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Why choosing Mint over (*)Ubuntu

Discussion in 'General Linux Discussion' started by Marlhin, Dec 6, 2015.

  1. Marlhin

    Marlhin Member

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    That's a question, I have always asked myself.
    The only reason for me would be the Mint Cinnamon edition. But I won't use Cinnamon because of it's performance issues.
    Nowadays you can install Ubuntu Mate, so there's no need to install Mint Mate either... The packages of Ubuntu are better supported and they are more up-to-date.
    Installing *buntu LTS version would be the better solution for me, if I wouldn't use Arch Linux.

    Or do I miss something important?
    Booman, you are a convinced Mint user, why do you prefer it over Ubuntu?
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  2. Daerandin

    Daerandin Active Member

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    I think Mint is easier for newbies for the simple reason that it comes with some software preinstalled, like Java, codecs and the like. So for a newbie, there is more of a complete experience after install without needing to install much themselves.
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  3. allenskd

    allenskd Active Member

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    Mint takes care a lot of dreadful initial installation packages(flash, java, mp3, video support which can be tedious if you don't know which packages to pull, include fonts that cover modern languages (Korean, chinese, japanese, etc etc. These are things that neither distributions like Debian or Arch Linux would include that post-installation), and keep maintaining them over its iteration cycle. That said, at this time it doesn't make much sense to compare it to Ubuntu MATE. Linux Mint has established itself as not only a newbie-friendly platform but as a trusted Ubuntu derivative that will work without having to worry about trivial stuff. Plus up to date packages can be delayed in a way, the only packages that are never delayed are the security ones for obvious reasons.

    Do note that Linux Mint first release was around 2006 while Ubuntu MATE is still in diapers in terms of getting a decent _loyal_ community behind it, heck Ubuntu GNOME is still struggling to get users, they can't even get their website up (seems like internal issues, bleh). I see your point but see the point of Linux Mint users who have invested themselves to use it as their main distribution for years. In the end, use what you are comfortable with.
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  4. Marlhin

    Marlhin Member

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    Imho Ubuntu does the same, because everything is preinstalled what a normal user (internet, music, movies, a little bit of gaming) would need.
    Sure, Mint looks like Windows, especially Mate or Cinnamon. But at the moment I don't see the added value of Mint..
  5. allenskd

    allenskd Active Member

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    Hmm.... not exactly, but then again you have to remember Ubuntu did not include the option to install audio support packages and whatever mint offers years ago. Mint took what made Ubuntu great and made it more straightforward and easy to use. Linux Mint created a name itself years ago and now it's up there as a trusted distribution. Users are happy with that, which imho seems to be the most important thing. (hint, this happened years ago, if you ask yourself that now then yea it doesn't make _sense_ now and the value is nonexistent.)

    Honestly, all distributions are the same if we just sit down and think about it. You have a package manager, enormous repositories and the user can install anything these days. From here on it's all just a matter of taste.
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  6. booman

    booman Grand High Exalted Mystic Emperor of Linux Gaming Staff Member

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    I'm late to the party :D

    I've tried different Distros in the past:
    • Fedora
    • SuSE
    • Ubuntu
    • Peppermint
    • Mint
    I even committed to using Ubuntu 14.04 on my Huge Dell laptop/desktop, but always finding myself back with Mint again on my gaming desktops.
    There is a bit of confusion for me when it comes to GNOME and how to change system settings, configure my GUI, share folders, and simply navigate.

    I still have Ubuntu 12 on my Acer Chromebook. I can work with it just fine, but I can get Mint Cinnamon setup and configured quickly on my desktops. I'm not going to make a list of issue's I've had, but when it comes to Mint, I know exactly where to go, what to click and how to make it look the way I want.

    I also keep Mint in a pretty vanilla state because of my Guides.
    Specially as a Windows gamer, I still like the windows-ish functionality.
    Normally I will change the theme, login screen, panels and systems tray a bit.
    That is about it.

    The best thing about Mint is its a nice transition from Windows to Linux with the least amount of frustration

    Anyone coming from Windows to Ubuntu (GNOME) will experience a whole new way to use their operating system.
    This can be frustrating and exiting at the same time.

