28 Comments

  1. Alastair Toms

    I've been using Mint 15 with Cinnamon on my work laptop for just over a month and, while there's a lot about it I really like, I don't feel that it's ready for a work environment.

    I'm quite inexperienced with Linux, but have dabbled with a few distros (Opensuse, Ubuntu and Fedora and earlier versions of Mint with Mate) over the years. I've been in my current job for about 6 months and the whole company use Linux (it's an open source consultancy firm), so I've been using the opportunity to try out a few more to find one that fits me.

    I had Ubuntu for about 2 weeks but really didn't get on with Unity so switched to Kubuntu, which I liked a lot at first. KDE immediately felt like a far more competent, customisable and business ready desktop. I started getting a few issues though. I particular with panels vanishing or freezing or moving to off-screen locations due to regularly using a docking station with a 2nd monitor and then undocking. I'm used to being able to do that without issues on Windows 7, and I didn't want to have to start setting up activities for different locations and having to remember to switch them before undocking.

    Since then I've been with Mint 15 Cinnamon. My main bug-bear is again with the panel; Cinnamon doesn't support having multiple panels over dual screens (unless they're cloned). I've also found performance to be somewhat poor and see a lot of slow down in some applications (scrolling in libre office is especially slow). Using KDE did help me learn that clipper is quite possibly the most useful application ever created, but I couldn't install it on Cinnamon and have the system tray icons so started using gpaste, which is fine until I try and copy an image, when it then eats all the memory. I don't have any issues associated with docking and undocking though.

    I do actually like Cinnamon a lot, but I won't be continuing to use it for a slightly under-powered work computer.

    I think I'm going to try out xubuntu and Mint xfce next.

    Reply
    • Linerd

      Thanks for you in-depth comments. Everyone's use case can be a little different. I did my testing on my desktop computer and a netbook. I don't have a docking station or multiple monitors, so it's especially interesting to read about your experience with those situations.

      If you're interested, have a look at my review of Xubuntu 13.04: http://tuxtweaks.com/2013/05/distro-review-xubuntu-13-04-raring-ringtail/

      I haven't tried out the xfce version of Mint 15 yet. There are things I like and don't like about Mint, but things have gotten to the point for me that Mint takes the least amount of adjustments for me to get it set up the way I want.

      Reply

  2. I'm new to Linux and Linux Mint seems to work better than Ubuntu out of the box. I think that the Ubuntu launcher is ugly but, once the Cinnamon flavor wore out and I got tired of double-clicking icons on the desktop, I returned to Ubuntu.

    Reply
    • Lance

      Why are you double-clicking icons on the desktop anyway? There are numerous tweaks that make it easier to add favorites to the panel, for one-click friendliness.

      Reply
  3. cjnslm

    Used Mint 13 on my laptop with no issues whatsoever. Upgraded to Mint 14 and found myself having a few headaches with the optimus video configuration. Bumblebee didn't run properly even after i updated the kernel to "fix" the hardware issue.
    Since i tried Mint 15, all hardware works perfectly including bumblebee, support for fan speed and cooling features have improved but still don't have the fingerprint reader running :P.
    Basically, Mint 15 runs faster, takes less resources than 14 and its by far more stable than 14 (13 worked fine without the proper hardware support though).

    Reply
  4. jk

    hp b025es all hardware seems word booting livedvd mint destop 15

    Reply
  5. John Culbertson

    I want firefox completely off my laptop I hate firefox it's always been buggy I love chromium so I upgraded to Linux Mint 15 Olivia it came wit firefox and I want to remove it permanently how do I do that?

    Reply
    • Linerd

      You should be able to remove it from the software manager. You could also remove it from the command line with something like:

      sudo apt-get purge firefox

      I'm not sure if the package is just called firefox or something like mozilla-firefox and I'm nowhere near a Mint machine right now. I'll update when I find the real package name.
      I've checked, the command above is correct.

      Reply
  6. Travisyard Heiberger

    Thank you for the review. I used Mint 14 as my first ever distro, and have used another partition to jjump around since. I have used Mageia, Debian, CentOS, Fedora, Ubuntu, and most recently Snowlinux. I wanted to check out some reviews to see if Olivia had some horrible problems or not, and after this article and a few others I will do the upgrade! Thank you for your reviews!

    Reply
    • Linerd

      Wow, that's quite a bit of distro hopping in a relatively short time. Thanks for visiting my site.

      Regarding problems, I have read that there have been some issues with the kernel that shipped with Mint 15, so make sure you either turn on priority 5 updates to get the latest kernel, or update from the command line with apt-get.

      sudo apt-get update
      sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
      Reply
      • Carl

        These two commands fixed my freezing problem instantly. Thank you.

        Anyone that is having a problem with LM 15 (in my case Cinnamon) Freezing, just follow Linerds instructions. Very easy and it works.

        Type these into the terminal
        sudo apt-get update

        sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

        Reply
  7. Jose Carlos

    For me,it's the best distro today in linux,I've been using a lot of distros in the past,but always at the end I finish using Mint,in Mint all is easy,and with cinnamon is perfect.

    Reply
  8. shadowsurfer

    I have been trying a lot of distributions during the last years and at the end of the day I am always ending up sticking to Linux Mint. Olivia will not change this. Even though I am waiting for the KDE-Edition, I tried out the Mate Edition. As always: Excellent job, guys. Even though since Mint 12 I have never understood all these Gnome/Mate/Cinnamon/Unity-Discussions and became never really happy with these new developments.

