Monthly News – August 2014


  • Many thanks to our sponsors and to the 300 people who donated to us. 7 developers received funds in August as the result of the work they performed to improve our distribution. Development was extremely varied and a lot of fun. The team came up with some really cool ideas, one of which I’ll describe below.
  • The upcoming release of the new LMDE was codenamed “Betsy” and given version “2”. Although the release is planned for November, a lot of work went into it already, the repositories were set up, cinnamon 2.2 was ported and many improvements are being added to the installer.
  • A new project was started to improve the quality and access to documentation in Linux Mint. The “Official User Guide” is now automatically generated to various formats such as PDF, ePUB, HTML, translated in various languages on Launchpad and integrated within the OS as a Yelp DocBook guide. In Linux Mint 17.1 you should therefore see it in your own language by just press F1. We’re also tying various parts of the OS with the help system to give better contextual help. Pressing F1 in the Update Manager for instance will show the appropriate relevant paragraph on Software Updates.

Development preview:

The team focused on making folder navigation more fun.

Going forward, Linux Mint will ship with multiple colors. For those who don’t like green, you’ll be able to switch your icons and controls to blue, grey, pink..etc.

We’re adding emblems support to Nemo, so you’re able to add little emblem icons to files and folders:

… and to change the color of individual folders:

Finally, the Nemo toolbar and its path bar were re-designed to look better and integrate well with other themes (This is visible on the 2nd and 3rd screenshots).

In MATE, Caja already features emblems support and it will also receive the ability to color individual folders.

For more details on these new features, please visit Segfault at


Linux Mint is proudly sponsored by:

Platinum Sponsors:
Gold Sponsors:
VMware Cloud Hosting
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Vault Networks *
AYKsolutions Server & Cloud Hosting
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David Salvo Coupons
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Community Sponsors:

To become a sponsor or to see the full list of Linux Mint sponsors, please visit:


A total of $7350 was raised thanks to the generous contributions of 300 donors:

  • $400, Spencer F.
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  • $150, Joanna R.
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  • $100, Vishal P.
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  1. Hello

    First implement GTK 3.12 header bars on Cinnamon DE please 🙂

    Edit by Clem: We actually either patch or remove applications which use headerbars or CSD. It is a requirement for apps to look native and to integrate properly in all our supported desktop environments, including of course Cinnamon but also MATE, KDE and Xfce. We did add proper CSD support in Cinnamon 2.2 (mostly for other distributions) but it’s not a technology we want to use.

  2. How will 17.1 update process be different from previous ones? Will 17 be automatically updated to 17.1 with update manager? Does it include Kernel update? Is this 17.1 update universal for all DEs or KDE and Xfce will come later?

    Edit by Clem: Hi Konjad. It will be an opt-in and it will be trivial (possibly via the update manager or software sources tool). It might include a kernel update, it’s too soon to say at this stage. In any case just like in 17 you’ll be able to switch kernels, the kernel screen in 17.1 is also much improved compared to 17. It should also update your DE to the latest available version at the time of release (including KDE/Xfce, although these might be released after the Cinnamon/MATE edition and in the case of Xfce there hasn’t been a new version since 2012).

  3. >> For those who don’t like green, you’ll be able to switch your icons and controls to blue, grey, pink..etc.

    Very cool to think about this little details ! Keep good job !

  4. Im glad Cinnamon is improving, but what about new bluetooth streaming problems and middle click lost function to close windows in Mate? or Compiz + Mate 1.8 problems with bottom panel? 🙁

    Edit by Clem: The middle-click functionality isn’t coming back.. MATE implemented this in their own wnck library which they discontinued in 1.8 to use the GNOME equivalent. We’re planning to look into Compiz issues and integration with MATE for 17.1 and there’s an item on the roadmap to consider making cinnamon-bluetooth cross-DE (to give MATE/Xfce a gnome-bluetooth frontend).

  5. Please add better lan similar to windows 7.

    Edit by Clem: Hi Daniel, please describe what you like and what you’re missing in particular. My experience with networking in Windows, although brief, was negative. If there are features or things in it you feel could improve Linux Mint though, we’d be happy to consider implementing them.

  6. Thanks for the latest updates. Any progress on getting application indicators to show reliably in the system tray? Bug #481 on github?

