Linux Mint 3.1 "Celena" BETA - Review

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Linux Mint 3.1 "Celena" BETA - Review

Postby Ede on Wed Sep 05, 2007 7:47 pm

Just downloaded and installed Celena. It was almost heartbreaking to ditch Cassandra. For the last weeks, I have been VERY eager to try the beta, hoping for a release each day. And now it's finally here, so I'll try to write up a small review.

Ofcourse, it's a review of the beta. Beta. :3

:: The test subject ::

Fujitsu Siemens Amilio Pro 2200
512 mB ram (Although Mint reports it's 494,9 mB.)
1.60 GHz

I did not virtualize anything, it was done properly on the harddrive directly.




:: First look at the new girl ::

Since my laptop still has no CD-rom, I easilly installed via my USB-pen. The new bootscreen and gfx-grub looks sweet. Now, I have used the same background from Celena, on Cassandra the last week, so it was quite familiar, but still very appealing. No offence to the designers, but the colortheme for Cassandra was slightly ugly in some aspects. The new design is alot more solid and appealing, and Mint jumped up a few notches on the design-scale among Linux-distros.

:: Inviting the girl home ::

Once again, I stumpled upon some problems when using gparted from the live cd. I personally trust Gparted more than the main installing-software, so I formatted my main drive with gparted, but as I was going to do it, Mint mounted the disc, and the operation stopped. This happened in 3.0 too, and I have no idea why. I fixed it with a little race, writing "sudo umount /dev/sda1" in a terminal right after it got mounted during format.

Installation worked smootly, no problems at all.

:: Taking off her clothes ::

Right, time to check out the new features. (Oh, did I mention the new login-screen? It's pretty. Very pretty and stylish. All props to the designers.)

Boot was slightly faster than with 3.0.

MintAssistant popped out when I first logged in, asking me a few questions. It's a great addition, but the text looked a bit out of shape. I had heard talking about MintAssistant asking you if you wanted to enable Beryl or not. It did not ask, first evidence that this is a beta. No problem anyway, as it did not launch beryl by default. I also noticed the absence of the update-manager and beagle. I first thought I would miss the good 'ol chap Update-Manager, but I learned that synaptic can be used too in updating. A bit harder, but I felt that I had more controll over my system that way. Some things is still good to update, IMO.

Firefox is now maintained directly by the Mint-team, still, it doesn't seem like anything is changed with it. Maybe we will get a surprise in the final release? Hmm...

One of the most anticipated features (from my part) is the new MintUpload. For those that doesn't know about this feature, it's a feature that allows you to upload a file, simply by right-clicking on it, and pressing "Upload". It will then upload the file (If it's less than 10mB in size) up to a server where one can download the file. Easy sharing, and it works like a charm. The gui is simple (KISS) and works perfectly.
The only thing that bothered me was that the link doesn't send you directly to the file, but rather to a page where you can press a button to download it, not view it remotely. The ideal would be if one could upload something and people could then access a link directly to the file. I hope it will be a direct link if one uses his own bought mint-space. ( http://www.linuxmint.com/store/index.ph ... mint-space )
The web-hosting is a very good deal, and totally worth it.

When I was about to try the new PDF-printer, I found a bug. Not a fatal one, but it bugged me. (Hah, pun.) When chosing print, 2 choices appear. When I pressed 'Print_to_PDF', the Print-button became disabled. I then pressed the other option, 'Print to File', and the Print-button became enabled again, but then again disabled if I pressed 'Print_to_PDF', but this time, permamently, even if I pressed 'Print to File'. It was easy to bypass, I exited the printer-query and entered it again, only pressing 'Print to File', which worked. Then again, why is there 2 options there? Seems like a little bug of some sort.

APTonCD comes installed too. I don't use it, I actually never had to use it, I prefer to backup my .debs myself, but it's a great app and fits inn with the Mint-philosophy.

Other than that, the software is about the same as with 3.1. Mint still recognizes every hardware in my laptop and runs it perfectly. I still had to reinstall hal-device-manager, which this time, after a reinstall, did not show any hardware-information at all.
System Monitor still shows that the OS is Ubuntu, and the python-menu still bloats the memory at times.

:: Will I date her? ::

Without a doubt. Even though it's a beta, it feels relatively stable. It seems faster than 3.0, more sexy, more software, more sexy, more out-of-the-box-experience, and once again, VERY sexy. The designers did a great job. I can't wait untill the final release, even though the beta feels stable and works "perfectly" for me.
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Postby LostOverThere on Thu Sep 13, 2007 8:43 am

Nice review there. That review makes me wanna download the BETA (Sorry, I'm a wienerific KDE fan)

The only part of your review that bothered me is how you related software to a female human-being. C'mon, you can't be that nerdy. :wink:
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Postby Ede on Thu Sep 13, 2007 6:30 pm

It's because of the name, I just HAVE to abuse that fact as much as possible. :3

That's a reason to use mint instead of ubuntu. What would you play with? Cassandra/Celena, or a Warty Warthog? ;P
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