Monthly News – March 2015

Written by Clem on March 30th, 2015

The release candidate for LMDE 2 “Betsy” was announced. Bugs were fixed and we’re now getting ready for a stable release. Working on Betsy was very exciting and it paved the way for some of the work planned for Linux Mint 18 (in 2016). It also highlighted a few areas where things could be improved further, so some of Betsy’s improvements will also find their way into Linux Mint 17.2. I’d like to thank all the people who helped us test Betsy and who sent us their feedback.

The team also worked on MDM (the display manager which is responsible for your login screen) and redesigned the way it detects sessions. Technical details were posted on http://segfault.linuxmint.com/2015/03/better-session-detection-in-mdm-2-0. The upcoming version 2.0 of MDM should also bring better support for encrypted home directories, in particular where it comes to language, session and avatar detection.

Bugs were fixed also in mintstick (the USB formatting tool and ISO image writer) and in Cinnamon 2.4 (drag’n drop freezing issues, black bars in the screensaver, many small bug fixes). We want to test these a little more first and possibly put them in “Romeo” before we serve them to you as updates in Rebecca and Betsy.

A huge amount of work went into making Cinnamon load faster. Sadly, we’re only half-way there and the results aren’t conclusive yet. On one of our test machines Cinnamon is able to load in less than a second in normal conditions, but can take up to 12 seconds to load the very fist time the computer is turned on. Investigations showed that this delay took place in cinnamon-menus and cinnamon-desktop, during the initial loading of application info (from /etc/xdg/menus, /usr/share/applications) and icon themes. Through optimization, the loading time was reduced from 12 seconds to 7 seconds average… which is a first step but doesn’t yet solve anything (“slow” and “slower” both feel “slow”). We’re still working on this and hoping we’ll be able to drastically reduce that initial loading time.

New tools were released for Linux Mint developers and to make it easier to compile Linux Mint projects. For more info on the “mint-dev-tools”, please read http://segfault.linuxmint.com/2015/03/introducing-mint-dev-tools-a-collection-of-tools-for-linux-mint-developers/.

Linux Mint has a brilliant development team, but we need more artists, more photographs and more Web developers:

  • Web interfaces: Many components in Linux Mint use Web technologies (the login screen, the welcome screen and the software manager use HTML, Cinnamon and GTK3 are styled in CSS…)
  • Backgrounds: Each new release brings a new set of gorgeous photographs and backgrounds. We always need help on this.
  • Widgets and icons: Our themes and icon themes are great but we’ve been using them since Linux Mint 10. We need to work on something new, maybe adapt to new trends in UI design, successfully marry our identity with flatter looks without falling into something that might be too minimalistic… there’s a lot of work on that and we’d like to get started.
  • Websites: Some of them look old, some of them look bad even. We’d like to redesign all of them, make them look simpler, more in line with the current trends and more consistent with each others. If we can’t find the talent internally we’ll contract this work to an external company.

Producing themes, backgrounds, icons is something we can do or get done at least. When there’s a particular need or shortage of artwork, we’re able to outsource and either acquire or find material we can use. Long term though, we’d like to work with people, internally, and have them empowered to change and improve our visual identity, not only online, but within the operating system as well. If you know how to make things “look good”, if you’re talented with HTML, graphic design or even just your camera, don’t hesitate to come and talk to us on IRC at #linuxmint-dev (irc.spotchat.org).

Last but not least, we just got word from CompuLab that the first MintBox mini were produced… and we’re welcoming a champion of online privacy as our new Platinum sponsor. While we’re waiting to publish pictures of the new unit and details about this sponsorship I’d like to thank CompuLab and PIA, it’s a real pleasure to be working with them.

As always many thanks to our sponsors and to everybody who contributes to our project, via donations, feedback or even simply time spent on making Linux Mint better. Congratulations and thanks to all people involved.

