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Linux Mint 15 'Olivia' Is Out

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the linux-mint-16-unlikely-to-be-called-'newton-john' dept.

Open Source 185

An anonymous reader writes "The Linux Mint blog today announced the full release of Linux Mint 15 'Olivia.' Here are the release notes and a list of new features. As before, it's available with either MATE or Cinnamon as a desktop environment. The included version of MATE has been upgrade to 1.6, which saw many old and deprecated packages replaced with newer technologies. Cinnamon has gone to 1.8, which improved the file manager, added support for 'desklets' (essentially desktop widgets), and completed the transition away from Gnome Control Center to Cinnamon's own settings panel. Other new features of Linux Mint 15 include improved login screen applications (one of which is an HTML greeter that supports HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, and WebGL), a tool developed from the ground up to manage software sources in Mint, and a vastly improved driver manager. The project's website sums it up simply: 'Linux Mint 15 is the most ambitious release since the start of the project.'"

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185 comments

Sweet... (1, Informative)

interval1066 (668936) | about a year ago | (#43852873)

...I'm going to try it out later today.

Re:Sweet... (1)

RedHackTea (2779623) | about a year ago | (#43853317)

Me too. I hope it still fits on a 1GB flash drive (that's how I installed the last version). I'll never install with CDs/DVDs again! (Unless I buy a computer without BIOS support for booting USB.) It'd be nice if you could install directly from the ISO image file somehow like you can with VMs. I think I remember reading about someone doing this with 2 computers (1 as the server)?

P.S. I use usb-creator-gtk... unetbootin if no X.

Re:Sweet... (2)

i.r.id10t (595143) | about a year ago | (#43853571)

Based on what bittorrent is telling me, the cinnamon disks are 915 or 928mb depending on arch, the mate desktop ones are both "1.0gb" - so they may or may not fit on a 1gb flash drive (depending on if a geek or a marketing designer labeled said drive)

Re:Sweet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854157)

I'm going to torrent it, then seed. Give that uncapped symmetrical fiber a work out.

Re: Sweet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854575)

And I'm going to add my Cross Linux Server javascript attack afterward

Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43852885)

No?

Well at least now I have an excuse for why I didn't get any work done today.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1, Insightful)

sorensenbill (1931240) | about a year ago | (#43852925)

I don't get why so many people get all bent out of shape about this, with /home in it's own partition it's so easy to upgrade with a LiveDVD.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (5, Interesting)

bmo (77928) | about a year ago | (#43852983)

Well, some people have custom stuff in /etc/ and whatnot, so an in-place upgrade is a lot more convenient.

That said, even on Windows, one should have the system/software and user partitions separated, if only for making a nuke-and-pave more painless. The whole business of having everything in C: is just dumb.

--
BMO

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1)

mexsudo (2905137) | about a year ago | (#43853219)

agreed, but it is a pain installing all those little apps and other gizmoes.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853843)

Ninite is your friend.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854183)

That's great if you only want 15 or so programs that ninite can install for Linux. Don't get me wrong, it's still very convenient but it doesn't wipe away the annoyance of reinstalling every program. Even if you keep an apt-get script of everything you've installed you still miss out on anything you've installed from package or compiled manually

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854211)

Does Ninite preserve all of your application settings and automatically apply them when reinstalling? Additionally, by the looks of their web site, they only support a very limited set of applications.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1)

KiloByte (825081) | about a year ago | (#43853465)

Or preferably, merely on different btrfs subvolumes. No need to micromanage free space this way, you can test upgrades, etc.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853531)

Ever tried to use an NFTS volume for your /home partition? (So it's accessible from Windows.)

Don't bother, you can't. Pulseaudio of all things won't let you.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854111)

Why would you do something like that, so you can spam windows with all the useless .folders and .files?

This guy has a better idea [askubuntu.com]. And it is objectively better, don't tell me "wah, i have to do a workaround and it's keeping me from filling the ntfs partition with cruft".

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853587)

We all see your user name, there's no reason to use it as your sig.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1)

justthinkit (954982) | about a year ago | (#43854103)

We all can identify you by your style of writing -- drawing strength from anonymity, the coward within you comes quivering to the fore as you shake your jowels at someone more constructive than yourself. No need for you to have that as your user name.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year ago | (#43854509)

In XP, you could make the target drive of My Documents something other than C:\ But I've not figured out how to do it in Windows 7, or even IF it can be done or not. In fact, that's the only reason to have separate partitions, or else, the old habit of making C a small fraction of the drive and D everything else is really lame

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | about a year ago | (#43854917)

I can think of two places where there's custom stuff in a typical distro (which probably wouldn't be in a separate partition): /etc, where you might have some special configuration stuff (I have some custom udev rules, like for a USB device), and /usr/local. There might also be some stuff in /opt, for proprietary programs that may install themselves there.

