Monthly News – March 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 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

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 (

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.


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  1. As an Arch Linux user I’m especially grateful for the updated GNOME 3.14 support.
    The black bar on the lock screen is ugly but not a deal-breaker. It is still there though.

    Websites: Some of them look old, some of them look bad even.
    And some haven’t been maintained for months:

    Edit by Clem: The issue with the screensaver was partially fixed by monsta in version 2.4.1, and then more recently by mtwebster (I’ll label this today as 2.4.2 so it can be packaged by Arch). The started as a blog and a host for the spices (, attached to it). We quickly found out we didn’t need three separate blogs but, within the scope of Cinnamon, static dev info instead. Since, technical news moved to, and we’re yet to either reconvert into a static website or to discontinue it completely and host the spices elsewhere.

  2. @Jeroen the screensaver is fixed in git – we don’t maintain Cinnamon in Arch, though. Talk to him (city-busz?) about updating it.

  3. Hi Clem,

    A huge amount of work went into making Cinnamon load faster.

    That’s so cool! Thanks for this!

    Edit by Clem: Well thanks.. we do have a better understanding of why it’s slow, and it’s also less slow than it used to be… we’re still looking at a huge delay though, so there’s no real good news as of yet 🙂

  4. Hi Clem,

    The good piece of news is that you started to look into this. And therefore half the way to solve this problem was done when you decided to have a look to it.

    That it takes 6 more months, or that you are not really able to reduce it below 5 seconds or… is not really a problem. At least you have tried, and this is cool!


  5. Hi guys,

    Thanks for this huge work, can’t wait to install Betsy. A thought came to me though, at the part where you mentioned Mint 18: wasn’t there a plan to make LMDE the main distro?

    Edit by Clem: We maintain both Mint and LMDE (and for other distributions also Cinnamon, MDM and Blueberry) and we’ll continue to maintain them as long as they are popular. In terms of popularity, Mint itself represents a big majority of our user base, and LMDE is just getting a brand new release so it’s a little early to assess the size of its audience. I know fans can be quite vocal about their favorite package base, project and/or desktop environments, and you might have heard some of them wishing for us to discontinue this or focus more on that. We’re already reacting to feedback and popularity though, so I can confirm that we’ve no plans to do such thing. If an edition was discontinued or another promoted, that would only be in response to their respective popularity. Linux Mint is by far the most popular distribution at the moment.

  6. Hi clem,

    Really happy to see another great distribution is done.
    It’s a very high standard to call cinnamon “slow” since it already ranks in top 20-30% in different linux reviews (e.g., Linuxed).

    For 17.1, no big problems since installed.
    The only annoying thing is the wifi problem which also complained by other users.
    Sometimes it is hard to find certain wifi connection (need to turn off and then turn on the switch again), keep asking ID and pw in PEAP connections without connecting, and might not maintain connection for long.

    It seemed to be something upstream and can be resolved:
    Hopefully this bug can be solved out of box in 17.2.

    Best wishes to all the dev team and looking forward to more upcoming great distros.


  7. @niquis7: in addition to what Clem said, it’s worth mentioning that LMDE’s base, Debian Jessie, lacks ubuntu-drivers-common (which is the backend of Mint’s Driver Manager), nvidia-prime, compiz and – the major downside which can’t be simply fixed in LMDE – PPA support.

  8. i see u use WP as CMS – what version is it?
    I cloud create a clean html5 teamplate for WP.

    Edit by Clem: Thanks for helping, it’s 4.1.1.

  9. Clem!:

    Thanks again for all the work, mint is my only experience en linux, but it was all i needed to jump off from windows, now all the pc in my office are linux mint (10 pc).

    Thanks for taking care of the graphics side of the os, we users are unfair, and we tend to evaluate the os for its graphics. 😀 so allways will be wellcomed another graphic imprubment. (any way the present linux mint cinnamon graphics are grate)

    best regards from your mexican friend


  10. Hi Clem,
    Looking for a new set of icons and icon themes? Why not look at Dalisha and Numix Circle icons sets and themes … just suggesting! Waiting for Betsy, thanks to the devs for your work.

