I’m on Ubuntu 22.04 with Gnome and Wayland. I’m thinking of switching to Tumbleweed. I’ve heard that new versions of Gnome often break existing Gnome extensions. Correct me if I’m wrong, but my understanding is that shortly after a new version of Gnome is out it will go into Tumbleweed.
I’m a big fan of the Gnome extension called Dash to Panel (DTP) and don’t want to do without it. So if I’m on Tumbleweed and a new version of Gnome comes out, would I have to delay all Tumbleweed updates until a new compatible version of DTP comes out?
You’re correct that extension authors will, by necessity, always have a moving target to hit with GNOME releases, and that some things take until after the GNOME release to get updated (and some extensions simply never do).
And yes, Tumbleweed as a principle follows upstream development fairly closely and quickly, while still testing the overall distribution via openQA with each snapshot publication. So overall, the more GNOME extensions you rely on, the higher the chance is that you’ll eventually run into something breaking because an upstream change in GNOME that doesn’t break the overall distribution (hence passing QA and being published in Tumbleweed) does in fact break one of the extensions you’ve installed.
Here’s my opinion / personal experience…I was also an avid Dash to Panel and ArcMenu user, after trying for a while and eventually failing at feeling comfortable with the intended GNOME workflow. After enough instances of extension-related issues causing a full shell + applications crash, or a full system freeze, I tried KDE Plasma as a desktop environment, and found that it fit the workflow I was looking for much better without having to chase down extension issues regularly.
If there are other reasons why you’d prefer to stick with GNOME, though, and if Dash to Panel is the only extension that you use, then it does look like in the near-term / for the overhaul of how extensions need built for the upcoming GNOME 45, the Dash to Panel primary maintainer is pretty darn on top of things:
Hope this helps,