I did a little search in this thread, but I didn't find anything about a recommended partition table for those that want to do it manually. The guide as published by the person starting this thread is excellent, but it only describes creating a two partition set-up. One for the swap and one for everything else. It seems to me that the guide would be better if it recommended a three partition table for beginners:
1. A swap partition (twice the size of your RAM - if swap is too small, then 'hibernate' and 'suspend' won't work)
2. A second partition formatted as Ext3 and with the mount point of '/',
3. A third partition (also formatted as Ext3) for the home directory (mount point of '/home').
I'm sure people could offer alternative partition layouts, but this 3 partition system is nice and simple for beginners and it will help them greatly when they want to get the latest version of Linux Mint. All they will have to do is then do a fresh install, whilst leaving all the files in the home directory intact. A clear description of how to do this in the guide would be extremely useful!
I believe this is the best way of getting the latest version of Mint - the other two methods are no way near as good. Firstly, the upgrade system as described here (http://www.linuxmint.com/blog/?p=1144
) is not reliable at all and can lead to all sorts of problems for beginners. And secondly, doing a fresh install where you don't have a separate home partition means that you will then need to recopy all your files from a backup onto your computer once the fresh installation is completed. If you use the manual three partition method for installing Mint, then when you do a fresh install, you can leave all your saved files in the Home directory intact, along with all your personal settings (which is a very big bonus). Surely, we MUST recommend this to beginners and then they will all appreciate that it is actually an easy and enjoyable experience to do a fresh install of the latest Mint operating system. Even if the 'upgrade' tools are improved, I think I would still prefer a fresh install using the separate home partition method.
PLEASE NOTE THOUGH: Even with the separate Home partition method of installing Mint, it is VERY important to make a backup of your Home directory beforehand!! (Just in case you make a mistake - for example, some people might accidently tick the format partition box for the '/home' partition. This is necessary if it is a first time install, but NOT if you want your existing files of a Mint 7 installation to remain intact after you have freshly installed Mint 8 ). If you don't make any mistakes, though, your Home directory files and all the settings will be there after the fresh installation of the latest Mint. Everything will work just fine. No need to then start copying all your files and settings over from your backup!
As a general rule, I would always recommend even beginners to use the manual partition method during installation. The 'Guided - use entire disk' partition method often gets the size of swap wrong. This then leads to disappointment when the hibernation and suspend features don't work! (Ok, if the automated partition method makes a mistake with the swap size, it is of course possible to create a swap file to compensate for the existing (and too small) swap partition. But, why not just do it right immediately?...)