Monthly News – April 2015

Apologies for posting late this month. LMDE 2 “Betsy” was released. I know many LMDE 1 users are eagerly waiting for us to announce an upgrade path to Betsy so I’ll keep these news short and go back to working on that 🙂

MATE 1.10 is being labeled as we speak and should be released very shortly.

Cinnamon 2.6 will reach feature-freeze mid-May and become stable at the end of the month. It’s already full of improvements and new features but there are a couple of very important sub-projects we wanted to put in it: The ability for users to change whether Cinnamon works with consolekit or logind without recompiling, a queue for file operations in Nemo so they can be performed one after the other, actual screensavers in cinnamon-screensaver (we’ve got support for xscreensaver and webkit screensavers already, we need to work on the configuration UI)… etc.

Linux Mint 17.2 “Rafaela” is planned for the end of the June, with an RC release mid-June.

Many thanks to our sponsors and to all the people who donated to us. Special thanks also to the artists who answered our call for help last month.


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  1. will Linux Mint 17.2 use MATE 1.10 or stay at 1.8?

    Edit by Clem: It will use MATE 1.10. I also talked with Stefano (who’s in charge of the 1.10 release) about pushing some fixes into 1.10.x updates post 1.10 release. So in 17.2 (and in Betsy also) you’ll eventually see 1.10 + updates.

  2. Clem,Cinnamon 2.6 will arrive in LMDE 2 before going in the the main edition won’t it? Just asking because there was no mention of LMDE 2 in the announcement. Thanks!

    Edit by Clem: Hi Don, yes it should.

  3. Clem, thanks for the quick response! LMDE 2 is amazing, it really runs great! Looking forward to Cinnamon 2.6! Thanks again!

  4. Awesome news! Waiting for Mint 17.2 KDE Edition here 😉

    Any idea about what version of KDE it will ship with? Thanks!

    Edit by Clem: With every release we keep a keen eye on the development of Plasma 5, but I think our role more and more is to bank on mature technology for now so we’re very likely to switch to it for Mint 18 and to keep using KDE 4 until then. With that said you can enable Plasma 5 on top of Mint 17.x via PPA.

  5. Xfce 4.12 released some months ago, will Rafaela use that?

    Edit by Clem: No promise until it actually happens, but yes, we’re planning to upgrade Xfce to 4.12.

  6. “a queue for file operations in Nemo so they can be performed one after the other”

    I had the biggest smile on face reading this. 😀

    Thanks for the hard work Clem & Mint devs. Keep up the awesome work.


    Edit by Clem: Ideally we want to detect whether the source/destination of the file operations are the same to prevent them from being performed in parallel, but even if it’s in series all the time I think we’ll gain in performance and there’s also a case where concurrent gvfs tasks hang nemo and we really want to get that fixed.

  7. I think, Linux Mint 17.2 “Rafaela” will come with MATE 1.10. But it will be a little difficult to wait until the end of June. Thank you Clem and all development team.

  8. does cinnamon 2.6 has a way to hide panels completly?

    Edit by Clem: I’m not sure what you mean by that. Panels can autohide. Cinnamon 2.6 introduces multiple panels and multi-monitors support for panels.

  9. I’m looking forward to Mint 17.2, Clem—it looks like you’ve added a lot of nice new features plus added stability and security. This may sound shallow, but I’m looking to real screensavers. 🙂


  10. Looking forward to Cinnamon 2.6! Cinnamon is already the best Linux desktop IMO, and the latest release is looking exciting 🙂

    Out of curiosity, when is it expected to hit LMDE 2?

    Edit by Clem: End of May.

  11. Hi Clement, i would like say: Congratulations for great job in Linux Mint. It’s is the better distro used at moment for me, a windows user. I have linux mint installed in my 2 computers. 1- Desktop, 2-Laptop. I had linux mint 17.1 installed in 2, but because i had problems with laptop and overheating i tryed many distros and Mint versions (Cinnamon, Kde, Xfce, i not tried mate). A unique version that solved my laptop problems were Linux Mint Maya 13. The laptop work great now. But i have afraid because Maya will be discontinued in 2017. My laptop is not too old. 2gb, dual core, hd 320. So i ask: Would be possible the desktop enviroment in Linux mint to be more lightweight? I don’t want move out linux mint.
    Congrats for top rank distro and your focus in stability.
    I think in donate in future.

    Edit by Clem: 2GB RAM with dual core CPU is a decent spec, you should be able to upgrade without worries. This release cycle we tackled performance. I’ll be honest, we didn’t reach the goals I had set, but we did manage to significantly reduce CPU consumption.

  12. Man, glad to know 17.2 will be mint-polished on release. Continue taking the time necessary for rock-solid releases.

    You guys rock. Continue with the great work!