    Edit by Clem: Hi Rohit, which app in particular do you have issues with? and are you using version 2.2.16? This bug is still open because it covers them all, but for the huge majority of applications we fixed the issue already. We also have a patch we’re planning to push towards Qiana and which might fix your issue:

  7. Thanks for the updates.Would Linux Mint mind changing the default CJK font in the future release?like Adobe’s source han sans.
    As a Traditional Chinese user, the default font Linux Mint now using is pretty awkward, and even didn’t follow the hand writing rules and education standard.
    The fedora team changed their default font to Adobe”s source han sans and it’s great.

    Edit by Clem: We’ll look into it. Don’t hesitate to come and chat with the dev. team to push the issue and to give us more info.

  8. Hi,

    How to donate if you don’t have a paypal account or a credit card and when you don’t want to have a Paypal account/credit card? Thanks!

    Edit by Clem: With Bitcoin, it’s completely anonymous though (so send us an email if you donate with it as we won’t know where the money is coming from otherwise).

  9. Hi Clem,

    I don’t have a bitcoin account either no do i have a Paypal account. Isn’t there no other way like moneytransfer through a bank?

    Edit by Clem: Hi Nomko. To be 100% safe and to keep things clear and simple in regards to accountancy we need to set up a new account specifically for this. It’s possible and we should definitely do so but it’s not ready yet at the moment.

  10. “Development preview:

    The team focused on making folder navigation more fun.

    Going forward, Linux Mint will ship with multiple colors. For those who don’t like green, you’ll be able to switch your icons and controls to blue, grey, pink..etc.”
    Will/Would it be possible to backport this to Maya?

    Edit by Clem: No. Maya will continue to receive updates until 2017 but after 2 years of backports we’re switching focus to 17.x when it comes to new features. That’s also necessary for us to move forward in terms of technology, we guarantee backwards compatibility for 2 years but we still need to move on at some stage to be able to use newer technologies. Maya started with Cinnamon 1.4 and went all the way to Cinnamon 2.0. It cannot run 2.2 (which upped its GTK requirement to be able to support HiDPI) or the upcoming 2.4 though. Regarding themes, it’s safe to backport the icons but I wouldn’t recommend backporting the GTK themes… Gtk3 themes in particular are tightly tied to the version of GTK you’re running.

  11. @nomko: have you considered getting a virtual visa (or other card)? there are internet services (and banks) that offer this.

  12. “…Finally, the Nemo toolbar and its path bar were re-designed to look better and integrate well with other themes (This is visible on the 2nd and 3rd screenshots).”…

    Will the buttons scale up when larger panel heights are used (i.e 30 or 40 pix.)? interesting for the visually disabled, but not present in Quiana!

    Edit by Clem: I assume so. I’m not 100% sure but according to Joseph (who worked on this) the look of these buttons is now 100% handled by the themes.

  13. When will the Official User Guide be available for translation in Launchpad?

    Edit by Clem: Hi Alan, it should come in very soon. You can follow the progress on this at I’m waiting a bit more before sending the pot templates to Launchpad in case we change the name of the paragraphs again, but it’s just a matter of days now.

  14. Hey,

    At some point can you implement Redshift 1.9 into the Repo’S?

    I can not install 1.9 — it’s the *BEST* version / newest of redshift, and it it EXTREMELY ACCURATE.

    If you don’t already know what it does – you can run it yourself but use the following settings because the defaults for the one in the repo are INCREDIBLY STRONG!

    redshift -t 6500:4700

    or add -g 0.75 after the 4700 and you can change the gamma too, makes things look shiny!

    I really hope you can make 1.9 work because then you’d be able to just run ‘redshift’ and not change anything and the default is the same, but it’s not as drastic because the colors are so much more accurate. (it’s less of a change than what 4700 looks like right now — that’s how much more accurate)!

    Edit by Clem: Hi Tim. It was fixed upstream (, so I add added 1.9.1 to the Qiana repository.

  15. Linux Mint is great! I love it.
    Please add an option for an auto update in the update tool.
    A script with apt-get upgrade and/or apt-get dist-upgrade will install also 4 and 5 grouped programs.
    This will be a great feature for non-pro user.
    Thank you!

    Edit by Clem: You can set it with a one-liner in /etc/cron.d/ but if something goes wrong you won’t know what broke it.. I wouldn’t recommend applying updates blindly and automatically, especially to novice users.

  16. Clem I would like to be able to create a lan network easily and to allow people to join easily as well. I would like to be able to connect to printer and local games thanks in advance.

  17. Daniel@18,

    So far, you’re not asking for something that you can’t do in Linux. I’m assuming you have a router in the mix somewhere, and a very basic understanding of TCP/IP? If you understand it in Windows, you understand it in Linux, it’s the same protocol. If your printer is configured with an IP address, Linux Mint will find it perfectly. If your router is configured to hand out IP addresses with DHCP, then any Linux device wired to the router will get an address just fine, and are thus joined. This also goes for wlan.

