That was my first solution, after that is when I got 2 of every folder showing up in picasa
[hi-res jpeg] 
hi-res jpeg] 
and so on. Pictures are still locked when I look in the folders. I tried deleting everything, starting picasa to make sure it was all gone, then re-copying with the same result.
There are no duplicates in the folder, only in Picasa, and they are all still locked in the folder.
Feeling a bit embarrassed since I'm setting this up for a totally computer(as opposed to just linux illiterate like me) friend.
I have had none of these problems installing on a laptop for the girlfriend, she now loves mint, much better then when I switched her from Vista to XP and had endless headaches and many angry phone calls.
I'm going to switch off of vista as soon as I get home in a week, couldn't be happier with mint on her laptop, but this desktop is giving me serious grief.