    Reply
  9. Bhupendra Bhatt

    I had been using Ubuntu for years but had to move to Mint 14 Nadia when Ubuntu started crashing several applications. I have upgraded to Olivia and have been using it since it came out. There seems to be a driver issue that I need to sort out. I think it is the ATI driver. Olivia freezes sometimes. The log shows driver issue. I am working on it. I do like Linux Mint and will stick with it as my main desktop.

    Reply
  10. MightyMoo

    I got Linux Mint 15 Cinnamon running for my laptop at work and it's chugging along fine for meetings and everything else. Had Mint 14 running on my laptop before that and no problems even then. Once Windows 7 is no longer useable for my desktop I'm going to be jumping that over to Mint as well if they keep this up. Bye bye Windows and Microsoft.

    Reply
  11. Eddie Wilson

    While LinuxMint is a quality distro I find some of their actions rather confining and locked down. They cripple Synaptic as to make a person use their update manager. While that may be good for newbies coming from MS Windows it really does no good what so ever for someone who has been using Linux for years and wants total control of their system. In Mint you have to use the command line to achieve total control. Their biggest contribution is Cinnamon. The other small utilities are irrelevant and I feel that too much is made of them. LinuxMint would be a good distro to use full time as long as they don't cripple some applications in order to make you use inferior applications, and also fix their update problems. I choose my own updates.

    Reply
    • pachu

      In Mint you have to use the command line to achieve total control.
      But you also said that you're someone who has been using Linux for years.
      So you've been using Linux all those years without the need to run a command line from time to time... what distro you've been using bro????

      Reply
      • Eddie Wilson

        What are you talking about? I guess what I should have said is that in LinuxMint you have to use the command line to achieve total control of what you want to update. They crippled Synaptic and that is a fact that everyone knows. BTW when did I say I never needed to use a command line in any other distro? I didn't say that but what I did say about Mint is true. I guess they want to keep the new users safe from themselves. Synaptic is one of the best GUI application managers you can run, if people don't mess with it. They messed with it and not for the better.

        Reply
    • Linerd

      Eddie, can you point to some documentation about how the Mint Team modifies/cripples Synaptic? I'm not familiar with that. I did find this bug report though - http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=47&t=135706&p=726683

      I'm not a big fan of the Mint Update manager myself, but I'm guessing it wouldn't be a big deal to a novice user. I've just used apt-get to get all of the updates myself.

      sudo apt-get update
      sudo apt-get upgrade
      sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
      Reply
      • Eddie Wilson

        It has to do with the updates and upgrades of the system. Mint wants users to use their update manager and there is nothing wrong with that. Their update manager does limit the updates a user will see and install. In Synaptic after refreshing the repositories you should be able to mark all updates to install if you choose. Most installs of Synaptic have that feature. The Synaptic in LinuxMint does not have that function, it is grayed out, and you are correct in saying that using the LinuxMint update manager is not a big deal to a novice user. To be honest there has been times that a command line apt-get update has broken things in Mint for me and I believe that is why LinuxMint will point a person toward their update manager. They are helping their target user base and that is a good thing. I guess that I've grown use to using apt in the command line and also Synaptic as a GUI software manager so much in the past that it throws me for a loop whenever I see a function taken away. You can Google a bunch and come up with the differences but the best way is to just do a comparison of Synaptic in two different distros, Mint and another one, and then you will be able to see the difference. Anyway LinuxMint is a top quality distro and worthy of being used. I have no problem with them having their own utilities or mods. because there are ways around that if I want to use Mint and I do use it some. Again thanks for a good review and a good discussion. Looking forward to the next.

        Reply
        • Linerd

          Thanks for the information. I wasn't aware that they'd made this change to Synaptic. I'll have to take a look and check it out. Updates are probably the main thing that bug me in Mint, but I guess I'm willing to deal with it because other distros I've tried have issues that bug me even more.

          I found a post on the Mint Forums on how to re-enable the Mark All Upgrades feature. I'll give it a try and see if it works for me.

          Reply
  12. Slimmons

    I've been using Linux Mint 15 on my laptop for a week now, and I absolutely love it. I was on ubuntu 12.04 before this, and my desktop was dual boot windows 7 and linux mint 14. I love what they've done with the system preferences being either combined or completely removed from the cinnamon settings. Overall It's my favorite distribution so far. As mentioned above, a good reason to switch to mint is the community. It's fantastic.

    Reply
  13. Jiri

    Meantime I educated myself with help of Wikipedia: Seems like Cinnamon is a fork of Gnome-shell and runs on top of Gnome 3.

    Reply
    • Linerd

      I think I read somewhere recently that they are having problems with the upstream GNOME stuff and are moving more toward a full fork soon.

      Reply
  14. Jiri

    Great review. Question: is Cinnamon Gnome 3 with extensions or is it a fork of Gnome 3?

    Reply
    • Linerd

      As I understand it, Cinnamon started out as a bunch of extensions for GNOME 3, but is now considered a fork. You make a good point, I'll change the description in the first paragraph. Thanks for your comment.

      Reply

      • As of now, Cinnamon is considered a fork of GNOME 3. Later, it won't be.

        Cinnamon 2.0 will be a completely independent desktop environment, Clement Lefebvre reveals to Linux User & Developer in an exclusive interview.

        I can't wait to see that happen. :)

        Reply
  15. Keith H

    I also tried Mint 15 Cinnamon and been impressed enough to switch to it on my main home desktop computer from Fedora 17. Best difference is the boot time: now incredibly fast. Also Mint forums are helpful for understanding and adjusting some defaults. Excellent review.

    Reply

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