rop75 wrote:From my humble pont of view, LMDE IS NOT a (semi) rolling realese distro. A rolling release distro is distro that offers small updates almost everyday and so its users always enjoy the latest versions of their software and they don't have to update /reinstall the whole operating system (when a new version of the distro they are using is released) to enjoy these latest versions of their favourite software (Arch or gentoo are rolling relaese distros. Debian unstable might also be considered as a rolling distro as well).
LMDE users don't get any updates of the software they are using (only a few programs ie mozilla, mint tools get updates every now and then), so they don't enjoy the latest versions of the software most of the time. Besidews, LMDE users have to update the whole operating system everytime a UP is released (and this happens every four or five months). Nevertheless, despite the fact that I don't like the LMDE's update pack system, I must admit LMDE is a very convenient distro, as you don't need to update anything in months because there are not any updates (so it is perfect for people who don't like spending their time doing maintenance tasks).
There are two ways to talk about rolling distros. The first is technically, where you are correct in saying that Arch and Gentoo are rolling releases. However, distros like debian unstable are technically only partially rolling releases because they are the development branch for a non-rolling distro (like debian stable). In this scenario, LMDE falls under the semi-partially-rolling distro category (because it is sort of rolling based on a partially rolling distro - debian testing). The other way to talk about rolling distros is how they end up in real life, regardless of them being a testing release or anything like that. Under this scenario, Arch, Gentoo, and Debian Sid are rolling releases. Debian testing is still debatable because it stops rolling for the 8 months prior to the debian stable release, but most people would still call it a rolling release because it still gets updates and you still never need to reinstall (unless it breaks).
LMDE users get update packs, which makes it, under the second definition, a semi rolling distro. With update packs, you don't need to reinstall your system ever (unless, again, your system breaks). You are correct, however, in saying that most of the time a lot of the LMDE packages are behind what most rolling distros have. Again, technically new software isn't a requirement of being a rolling release (although in most cases it's assumed).
I will say, though, that for my purposes (although most likely not for the average user's) Debian Testing with the SolusOS repos and the Liquorix kernel is much better - it is slightly faster, and all of the software is newer. Usually, if you know how to use apt, there isn't a problem. Debian Sid is better for new packages, but it also breaks sometimes, and it can be frustrating fixing the broken things (so I usually stay away from Unstable for machines that I do work on). Rolling releases like Sabayon are usually somewhere in between testing and experimental in package versions (it varies by distro).
Dell XPS 15 l502x - Debian Testing 64-bit NetInst Xfce, SolydX 64-bit Debian Testing, SolydK 64-bit SolydXK Testing
Old Gateway Pentium 4 Desktop - Arch Linux 64-bit Xfce and SolydX 32-bit Sid