  13. Clem, i meant to completely remove it (as in close) and to be able to use cairo-dock without any panels on the screen. if i choose to use that dock i really don’t want to see any panel on the screen.

  14. “a queue for file operations in Nemo so they can be performed one after the other”

    Thank you so much 😀

  15. I’ve been using LMDE 2 for about a week, and WOW. Very, very solid, and very, very fast. Works great for serious server/industrial applications.

    Since you said: “Edit by Clem: With every release we keep a keen eye on the development of Plasma 5, but I think our role more and more is to bank on mature technology for now so we’re very likely to switch to it for Mint 18 and to keep using KDE 4 until then. With that said you can enable Plasma 5 on top of Mint 17.x via PPA.”

    Does this mean there is some hope of having LMDE continue without systemd? systemd caused mayhem on a couple of my test server builds, and I’d love to have a distro that wasn’t so divorced from reality. Even if by default it came with a desktop of some kind (currently using MATE and very happy with it, btw).

    Edit by Clem: Both Betsy and Mint 17.x use sysvinit (with upstart in Mint) as well as consolekit for session management but with a functional logind there as well (afaik that’s needed these days since some components made the choice to depend on it). In a way that’s good, because it means we’re using old and reliable technologies while systemd matures. It’s good also because users are able to switch to systemd in Betsy (and I think in Mint too?) if they want to. I also just wrote a runtime switch for Cinnamon 2.6 last week so you can make it use either consolekit or logind by just changing a gsettings key and without recompiling anything anymore. And I’m hoping to do the same for MATE 1.10.x (probably post 1.10 release). So as you can see, right now, we’re in the best position cause we’ve got multiple choices and we’re defaulting to proven techs. For us developers, the ability to switch between ckit/logind at runtime also means we can troubleshoot session and power issues much better, and instantly understand when a problem is related to the DE or the the underlying session/power management. Long term though, what matters is momentum and right now the concensus upstream is to kill sysvinit, consolekit, upower even (and the list will grow) to replace them with systemd components. It’s not something a distribution can decide against unless somebody actively develops a complete alternative. So although DEs have been more and more different across distros lately, you can expect all of them to have the same underlying core sooner or later. That’s not a bad thing actually.

  16. Hi Clem,

    You are right. My adblocker was not disabled on the blog despite I thought it was. Now I can see the name of the sponsors.


  17. Wow Clem,

    Just wanted to thank you for the thoughtful and detailed response. I’ve had various problems in my testing of Jessie on the server side, so I’m glad I have a current alternative. Maybe they’ll fix systemd eventually. *fingers crossed*

  18. Hi Clem,

    Do you have a link to the new features of Nemo or a roadmap of planned features?
    I would love to see a way to configure which columns are shown as a result of a search…

    Edit by Clem: No, but you can see the commits since 2.4 at The feature-freeze is in 5 days but we’re planning to queue fileoperations, and to simplify/declutter the context menus.

  19. Hi Clem,
    I’d like to ask you a question that is not so clear to me. Could I use the Debian testing repos with LMDE?
    I’d like to mantain that “rolling” scheme. If this can be made, what do I need to do?
    Thanks very much for all your work guys! See ya!

    Edit by Clem: It might work for a while but not long term. Eventually we’ll continue to build for Jessie and that will create issues as testing starts becoming Jessie +1 and getting more and more different to it.

  20. To my big surprise, Debian 8.0 “Jessie” doesn’t need the kernel boot parameter ‘radeon.modeset=0’ for older Radeon chipsets, whose required use in turn results in an unacceptable high CPU load for even simple graphic output like the System Monitor’s Resources graphs, let alone trying more demanding ones of the likes of VLC, Banshee or Totem, which are totally unusable.
    Unfortunately this is an issue plaguing every new release that I tried since LM11 (including Ubuntu and SuSE), strangely also affecting the latest LMDE-2, which is based on Jessie.
    This is why I had to stick with Helena ever since, but circumstances eventually now require a fresh installation and I finally need something, that installs and works as well.
    Therefore, please find out why Debian Jessie works for those older chips (like Radeon 9600 (RV350), Radeon X800 (R420) or IGP320M), while all the derived distris are broken for way too long and change for LM17.2, whatever is causing those problems, to the way Jessie is handling it.

    Edit by Clem: Can you try with the Jessie liveDVD at and tell us if it works ok with that one? It’s probably something small, so far we haven’t been able to identify the cause of that regression. Try to check for differences in the modules loaded, drivers/firmware packages installed and default boot arguments used. We already investigated MDM and plymouth and ruled them out. Another thing to try is to remove all packages (in Betsy) containing the word “firmware”, except for “firmware-linux-free”. It’s possible one of these firmwares is responsible for this.