Sponsorships:

Linux Mint is proudly sponsored by:

Platinum Sponsors:
Private Internet Access
Gold Sponsors:
Linux VPS Hosting
Silver Sponsors:
ThinkPenguin.com
Bronze Sponsors:
Vault Networks *
AYKsolutions Server & Cloud Hosting
7L Networks Toronto Colocation *
BayLibre
BGASoft Inc
David Salvo
Michael Sartain
Milton Security Group
Sysnova Information Systems
Community Sponsors:

To become a sponsor or to see the full list of Linux Mint sponsors, please visit: http://www.linuxmint.com/sponsors.php

Donations:

A total of $6,816 were raised thanks to the generous contributions of 353 donors:

$200, Krueger U.
$100, Vincent D.
$100, Paul B.
$100, Samuel M. P.
$75 (2nd donation), Danny L.
$75, Chris J.
$60 (2nd donation), Jan S. aka “… just a tiny lilltle Mint.”
$59.59, Michel D. W. aka “NicNac”
$59.59, Kurt S.
$59.59, Gerrit H.
$59.59, Orazio I.
$50 (16th donation), Wolfgang P.
$50 (3rd donation), William W.
$50 (2nd donation), Kirby S.
$50 (2nd donation), Michael Kay VK5ACX
$50 (2nd donation), Joshua R.
$50 (2nd donation), Richard D.
$50, Saito S.
$50, Donald Hammers aka “Don”
$50, Don P.
$50, Chris D.
$50, José W. F. J.
$50, Marion S. aka “Linux4Today”
$50, Patrick S.
$50, John S.
$50, Paul W.
$50, David Q.
$50, Stephan T.
$50, Charles G.
$50, Edward B.
$50, Martin R.
$50, Joseph B.
$50, Joseph S.
$50, Terrence P.
$50, Michael M.
$50, Vigil Y. F.
$47.67, Jarosław T.
$47.67, Uwe W.
$41.71 (2nd donation), Frédéric B.
$41.71, Martin M.
$40.52, Mr A.
$40, David C.
$40, 夏 瑞.
$40, Donato E.
$35.75 (60th donation), Olli K.
$35.75, Ondrej Stanek aka “ostan
$35.75, Trudie L.
$35.75, Alexander D.
$35.75, Jose M. K. Z.
$35.75, Massimo V.
$35.75, Pierluigi T.
$35.75, Thomas L.
$35.75, aka “AnalogueMan”
$35.69, E V. D. V.
$35, Dale K.
$33, Jason B.
$31, Mark D.
$30 (5th donation), Steve Guard aka “SteveG”
$30 (3rd donation), Devendra R.
$30, Terry L.
$30, Benito C.
$30, Cecilio L. P.
$30, Jordan K.
$30, Tech Solutions
$30, Stephen B.
$29.79, Johann M.
$29.79, Enymind Production aka “Enymind Oy
$29.79, John B.
$29.79, Yuko M.
$29.79, Andreas E.
$29.79, Ralf- D. G.
$29.79, Wulf D.
$29.79, Juan M. L.
$29.79, Rune Ø.
$25 (41th donation), Ronald W.
$25 (5th donation), Bill
$25 (2nd donation), Bob aka “electricworry
$25 (2nd donation), James A.
$25, C S.
$25, John H.
$25, Philip J.
$25, Holt D.
$25, Tim B.
$25, April A.
$25, Joy C.
$25, John P.
$25, Luigi M. B.
$25, Thomas R.
$25, Roland V.
$25, Carroll K.
$23.83 (3rd donation), Francois G.
$23.83 (3rd donation), Denis B.
$23.83 (2nd donation), Antun K.
$23.83 (2nd donation), Thomas A.
$23.83 (2nd donation), Jan J.
$23.83, Lee S.
$23.83, Adam V.