Inexperience Is Not A Valid Decision Maker (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853307)

I don't get why so many people get all bent out of shape about this, with /home in it's own partition it's so easy to upgrade with a LiveDVD.

This indicates a CLEAR lack of experience on your part. Come back to us in a few years, after you have done a few installs with customized packages and configurations, that have worked untouched for a few years. How about your Postfix/antispam configuration, or your nightly backup schedule/app, or your UPS shutdown config, and much more? By then you will have completely forgotten half of what you have running, let alone all the custom configuration you've done. You do your upgrade and BAM nothing works anymore. When you've spent day/weeks reconfiguring, rebuilding, repairing and getting stuff back close to the way they were, you'll quickly tire or upgrades destroying your working setups.

Safe(!) in-place upgrades are mandatory for today's OSes. If yours doesn't have it, it sucks. If you don't see the need for it, your...

Re:Inexperience Is Not A Valid Decision Maker (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853769)

This is a possibility any time you upgrade, even if it's not a distro upgrade. Undocumented features or even a shoddy installer can totally fubar a long-standing config that, if you are remiss in your backups, you will have to rebuild from scratch. If you're running this kind of setup without a BMR option, then you're asking for trouble; if you do have a BMR option, then QYB and do the upgrade.

In-place is faster, when it works, but should never be relied upon as safe. Ever. EVER.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1)

i.r.id10t (595143) | about a year ago | (#43854047)

True, and that is what I used to do when I used slackware.

But Mint is based on Debian and Ubuntu. Mint has apt in it.

*Why* should a distro with such a great package manager force you to reinstall for every upgrade?

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (1)

Misch (158807) | about a year ago | (#43854837)

You don't have to [linuxmint.com].

Mint also has a pretty good backup program (mintBackup) that remembers the software packages you had installed and you can install them again later.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854431)

Sorry, an operating system that doesn't have an upgrade path is a no-no for me. Reinstalling isn't an upgrade path. I just don't believe all my settings and custom scripts (that I don't even remember where they are and what problem they were supposed to fix) will be magically reapplied.

Upgrade in place is worthless anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854455)

I've always been afraid to use upgrade-in-place due to lack of confidence in open source types to accomplish such a feat without screwing something up. ...and indeed, after ten years of refusing to use it, I once decided to allow Ubuntu to do it, and it killed itself. So it doesn't matter if the feature exists or not as I'll never use it again anyway.

Now if they could bother themselves to cease to strip out Debian's support for full disk encryption, that I'd be excited about. Also, if they could do it correctly, by also encrypting the temp and swap partitions with a random key at each boot, that would leave me positively ecstatic. Presently, if I want full disk encryption, I'm forced to use Debian, which I'd rather avoid since it's a bit too freetarded. While Debian won't set up full disk encryption correctly by default, it's partition & LVM tool is sophisticated enough to allow you to do it manually.

Re:Did they fix upgrade-in-place? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853947)

Just change the repos:
http://linuxg.net/how-to-update-upgrade-from-linux-mint-14-nadia-to-linux-mint-15-olivia/

I liked that ubuntu fixed it with their 'do-release-upgrade' command.

Been using it since the RC came out (1)

sorensenbill (1931240) | about a year ago | (#43852905)

I love it, I've been with Mint since Fedora switched up the UI too much for me with Gnome 3. Both my laser printer and USB wifi adapter worked turn-key and no problems with my Nvidia graphics card. Easy to install onto a fully encrypted LVM too for only a few extra minutes and a LiveDVD.

Cinnamon Window Grouping (4, Interesting)

n1ywb (555767) | about a year ago | (#43852911)

So when is Cinnamon going to support window grouping "out of the box"? I know there's a 3rd party applet for it, I tried it, it was buggy and kludgy. Despite members of the community clamoring for it, the devs claim that not having it is a "design decision". So it's a design decision to make it frustrating and difficult to find the right window when I have a many windows open, which I usually do, because I'm a software developer and power user? It's a design decision to ignore the requirements of the Linux Mint Cinnamon Edition community?/rant

Overall I have to say I've been very happy with Linux Mint. It really "just works" and I wouldn't even consider switching to another distro, the above complaint notwidthstanding. Cinnamon is mostly sexy and cool.

