes several experimental features to improve WSL's performance and compatibility with Windows.

Automatic memory reclaim: WSL checks if CPU usage is consistently low for 5 minutes and then releases cached memory back to the primary Windows operating system.

Sparse VHD image compression allows you to automatically reduce the size of the virtual hard disk when you delete data from Linux, saving space on physical media.

Mirrored mode networking is a new networking mode for WSLs that uses mirroring of Windows and Linux network interfaces. The mirrored mode supports IPv6, multicast, VPN, and access to the WSL from the local system (LAN).

DNS tunneling changes the method of determining IP addresses without the need to exchange additional information to improve network compatibility. The new Hyper-V firewall applies the same traffic filtering rules to the WSL as in native Windows.

It's worth noting that the DNS tunneling and Hyper-V firewall features are now only available to members of the Windows Canary and Release Preview channel.

Overall, the update improves WSL's performance and compatibility with Windows, along with new features and bug fixes.

GitHub has opened access to Copilot Chat beta

GitHub has opened access to Copilot Chat beta

All current subscribers to GitHub Copilot in Visual Studio and VS Code will have access to the beta version of Copilot Chat. Copilot Chat will be free for some users, and the Copilot subscription itself is $10 per month.

Developers can use Copilot Chat in the sidebar of the IDE, like similar chatbots, to talk about coding in general and current projects. GitHub has stated that context makes Copilot a more useful tool than a simple chatbot. For example, Copilot Chat can analyze code, identify bugs, and suggest best practices, fixes, and improvements.

This real-time universal assistant approach can significantly speed up the work of developers, with no need to switch to third-party services and the ability to get help right “next to the code.”

Release SteamOS 3.5

Release SteamOS 3.5

Valve has released a preview of the Steam Deck OS update to version 3.5. Several new features and improvements have been introduced to enhance the user experience of the Steam Deck handheld console.

Significant changes have been made to the screen performance in the updated version. Steam Deck's color rendering now emulates the sRGB gamut by default, making colors appear slightly warmer and brighter. HDR can be enabled in the display settings if the external display supports it, and VRR if the USB-C adapter supports it.

Among other changes:

  • Added new keyboard shortcuts to quickly open preferences.
  • Improved transitions between applications.
  • Improved Bluetooth connection stability.
  • Updated video drivers and many performance and functionality improvements. 
  • Improved Starfield performance.

The Arch Linux base update includes the latest performance, security, and stability fixes from the packages on which SteamOS is based, as well as KDE Plasma.

TON wallet for all Telegram users

TON wallet for all Telegram users

Pavel Durov announced on his official channel the upcoming innovations in Telegram related to TON. The creator of the messenger has decided to implement blockchain technology more deeply, for which he has developed a mini-application called TON Wallet for Telegram. 

Starting from November 2023, TON Wallet will be included in the settings menu for Telegram users outside the US and some other countries. Durov mentions that if you add @wallet via the search bar and have the latest version of the Telegram app installed, you can already see the wallet in the menu. 

The app inside Telegram makes instant transfers to contacts in the messenger as easy as sending a message. Bitcoin, USDT, and Toncoin are currently presented as cryptocurrencies for transactions. Topping up can be done using a bank card, another wallet, or by purchasing on a P2P marketplace.

Web version of Photoshop with AI tools

Web version of Photoshop with AI tools

Adobe has unveiled a beta version of Photoshop on the web, making the artificial intelligence photo editing program available without installing the program. The software integrates Firefly AI tools previously only available in the desktop version.

Generative Fill and Expand tools are available in the web version for adding and removing images with text prompts. Basic Photoshop tools and a collaborative mode are also included.

The interface has been simplified and optimized (compared to the desktop version) with an updated contextual taskbar that shows you the most important steps to work with. At the same time, you can remove the grouping of some tools and use the familiar Photoshop panel.

There will probably be no free or partially free web version of the popular program, but you can check the work with the help of free interactive demonstrations and tutorials. Photoshop Web Service is included with all paid plans starting at $9.99.


Why was the Unity Runtime Fee introduced?

Why was the Unity Runtime Fee introduced?

Unity decided to build a new monetization model and announced the introduction of the Unity Runtime Fee in mid-September, which will be charged to developers of Unity-based projects if the number of installations of their games exceeds a certain pore value. The change is expected to take effect in 2024.

The notorious decision of the Unity management has angered many developers who criticized the Unity Runtime Fee. Depending on the level of cooperation between developers and Unity, if the game statistics exceed the thresholds of profit and number of installations, then application creators will have to pay Unity a small fixed commission for each new installation of the title.

It is believed that the commission will only increase costs for project creators without bringing any benefits for using the engine. Many developers are deciding to move projects to another engine.

At the same time, the company responded to community feedback, and Unity Create head Mark Whitten explained that the new program should not affect new, only developing projects, and current teams of large Unity-based applications will be able to calculate the approximate number of installations independently and include the amount of commission in the budget. Whitten understands all the adverse reactions but does not call to trust the company unconditionally, only to make their own decisions.


Meanwhile, Terraria developer Re-Logic Studios has donated two tranches of $100,000 each to the developers of Godot and FNA to help some of the project's creators switch engines from Unity.


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