$23.83, Daniel K.
$23.83, Giovanni C.
$23.83, Rob B.
$23.83, Sandra M.
$23.83, Marc A. P.
$23.83, Thomas W.
$23.83, Martin R.
$23.83, Michael F.
$23.83, Miguel A. C. R.
$23.83, Christopher T.
$23, Nathan L.
$20.39, Earl W.
$20 (16th donation), Utah B.
$20 (4th donation), Robert O.
$20 (3rd donation), Kendall G.
$20 (3rd donation), Jose M.
$20 (2nd donation), Sheila S.
$20 (2nd donation), Daniel L.
$20 (2nd donation), Robert D.
$20 (2nd donation), Rodrigo D.
$20 (2nd donation), John H.
$20 (2nd donation), David R.
$20 (2nd donation), Andriy K.
$20 (2nd donation), Peter J.
$20 (2nd donation), Charles P.
$20, Miroslav Franko
$20, Rajiv I.
$20, Frédéric F.
$20, Yue K. Y.
$20, Almut T.
$20, Charles S.
$20, Ana M.
$20, Brian S.
$20, James B.
$20, Robert S.
$20, Jarosław J.
$20, Jeff D.
$20, Steven W.
$20, Robert A.
$20, Michael G.
$20, William F.
$20, Susan R.
$20, Kelly K.
$20, Daniel O.
$20, Frederick S.
$20, William H.
$20, Peter J.
$20, John P.
$20, Maffiou
$20, Fabio S. D. A.
$17.87 (4th donation), Stoyan N.
$17.87 (2nd donation), Fredrik E.
$17.87 (2nd donation), David M.
$17.87, Morel I.
$17.87, Marko O.
$17.87, Henrik E.
$17.87, Michael D.
$17.87, Morten H.
$17.87, Edward S.
$15.25, Hugo L.
$15 (3rd donation), Timothy C.
$15, Martin G.
$15, Matthias W.
$15, Kok E. B.
$15, Michael Z.
$15, Michal C.
$15, Michael B.
$14.3 (2nd donation), Alexandru R.
$14.3, Antonio G. N.
$14, Pedro P. R. C.
$13.37, Justin V. E.
$11.93, Matīss J.
$11.91 (18th donation), Raymond E.
$11.91 (4th donation), Brendan M.
$11.91 (4th donation), Touko N.
$11.91 (4th donation), Kevin O. aka “Kev”
$11.91 (3rd donation), Queenvictoria
$11.91 (2nd donation), Jordi F. N.
$11.91 (2nd donation), Günther K.
$11.91 (2nd donation), Lodovico Settembrini
$11.91 (2nd donation), Philip King
$11.91 (2nd donation), Roger P.
$11.91 (2nd donation), In gratitude for the forum help
$11.91, Artur H. K.
$11.91, Jose L. C. R.
$11.91, Viktor S.
$11.91, Carsten D.
$11.91, BITE GmbH aka “www.b-ite.de
$11.91, Danilo R.
$11.91, Till B.
$11.91, Dieter F.
$11.91, Alfonso D. D.
$11.91, Patrick D.
$11.91, Faustino M. M.
$11.91, Francesco P.
$11.91, Andrea B.
$11.91, Mogens B.
$11.91, brotenet
$11.91, Ilpo L.
$11.91, Ian B.
$11.91, Adrian G.
$11.91, Dzintars M.
$11.91, Daniel P. M.
$11.91, Giuseppe M.
$11.91, Andreea M. S.
$11.91, Hans H.
$11.91, Thorsten H.
$11.91, Rodolphe V.
$11.91, Miklós B.
$10 (47th donation), Tony C. aka “S. LaRocca”
$10 (12th donation), Mark C.
$10 (7th donation), Stuart K.
$10 (7th donation), Trey H. aka “Ubuntaur”
$10 (4th donation), Mike C.
$10 (4th donation), Dadykin A.
$10 (4th donation), Jeffrey T.