Re:Cinnamon Window Grouping (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853683)

No grouping windows is a wonderful feature. Few GUI design decisions bother me more than window grouping, it's slow and unintuitive. I think it's a really good move on the developers not to put such a feature in Cinnamon, especially when there are plugins for people who do want it. It's definitely not something people should have to deal with by default.

Re:Cinnamon Window Grouping (2)

ADRA (37398) | about a year ago | (#43853751)

Not all users use their desktops the same way. If window groups on by default adds extra complexity for everyone else, then its a lot less appealing for mass adoption. If you can trivially add an extension that does exactly what you need it to, I fail to see the problem with this solution. If I want to add ad-blocking, or development tools, or custom search providers on my web browser, I'm glad that Firefox makes it fast and trivially easy to do so.

Maybe giving a better explorability or curation for commonly used extensions could help that, but honestly I don't use Cinnamon, so I'm not the one to say.

Re:Cinnamon Window Grouping (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854447)

If you can trivially add an extension that does exactly what you need it to, I fail to see the problem with this solution.

As he said: "I know there's a 3rd party applet for it, I tried it, it was buggy and kludgy".

By making it integrated in the core, even as a disabled-by-default option, we can hope that it will be much better maintained and integrated

I for one use neither cinnamon nor GNOME because of the lack of proper desktop-on-a-grid (nxm desktops instead of 1xn).

Why do we care about diff distro releases? (1, Insightful)

Formorian (1111751) | about a year ago | (#43852939)

Even if you posted Lubuntu's releases (the distro I use) I would still be posting this. Why do we care about random distro releases?

Sure Linux Kernels, but beyond that, who cares?

If you are a fan of a specific distro, you probably already know a new one was released.

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853047)

Maybe because it's interesting to know about different distros than the "chosen one" you use.

Sometimes a new distro highlights can be a turning point for a sick and tired user of an old retro distro.

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year ago | (#43854537)

But there are some 100 different distros. How do we select which get covered & which don't? So far, I've seen /. cover Red Hat, Fedora, Debian, Ubuntu, Mint, Mageia, Crunchbang, Slackware, Gentoo. So what's the criteria under which a distro is NOT worth covering?

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853067)

Not quite. I'm very fond of my Linux Mint, but I'm hardly a fan. I'm a fan of some games and movies, and I use the desktop for work. It's nice to know that a new one is out.

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853095)

Maybe because people don't know every single distro out there and a new release is a good way for someone to be introduced to the distro...

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (4, Informative)

TopSpin (753) | about a year ago | (#43853189)

Sure Linux Kernels, but beyond that, who cares?

I do. I have been looking forward to Mint 15 for a while and so have a lot of others. I appreciate that it was posted on Slashdot and I hope others consider trying Mint as a result. Mint deserves the attention because Mint is an antidote to terrible Linux desktop environments.

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (1)

Formorian (1111751) | about a year ago | (#43854445)

Lubuntu. Clean, small, fast. What more you need?

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854719)

Clean, small, fast. That's Mint alright, and I'm not craving for a fixed up version of Ubuntu.

Because (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853417)

Even if you posted Lubuntu's releases (the distro I use) I would still be posting this. Why do we care about random distro releases?

Sure Linux Kernels, but beyond that, who cares?

If you are a fan of a specific distro, you probably already know a new one was released.

Other people may not know about it.

I'm getting ready to do a desktop upgrade. This is something I usually avoid because it always causes pain and after avoiding it for a few years, the pain is rather significant. So, when I bite the bullet and do the upgrade, I want to know I'm using the best, most usable, and longest lasting installation available.

Though I am aware of Mint, I have not used it, nor have I been following its development. I know that my distro is no longer good enough and that although Ubuntu is the common favorite, Unity SUCKS and I won;t be switching to Ubuntu.

But, hey, a new version of Mint just dropped! It has the Ubuntu goodness without Unity. I think I'll give it a try and see if I want to use it for my impending upgrade.

You see, way back when, Slashdot was "News for nerds. Stuff that matters." The announcement of a new version of Mint, DistroWatch's #1 for the past year or more, definitely qualifies as "News for nerds. Stuff that matters".

P.S. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853439)

It might be time for a Mac.

There, I said it!

Re:Because (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853889)

although Ubuntu is the common favorite, Unity SUCKS and I won;t be switching to Ubuntu.

I used to do that "Unity sucks" thing but when I actually tried it, I was slightly surprised how smooth it feels. It has a few kinks, but it has stayed as my main desktop since then.