  11. clem:

    about the graphics… i have a friend who is unemployed, he is a graphic designer (he use to work for a news paper) if you want to hire some one to do some graphics magic, i think he would be willing to do a nice job for small coins 😀 (if you are interested let me know)


    Edit by Clem: Thanks Fernando. We talked to two people so far. Money’s not an issue if we’re to pay for this (and it’s not an issue either with volunteers who join our team.. we’ve a budget to make sure our devs can afford to purchase equipment and find spare time) but I’d prefer to try and call artists to get involved with our team first. We don’t “hire” per se, or contract people based on skills, we’re open to working with anyone who’s interested in helping out and has time on his/her hands. We can outsource the production of everything we need and pay for it, and that would work short-term. What I’d love though, is for artists to join our core team and get involved long-term, so they can have an immediate impact on things we need to “beautify” but also on design within the OS and on new features as we’re developing them.

  12. Hi Clem is possible in future versions lm cinnamon comes with new design based on material design(android) changing the old design?

    Edit by Clem: Hi Fernando. Can you rephrase your question? Can you show us examples of what you have in mind?

  13. @Monsta: Hi, I should not install any Ubuntu-junk, even if it was possible. E.g. the Compiz-version Ubuntu deliver is totally damaged! It’s a huge difference to what I found in the old Debian snapshot-repository. I have the original full-featured version installed on LMDE-1 at the moment. Unfortunately it does not fit in LMDE-2 at the moment. That is something I would like to see Clem fix in the future.

    My opinion: The big advantage with LMDE is that it is all free from Ubuntu and therefore more reliable.

    I use the open Nvidia driver on my 64-bit computer with no probems. On LM 17.1, on the same computer, I had the propritary Nvidia driver installed and got colour-problems on Flash-player as a gift….

    I can run Compiz, Kdenlive and lots of graphic demanding programs wihout any problems, using the open Nvidia-driver.

    Edit by Clem: Ubuntu is Debian + added patches. Some of these patches might get in the way and create issues (Compiz for instance is patched for Unity), some add frustrating complexity (locale management is my biggest gripe) and I’m sure everyone who’s dug far enough can pinpoint a few missteps (and I’m sure you could also do that in Mint with many of our own patches). It’s not really fair to make a generality of it though and to call Ubuntu less reliable. From my experience, this isn’t the case. You mentioned Compiz.. from the top of my mind and without even looking at my notes I can think of 5 or 6 important aspects of Debian which don’t work as well as in Ubuntu. There’s a significant amount of changes at play here, and although some make compromises or prioritize components you don’t value, many bring added value to Ubuntu. You mentioned drivers… look at the LMDE 2 feedback, people are having issues with Intel chipsets on hardware that runs Mint 17.x perfectly fine. Mileage varies, the two bases are slightly different, our work is to make both of them work. I don’t think one is less “reliable” than the other though.

  14. I don’t like flat icons. I want colorful and expressive icons. I don’t like the “Modern” trend.

    Am I one of the last dinosaurs? Does anyone feel the same?

    I think is beautiful. Segfault not so much.

    It’s just my opinion. I have already accepted defeat, but I fear living in a flat world.

    Anyway, Linux Mint 17.1 Mate edition is great. Oldschool awesomeness!
    Thanks for a great distro!

    I wonder what will happen with the Ubuntu base… systemd, mir, unity next and focus on mobile. But if Ubuntu spins will be around so will Linux Mint I guess.

  15. QUOTE
    Websites: (…) We’d like to redesign all of them, make them look simpler, more in line with the current trends(…)


    Please don’t do that, Clem, don’t go with trends.
    I’m still with Mint just because it didn’t follow the trends, sat by Ubuntu or Gnome and sat it’s own trend to have the users in mind. Not how developers like it.

    Edit by Clem: There’s a certain fascination for Apple going on, and I can assure you this does not affect us. We’re also not planning to reinvent the wheel when it comes to desktop paradigms.. your productivity and familiarity with the OS is important to us. Outside of the Linux world though, the trend is to simplify visuals, prefer bold tints to gradients and decorations, put emphasis on client dynamism and simple UI elements. It’s like everything I guess, we’d be wrong to adopt new trends too early before people like them, but we’d also be wrong not to adapt to them after they become widely popular. Websites, cars even.. everything’s getting simpler and more modern looking, so we need to adapt. That doesn’t mean we’ll dumb down interfaces, remove information that might be useful, give you the impression your OS was designed for something else than your PC.. we’ll need to push ourselves into that new era, look modern, without compromising on what’s important to us.

