Choosing a Desktop Environment on Linux Mint

Linux Mint has four desktop environments that you can choose from. There is KDE, Xfce, Cinnamon and Mate. The two most common choices by users are Cinnamon and Mate. Technically, you can download any of the desktop environments and change them later. If you decide to go with Mate and later on want to install Cinnamon, the change is going to be easy.

You just need 400MB of extra disk space, which is practically nothing judging on the size of hard drives nowadays. The only other decision to make is to whether include multimedia effects or leave them out. My preference is to include them.

Let’s say you’ve decided to go with Mate and want to install Cinnamon later on. Changing from Mate to Cinnamon is quite easy. All you have to do is install Cinnamon via the Terminal which is my preference. You can easily do the same using a GUI package manager.

From Mate to Cinnamon

$ sudo apt-get install mint-meta-cinnamon

From Cinnamon to Mate

$ sudo apt-get install mint-meta-mate

Once you’ve made the change. You need to log out of the current desktop environment and log in again and making sure you select the environment you would like to use. You can switch back and forth desktop environments to your hearts delight. As you can see, changing desktop environments in Linux Mint is quite easy.

Amazon Ads on Ubuntu

Canonical plans to integrate Amazon search results in the next release of Ubuntu 12.10. This is an unpopular move to most Linux users because most Linux users want an ad-free environment. I recently moved away from Ubuntu due to the fact that I have to deal with technical issues every time there is a new release. I have to constantly fight with issues that were previously resolved and now broken again with the latest release. The introduction of Unity just made things even worse. I hate Unity. That’s one good reason, I moved away from Ubuntu to Linux Mint and Mate, since Mate is based on Gnome 2. Now, with the introduction of Amazon search results, in Ubuntu 12.10, will result in more Ubuntu users moving away to other distros. Good luck, Canonical. I hope you think more about your user base, that what actually goes into your pocket books.

Pluma Text Editor

I have been using Linux Mint 13 and Mate, a desktop environment forked from now unmaintained Gnome 2.  If you like to know more about Mate, visit the Mate Desktop’s website. Mate comes with Pluma, a text editor called based on Gedit.

Pluma is a text editor which supports most standard editor features, extending this basic functionality with other features not usually found in simple text editors. pluma is a graphical application which supports editing multiple text files in one window (known sometimes as tabs or MDI). Pluma fully supports international text through its use of the Unicode UTF-8 encoding in edited files. Its core feature set includes syntax highlighting of source code, auto indentation and printing and print preview support.

The Perfect Desktop on Linux Mint 11

HowtoForge has a tutorial how to install a perfect desktop on Linux Mint 11. Mint is based on Ubuntu but contains proprietary drivers and programs such as multicodecs, Adobe Flash, Adobe Reader, Skype and Google Earth. In addition, the tutorial also instruct users to install a few more packages such as: filezilla, shotwell, chromium-browser, picasa, opera, evolution, amule, vuze, skype, googleearth and acroread just to name a few. If you’re an Ubuntu user and haven’t tried Linux Mint, you might want to consider it as an alternative. With Mint, you’ll have the familiarity of Ubuntu and the ease, flexibility and compatibility of Windows. Read the rest of tutorial.

Linux Mint Helena LXDE Released

Linux Mint Helena LXDE is a distro based on Linux Mint 8 Main Edition, Linux 2.6.31, Openbox 3.4.7.2, PCManFM 0.5.2, and Xorg 7.4. It features a complete and familiar desktop experience while being low on resource usage and is suitable for a good variety of older hardware. The benchmarks are remarkable. Boot time from Grub to the login manager is about 26 seconds, the same benchmark as XFCE and less than Fluxbox. RAM usage at idle is only at 141 MB. If you have an old and aging hardware, Linux Mint Helena LXDE may be the path to go. It’s fast with a very small footprint. Learn more.