Re:Because (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854133)

Not being able to move the dock is terrible.

Try running as a VM under VMware or Virtual Box in a dual-monitor configuration sometime, and you'll see why the forced dock placement is terrible.

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (1)

Patch86 (1465427) | about a year ago | (#43854073)

News, nerds, etc. That's why I come here for news rather than just reading Reddit/Google News/BBC News/whatever.

You might as well go on a sports website and complain that they post a news update every time a football player transfers team. Seems deadly dull to me, but then that's why I don't read those sorts of sites.

Re:Why do we care about diff distro releases? (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about a year ago | (#43854463)

Why do we care about random distro releases?

Because "we" don't all care about the same things as you.

Linux needs more desktop forks (3, Interesting)

demachina (71715) | about a year ago | (#43853035)

On the one hand it is great that Linux allows people to innovate, and fork when the need arises.

On the other hand the Linux desktop has reached the point that I simply don't want to choose between the myriad of desktops and window managers any more. Just reading Wikipedia on MATE and Cinnamon leaves me shaking my head.

Seems to me that the massive fragmentation of the Linux desktop probably does work for the hard core geeks who can pick the one that scratches their itch. It also gives every programmer who wants to develop a desktop or window manager their own private little place to do it.

On the other hand, Linux on the desktop is pretty much doomed when it comes to any ordinary person just wanting to install it, use it and have it work if the first question they have to deal with is which of 20 UI's and desktops they should pick.

Not sure how you are going to maintain a critical mass of developers and users for testing when resources are scattered across so many, mostly, mediocre UI's and desktops. If you don't have that critical mass, chances are every effort will come up short quality wise.

Developer's thinking about developing a serious app with a lot of UI and desktop integration must cringe at the prospect of doing QA across so many desktop variations and either only support one or give up on supporting Linux all together.

Who would have figured that Android, running a Java front end, would be the one and only place that Linux would have any chance of making it as a consumer OS.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (3, Interesting)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year ago | (#43853147)

Making your app work with Unity and Gnome 3 is bad enough. Throw in Mate or XFCE and you're fucked. Time is always limited, and I don't know about you, but I'd rather spend my time writing a polished app than an unpolished app that's compatible with many different desktops.

Choices have cost: the Linux community's continued refusal to acknowledge this has left the Linux desktop in a continuous state of disrepair.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853213)

Choice is good. GNOME 2.32 had everything in place where I wanted it, how I wanted it to look, with a simplicity that the wife could use. GNOME 3 took all that, threw it out the window, and added in bugs as a bonus. Now instead of being stuck using an environment I don't want, I can continue using the environment I had. There is a big benefit to this. Look at the backlash over Windows 8 for a relatively minor UI change. And you're stuck with it, unless you have the time and skill to futz with third party crap to unbreak your desktop.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853283)

How about separating the core functions from the GUI? That way anyone who's interested can write a GUI wrapper compatible with the DE of his choice and you can concentrate on the one(s) where your core customers reside.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (4, Interesting)

ADRA (37398) | about a year ago | (#43854009)

There is no 'body' in Linux to tackle this problem. The kernel is well managed because by and large its run by one group and they steer with a very clear set of goals. Generally the goals of EVERYONE's use of the kernel is relatively narrow, so there's little need to fork the kernel for any specific work (it usually happens more often as a continuous branch/patch than an actual fork when done).

Now you look into the desktop space, you see many groups operating independently, each of which has philosophical/design/financial/NIH/licensing/etc.. reasons to create another tool vs. using something that people have already invented. You also have the idea that these developers are generally 'chasing innovation' as if they want to invent something that'll be amazing for Z even though we haven't hit X or Y yet.

Ideally, we'd have a world where:
1. Applications were 100% agnostic of Desktop (Any common frameworks would have to be 100% agnostic of desktop, or add very pluggable modular integration so that any desktop could implement)

Eg. If I install Gimp on KDE/XFCE/etc.. desktops, I'd pull in something like this
Gimp
GnomeDependenyLibraries (small direct use libraries)
GTK_compat_common-ui-foundations

Instead, I get
Gimp
GimpDepenenyLibraies (small direct use libraries)
TheKitchenSinkWhichIsMostOfGnome

2. Service layer components should equally be standardized per their function, not per their desktop environment. If they need integration points with the desktop, then as with applications, a clear set of API implementation points should exist to make this straight forward for a desktop developer to implement.

