One of the things about 'upgrading' or 'updating' - is that some things get broken.
the most stable Mint & one that I really liked was Mint 7 - Gloria,
the next most stable was Mint 10 - Julia
I am thinking a similar way about Mint 13 - Maya
However - I use Gnome Commander - a two pane - file manager utility - a lot,
I can install that - it is in the repository, still.
another is Giver - that was broken way back in Mint 11:-
but it can be fixed:-
http://www.webupd8.org/2011/11/get-give ... 0-and.html
The thing about 'nix - is that you get used to stuff just working - aka the OOB experience.
- unlike the "TAX" - which works - sometimes really well
I promote Mint - to each person - differently:-
- to a newbie as easy
- to a regular as stable
- to a experience as reliable.
the killer - is when things "break"
Anyway:- that's my 2c