    With Mint I've learned how to use the Terminal to install applications, PPA's and edit configuration files.
    I have also learned to use Synaptics Package Manager, kill applications with TTY shells and even upgrade my distro to a new release.
    I'm not so patient with Ubuntu because finding the tools and making the changes is alien territory
    So Mint really helps the Windows gamer become a Linux gamer in the long run.
  7. allenskd

    allenskd Active Member

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    Probably unrelated:

    You know I gotta agree with you booman. Yesterday I spent fiddling with two distributions that I'm looking forward, Linux Mint with Cinnamon is complete, couldn't find anything missing out besides the dev tools I use which obviously won't be installed.

    Then I checked elementaryOS which admittedly I scratched off after Freya's release, however, revisiting it yesterday made me realize that eOS may be a strong contender in the future. It's looking really, really good. I think the next iteration of eOS may be the definitive answer to many casual users out there.

    I wish all the best to both teams, like I have mentioned before though (in different ways), I'm just moving towards a hassle-free distribution that abstracts the trivial stuff for me or us and get myself started in actually using the OS rather than configuring it.

    That said... I gotta battle my urges to install linux in this laptop. :( I'm not done learning .NET/Visual C++ yet
  8. Marlhin

    Marlhin Member

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    Thank you all for your replies!

    Yeah, you're right. Linux Mint has all the codecs and stuff pre-installed, so it is easier to setup your OS than on Ubuntu although I've never found it irritating to install these on Ubuntu.

    As Daerandin I am using Arch Linux, which I really love, not only because I can setup my system exactly how I want it to be but also because you really know which packages are installed on your machine, where the config files are and where you have to look if something went wrong.
    So your system is very slick and fine. Moreover I like pacman and the mighty AUR more than the .deb-system, although the .deb-system is also nice as well.

    But there's another thing which would bother me if I would switch back to Mint or Ubuntu:
    On Arch Linux you have the rolling releases. You install and setup your system only once. You may never have to reinstall it, theoretically.
    On Ubuntu or Mint, you have to reinstall everything once a major release is available, otherwise you won't get the benefits especially when you run modern hardware.
    But the great thing with Ubuntu/Mint is, that everything is setup again, after 20 min or so.
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  9. booman

    booman Grand High Exalted Mystic Emperor of Linux Gaming Staff Member

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    I've heard good and bad sides to rolling releases. It sounds really nice to have everything updated to the next release automatically, but some times packages can break something. New Linux Gamers would have a lot of problems trying to resolve this.
    To be honest, when something breaks and I have to research then trial-n-error, I learn the most about Linux.
    We all know most people do not have this kind of patience and enthusiasm.

    Mint is well known for being behind on the releases, but always providing very stable packages. I was stuck on Nvidia 331 for a long time and finally last month they released stable 346, then stable 352
    I'm finally on a newer Nvidia version! Yay!

    If SteamOS continues to grow in the gaming world, I may have to install it and learn to do Guides for PlayOnLinux in it.
    I've always wanted to try Manjaro too, looks really "minty"
  10. Marlhin

    Marlhin Member

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    Well, I am using Arch Linux for over 2 years now. And during this time I had maybe 3 or 4 minor problems after pacman -Syu (command to update the whole system) but all of them could be solved by updates or via the index page of the arch linux website.
    So for me, nothing special. I had more issues with Ubuntu during the same timespan.

    Booman, do you use the Cinnamon or the Mate version of Linux Mint?
    Because I've heard that Cinnamon may slow down games respectively can cause problems.

    I've also tried Manjaro and i used it a while and I can say, that Manjaro runs great on my machines!
    Even though Manjaro is pretty new, everything works right ootb and really is like Mint.

    Manjaro is, compared to Arch Linux, more stable, because they test new packages more than the supporters of Arch Linux do. So Manjaro is a little bit behind when it comes to newest software versions but with the benefit of being pretty stable.
    Manjaro has also a nice packagebundle which is automatically installed by default with everything you need, also with steam.