I hate seeing SO many redundant packages being installed because people just don't communicate, or they don't want to use code written by 'those people' or they didn't bother to see that it was already invented, or some other equally pointless meaning. We're generally all adults and we should be doing the mature steps in moving the platform in the right direction. Sadly, unless a very large company comes along and clubs all these other org's over the head with their amazing flexible solution, I don't see things changing any time soon.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

Teun (17872) | about a year ago | (#43853441)

What fragmentation? It's all the same Kernel and by and large the same applications.

The differences between the main Linux distro's are mainly visible in the desktop chosen an felt in the package manager used.
There is no easy (if at all) way to consolidate those in a single distro.

Personally I like the Debian dpkg-based package management and the KDE desktop so I ended up with Kubuntu.

KDE is by now the most complete desktop environment and especially since the intervention of Blue Systems with the best support. See www.bluemintlinux.com
Sure an OpenSuse can be nice too but for that damn package manager...

Linux on the desktop is not about different distro's, it's about hardware manufacturers putting in the effort to build and sell computers with any well integrated version of Linux.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853547)

This!!! You nailed it!!

This is exactly the reason I tried Linux and gave up (twice - once in 2002 then in 2007).

All Linux distros are like religions. They're all based on the same thing, but each has its own little quirks just to differentiate itself from the 200+ crowd (and earn a spot on Distrowatch.) As a result, newcomers get lost choosing a distro and just remain with what they know (Windows).

And the repositories (basically a distro's app store) only make it worse. Linux is open source, but God forbid I run Fedora and want to install a Ubuntu app.

IMHO, Mr. Torvalds should step in and organize / unify this mess if the Year of Linux in the desktop is to ever happen.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (2)

marky_boi (1427845) | about a year ago | (#43853907)

I don't care for the year of the Linux desktop. I like the variety, coz when bad decisions are made I can move on. Mint is the first distro that works the way I do. Windoze users can do whatever the hell they do I don't care.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (3, Insightful)

jones_supa (887896) | about a year ago | (#43853945)

IMHO, Mr. Torvalds should step in and organize / unify this mess if the Year of Linux in the desktop is to ever happen.

As much as some people here may not like him, Mr. Shuttleworth is doing exactly what you described.

Re: Linux needs more desktop forks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854247)

I just tried Mint and for the first time ever a Linux distro found all my hardware and assigned the right drivers. I was excited to finally use Linux. I plugged my pc into my HDTV to watch movies and got no sound over HDMI. The fix included trawling around some config file and figuring a bunch of stuff out.

  I installed Win 8 and it worked out of the box with no additional configuration.

  That is my experience with Linux. If it does what you want great. if it doesn't have fun dialing around unless you're an expert.

Re: Linux needs more desktop forks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854617)

That is my experience with Linux. If it does what you want great. if it doesn't have fun dialing around unless you're an expert.

This experience is the same for any OS: if it works it works, and if it does not, it does not. I had a PC in 2004 (pretty standard stuff for that time) and Windows XP installer would hang on it. Installed Debian on it without problems. Some years later, my sister needed to install some application on his Mac for her Uni classes. The offical procedure was: download some specific version of some compiler and related specific versions of build tools, download dependencies, make, make install, etc etc. I looked at the application website and they did have downloadable .debs.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year ago | (#43854579)

If the sheer #desktops alone weren't enough, you have the different GUI toolkits - Qt and GTK++, and the myriad desktops based on them. Heck, you now even have different DEs based on different versions of the same toolkit - GNOME & Cinnamon based on GTK3, Mate based on GTK2, LXDE & XFCE based on.... what again? On the Qt side, things are slightly better, but you still have KDE and Razor-qt based on Qt 4, but Trinity on Qt3. Oh, and then there's Enlightenment, ScrotWM, WindowMaker, AfterStep, and a whole bunch of others that I've lost count.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

steelfood (895457) | about a year ago | (#43853743)

Who would have figured that Android, running a Java front end, would be the one and only place that Linux would have any chance of making it as a consumer OS.

A central authority always makes things easier. Why do you think history is not littered with democracies and republics, but of monarchies and other dictatorships?

Yes, it'd be nice if all the Linux developers pooled all of their resources into one distro and the libraries around it. But then they'd all be following one person's vision. That's how Apple made OSX the most popular BSD distribution, and how Google's making Android the most popular Linux distribution.

But that is the antithesis of OSS.

I guess in the end, it's unreasonable to expect Linux to be successful as it exists now as a consumer product. With a leader capable of throwing massive amounts of resources, market clout, and strong leadership into a product, it'd be possible.

