"Also Mint seems to run very slowly when compared with Windows is that normal?"
No. I have more browser windows opened with Mint Gnome than WinXp. Also when Gnome eats 100 % process, my system feels more stable and faster (1gb ram, 2.8 ghz p4). I can even move the mouse in certain cases, open some programs or ctrl alt F1, open htop and kill some process without feeling like it's eating my processes and then ctrl alt f7 back.
One thing that I would've hoped was more pronounced than a search in the Mint forums is this tweak:
Care for some memory tuning maybe? Add these lines to the end of your '/etc/sysctl.conf' file:
# Modification of Swappiness according to this URL:
# http://ubuntuforums.org/showpost.php?p= ... stcount=43
# '100' swaps at maximum rate = good for slow machines with little RAM
# '0' tries to avoid swapping = good for fast machines with lots of RAM
# Linux Kernel's default value is 60! (this sucks!)
... then reboot so that the changes can take effect (there is a way to activate them without rebooting ... it's just I don't remember it at the moment Laughing )
This should increase the perceived speed of your machine and make things 'snappier' .... it sure as hell did on my systems
Reload them with this command for no reboot:
Remove programs based on Mono (Banshee/Tombo/Incollector/Beagle):
It is a Mono (the reimplementation of Microsoft .NET) application and comes with 3 .exe files, 47 .dll files and 17 .mdb files â€” exactly what you needed to feel "at home" in Linux.
Also I recently found out that there's a possible memory leak with gnome cups icon which I keep seeing but didn't credit as a memory leak until frustrated I did a search in Google and killing the process really helped get rid of the annoying memory eating feeling that I thought was normal to Mint and I'm also waiting for the XFCE community edition Daryna and try to switch it so I can squeeze more tabs into my browser. Would've gone the fluxbox, icewm, Slax based distroes except as you kindly pointed out, I don't have a degree in IT and haven't gotten the time to learn about Linux further so I'm stuck on the Mint Gateway for now. Luckily it's one of the best distroes.
Edit: Btw that tweak if wrongfully set can slow down your pc. I didn't consider pointing it out at first because it didn't seem to mess up my system and it didn't get the warning that most Linux experts scream about when setting up tweaks.
Ex. setting Linux as permanent root
Although it can. I don't know the technical details but it was in the original thread where I got that advise. I believe it was scorp who posted about the tweak and violin who posted the portion about mono.