Thanks for the great welcome guys....
My impression after hours upon hours of play (much to the chagrine of my wife I assure you
), is that it is very user friendly. Not only that, you are right, it is screaming fast.
Exploder, you can empathize: I had to reload XP Pro SP2 on my pc because of a crash once. It took hours to load XP, NIC drivers, FW/AV software, then all of the updates. Once that is done, you can start loading your other drivers and software. It took all day long to do this.
Installing Mint was easy: Plug in the Live DVD, click the Install icon, and a few clicks later, I'm up and running. All I had to do was plug in my email info (thud), and internet links... it took about an hour. The tinkering took longer... but I wasn't down, I had email and internet to assist me.
I think LInux has come such a long way. You can d/l a mint distro in minutes (15MB d/l cable), burn it to a DVD, and be up and running in less than an hour. Can't ask for much more than that.
I work for the Fed, we are looking at standing up a SLES thin client server and pumping out SLED to about 5000 pc's. I'm the Lead Network Engineer of the activity, but I'm involved because of the network involvement. After working with Linux (this distro expecially), I'm liking a Linux solution much much more.