Hell, we saw a little bit of that with Ubuntu for a short time. They had everything except the market clout. And it was going well too, until that leader (or group of leaders) decided to jump off the deep end and pull everyone else along with. But then the ability to fork and go off on a different direction is what makes the good parts of Ubuntu still alive in the form of Mint.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853897)

But that is the antithesis of OSS.

Open source software is about the source being available not infinite choices that all suck.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

demachina (71715) | about a year ago | (#43854187)

I dont think I advocated "A" central authority, but when there is absolutely no consistency or continuity there is a fair chance it wont be good, it will take a miracle for it to excel, and a fair chance its going to suck.

You might not have to have a dictator but everyone needs to be working on the same code base, using the same frameworks, working to make those excel, and making some compromises. That is how the kernel works mostly. Instead on the desktop you get constant forking and the developer and user base is so diluted nothing is going to succeed.

Android is doing as well as it is because someone at Google is the central authority, despite efforts by Samsung and others to fragment it. Google also has the marketing clout to get people using it. If Android fragments as bad as the Linux desktop, the apps dont work right and a user wont be able to run two different versions because EVERYTHING is different.

For all of you who posted in this thread that GUI X.X works the way I want, well chances are you are one of those hardcore Linux types that want everything a certain way, wont tolerate anything else, not an average person looking for a computer that just works and they can use. You are as much the problem as the developers doing all the forks.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (3, Interesting)

cusco (717999) | about a year ago | (#43854853)

This. I am actually looking for an alternative for Windows 8 (the first OS that I've ever seen that deliberately impedes your work flow), but my previous Linux experiences have left a bad taste in my mouth. From the perspective of a 20-year Windows user, there are two things that would make Linux much more attractive. First, a Linux equivalent to InstallShield, one which detects and installs dependencies, allows configuration customizations, shows you what it's going to do, asks your approval, and then lets you know what it's doing as proceeding and gives you usable error messages. The second would be a file manager which gives a new user 1) some idea where is an appropriate location to save user files, and 2) some system that shows users what is an executable file, a config file, a library, etc. as easily as a user can tell from the Windows file extensions.

The idea of repositories is nice, but having to figure out what to do with the tarball, rpm, whathaveyou, file, wandering about until you find the install directory, flailing about until you figure out which is the executable, trying to launch it while guessing which switches are appropriate, and then finding that it requires some uninstalled prerequisite file (or worse, a different version of one you have installed), is absurd. I liked what I got working in the couple of Linux installed I've done (except the bog-slow version of Google Earth), but getting to that point was ridiculously more difficult than it should have been.

I'm afraid that at this point I'm sounding like some of the thousands of (l)users that I've supported over the years, "I don't care how it does it, I just want it to work!" It's true though, I don't want to become an expert user and THEN become productive with the OS/apps, that's the exact opposite of the way the work flow should go. I need to be able to do my work first, and then I'll take the time to experiment and explore further. That's not the fun, flashy stuff that people want to work on, but that's what Linux needs before I'll recommend it to anyone else.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

dj245 (732906) | about a year ago | (#43854049)

On the one hand it is great that Linux allows people to innovate, and fork when the need arises. On the other hand the Linux desktop has reached the point that I simply don't want to choose between the myriad of desktops and window managers any more.

This probably stems from the fact that it is far more interesting (to most people) to create something, rather than fix something that someone else made which is broken.

There also may be some professors out there who make projects like "write me an rudimentary Z from scratch", then the person just keeps working on the project until it becomes a usable piece of software. I am not a code writer, but in my few computer classes "make me a Z!" was a far more common homework than "Here is a Y, which Bob wrote in ridiculous spaghetti code and has bugs A, B, and C, please fix it".

While the second is arguably a more common skill, I can easilly imagine that the first is much easier to grade and/or detect cheating.

Re:Linux needs more desktop forks (1)

aliquis (678370) | about a year ago | (#43854089)

On the other hand, Linux on the desktop is pretty much doomed when it comes to any ordinary person just wanting to install it, use it and have it work if the first question they have to deal with is which of 20 UI's and desktops they should pick.

Not really since as far as distributions go Gnome and GTK is the standard.

Even though some use KDE to.

Xorg standard would be twm or something such I guess but that's not very relevant to someone installing a distribution.

(Maybe that's a kinda weird thing to say when Ubuntu use Unity and Mint Mate and Cinnamon and those are the two biggest but well, guess it's close enough to being "kinda Gnome" to me and at least giving someone Gnome on those or something else won't change / break all to much.)

