Shortly after the announcement of 4.0.2, a bug was discovered in the dom0 kernel included in that release. This was not a security-related bug, but rather a compatibility bug that would have presented installation difficulties for the majority of users. (Users on unaffected hardware were safe to continue using the release.) This bug has now been fixed, along with a few installer fixes, resulting in 4.0.3-rc1.

In keeping with standard semantic versioning, we’ve incremented the patch version number to reflect this latest fix, so 4.0.2 has become 4.0.3. This is the first release candidate (rc1) for 4.0.3, because we’d like to give the community an opportunity to test it before declaring it to be the stable release. However, the changes from 4.0.2 are minimal, and 4.0.2 itself was preceded by three release candidates, so we plan to keep the 4.0.3-rc1 testing period brief.

As with 4.0.2, 4.0.3-rc1 includes many updates over the initial 4.0 release, in particular:

  • All 4.0 dom0 updates to date
  • Fedora 30 TemplateVM
  • Debian 10 TemplateVM
  • Whonix 15 Gateway and Workstation TemplateVMs
  • Linux kernel 4.19 by default

Qubes 4.0.3-rc1 is available on the Downloads page.

What is a patch release?

A patch release does not designate a separate, new major or minor release of Qubes OS. Rather, it designates its respective major or minor release (in this case, 4.0) inclusive of all updates up to a certain point. Installing Qubes 4.0 and fully updating it results in the same system as installing Qubes 4.0.3.

What should I do?

If you installed Qubes 4.0, 4.0.1, or 4.0.2 and have fully updated, then your system is already equivalent to a Qubes 4.0.3 installation. No further action is required.

Regardless of your current OS, if you wish to install (or reinstall) Qubes 4.0 for any reason, then the 4.0.3 ISO makes this more convenient and secure, since it bundles all Qubes 4.0 updates to date.

Note: The Qubes 4.0.3 ISO will not fit on a single-layer DVD (for the technical details underlying this, please see issue #5367). Instead, we recommend copying the ISO onto a sufficiently large USB drive. However, if you would prefer to use optical media, we suggest selecting a dual-layer DVD or Blu-ray disc.

Thank you to all the release candidate users for testing this release and reporting issues!

Release candidate planning

If no major issues are discovered in 4.0.3-rc1, we expect the stable release of 4.0.3 to follow sometime next week. As usual, you can help by reporting any bugs you encounter.