  21. Will mint 17.2 have solved the problem with Nvidia Prime and dual external monitors?

    In 17.1 you still need to use lightdm as login manager.

    Edit by Clem: Can you describe the issue more in details?

  22. Can you please bring no panel option to Cinnamon 2.6 so I can use dock only, would love to see this happen. Using Linux Mint 17.1 Cinnamon 64 bit. Great distro but no GTA V.

  23. Will we see an upgrade to at least kernel 3.19 in 17.2 rather than the current 3.13?

    Edit by Clem: Hi Robert, probably 3.16.

  24. Hello, everybody.

    First. Infinite thanks to all people involved in Linux Mint development!! Mainly for making Linux Mint easy to use without treating us as idiots, like Ubuntu does!!

    And second. Please Clem, do the absolutely possible to include XFCE version 4.12 with Linux Mint 17.2. It has so many improvements and bug fixes!! XFCE 4.11 has a lot of bugs (more annoyances than bugs, but they “bug me” the heck out of me!!).

    Thanks again and keep up with your excellent work!!

  25. Just want to thank you Mint development team for all you do. I’m on my way to ditch Windows. Using 17.1 Xfce and LMDE2 and as a beginner in Linux world I love them!

  26. “Nvidia Prime and dual external monitors”.

    mdm fails to start so instead of a login screen you see the error screen presented when X could not be initialized.

    Hardware: Lenovo W540 in docking station (DS) connected to two external monitors through DS DVI and DS display port.

    GPU: Nvidia Quadro K1100M

  27. Clem, and perhaps others,

    I was looking at Linux kernel versions and their length of support. I’ve noticed that ver. 3.13 (LM 17.x) is supported until April 2016 (by Canonical); but LM 17.x has support until 2019. Since unlike Ubuntu, LM does not perform kernel upgrades by default, my question is how will LM 17.x’s kernel be supported past April 2016? Even for those that plan to upgrade to LM 18, there still will be a month or two of lapse between April 2016 and before LM 18 is released.


    Edit by Clem: Hi Jacob, they’re all on the same base. If needs be we can simply update the meta and recommend people a kernel upgrade. That mechanism is already in place to face situations where a critical bug is found in the recommended kernel.

  28. @Odyseus (#38): I’m going to install Xubuntu 15.04, which uses XFCE 4.12, to see how it goes.
    I presently use LMDE2 with XFCE. (the one currently in the repos)

  29. Is there any chance of getting a striped-down version of LMDE Betsy so that it could be easy to installed on older hardware. It would also be nice to only have to install the programs you wanted. Some of the people in our St. Louis LUG are having problems trying to install antiX. We recommend Mint for new members and in some cases we will install it for them if needed so a striped-down version would really be helpful.

  30. @Distro-Don: MATE edition should be fine for older hardware (32-bit version even has 486 kernel without PAE support by default).

    If you have some issues, try Xfce edition of SolydXK. This distro is like LMDE’s cousin, with KDE and Xfce instead of MATE and Cinnamon. They also moved to Debian Stable, like LMDE. And Xfce is more lightweight than MATE, so it should be good for old machines.

  31. @Distro-Don
    how old?
    I install LMDE Betsy on several with 1GB Ram and less than 10GB partition. some people say they want to try it on 512 of Ram but I don’t see any machines around that small to try it on.

  32. What are the chances of getting a striped-down, bare bones version of LMDE Betsy? We have already tried all of these other suggestions. We have some machines with 512 and also 256 of ram.

  33. I am using Linux Mint nearly for about 2 years now and I am very happy with the performance and speed it offers. A million thanks for all the hard work you guys are doing.

    Eagerly waiting for the new releases to update to latest versions.

  34. Looks like there is no chance of getting a striped-down, bare bones version of LMDE Betsy.

    Edit by Clem: Hi Don, sorry for the lack of reply. No, we don’t do custom ISOs.

  35. Hi Clem, I don’t need custom ISO just a bare bones version of LMDE Betsy or at least a list of all the programs that I can safely remove without preventing me from being able to boot-up.

    Edit by Clem: Hi Don, I’m sorry we don’t have such a list. It would depend largely on your target audience/specs and your own set of priorities. You’ll have to experiment, identify bottlenecks and customize accordingly. My suggestion would be to use the right tool for the job though, there are many distributions specialized in smaller specs or support for older hardware. They might be more adapted than Linux Mint for this particular use case.

  36. That’s OK. Ill start deleting programs and I’ll post which ones are safe to remove as I go along and then anyone who wants to can get rid of whatever programs they don’t use. Hopefully some other people will contribute too.

