I currently have Ubuntu 8.10 installed (after switching from OS X last spring to PC hardware and Ubuntu 8.04). I'd like to give Mint a try, but also need a working and reliable (that's relative of course...) PC in a reasonable amount of time. So my questions are:
* can I expect Mint to install and work just like Ubuntu 8.10 does but with all the Mint specific features (codecs...), art work etc...? Or are there important differences (from a user's point of view) that I should be aware about that could break certain apps, hardware etc.?
* is Mint "compatible" with all the Ubuntu updates (specially security updates) that you can/should install? From what I read I understand that there is (also or instead?) a slightly different system where updates first get checked/approved by the Mint developers and it might take a while until an update gets recommended. So the question is can I access/choose to install the normal Ubuntu recommended updates instead if I want/have to (maybe because for whatever reason Mint might take longer to check all updates).