  16. Lando, I agree with you:
    “I don’t like flat icons. I want colorful and expressive icons.”
    IMO, this flat trend happened about 30 years ago when GUIs were just coming out. But the wheel turns, and in another 30 years, flat might be the “modern” trend again.

    I’m guessing LM will find its own way and its own style as it has done.

  17. Hello, Clem and fellow Linux Minters:

    Thank you, Clem, for the March update; it is always great to hear what’s going on, behind the scenes. It certainly sounds as if you and the developers are looking to freshen up the operating system and the Internet presence of Linux Mint. If you will allow me, I do not take you or the developers as people who incorporate change “for change sake,” so, I am certain that how or what the developers decide to freshen up, it will be for the better. For what it is worth, I would like to echo the sentiments of both Lando & jesse5567, regarding their take on a “modern” or “flat-looking” operating system. While I do not consider myself a “dinosaur,” I, too, do not care for an overall “flat look.” Having said that and after following the work of Linux Mint for the past few years, I trust that what will evolve will be as fresh and as Minty as it can be. Linux Mint and LMDE are in great hands and your community appreciates your work and your passion for all things Linux Mint (and LMDE). Thank you!

  18. @Lando: Same here. Wish to live in a 3D world instead of 2D. A bug with no eyes live in a flat world. — Einstein

  19. I can’t help with web design – people say my designs are too “old fashioned” and “orthagonal”. But wallpapers I can provide. What size and where to post?

    I’ve been with Mint since Felicia and it IS the best distro and keeps getting better.

    Edit by Clem: Thanks Jan, high-res (as much as you can really) and by email

  20. If you get Compiz working correctly, you have all but a flat world. 😉

    A rotating cube and wobbly windows… A RED turn off button and a BLUE blue-tooth applet is Linux and Mint for me… 🙂

  21. Hi Clem,

    I Thank you and the Mint team for your hard work.Great to hear Cinnamon is becoming even more polished. Quick question – Did USB image writer fixes address anything related to this issue?

    Edit by Clem: I can’t be sure 100% because we don’t fully understand the cause of that issue, but I’d say no, it’s unlikely. What we fixed in mintstick are boot flags, partition alignments, 100% CPU usage.. all these could potentially get in the way of Nemo/GVFS properly mounting the newly formatted drive, but I think we’re looking at a separate issue. It’ll be interesting to see if people can still reproduce that issue though, just to be sure.

  22. @Jorge: Excellent pictures, just what I like! ! 🙂
    As a wallpaper, perhaps, the objects should be less “central” so there is some free calm space for the icons….? (Just my thought)

  23. what about bring back lxde?

    Edit by Clem: Sorry David, we’re not planning on bringing back discontinued editions. That said you can install LXDE on top of another edition “apt install lxde –install-recommends”. Once installed, log out and choose LXDE as your session in the MDM login screen.

  24. @clem the pictures can’t be downloaded and are not in proper size, I can happily send the ones selected from the site o send others in archive.

  25. Yet again excellent news but Clem, be careful with “the trends”. They are the reason why so many users like Mint.

  26. “The team also worked on MDM (the display manager which is responsible for your login screen) and redesigned the way it detects sessions.”

    Login screen is displaying at 1024 x 768 if I have my HDMI connected along with my DVI monitor. Without HDMI connected no issue. No issue in Mint 17.1. Once logged in screen resolutions go to their correct settings of 1920×1200 and 1920×1080.

    Other than that, have found no other issues.

    Graphics: Card: Intel Xeon E3-1200 v3/4th Gen Core Processor Integrated Graphics Controller
    Display Server: X.Org 1.16.4 drivers: intel (unloaded: fbdev,vesa)
    Resolution: 1920×1200@59.95hz
    GLX Renderer: Mesa DRI Intel Haswell Desktop
    GLX Version: 3.0 Mesa 10.3.2

  27. Re the slow response in cinnamon menu, is it similar to the one in mate? I have 4 mint pc’s and all have the same issue. except one with an ssd.

    Many thanks for what you guys have done.

  28. Fn+keyboard backlight,Fn+volume up,down,Fn+brightness doesn’t works on asus g550jk (LMDE 2 RC Cinnamon)

  29. Hi, about new theming, I think it would be great taking as example the “material design” of Google. It is simple, modern, colorful and good usable.

  30. @ RacerBG “be careful with “the trends”. They are the reason why so many users like Mint.” Couldn’t agree with you more! Thats the reason I choose Mint over Ubuntu.

