Friday, 14 July 2017

Mint 18.2 Review

Linux Mint 18.2 in the wild!

I’ve just upgraded to Mint 18.2 from 18.1 being the (sort of) early adopter that I am. Realistically there was no good reason to do this - 18.1 was running well and doing everything I need, except to get any new bits and pieces that come with .2. There are some nice new desktop pics (quite beautiful ones actually), but not much I can see that is really different. It's still running Cinnamon, so there haven't been any gigantic changes in the UI in a while. I’m running it on a Lenovo M series desktop that I’ve had for some years and it’s a beast of a machine so any performance upticks in the new version aren’t really noticeable. Here are the release notes : and they're worth a quick perusal.

I did find that my desktop icons all disappeared. As a result I experienced sadness :-(

Fortunately I found the solution. The nemo-desktop application is no longer running. I found it (/usr/bin/nemo.desktop), ran it and voila - icons are back! I’ve added it to the startup applications and that fixes that.

I really enjoy the ease of the upgrade process - it’s fast and straightforward using the excellent Mint Update Manager. The download was around 400MB but the mirrors are all quick and it was quite painless. A fast reboot and I was back in business. I also took the opportunity to upgrade the Nvidia drivers I have (for my whiz bang graphics adaptor) and after another restart I was done. As a result, my primary work computer was fully upgraded and operational in about 20 minutes - much better than the Windows 10 computers I've just got that need a 4GB upgrade out of the box (!)

Mint 18.2 “Sonya” new stuff:
  • LTS release so supported until 2021
  • Cinnamon 3.4 apparently has many new icon management features (I’ll have to try this out now I’ve got icons back!)
  • Plugins for Cinnamon run in their own process
  • Add-ons called “spices” have been added - check them out on the Cinnamon Spices website here:
  • Various app upgrades including xed, update manager, xviewer, xreader and LightDM - the new login manager.
  • Ships with Linux Kernel 4.8.0-53

Get it via Update Manager or from the Linux Mint website:

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