    I would recommend Manjaro to everyone who likes a stable, fast and easy to install Linux distribution with rolling releases. It is as easy installed as Mint, so if you are interested, just try it out!
  11. booman

    booman Grand High Exalted Mystic Emperor of Linux Gaming Staff Member

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    Sounds like Manjaro is the "mint" of Arch

    I definitely use Cinnamon, if there is a performance issue I haven't noticed at all. I've recently seen a performance problem with Cinnamon after updating to Nvidia 346 & 352 drivers. I never had this problem previously, so I'm hoping Mint developers are searching for fix. I've posted the problem on their forums. But like I said, this isn't normal. Never had this issue with Nvidia 331 drivers.
    As for games, it runs GREAT! My GeForce 550 Ti is getting a bit old, but still runs most games on high or medium with resolution: 1680x1050
    Any games that have major performance issues are Wine related
    I have tried using Openbox to gain a bit of performance in some games and it actually does help.
    It also helps to keep other programs closed while running games too.
  12. rolandttg

    rolandttg Member

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    I have been on Linux Mint Cinnamon since 14. Fellas here put me on to it. It was super easy to move from windows to this OS. I have had no performance problems using Cinnamon. And of course using wine I can play my games. I also record a lot of vinyl lp's to cd with linux. Getting audio working right while recording requires a little extra effort. I do like other distros but Mint is ready to go. With conky, wallpapers and settings on Mint I can get some stunning desktops.
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  13. booman

    booman Grand High Exalted Mystic Emperor of Linux Gaming Staff Member

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    I can't complain about Mint either. Each release the optimize Cinnamon more and more
  14. Marlhin

    Marlhin Member

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    Yeah, I have also read a lot about how active cinnamon is being developed. I also think that there is no big performance difference when you are running proper hardware.
    With my notebook which I am currently using, I would note the performance difference between my current openbox arch linux and mint cinnamon (i3-2310, 4GB ram, intel HD 3000).
  15. Daniel~

    Daniel~ Chief BBS Administrator Staff Member

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    Great thread guys! I don't get around as much as I'd like to...destro wise...

    I've spent all my time in Mint since 7 or 8, but keep a hard drive free so I can poke my noise into the new releases. I'm never even tempted to switch.

    I can appreciate anyone who has the skill set wanting to use it! ":O}
    We all seem to share the opinion that, simply put:
    The less you know, the less computer savvy you are, the more you need Mint!
    It's as if Mint understands just how thick I am!
    Marlhin...I think you may simply know to much to fully appreciate how useful Mint is to one like myself who knows so little!":O}

    The fact that I do know so little and am still rather comfortable doing most anything I can find instructions for is all mint's doing. I get lost in preparation and in "getting ready to" in other destro's, after years of frustration , I'm finally really enjoying being in "Something like" Linux":O}
  16. cloasters

    cloasters Well-Known Member

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    I went as far as I could "distro wise" more than a decade ago. I'm not an old hand with Linux by any means. I forgot far, far, far more than I remember about the intricacies of the mighty Linux.
    For that reason alone I greatly appreciate the ease of using Mint. If you wish to be a nuts and bolt person using very difficult distributions so that you genuinely LEARN Linux, good on you!!
  17. Aryvandaar

    Aryvandaar Active Member

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    I'm not a big fan of canonical. Then again, I'm not big on non rolling release distros either.

    But definitely, Mint > Ubuntu.
  18. Daniel~

    Daniel~ Chief BBS Administrator Staff Member

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    The talented have many choices, the rest of us have but a few...":O}
  19. Daniel~

    Daniel~ Chief BBS Administrator Staff Member

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    BTW
    Mint 18 is the last update from scratch you'll have to do in Mint, from 18 on it's all upgrades.
  20. Aryvandaar

    Aryvandaar Active Member

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    I'm not sure if you're referring to me, but it has nothing to do with talent. It's all about seeking the right knowledge for the task and some willpower.

    I remember when I first installed Gentoo, on a Saturday. I spent 8 hours straight installing and re-installing Gentoo until I got it right.
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