  31. I hate the flat trend, it’s very difficult to find a good “3D” theme now, I don’t know why everything has to be flat.

  32. Just wanted to add to the rising chorus that flat is dumb. I never follow trends, but Lollipop is a step backwards from a design perspective in my opinion. It’s ugly, and all that white wastes a ton of battery for no real good reason. The old black was much better. I’d like even MORE 3d looking icons. Like maybe something that looked like a real object in real life, with better lighting than the current icon set. Screw the stupid trends.

  33. You’re doing a great job improving MINT. But there is a big problem with Nemo file manager 2.4.5 thumbnails. Edit Preferences Preview Show thumbnails should be defaulted to Always. Have the Nemo developers remove “Only for files smaller than:” Any size file should be allowed to have a thumbnail. Now if they can’t or won’t fix it right now, perhaps you should package Dolphin with MINT. I’ve waited enough time already, I won’t be giving any good reviews until this happens.

  34. Many thanks to the team for all their hard work. I’m using Cinnamon and mightily impressed. Well done! Regarding the future ‘look’ of Mint please remember that not all users have good eyesight. The trend lately seems to be to use feint (and often tiny) print, often on coloured backgrounds. I find it very difficult indeed to see the dividing light green lines in Community comments, for example.
    Also please keep ticks in boxes as an option – to me an X in a box will always mean means delete, not available or not loaded.
    Lastly, personally I find the Mint 17.1 logo on the desktop to be very nice but way too big – I use a version 3 or 4 times smaller.

  35. I want to support the project as it relates to web programming, I’m not good at graphic design but I have experience in the optimized programming php poo with database as postgresql, sqlite and MariaDB, also handling formated with jquery, and some css, if you need any help feel free to contact me at the mail that request for comments, the’ll help in any way possible.


    Edit by Clem: Thanks Carlos, that’s the skills we already have 🙂 That said, you’re more than welcome to come and chat with us. As a developer you’ll more likely end up working with python, C and JS though as that’s what we use mostly. On the web side of things we do need help but primarily on the graphical side (PSD/HTML..), not on the server-side.

  36. when will lmde 2 final be released???

    Edit by Clem: We’re getting close, only a few bugs left in the roadmap.

  37. To John Thomas’ comment, it isn’t just a thumbnails issue.

    Edit by Clem: Please be more precise (second part of your comment was removed, very negative and not constructive at all).

  38. “successfully marry our identity with flatter looks without falling into something that might be too minimalistic…”.
    Please don’t follow MS in this trend they are trying to force on everyone. If the truth be told, flat is ugly, and their Jackson Pollack / Pablo Picasso inspired UI is awful to look at. Imagine if Michelangelo had painted the Sistine Chapel using MS’s design team’s input…
    Oh, yes, I understand that it might make the UI marginally faster by not having to upload gradients or shadows, but that only says something negative to me about the mind-set of people in that mere seconds, (or nano-seconds), matter to them so much that they would trade beauty for speed.

    Edit by Clem: Wait, we’re not here to copy something we don’t like. We wanted to have that look (Mint-X) and the identity we currently have. We want to remain true to all that, but find a more modern look for ourselves. That’s exactly what I mean when I say “marry our identity” here. We need to adapt to newer trends without getting into something that would alienate people who like who we are. The purpose isn’t to blindly flatten all our interfaces and websites here, there’s a lot of work involved here to find out how we want to look going forward, ideally something that rings true to what we were but which also is in accordance with current trends and modern looks.

  39. re #25: link to 30 wallpapers sent to root. Hope they can be included so the world can enjoy them.

    re icon ‘fashions’: never follow fashions, make them. Unity/Win8 are the wrong direction, overly dancing 3D will kill the processor (like KDE which eats RAM and CPU, leaving scraps for your apps).

    Edit by Clem: Thanks 🙂

  40. @Lando Calrissian
    I’d agree with you, that I don’t care for the “flat” icons either. I think the computing world moved *away* from them after MSWindows 3.0. And they definitely moved away from the “hamburger” menu after MSWindows v1.0 (that’s one, not ten).

  41. Clem, sorry to be negative on Nemo and yes it’s personal preferences but
    I don’t like the program, I’d rather have Dolphin as well.

  42. If you don’t like Nemo, do as I do. One of the first things I do after installing any Mint distribution is install Dolphin. Problem solved!

