caerolle wrote:Yes, I think the mission of Mint is exactly the opposite: to make an easy-to-use distro that works smoothly. The LMDE is for people who want to live a little bit on the edge, but I think if people want cutting edge, they will need to look elsewhere. There are plenty of distros who have that as their mission, and point out up-front that this approach is for people who want to be very involved with their OS, not people who just want to use their computer as a tool.
I am really don't agree with that accessment ot LMDE. It could be that I am crazy too.
I use Debian testing or Sid as my production OS so that should be considered too and I do consider it.
I used Ubuntu for a long time. Used to be pretty reliable too. Generally dual booted the LTS and what ever was newest.
LMDE is at least as stable as the Ubuntu LTS and folks seem to think that is fine for noobs. Just don't see the reason to worry about LMDE.
I have installed it on my bosses laptop. Believe me, she is not interested in knowing a thing about it or her laptop in general except does it or does it not work. LMDE works.
Ubuntu, or MInt (probably, never fooled with it - respins of respins make no sense to me) are generally reliable that way. If the Mint repos are as filtered as the Debian testing ones are for LMDE it is probably fine. Ubuntu, even the LTS, has some built in problems.
They ram in a lot of things that are just barely functional at best or only work on limited hardware. Update/upgrade cycles can, early after release of an LTS and pretty much anytime with regular releases, can break a lot of systems. I expect a lot of folks are using Mint right now because of that.
If you go with Ubuntu LTS being the "stable" Ubuntu release and that it is supposed to take the risk out of using Debian testing then you really ought to consider LMDE in that same light. Because that is what it is trying to do. VERY well.
This is a much more reliable way to do the job. The update packs are about like the Ubuntu regular releases. They will be behind those releases somewhat but not that much. The trade off for stability is worth that. It also gives you a fairly up to date version of Debian testing that is well ahead, for most of the LTS lifespan, of the Ubuntu LTS.
Being based on Debian testing and being fairly up to date means that if you want to install the more cutting edge packages you can do so using the Debian repos for sid and experimental. While this is not something I would recommend to a noob it is an option for the more experienced.
LMDE is what Ubuntu always wanted to grow up to be. Fresh and reasonably stable.
Right now I do not have a better OS to recommend to noobs. I think the folks at Mageia may be on to something but they need a bit more time (Mageia 3 will amaze anyone that has tried Mageia 1 or 2 with its maturity).
I think if the folks here do not try to pass on the Ubuntu fud that it is actually stable and something based on the same foundation with a better system (LMDE) is not, then in a very short while, as both mature and refine a bit, LMDE and Mageia are going to be the reliable things to recommend to noobs.
Mageia will probably use a slightly newer kernel but LMDE is using APT and Mageia RPM. APT is a better base for package managment. OK so I am biased.
If you are sticking with the default DEs then those 2 are going to be hard to beat. LMDE is hard to beat, for a noob, right now. I think we should be recommending it to noobs now.
Any small problems that they run into can be straightened out here on this forum with the great people that are here. You can't ask much more from any OS.
Dell XPS 420 Core2 Quad Q 6600, audigy5.1, Radeon HD 6450 - currently 4 320Gb HDD, Debian Squeeze for secure use, Debian testing for daily use, Debian Sid for fun.