    I suppose I still don’t understand what you’re missing. If you need technical assistance on this, ask very specific questions, and I’m sure you will get help. The network manager can be accessed in the menu system, or in the system tray by clicking on the network icon.

  18. On windows you are able to host lan without a router. I am asking that linux would also have that ability but make more user friendly. On windows this is called ad-hoc

    Edit by Clem: Hi Daniel. It’s there in Network->Wifi->Create a Wireless Hotspot.

  19. OK, time for another (just made my 3rd) donation. Thanks Clem and Team for continuing to provide quality Linux Mint, especially LMDE. 🙂

    Edit by Clem: Thanks 🙂

  20. I have a comment about privacy:

    Skype in Linux is not open source and I was reading that it generates some encrypted data continuously. How do we know that this software is not transmitting our files/pictures in our home folder? Or taking screenshots from my desktop while it is still working in background?

    If I had known this before, I would NEVER EVER use it. In the repositories/software manager we should have some kind of warning. There should be some separation between open source, safe applications and the other that we don’t know what they do in the background.

    From the privacy point of view, is there any classification to know what is completely safe and what isn’t?

  21. Hi Clem. I just want to let you know, Linux Mint rocks, specially LMDE Mate!!! Thank you for all you do and all the Devs. I’m looking forward to the next update pack. 🙂

  22. Daniel@20

    Ad-hoc is also supported in Linux, as Clem noted. And it’s technically not lan at all. Also, it is generally a temporary solution to establish 2 way traffic between certain devices. You can certainly use that for as long as you wish, but if you want an actual lan, then you can configure your PC as a router fairly simply with an additional network adapter. I guess I was confused on the lan part of it.

    Thanks for the clarification, hope you can get something set up that works for you.

  23. Daniel,

    As just a follow up, you may also be able to do it through wired Ethernet if you go into Network Connections => Add => Create Ethernet => IPv4 Settings tab, and in the Method drop-down, select share to other computers. Just make sure you don’t turn on the IPv4 address requirement, otherwise you introduce the need for a router to assign IP addresses. I don’t have the devices at present to set that up and test for you, but that sounds like the equivalent of wired Ad-hoc.

    Best wishes, let us know if it works.

  24. @Monsta: Thank you for your answer. I didn’t know this workaround.

    But still if we generalize the idea to all 3rd party apps, I guess we need some sort of protection/warning for all users.

  25. @Caner: well I guess the same can be done for other closed-source apps… though not for flashplugin probably – I’m not sure Firefox would be able to load a plugin running in chroot 🙂

  26. I took the opportuny of a recent kernel issue in Maya (the one I was using suddenly stop booting for some reasons) to upgrade to Qiana XFCE.

    I was really confortable using Maya (until my kernel issue occured…). Just want to tell Maya XFCE users that Qiana XFCE is much better; it’s faster, polished and seems even more reliable. Very glad I made this (soon unexpected) step.

    By the way, I changed the gtk-window-decorator theme in Compiz:
    gtk-window-decorator –metacity-theme Dust –replace

    If I leave the default call “gtk-window-decorator –replace”, the close/min/max title bar buttons layout is on the right (default Compiz theme).

    If I give any other –metacity-theme value (“Dust” theme in my case) buttons would shift to the left (Ubuntu-way).

    Does someone know how to put close/min/max title bar buttons back to the right then ?

  27. Does anyone have any update on ibus integration for Cinnamon? Gnome-Shell and Unity both integrate ibus keyboards in the “standard” keyboard indicator. Would be great if Cinnamon could do this as well. I know as of several months ago @clem indicated the issue was understood but would not make 17, hopefully for 17.1.

    thanks again for the great work and great distro!

  28. Hello to the LMDE dev team. I have a small query. My LMDE installation in about 3 months old (update pack 8). Anything i need to do manually to upgrade to betsy or will it be done automatically. Thanks and regards.

  29. Thx guys for the information I am new to linux as you prbably figured from the question about lan. Thx I will try your suggestion. I think for the ethernet cord thing you need to have a special wire. I think something like crossover.

  30. QUOTE “In Linux Mint 17.1 you should therefore see it ( the “Official User Guide” ) in your own language by just press F1. ” /QUOTE

    Hi Team, others had the same idea. I’m on 17 with MATE. When I press F1, I get the help screen of MATE.
    So if you integrate that in 17.1, MATE users will have a problem.