  43. Could not run the install (Cinnamon 32bit at least) on VirtualBox, because the screen comes up in 800×600 resolution, and cannot be resized until it’s installed and you add the Virtualbox Addons. The problem is, your iunstaller ts *larger* than that, co all the navigation buttons atre unreachable off the screen. You cannot drag the window to a location where you can use them, and it cannot be resized from the sides available to you (or at all, for all we know, since I couldn’t get to the bottom corners/edge to try it).

    Booting into compatibility mode did not help either (figured it might either make the installer select a different resolution). Since I first test new distributions in virtaualbox, I couldn’t go any further than booting to the desktop.

    Just an important note that any critical screens need to allow for screens that may be a lower resolution because the right drivers haven’t been loaded yet (it can easily be the case on physical hardware as well).

  44. OK, just tried with LMDE2 Mint 32bit, same problem. Even if you set the panel to autohide, the nav buttons at the bottom are out of reach. Can’t use the mnemonic keys, since you can’t see what they are. Really doesn’t need much, but I’d suggest pretending someone’s screen is 500×700 rather than 600×800 when laying out dialogues.

  45. @Richard; er… install Dolphin then? Personally, nemo is the best file manager I’ve every used 🙂

  46. Re the following:

    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.

    Don't get sucked into the flat look which Microsoft and Apple have adopted. I haven't found anyone yet who likes this flat look. Please keep giving us the more conventional look.

  47. Ooh, I’d love to see new icons… A distro with a flatter UI by default is what I’ve been waiting for! 🙂

    please more sharp themes!
    No gray texts, no blurred details, more perceptible window borders and headers!
    monochrome icons are good only when few icons are present, but are very user-unfrendly in highly populated bars (like libreoffice).
    thanks 🙂

  49. Someone already mentioned Google’s material design. IMHO apps that are following its recommendations look fantastic. And Enlightenment is supposed is to be clean but I haven’t looked at in a long-time. Maybe try to pull some stuff over from them. I have high hopes for more Cinnamon development. As always big thanks to Clem and team and always listening / replying to feedback

  50. First contrats to the entire Mint team for the outstanding job you have done throughout the years. I have switched to Linux from Win7/8 two years ago and will not go back. You have done the best implementation of the major desktops to include KDE, of all I have tried.
    Second, a suggestion to the entire Linux world and maybe this might be best implemented best by the Mint Team. The desktop is not dead! But it dies a little bit everyday that there is no unified desktop! The biggest frustration I had and continue to have, is the inconsistencies between desktop to do basic things like file sharing and networking. Unless the Linux developers just want to keep desktop linux a hobbiest toy, find some naming conventions and function consistancy. The business world will not put up with it. Older people are confused by it.
    Third, I am not any kind of expert, but for modernization of design, look to those square icons, and evolvere icons for inspiration. When I tried the new plasma 5 desktop, I was pleased.
    Again, you guys are doing grwat and I am proud to be open source!

  51. KDB@11

    Maybe I misunderstood your comment, but I don’t think Monsta was advertising a weakness necessarily in LMDE for the lack of Ubuntu based components. I think the reference was purely a matter of fact(s), and that those facts make certain fixes incredibly difficult if not impossible — not good or bad really, just well established truth.

  52. Always funny to see how Clem doesn’t bother with the never ending mess around Debian vs Ubuntu. That’s what I really like with Mint: they keep focused on what is the best for Mint users. Feel safe.

    I am very excited on the next LMDE realease: I dream of all the good stuff of Mint I can find without missing any in a Betsy base. The best of both worlds in one distro. Hence, “Linux Mint is by far the most popular distribution at the moment” might not remain true very longer…

    Thanks a lot to everyone for all the good work.

  53. It is great that the Mint team is giving serious attention to upgrading Mint’s appearance. Since we all have different tastes, perhaps it makes sense to establish a strong brand image, but still allow people a good deal of choice in customization.

    FWIW, I like the appearance of segfault, and I find Cinnamon to be pleasantly calm and understated without being boring. Solid black icons are hard for me to differentiate. On the other hand, while they’re individually very pretty, the usual KDE icons are distractingly busy, at least for me. And the Mint logo could use a makeover.

    And thank you, Mint team, for the color and wallpaper choices you’ve already provided.

  54. Hello Mint,

    Enjoy running your Mint 17.1 Desktop, it’s incredible, perfect replacement for any other OS!

