Rivenought makes an excellent point and it's one that bears repeating. So called "easy" or "beginner-friendly" Linux distributions such as Linux Mint, Ubuntu, and PCLinuxOS often achieve such status by taking a lot of the hard work out of configuring and maintaining the distribution. Such confounding issues as wireless modules for myriad of chip sets, proprietary video drivers, sound cards, etc., are often handled through pluggable modules that are generously supplied by the distro maintainer through the repositories, so that the user doesn't have to compile and install them themselves. The successful installation and operation of such custom modules rely on the kernel being controllable by the maintainer. recompiling the stock kernel can break compatibility with such modules and force users to compile their own modules, or seek alternative solutions. One just coming over to Linux from the dark side (e.g., Windows) may not be up to such tasks...yet! Nevertheless, there are a few advanced users who enjoy using distributions like Linux Mint because they're too busy to fiddle with making a more flexible, albeit less friendly distribution like Debian, Gentoo, or Slackware palatable for day to day use. Others might want to experiment with compiling code. I will work up a easy to understand tutorial for recompiling the kernel for Mint. I confess, I have not yet installed the new Mint 5.0 "Elyssa" as I'm awaiting it to go Gold. Hurry up Clem!!