    Edit by Clem: It’s ok, the help can be contextual and adapt to particular situations.

  31. Hi Clem et al,

    First off, congratulations on another fine set of releases.
    As an ex-developer, I am very impressed with the “Just Works” aspect of Linux Mint.
    Just to repeat a query that I placed on Segfault-Nemo Stuff (on a very old thread) – I would like the ability to modify which columns are available by default on a search result within Nemo.
    I find the need to sort my results on modification date.

    For every search, I have to right click on one column header and tick “Date Modified” to make it visible and then allow me to sort on that field.
    Is there a configuration file that allows me to set which columns are displayed in a search result? (and is there a way to set it to sort on that field by default?)

    [Nemo 2.2.4 on Qiana Cinnamon]

  32. TIL: Ask all my networking questions on Linux Mint monthly update blog posts. 😀 Seriously though, Mint 17 is the best. It’s my daily driver on a whole range of hardware.

  33. Does anybody know of a good alternative for remote desktop support? VNC is so slow, and setting up the rdp hooks in Linux makes me feel dirty.

  34. [quote]Edit by Clem: Hi Tim. It was fixed upstream (, so I add added 1.9.1 to the Qiana repository.[/quote]

    Wow! Thank you SO MUCH!

    Really truly appreciate that.

    If you don’t mind I’d like to switch topics.

    There’s a major issues that affects my ability to comfortably use linux. It’s DPI.

    I can easily scale the text up, but then the mouse, scroll bars, and everything else remains really tiny, and I’d like to stay on 1080p — I have a 24″ monitor, but I need stuff a bit bigger.

    For perspective, on Windows 7 I have the DPI set to “150%” and this helps out immensely quite literally putting everything bigger to the tune of 1280x720p but still running at 1080p.

    Is there a way to do this in Linux, or would you recommend I run 720p.

    Also, good work on the magnifier, I also use that a bit, but see if you can find a way for the shortcut to hold throughout numerous theme changes, as I find that it doesn’t always work, and changes to something else, in fact I would consider it a bug of the implementation, but I’m sure you’ll figure out how to fix it!

    Edit by Clem: Hi Tim. We’re in transition towards really high DPI screens I think. At the moment Linux Mint only does 100% and 200% DPI and only for the following components: MDM, Cinnamon, GTK3 applications.

  35. Hi,
    I just wanted to say that LMDE+Mate works great.It’s really fast in my old computer, and has everything I need.Still, I would like to have more options for printing.For example, I would like to be able to print two-sided pages.Thanks and regards

  36. Firstly thank you for your hard work. Such a breath of fresh air. Now heres my observations re. Mint 17 Cinnamon. Previous editions of Mint Cinnamon I was able to specify a panel height in panel settings. Now there is an inadequate dragable button from smaller to larger. On my 50 inch monitor I can hardly see the tiny icons and text so I choose to hide it. Painful! Next Issue. When restarting or logging in the multi monitor configuration I have is lost and needs to be reconfigured every time. Painful!. Next issue. I have imported my own Hi res jpg’s for desktop backgrounds. Occasionally on restarts or logging in the background configuration is lost and I need to reselect my preferred background. I have been using Mint since Nadia and have used kde, mate and cinnamon. I find Quiana Cinnamon edition to be a little too simplistic and more laptop than pc. Sad face! I am considering Mate and even looking around!!! I hope this is helpful. Cheers

    Edit by Clem: Hi Desi. The background bug was fixed in an update, make sure you’re running Cinnamon 2.2.16 and you’ve applied level 1 updates. Afaik the slider is there to abstract the pixel value.. in hiDPI pixels mean less than before and that can be confusing. Multi-monitor configuration should be persistent, I never experienced this issue personally. There might be an overlap between your driver configuration and Cinnamon’s display preferences. I’d recommend to delete the configuration and configure it again once and for all. It’s stored in ~/.config/monitors.xml.

  37. Hi Clem.I have problem with external subwoofer in Asus G550jk laptop.LMDE don’t recognize external subwoofer in sound settings.How to fix it??
    Thank’s for reply.

  38. Daniel@32

    If you choose the Ad Hoc method, yes I believe you will need a crossover cable. I’m not sure if this is necessary if you have a simple layer 1 network switch in the mix. They usually rely on mac address for interconnectivity, but you may have to test that one. Again, I would love to test it myself, but I don’t have the resources immediately. I feel confident that in the end, you will gradually realize how cumbersome Windows can be with this type of thing. But you’ll need just a little exposure. Best wishes.