    Thank you for your efforts, excellent software.

    Just wondering if there will be a MintBox Server in the works?

    Thank you and Mint Community for your time and help.


  55. Having no success at making a working copy of LMDE2 RC. I tried, I really tried, I downloaded from another mirror, this time HEAt from Ireland this time using my auxiliary distro Mint 10 (when you right click on an iso it offers to check the MD5 sum!). The md5 sums matched. I then burnt the iso to a quality blank DVD using Brasero. I then booted the computer from the DVD. Then computer’s BIOS is set to look for a DVD first in boot order. The computer spent about two minutes trying to access this DVD and the light was flashing on the DVD drive and i could hear the disc spinning. Then the computer went back to offering me the distros in grub already loaded. I have also tried using Image Writer in Mint 13 Mate to make a bootable copy of it on a 8Gb flash stick. That refuses even to copy.

    As a control I burnt a new copy of LMDE 201403 Mate 64 on a similar quality DVD and booted off that. That boots properly.

    After a chat with Xenopeek via PMs he suggested :”
    Post it on the blog for the developers to look at. To me it sounds like there might be a problem with LMDE 2’s hardware support and your computer.

  56. I guess your computer is a bit on the older side.
    I had similar problems with my previous PC.
    Try burning with K3B or Xfburn instead of Brasero.
    You could also try to burn at minimum speed.
    Just ideas.

  57. Plasma 5, as implemented in Kubuntu 15.04 beta 2, looks very nice. Notice that the titlebars are delineated, like in pre-OSX days; that makes more visual sense to me, since Mint isn’t doing the CSD stick-everything-in-the-titlebar thing.

  58. @Turtlebay
    What I do and always works: 🙂
    As root type in a terminal
    tail -f /var/log/syslog
    and then plug the usb stick. I take a note of the device the usb stick actually is (/dev/sdd, sde or whatever).
    Then I press Ctrl-C to stop tailing the syslog
    Then, in the terminal as root I type:
    dd if=/home/me/Downloads/linuxmint-blah-blah.iso of=/dev/sdd
    (be very careful to use the correct path for the iso file and the correct device for the usb stick!!)
    All data on the usb stick will be overwritten, but you get a perfect bootable usb stick to use to install mint or whatever.. 🙂

  59. Because Mint is the largest, most popular distribution that keeps the menu bar at the bottom by default, it is the MOST attractive for Windows refugees. But some of us have been using computers for 20 years!
    Major shifts in colors and dimensionality aren’t any easier than a shift to something like Unity, because our brains have long since been programmed to respond to certain colors and features.
    I understand how you need to cater to contemporary esthetics, for the most part, but there really needs to be one or two old fashioned themes and icon sets available at installation. You could have one like Isadora… call it RetroMint. And one that draws together the esthetically most pleasing (or if you prefer, the least repulsive ;^)) ideas from different Windows versions… and includes 3 dimensional icons! And call it Redmond or Redmint or Legacy Look or something.

    If not included by default, maybe there could be a question in the installation program about appearance preferences, or AT LEAST a package of very well tested retro themes and icons in the “Featured” section of the repository where it would be easy to find. Windows refugees are already having to get used to different ways of doing things in Linux like dealing with more passwords and a much different way of installing software. There really needs to be an easier way of allowing us to customize our systems to give us at least the approximate appearances our brains are practically hard-wired for by now!
    OR…. you could take a version of Mint, probably MATE, but maybe Cinnamon, and do your own respin… and call it Retromint, where the only differences would be in the legacy appearance.
    OR, you could include more retro themes and icons in the MATE edition, since the MATE edition is already kind of “old school” anyway.

  60. Hello, I’m sharing this in case it gives any additional insight to the loading speed of cinnamon. I realize this is a bit of an unusual case and shouldn’t normally affect users.

    I have the following four Mint OS’s installed on the same drive on my computer: Linux Mint 17.1 Cinnamon (LM 17.1c), Linux Mint 17.1 Xfce (LM 17.1x), LMDE 2 Cinnamon (LMDE 2c), and LMDE 2 MATE (LMDE 2m). All are 64-bit.