$10 (3rd donation), Jobs Near You aka “Find Jobs
$10 (3rd donation), Kouji Kobayashi
$10 (2nd donation), Roy R.
$10 (2nd donation), Kyle J. M.
$10 (2nd donation), Wang J.
$10 (2nd donation), Eric O.
$10 (2nd donation), Donald P. J.
$10 (2nd donation), Nicholas P.
$10 (2nd donation), Glover Electronics
$10, Robert S.
$10, Sander B.
$10, Nigel C.
$10, Alex S.
$10, Vincent L.
$10, Klemin E.
$10, Alik M.
$10, Indarien’s Game Theory
$10, Steven L.
$10, Andrew C.
$10, N R.
$10, Евгений Д.
$10, Есин С.
$10, Kaspar M.
$10, Mark C.
$10, Jason
$10, John R.
$10, Bread Kitchen Story aka “Amanda
$10, Jason M.
$10, Noelle N.
$10, David B.
$10, Hélène G.
$10, Sargis A.
$10, Owen W.
$10, Carlos Saltos @ Listatree Talenteca
$10, Maurício T. F.
$10, Laz
$10, Anaya S.
$10, Mikel C.
$10, Dave B. C.
$10, Simeon O.
$10, Victor A. D. C.
$10, Richard N.
$10, Antonio C.
$10, William G.
$10, Paul C.
$10, Vladimir P.
$10, William S.
$9.53, Christian S.
$8, HJI aka “Hospital Jobs Inc
$7.84, Luis E. Mesa aka “luismesalas
$7.15, Christopher N.
$7, Gadgets Greece aka “Gadget Expert
$7, David G.
$5.95 (3rd donation), Istvan Sz.
$5.95 (2nd donation), Marc Tutatis
$5.95 (2nd donation), Free hosting aka “Host 33
$5.95 (2nd donation), Korneliusz M.
$5.95, Marcel J. Z.
$5.95, Bernard S.
$5.95, Tom E. S.
$5.95, William D.
$5.95, Heiko S.
$5.95, Tomas Garijo
$5.95, Michel L.
$5.95, Karl A. L.
$5.95, Joachim B.
$5.95, Roberto I.
$5.95, Aleksandr K.
$5.95, aka “BendőBandó”
$5 (16th donation), Carlos W.
$5 (12th donation), Randy R. aka “MonkeyMint”
$5 (9th donation), CW P.
$5 (8th donation), Toronto Maple Leafs
$5 (5th donation), frisky
$5 (5th donation), Cristiano S.
$5 (2nd donation), Karol Zalewski aka “Zal
$5 (2nd donation), Snorri G.
$5 (2nd donation), Mojmír S.
$5 (2nd donation), http://www.newprojectfreetv.com/
$5 (2nd donation), J. D. Motta
$5 (2nd donation), Atilio P. B. J.
$5 (2nd donation), Harold F.
$5 (2nd donation), Wan Nor Arifin
$5 (2nd donation), John M.
$5, Richard D.
$5, Roger M.
$5, Christopher R.
$5, Christopher M.
$5, Luigi C.
$5, Paul J.
$5, Florian B.
$5, Tyler B.
$5, Andre D. A.
$5, Snorri G.
$5, Pablo L. L.
$5, Thomas D. C.
$5, J. D. Motta
$5, Juan P. C. C.
$5, Doug F.
$5, Chad M.
$5, Jason S.
$4 (2nd donation), Libertad Tecnologica
$4, Russell G.
$3.57, Temple Martin
$3.57, Ľuboš I.
$3.57, Dariusz K.
$3.57, Ismael V. Z.
$3.57, Daniel H.
$3.57, Jan M.
$3 (2nd donation), Správa IT
$3, Bartłomiej B.
$3, Mario A. N. U.
$2.38, Gonzalo C. V.
$2.38, Peter F.
$2.38, Renate J.
$2 (2nd donation), Hedy Botticelli aka “Hedy B”
$2 (2nd donation), Luis G.
$2, Christine D.
$2, T A.
$1.95, Fahad A.
$18.8 from 20 smaller donations