Debian Based Linux Distributions

I am somewhat surprised with the number of Linux distributions with Debian roots. A total of 129. This list doesn’t even include all the Ubuntu variations like Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Edubuntu, etc. I am using Linux Mint and it’s not even on the list. So here’s the list of 129 distributions courtesy of Distro Watch:

AbulÉduAdamantixAGNULA GNU/Linux Audio DistributionAmber LinuxANTEMIUM LinuxArabbixARMA aka Omoikane GNU/LinuxASLinuxAuditor Security LinuxAugustuxB2D LinuxBeatrIX LinuxBEERnixBiadixBIG LINUXBioknoppixBlackRhinoBluewall GNU/LinuxBonzai LinuxBrlSpeakCàtixCensorNetClusterixClusterKNOPPIXCondoruxDamn Small LinuxDanixDeadCDDebXPdeDizinha LinuxeduKnoppixERPOSSESwareEvinuxEuronodeFAMELIXFeather LinuxFlonixVital Data Forensic or Rescue Kit (FoRK)Freeduc-cdFreeduc-SupGEOLivre LinuxGibraltar FirewallGNIX-VivoGnoppix LinuxgnuLinExGNU/Linux KinneretGNUstep Live CDgrmlGuadalinexHelixHikarunixHiweed LinuxImpi LinuxIndLinuxJulexK-DEMarKaella • Knoppix Linux AzurKalango LinuxKANOTIXKlusTriXknopILSKnoppelKnoppixKnoppix 64Knoppix STDKnoppiXMAMEKnoppMythKnoSciencesKurumin LinuxLAMPPIXLibranet GNU/LinuxLIIS LinuxLinEspaLinspireLinux Live Game ProjectLinux LocoLinuxDefender Live! CDLinuxinLiVuxLocal Area Security Linux (L.A.S.)LuinuxLuit LinuxMAX: Madrid_LinuxMediainlinuxMEPIS LinuxMetadistro-PequelinMIKO GNYO/LinuxMoLinuxMorphixMunjoy LinuxNature’s LinuxNordisKnoppixOGo KnoppixOraluxOverclockixQuantianPaiPixParallelKnoppixParsix GNU/LinuxPenguin SleuthPHLAKPilotLinuxProgeny DebianRays LinuxROSLIMS Live CDSalvareSanta Fe LinuxSkolelinuxSlavixSlixSlo-Tech LinuxSoyombo Mongolian LinuxSphinxOSTablix on MorphixTilix LinuxTupiServer LinuxUbuntu LinuxUserLinuxWHoppiXX-evianXfldXandros Desktop OSXarnoppixZen LinuxZoneCDZopix

I just peeked at Ubuntu.com, 10.04 beta 1 looks really good!

Linux Mint 9 Development

Just wanted to pass this on to Linux Mint fans. From the Linux Mint blog.

Development started on Linux Mint 9. The menu will allow you to edit the shortcuts directly, to add them to the panel and to add them to the desktop. An option was also added to make the menu always start with the favorites. The update manager is getting new icons (the locks are replaced with white shields), it doesn’t consider it an error when it’s unable to know the availability of updates (the broken lock appearing when another APT application was open, or when connection to the Internet was lost, was irritating a lot of people) and it generally feels less intrusive. The software manager is being completely rewritten. It’s taking the best features of mintinstall, Ubuntu Software Center and Gnome App Installer. The graphical interface looks much slicker, using webkit to render HTML parts, a single-click navigation and a navigation bar. It also uses an APT daemon to queue up installation and removal of applications in real time. Your actions can be monitored as you go along, canceled, and you can close and open the software manager at any stage without any incidence on the queue. We’re abandoning .mint files to go back to raw  .deb support and as a consequence the software manager won’t deal with 300+ applications, but about 30,000.

Best Linux Distros of the Decade

It has been a very interesting decade for the Linux Desktop. The first half of the decade was dominated by Mandrake and the latter half dominated by Ubuntu. It’s interesting to know that I have been an avid user of both distros while they were both hot. I am now using Linux Mint, a distro derived from Ubuntu. Time will tell if Linux Mint becomes a favorite. If you are interested to know how your distro fared, check out the Tech Source from Bohol.