WTF is Mint (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853037)

You Mean Mubuntu. I don't view mint as its own distro. It just piggy backs off of Ubuntu's success and hard work.

Re:WTF is Mint (5, Funny)

n1ywb (555767) | about a year ago | (#43853125)

I don't view Ubuntu as its own distro. It just piggy backs off of Debian's success and hard work.

There, fixed it for you.

Re:WTF is Mint (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#43853481)

The Unix way is (briefly) to divide things up into small modular pieces. You know you're a success as a distro when people start taking pieces from yours and using them. Debian has apt which is really nice, for example, but doesn't need Debian, and is used as far away as iOS.

They say, "those who don't understand the Unix way are doomed to rewrite it, poorly." Make the new pieces good and they will be used for a long time, just like apt.

Re:WTF is Mint (4, Insightful)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year ago | (#43854627)

How? Ubuntu came up w/ Unity, which people hated. They flocked to Mint, which then started working on alternatives. First, they offered Mate as the DE, then they came up w/ MGSE and finally, Cinnamon. The work on Cinnamon is about as much as Mint's as Unity is for Ubuntu. Unlike other Ubuntu knock-offs, such as Zorin or Pear or Puppy, Mint listened to what users wanted and came out w/ a DE that people more or less liked, and then offered it to their users. It takes quite a stretch of imagination to call that piggybacking.

Why not provide packages for other distros? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853087)

Would it, in principle, be possible to to provide cinnamon or mate as packages for other distributions, e.g. Ubuntu? I always liked about Linux that most software packages work on all distributions.
I like what Mint looks like but on my own computers I fear the implications of a move to another distro and on my work computers Ubuntu is a given. I can install my own packages but not change the distro.
Is there a good page that explains the technicalities behind all this and why it may not be possible to distribute the nice parts of Mint as packages for other distros?

Re:Why not provide packages for other distros? (3, Informative)

socrplayr813 (1372733) | about a year ago | (#43853331)

I run LMDE (Mint Debian Edition) or straight Debian Testing on my computers whenever possible. They're fully compatible, just add one or the other to your sources. Similarly, I'm reasonable sure that standard Mint is compatible with the Ubuntu repos. I'm sure others will correct me if I'm wrong

Re:Why not provide packages for other distros? (3, Interesting)

RDW (41497) | about a year ago | (#43853479)

Would it, in principle, be possible to to provide cinnamon or mate as packages for other distributions, e.g. Ubuntu?

Sure, both Mate and Cinnamon provide these packages (right now I'm running Mate 1.6 on Ubuntu 12.04 and it works very well):

http://wiki.mate-desktop.org/download [mate-desktop.org]
http://cinnamon.linuxmint.com/?page_id=61 [linuxmint.com]

However, you won't them in the official Ubuntu repository. I suspect Mate at least will make it into Universe after Debian adopts it, which now looks like it's going to happen:

http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=658783 [debian.org]

Re:Why not provide packages for other distros? (2)

RDW (41497) | about a year ago | (#43853553)

Correction - Cinnamon is actually already in Ubuntu 13.04 Universe (though you may get a later version from the developers' ppa).

fragmentation solution (1)

spamchang (302052) | about a year ago | (#43853089)

I just run linux in a vm on top of Win7 enterprise. Sigh. Can't keep reinstalling my OS every so often; ain't nobody got time for that.

Re:fragmentation solution (1)

Patch86 (1465427) | about a year ago | (#43854219)

Then stop resinstalling your OS, you crazy man. Use a distro with a decent support period and get comfortable.

Windows 7 came out in 2009 and is supported (mainstream support) until 2015. Ubuntu 12.04 LTS was released in 2012 and is supported until 2017. If you're happy resintalling your OS only as often as is required for Windows, then there shouldn't be much to complain about with Linux either.

If you're desperate to always keep up with the latest shiny thing, presumably you would feel a burning drive to update to Windows 8 by now in any case (ho ho ho).