If you want to help Linux Mint with a donation, please visit http://www.linuxmint.com/donors.php

Rankings:

  • Distrowatch (popularity ranking): 2718 (1st)
  • Alexa (website ranking): 6673rd

LMDE 2 “Betsy” MATE RC released!

Written by Clem on March 18th, 2015

The team is proud to announce the release of LMDE 2 “Betsy” MATE RC.

LMDE 2 “Betsy” MATE Edition

LMDE (Linux Mint Debian Edition) is a very exciting distribution, targeted at experienced users, which provides the same environment as Linux Mint but uses Debian as its package base, instead of Ubuntu.

LMDE is less mainstream than Linux Mint, it has a much smaller user base, it is not compatible with PPAs, and it lacks a few features. That makes it a bit harder to use and harder to find help for, so it is not recommended for novice users.

LMDE is however slightly faster than Linux Mint and it runs newer packages. Life on the LMDE side can be exciting. There are no point releases in LMDE 2, except for bug fixes and security fixes base packages stay the same, but Mint and desktop components are updated continuously. When ready, newly developed features get directly into LMDE 2, whereas they are staged for inclusion on the next upcoming Linux Mint 17.x point release. Consequently, Linux Mint users only run new features when a new point release comes out and they opt-in to upgrade to it. LMDE 2 users don’t have that choice, but they also don’t have to wait for new packages to mature and they usually get to run them first. It’s more risky, but more exciting.

Important info:

  • Login and password for the live session
  • Gtk theme and icons failing to load
  • Multi-core and multi-CPU support in 32-bit kernel
  • Modprobe errors, warning messages during the boot sequence
  • Yumi multiboot

Make sure to read the “Release Notes” to be aware of important info or known issues related to this release.

System requirements:

  • x86 processor (Linux Mint 64-bit requires a 64-bit processor. Linux Mint 32-bit works on both 32-bit and 64-bit processors).
  • 512MB RAM (1GB recommended for a comfortable usage).
  • 9GB of disk space (20GB recommended).
  • Graphics card capable of 800×600 resolution (1024×768 recommended).
  • DVD drive or USB port

Bug reports:

  • Please report bugs below in the comment section of this blog.
  • Please visit https://github.com/linuxmint/Roadmap to follow the progress of the development team between the RC and the stable release.

Download:

Md5 sum:

  • 32-bit: ea683ce80296312857023f141c62163f
  • 64-bit: 2ddc1dc930b3b5a092f44d893df1cc25

Torrents:

HTTP Mirrors for the 32-bit DVD ISO:

HTTP Mirrors for the 64-bit DVD ISO:

Enjoy!

We look forward to receiving your feedback. Thank you for using Linux Mint and have a lot of fun testing the release candidate!


LMDE 2 “Betsy” Cinnamon RC released!

Written by Clem on March 18th, 2015

The team is proud to announce the release of LMDE 2 “Betsy” Cinnamon RC.

LMDE 2 “Betsy” Cinnamon Edition

LMDE (Linux Mint Debian Edition) is a very exciting distribution, targeted at experienced users, which provides the same environment as Linux Mint but uses Debian as its package base, instead of Ubuntu.

LMDE is less mainstream than Linux Mint, it has a much smaller user base, it is not compatible with PPAs, and it lacks a few features. That makes it a bit harder to use and harder to find help for, so it is not recommended for novice users.

LMDE is however slightly faster than Linux Mint and it runs newer packages. Life on the LMDE side can be exciting. There are no point releases in LMDE 2, except for bug fixes and security fixes base packages stay the same, but Mint and desktop components are updated continuously. When ready, newly developed features get directly into LMDE 2, whereas they are staged for inclusion on the next upcoming Linux Mint 17.x point release. Consequently, Linux Mint users only run new features when a new point release comes out and they opt-in to upgrade to it. LMDE 2 users don’t have that choice, but they also don’t have to wait for new packages to mature and they usually get to run them first. It’s more risky, but more exciting.

Important info:

  • Login and password for the live session
  • Gtk theme and icons failing to load
  • Multi-core and multi-CPU support in 32-bit kernel
  • Modprobe errors, warning messages during the boot sequence
  • Yumi multiboot

Make sure to read the “Release Notes” to be aware of important info or known issues related to this release.

System requirements:

  • x86 processor (Linux Mint 64-bit requires a 64-bit processor. Linux Mint 32-bit works on both 32-bit and 64-bit processors).
  • 512MB RAM (1GB recommended for a comfortable usage).
  • 9GB of disk space (20GB recommended).
  • Graphics card capable of 800×600 resolution (1024×768 recommended).
  • DVD drive or USB port

Bug reports:

  • Please report bugs below in the comment section of this blog.
  • Please visit https://github.com/linuxmint/Roadmap to follow the progress of the development team between the RC and the stable release.

Download:

Md5 sum:

  • 32-bit: 17566c6518b9a12d1c36a7204357f58e
  • 64-bit: e241ff278ad51ba2fe9a47dcec50d032

Torrents:

HTTP Mirrors for the 32-bit DVD ISO:

HTTP Mirrors for the 64-bit DVD ISO:

Enjoy!

We look forward to receiving your feedback. Thank you for using Linux Mint and have a lot of fun testing the release candidate!