I've been using Linux as my main desktop for a number of years now. I used to be very active in trying out different versions of linux and windows, but I haven't worked in IT for a decade now, so my interest in being a power user has waned quite a lot. I just got a Lenovo laptop to replace my Frankendesky computer I built 15 years ago that has been reworked and updated for far too long. I've grown to be very not fond of the desktop in Ubuntu, and after trying Kubuntu, Xubutu, and Mint 14/15 both Mate and Cinnamon, I've decided on keeping Mint 15 with Cinnamon. That being said, as far as my linux knowledge, I'd still say I'm a newbie that's very good at doing research in forums to find answers. LOL
I have Mint 15 installed alongside Windows 8, and the only issue I still need to resolve is that Mint boots up with the screen brightness all the way down. I have seen a fix for that already, just need to find it again. I currently have the HD out and attached to my home tower to copy all my data files over, so I'll look at that once it's done and I can boot that computer again.
Thank you for having such a great forum here!