  37. Can’t wait for Linux Mint 17.2 “Rafaela” !
    Please Clem, take your time to integrate Xfce 4.12 into it, there are so many corrections in this new release that it sounds like a must-have in your next Mint Xfce release.
    Thanks for your great job, and greetings from Alsace, France!

  38. @ Clem in Response to #31 (May 11th, 2015 at 4:42 am)

    Since the appearance of Cinnamon it never really worked on my hardware. From the beginning it only had an incomplete desktop and was and still is only running in software emulation mode and therefore unbearable sluggish and with intolerable high CPU load.
    Therefore I was using:
    Both, the x586 and x686-pae kernels work fine here, just as they did back then with LM8 Helena, but in turn Suspend fails and VLC (or any other media player) and support for my Ralink RT2870 and RT3572 based USB WiFi adapters is missing in the Live version.

    And my apologies for not mentioning here that my hardware base are Athlon XP boards with either nForce2 Ultra 400 (desktops) or IGP320M aka RS100 (laptop) chipsets.
    (Currently not having my own Internet connection anymore and hence depending on time limited access slots at the public metro library seems to be taking a toll on the completeness of my provided information. Sorry about that.)

    Since I can’t attach any log files here, I try to send you more details in a root-mail within the next 2 or 3 days.

    And would you also please put back Schily’s original CDRTools ( in all Mint versions, instead of keeping that dreadful CDRKit (, which isn’t maintained anymore anyway?
    This is the dispute history:

  39. Forgot to ask: How, if at all, can I remove/prevent firmware packages from being loaded with the Live-DVDs?

    report my Radeon chips to be fully supported (IGP320M in 2D only), yet somehow radeon.modeset=0 is still required here and with its application, the CPU load for even basic graphics output (System Monitor) becomes unreasonable high.

    Edit by Clem: Hi, we’re REALLY interested in finding out the cause of this issue. You’re not the only one to suffer from this. We suspect the presence of one of the *firmware* packages to be the cause of it. It’s hard to remove them from the live ISO, but you can do so post-install to identify which removal if any solves the issue. Alternatively you can try to add these firmware packages to Debian and identify which one introduces the issue.

  40. Does Mint continue to support processors which only support 4 GB?

    Edit by Clem: Non-PAE? Yes, the 32-bit versions of Betsy and Maya do. Mint 17.x doesn’t.

  41. Sorry for the forgotten question:

    Don’t mean to sound parochial, but is there an easy way to remove a LOT of the stuff (though admittedly VERY hard work on your part) which I absolutely do not need), such as support for every major and most minor languages of the world?
    Let me know if I should be asking elsewhere. Thanks in advance.

  42. @Jon Colt
    All versions of Mint 17.1 and LMDE2 I have tried run fine with only 2 GB RAM.

    The only problem I have had is with Cinnamon. It requires a more powerful gpu than some of the old machines have. But those old machines work great with Xfce (my preference) and MATE.

  43. I run Linux Mint 17.1 on the 3th comp now , but not as an main comp.
    an Amilo 1702 with mate, an old HP and an Core2quad from medion.
    all running nearly stable. i found WARTHUNDER has made it finaly to Linux and running nice. on the medion there is no presense to the power source , so it run an BATTERY mode (says tlp) and just imagine the goood old 8 sek clickclak is comming from an hard disk (parking)
    tlp ac fix this so the comp run on stable NO BAT mode (hey its a desktop), just loooking for a newer fujitsu an x95 maybee the next days and like to see if linux running stable an that old vista laptop
    so guuys made it stabler and stabler. (pls build a switch in for ac /bat mode and an better power control for the power supply. its not good that i have to ask TLP what state of power my linux mint has
    or if this constant hd parking problem is solved by TLP on AC mode

  44. I can report that I have been using lmde 2 since release and it has been running great on windows 7 host under virtualbox 4.3.18. Great job guys!

  45. USB 2.0, 3.0 LMD2 slow speed (copy to USB and OS)

    Postby fjal on 22 May 2015, 20:43
    Good afternoon days nights.

    I am copying data to a USB memory of 32 GB and it takes me too long compared to W7 … several hours (writing almost 32 Gb USB)
    and the system will slow me, the mouse pointer sometimes jumps pointer will (you get stuck) … slow to open applications, mozilla firefox … etc

    Does anyone know what that might be?

    Thanks in advance.

    Best regards.


    Buenos dias tardes noches.

    Estoy copiando datos en una memoria USB de 32 Gb y me tarda demasiado tiempo en comparación a W7 … varias horas (escribiendo casi los 32 Gb del USB)
    y el sistema me va lento, el puntero indicador del ratón a veces va a saltos (se queda atascado)… las aplicaciones tardan en abrir, mozilla firefox… etc

    ¿Alguien sabe lo que puede ser?

    Gracias de antemano.

    Saludos cordiales.


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