CIII (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853173)

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Pretty good so far (1)

Taibhsear (1286214) | about a year ago | (#43853191)

Replaced my 13 with 15 RC a few days ago. The new file manager is pretty nice. Right click to run with higher privileges pops open a new file browser window with a big red bar letting you know so you don't walk away and end up screwing something up when you get back. Also shows a small bar graph under each mounted partition so you can get a good idea how much space you have left at a glance. "Disk Utility" is replaced/merged with "Storage Device Manager" so I can just go to one place for all my partition renaming, automounting, and SMART options now, which seems to have gotten rid of a glitch that would always try to read my first two drives (sda, sdb) as identical drives for some reason. As of yesterday I still had a glitch with automounting my old Mint 13 partition at bootup but it mounts fine if I instead click on it in the file manager after booting. Mounts all the NTFS partitions with no problems. New applets organization makes it much easier to install applets without futzing with the terminal (This is important for newbies and out of the box experience.) but getting some of them to actually WORK after installation is another story. Having issues with the weather applet at the moment. In previous versions I also had issues with my firefox tabs locking up randomly, seemingly caused by a new song coming on the media player and the popup going over the tab button. Minimizing/maximizing the browser made it return to normal for a while. This glitch seems to have been fixed as well. Backed up and recopied one of my VM's to the new OS and it seemed to have spasms and refuse to shut the VM down but after a few cycles of update, force close, install guest additions, force close, startup again it went back to working order.

Re:Pretty good so far (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853405)

I'll give it a try for the storage device manager alone... previous Mints have been less than fun w.r.t CIFS network shares.

Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (-1, Troll)

snarfies (115214) | about a year ago | (#43853227)

http://abriefhistory.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/05/linusmintisrael.jpg [abriefhistory.org]

"I kindly ask you not to use Linux Mint and not to donate money to it. ⦠This is very important to me."

Okay. I won't use it, either. And neither should you.

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (4, Insightful)

domatic (1128127) | about a year ago | (#43853313)

Anti-Semitic != Anti-Israel in all cases. Israel is a particular political entity who's actions are not above criticism.

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (4, Insightful)

Ksevio (865461) | about a year ago | (#43853319)

Just because someone is in favor of Palestinians receiving statehood and not having their houses bulldozed doesn't make you anti-semitic.

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853363)

I suppose you don't realise that Arab Palestineans are just as much Semites as Hebrew Jews are and certainly more so than, say, Jews of Indo-European or Negro origin.
I personally don't care much what the name of someone's religion is as long as they don't try to force others to live by their prejudices, but I did not support Apartheid in South Africa back in the 80s and I won't support it in the Levant today.

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853783)

I don't use Linux Mint but Clem sounds perfectly reasonable there. Go fuck yourself.

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853803)

Heil Hitler!

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (0)

magic maverick (2615475) | about a year ago | (#43854061)

Personally I think the Israeli government should be lined up against the wall they're building. And shot. We can then line up the leaders of the various Palestinian groups, and shoot them as well. And then take out the various Israeli party heads. And for an encore, we can shoot all the leaders of all the major corporations, and all the states of all the world!

HOW ABOUT A BIT OF ANARCHY AND FREEDOM AROUND HERE THEN?!

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854281)

Sure, right after shooting you too.

Re:Anti-semitic OS? No thanks. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854655)

Freedom for those left alive?

why not just apt-get cinnamon in ubuntu (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853253)

Dumb question,

Why use Mint, an Ubuntu derivative, rather than just installing cinnamon (apt-get install cinnamon in 13.04)?

Nice and snappy on a netbook (3, Interesting)

Ksevio (865461) | about a year ago | (#43853407)

I was looking for a new distro to upgrade an old netbook and installed the RC this weekend (with MATE desktop). It started out a little shakey as the keyboard didn't work, and the mouse wouldn't click (due to a hardware issue and trackpad clicks not enabled), but after a restart and some mouse settings, it's nice and snappy.

Previously had Ubuntu netbook remix and tried Ubuntu with Unity, but that was just so awkward to use with a tiny screen and trackpad, and somewhat sluggish when web browsing.

I'd never tried Linux Mint or MATE in the past, but it seems to be a good combination for a low power computer.

Re:Nice and snappy on a netbook (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853599)

I can recommend a tiling wm for your tiny laptop screen, and you never really need to use your mouse.
I use i3 and debian testing.

No Ironkey support (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853639)

Tried it last weekend, but I've had to come back to Ubuntu because my Ironkey did not work.

No KDE? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43853643)

This distro doesn't have KDE? Why?

Re:No KDE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854167)

It's will probably get released soon. Cinnamon & MATE are usually the first to be released.

New version of MATE (1)

Merk42 (1906718) | about a year ago | (#43854577)

MATE has been upgrade to 1.6, which saw many old and deprecated packages replaced with newer technologies

oh no! things were removed! Better fork MATE so I can have it be exactly the same as a previous version!

citrix client broken !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43854873)

Can't remote to my company desktop. Thats the last nail in coffin..for me. sad day, really.

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