Deepin 23 Alpha Released With a New Installer, Three Flow Design Apps, and a New Backup and Restore Tool


  • Deepin 23 alpha is an under-development Linux distribution, and it is not stable enough to be used as a daily operating system. 
  • Some of the basic functions of the operating system such as network connectivity are not working in this version, as the purpose of this alpha release is to enable users to see the progress in development, and their excitement for the final version.
  • We advise you to test this alpha release on a virtual machine app rather than your PC. {alertError}


While work is underway on version 23 of Deepin to be released next year, the Linux distribution team has released an alpha version of this upcoming version, so that users can get a glimpse of the great features and aesthetics that await them in the 'final version' of Deepin 23.

Deepin is a Linux distro based on the stable version of  Debian, and it has a self-developed desktop interface with its own core applications. With Deepin 23, the distribution is striving to become an independent upstream distribution.

As part of this change, the development team decided to make several changes to the Linux distribution, among them is a new design language called "Flow Design" for Deepin's core applications, that focuses on "simplicity, friendliness, and vitality principles" (according to the dev team). "From icon repainting to new color palettes, from shadow and blur optimization to overlaid background saturation, and from layout and controls to animation design, all of them are natural and proper", the team adds.

The first Deepin apps that use the Flow design are Music, Album and Image Viewer.

Thanks to the Flow design, Deepin Music has got an updated user interface, with improved animation effects and an optimized interface layout. The app now supports dragging songs up and down to play them in the order you want, it has more buttons in the playlist menu to make operations quicker and easier, supports shortcuts, and the album cover is also displayed at the top of the details page to give better and more beautiful effects.

The Deepin image viewer application, in addition to an updated user interface, gained support for auto-hide controls, whereby when the user reduces the size of the app window to a certain value, the title bar and toolbar will be hidden automatically to avoid covering part of the image. Moreover, the Live Text (OCR) function has been added to the image viewer to improve the efficiency of text extraction in images and help the user to get accurate and faster results.

Deepin Photo Album also got some adjustments in layout and improvement in its classification of functions to make it simple and easy to use without having to do many steps and adjust unnecessary and complicated settings just to use the photo album app. An option to view photos by year, day, and month has also been added to make it easier for users to organize and find their photos, as well as add new display modes to the app so that you can preview your photos in original ratios or in square thumbnails.

Deepin 23 will also come with a new self-developed packaging format called "Linglong", a packaging format that brings together the idea of AppImages and Flatpak applications, where applications with all their dependencies are bundled into a portable executable file with controlled permissions.

Linglong applications have the “.uab” extension, and you can download them from the Linglong store website. these applications run without the need to install them just by double-clicking on the "uab" files, and once you run a Linglong app for one time, it becomes integrated into the OS app menu or launcher, just like any other regular installed application, and in case you wish to uninstall the app, all that you have do is deleting the uab file from your system.

Linglong applications run in an isolated container to protect the system from any harm that can happen due to a wrong application upgrade or if a malicious application is installed by mistake, also these applications cannot execute any command with suid and guid privileges (they are often used to allow users on a computer system to run programs with temporarily elevated privileges in order to perform a specific task), making it one of the safest and reliable Linux packaging format.

In Deepin 23, most of the core apps are in this new packaging format including Mail, Music, Image Viewer, Album, Browser, Movie, Text Editor, and Calendar, ensuring a great user experience out of the box. 

Moreover, Deepin 23 Alpha comes with an all-new system installer, where the installer pages' design has been updated to give it a more beautiful look, the steps needed to install the system have been simplified, the full-disk installation and advanced installation options have been improved, and a new option for a custom installation method has also been added, to meet various users' needs.

Last but not least, The Backup and Restore functionality has been separated from the system settings app and become an independent desktop application with a lot of new features. 

The Backup and Restore application now supports creating a system restore point (as in Microsoft Windows) to be able to restore the OS in case something happens that prevents it from booting again, you can also  to backup all your home folders and data to an external storage disk and restore them from it, and there is also an option to export a full backup of the operating system in the form of an "uimg" file, for easier system restoration in emergency cases.

As before, there is an option to reset Deepin from the same app as well, which helps you to get a fresh start without having to reinstall the whole operating system from scratch.

Deepin 23 Alpha comes also with a bunch of bug fixes alongside a list of known issues to be fixed by the development team ahead of the final release launch (which is normal for an alpha operating system release), and it is available for download for free on the distro website for x86_64 (64 bit), T-HEAD TH1520 Light-a RISC-V, and StarFive VisionFive v1 RISC-V processors, via the following links:

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