    Normally both Cinnamon OS’s (LM 17.1c and LMDE 2c) don’t take very long to go from login, to black screen with mouse pointer, to desktop. Probably somewhere between 2 to 10 seconds, but that’s a guess… I haven’t timed it. A few days ago, I discovered that both LM 17.1c and LMDE 2c were taking over two minutes (I timed this) to get to the desktop after logging in. Most of the time was spent on the black screen with just the mouse pointer. However, both LM 17.1x and LMDE 2m were as quick as usual when logging in.

    Once logged in, I discovered that folders from my network attached storage device were not appearing in the file manager. I believe the cursor would just spin (or possibly nothing would happen) when trying to go to these folders. This happened on all four Mint OS’s I currently have installed.

    It turns out my network attached device was in some sort of non-responsive state. The status lights on it appeared as they usually do and I could ping it, but it wouldn’t respond otherwise. I am using autofs to mount twelve different folders from this device, and am using -fstype=cifs in the config file. I believe during login of both LM17.c and LMDE 2c, it was trying to mount the folders and timing out, which caused the login delay. In /var/log/kern.log (and other places), I found entries such as:
    Apr 2 17:59:13 lm17c kernel: [ 144.644919] CIFS VFS: cifs_mount failed w/return code = -112

    After I rebooted my network attached device, both LM 17.1c and LMDE 2c were logging in again at their normal speed. All autofs mounted folders were working again as well.

    Edit by Clem: Thanks that helps a lot. It’s not the delay I was looking at (it’s irrelevant on my particular dev box) but it highlights another possible source of delay. Can you set “gsettings org.nemo.desktop show-desktop-icons false” and see if the issue still happens? I’d like to see if this related to nemo or cinnamon itself. Underneath we’re probably dealing with a synchronous call to gvfs. Also, you should see the mouse cursor position itself to the center of the screen.. that’s one of the first things cinnamon does. Can you describe whether the delay happens mostly before or after that re-positioning?

  61. In ancient times (the 80’s and 90’s) I was part of a mainframe user group that had an interesting “feature review” twice each year. It worked so well that I’ve always wanted to see it deployed for my favorite platform — Linux™ — and distribution — Linux Mint™.

    Perhaps the Linux Mint organization would consider something along these lines. Perhaps voting might be tied to “registered end-users”. Where “registration” included a small donation. (In not case should a kilo or mega-bucks donor have more votes than a tuppence donor.)

    Also, because of the internet, the list and voting etc could be online and visible all the time. In addition, Linux Mint commentary could appear in near real time.

    NOTE — I’ve used Linux Mint since -8 and -9. I feel certain that there are feature request lists or pages or blogs but I’m not connected to those channels. Also, I know that there are maybe too many Linux-in-general feature lists vs. Linux-Mint-specific lists resulting in end-user — especially new end-user — confusion.

    The Feature Review
    Users would submit feature requests. Each request was added to a master list. The user group would moderate the submissions to merge duplicates and handle the unavoidable junk. Twice each year, they would send “the list” to each registered end-user. [Remember — these were the mainframe days so we are talking companies not individual people.] Each end-user would then vote for some specified number of features. For example, they might pick the top-five by number: 1=most important, …, 5=least. The user group would then publish the results of the voting in both summary and details form. They also sent these results to the manufacturer.

    The manufacturer would review the list and voting results. During the next user-group meeting (twice yearly) the manufacturer would hold a panel discussion and present their analysis of and plans for the features on the list.

  62. Hi Clem, To answer your questions from #73.
    Short answer: The delay is after the mouse cursor is re-positioned.

    Long answer: I couldn’t quite do the same test as I originally did, since I had restarted my NAS. However, shutting it down seems to cause enough of a delay to still provide some useful numbers. Instead of taking 2 minutes to log in like it did the other day, it’s now taking about 13 seconds.

    After setting “gsettings set org.nemo.desktop show-desktop-icons false”, I saw the icons disappear from my desktop. However, it did not seem to make any difference for my Cinnamon login times. (I may have previously adjusted System Settings > Desktop to hide various icons, so I’m not sure if I really tested what you wanted to see.)

    However, before running “gsettings set…” I logged in several times to both LM 17.1 and LMDE 2 (both with Cinnamon) and kept track of the time it took. I rebooted between logins. Part way through my tests, I commented out the line in /etc/auto.master for my NAS. When I did that, the time after the mouse cursor re-positioning was consistently 6 seconds faster. The time it took before the re-positioning didn’t change.

    Edit by Clem: Thanks that helps a lot. I’m planning to review the Gio usage in Cinnamon, I think that’s what’s at play here.

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