  39. rhy@37

    Just curious, what’s wrong with rdp? Are you connecting to a local desktop/server or do you need to traverse wan? If locally, rdesktop works great, and grdesktop is a quick little graphical front-end to configure a connection. Of course, if you’re crossing wan, you’ll need a vpn client, I like the follow if you need anyconnect support for vpn:


    If it’s not that critical, there are plenty of other decent vpn clients. And then just rdp. There may be other suggestions for remote desktop connectivity, but I would suggest bonding with .rdp, it’s pretty solid.

  40. Clem. Thanks for your suggestions. The background glitch has not occurred since I began using quiana’s default bg. Thanks for the heads up I will use my own awesome bg’s once again. Re. the slider pixel abstraction issue when coding css for websites to avoid this scaling problem I can use ems. No idea if ems is appropriate. Ultimately I would like the ability to define my own pixel value as in previous versions of cinnamon. Finally, the multi monitor issue is still a mystery and when time allows I will investigate some more. Potentially its driver related but is inherent specifically to quiana cinnamon. If I recall correctly whilst fresh installing quiana there were some nvidia driver issues so I wouldn’t be surprised. Thanks again.

  41. One of the major problems for those of us migrating from windows is the difficulty of installing software. It is a major complaint and impediment to many. I am not referring to the Software Manager, but to installing tarballs. Can this not be made more automatic so that by clicking on the tarball most of the steps can be completed by the operating system.

    Apart from that I am enjoying Mint 17 Mate. I only use windows now for a game that the developers refuse to issue in Linux.

    Thanks for all your work.

  42. Just a quick note to congratulate the developers of the sound module ALSA. I am now able to use my old RME Digi96 PAD card that is not supported on Windows 8. I also note from the ALSA documentation that there is also support for the old Digigram cards, which I also have. Brilliant to have legacy compatibility in Mint 17. Well done to all.

  43. Great job Clem (& your team), all these little change do add up for a smoother and more enjoyable OS. Thank you

    An aside, and these questions are exactly that, well your team have Mint working so well, tough to come up with issues!
    One thing that I’m not sure you’re aware of, as it is a 3rd party app, but the applet “minitube” kept crashing. There was a fix for it but in early September my VLC files were updated by Update Manager, and now “minitube” is broke again.
    Have you heard anything about this bug being fixed again by the 3rd party developer?
    Also, are you aware of any media program that will allow me cast my videos from Linux mint laptop to Google Chrome cast.

  44. @50
    Thank you xet7, yeah I had heard VLC was thinking about supporting it,
    wasn’t sure if another media player like Mplayer had already achieved this, and my google searches were just failing me 🙂

    At the minute I use XMBC on my laptop to render the video locally from an external hard drive, it sends it over the network to BubbleUPnP on my tablet and from that to my Chromecast. As you can imagine, I was convinced there had to be a simpler way…

  45. More important than colored folders, is it possible to have a transparent background behind the folders in Nemo? All of my terminals are 50% black, and I love it, I’d love to have the same background for folders.

    See which one doesn’t belong?

    Edit by Clem: It’s funny, we talked about that too within the team. Some of us remember being able to set the background color of the view in early Nautilus 2.x builds. We might bring that back at some stage.

  46. @Clem, thanks for the updates. Great initiative on the help documentation, especially on invoking contextual help. We could also place a help icon on the window title bar on applications / windows where it makes sense to have.
    I feel, for new Linux users, what would also greatly benefit is some sort of a “Troubleshooting Guide”. I posted about the idea – Have a look at it and see if it is something feasible from a development perspective.
    @All – Looking forward to comments / votes for the idea. 😀

  47. Clem, Since there has been some talk above on Networking improvements, sharing a link for Network Applet meta bug (many UX) here for your visibility. Please look at when you get time
    Original report was on implementing some improvements that KDE n/w aplet recently. Later, I added some reference to the issues reported by other users on the n/w applet.

  48. Clem: Awesome! I really miss that. The only other real improvement I can imagine for Cinnamon is different desktop wall papers (I know this is possible already, but the implementation is kludgy), and also different desktop icons (on a per workspace basis). I’m using Mint all over the place already, so these are just incremental improvements that would be sweet for power users like myself and the other sysadmins in my department.

  49. Thank you very much, I prefer blue color!
    I’d like to see in Linux mint (cinnamon and xfce), the possibility to resize the icons of personal folder, without the space between columns also increase, as occurs in the KDE environment.
    It would be wonderful!

    See, the space between the columns of icons in cinnamon, is wider than the space that it occupies its own folder icon. See KDE w

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