I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

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NewToLinuxxx
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I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by NewToLinuxxx »

Apologies for a 'meta' topic like this from a newb, but I'm very confused w/ what I've been doing and signed up a user account here to find some answers to my questions.
(note- any security, ease-of-access, functionality that I may/do/did find in linux distro's, I have also been able to find in windows7. But it never swayed me, and here I am- wondering why I'm even here? Story is:
Last night I was finishing-up "customizing" my new laptop (stripped windows7, re-installed to dual-boot windows7/mint, have windows7 fully done/built/hardened and was about to start on Mint), when my brother- whom had asked me to do the same to his new computer- asked me a question that stumped me: why? Apparently, my excitement/enthusiasm for linux had gotten him to forgo this simple question, as well. I was unable to give him a single, straight answer, just a lot of innuendo and vague 'could's' / should's.
Later in the evening, I actually came to a similar q in regards to firefox v chrome (I have/use both, but damned if I even know why I keep firefox, tbh)

So, what's the point? Should I keep linux mint, or just re-partition my windowsCHDD and get back that 10gb I devoted to mint? (I use the pc for two things: general internet/media, and then for offline WAMP server setup to develop wordpress http files. The latter isn't secretive or valuable, but I do like to play 'corporate' security on my laptop for fun (which is probably what got me into linux in the 1st place.. but frankly, the best 'security' I've found for safe wordpress development environment is to simply unplug from internet and work with offline WAMP server, saving to somewhere external - cannot imagine how any OS can beat that if it's still online, right?)

Apologies for such a vague, open-ended question. I ran into a similar situation a while ago, when I began using TOR as my primary browser while having zero personal need for security; I got pleasure out of knowing that, at least, I was helping broaden teh tor network, and helping in however small a way those who truly, legitly did need tor routing for their own safety- such knowledge kept me using TOR over chrome for, at most, a couple days LOL! I think I've hit a similar problem w/ linux and I don't even have that half-assed reasoning, since it's a firefox browser (I could just use Tails, which I actually have on an SD and could run whenever, but...what's the point? Zero observable speed differences, have never ever had security/malware issues on another OS platform, and there's a huge functinoality/compatability loss w/ linux compared to windows. I figured that this is the place for people to tell me how obviously better linux is, and why I shouldn't lose faith (or, better stated, why i should acquire faith in the first place!)
Last edited by xenopeek on Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: moved topic to chat, as it is turning chatty :)
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konjad
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by konjad »

If you have no need for nor interest in linux then you shouldn't bother with it. It's in no way "better" in Windows (or MacOS), whoever tells you that one OS is better than the other, without being specific what the betterness is, clearly does not know what he is talking about and you shouldn't listen to him.

I started using linux (mostly ubuntu) because I was curious, as playing around with PCs is my hobby. I dual-booted Ubuntu (and other linuxes) andXP to learn the linux environment, then installed Ubuntu as my the only OS for a while. Later I came back to XP. When I bought a new laptop I got Vista on it, so I installed Ubuntu/Mint (I don't actually remember) again, until Windows 7 came out, so I bought it and removed linux. A month ago I bought a new laptop and decided to buy it a bit cheaper, but without Windows, so I installed LM15. I like both OS and can do everything I need on both of them, both have their pros and cons, however, in the end I don't care much.
Last edited by konjad on Thu Jan 09, 2014 4:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by kurotsugi »

I choose linux for these reason:
- it's faster than windows. even microsoft admit that their windows is slower. none of supercomputer is using windows. most of them using linux or bsd.
- small and compact. with only ~1 gb iso i got an OS with every app I need already installed.
- less battery usage. it also use less resource than windows. lower cpu and ram usage.
- it's more secure. no viruses. most malware are designed to run on windows. they didn't work on linux
- open source, open community. it makes me easier to fix my system if anything goes bad.
- it gives me total control of my system. almost every aspect on linux is customizable
- it has tons of customization. I can build my own system with my own personal preferences.
- it's a rolling release distro. no more install new OS version.
- better software development. better support from big companies. linux is supported and developed by many companies while windows is only developed by one companies.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by Flemur »

and there's a huge functinoality/compatability loss w/ linux compared to windows.[\i]

Depends what you're doing. I've installed a bunch of linuxes on this hardware, and all work fine.

I find linux to be superior in every way to windows except for the (non-MS) audio/video/dvd applications which you can get for windows (e.g. Photoshop, Audition, ConvertXtoDVD, Photomatrix, etc). I find the linux desktop(s) - probably any of them, plus you have a choice(!) - are far better than the windows desktop (which I replaced with blackbox, but if the OS crashes it'll hose that up for ya...), and the desktop is something you interact with all the time. I generally start yelling within 2 minutes of having to use my girlfriend's Win7 computer (usually for "how come nothing printed?"-type stuff).

better software development. better support from big companies. linux is supported and developed by many companies while windows is only developed by one companies.

The Windows OS itself is only developed by one company (plus contractors, probably), and it's pretty bad, especially the desktop, but many windows apps, from hundreds of different companies (but not MS apps), are quite superior to what you'll find on linux (e.g. anything dealing with audio or video in linux is mediocre and awkward to use (like the rather minimal MS apps) and usually poorly documented, and/or glitchy and unreliable, hence 'wine'; not to say that it never happens, but I've never heard of anyone wanting to run linux apps in windows. Fortunately I can run most, but not all, of my fave windows apps - none of them made by MS - with wine and haven't booted windows in well over a year. They're very non-trivial pieces of software and I can understand why the linux equivalents aren't as good).
Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] if/when it is solved!
Your data and OS are backed up....right?
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by Dawgfan16 »

I am also a newbie, and for me at least, it is the total control that I have of my system.
I love to tinker with an operating system and with Linux I have a whole host of things to learn where with Windows I was about tapped out.
I also wanted to learn something new that in the past I have been "afraid" to try out for one reason or another.
Trial and Error helps me learn better and with Linux, I feel like if I break it, someone, somewhere has already done it, and can probably help. No canned responses.
And based on my own personal experience of installing Linux Mint on several machines now, it is just a cleaner, smoother, and less resource hogging operating system.
I am always having to fix one of my family members system because of something they did. So far, in the 1 and 1/2 months that I have had Linux Mint, I have not had to really fix anything. It is running so smooth in fact that I have put my 72 year old Mother on it and she is absolutely loving it AND I have not had to go fix anything for her.

In the end, it really is just a matter of personal choice and for me it is Linux Mint, hands down.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by Previous1 »

If you're a programmer/hacker then there's no way around an open source system like Linux or BSD. By consequence if you're inclined to learn about computers Linux is the way to go. Otherwise, I wouldn't promise Windows/OSX users a "better" user experience, especially when "free" rhymes with "no guarantee".
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by marcus0263 »

It's all about choice and also the tools you need. The ease of use is excellent, no worries about chasing down updates, drivers, etc. for most everything is in the repositories. My 85 yo father has been on it for close to 10 years, used to have him on Windows and much easier with Linux.

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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by xenopeek »

There are many things on Linux that make life easier. An informative website about that is the Why Linux is better website. That said, use whatever works best for you :wink:

I'm using Linux because it's easier on a day-to-day basis for me. Two points that immediately come to mind:
  • I can install software with a single command, instead of having to scour the Internet for something suitable, download it, hope it isn't malware or trialware, start the installer and hope they won't install any toolbars or other crapware, go through the pointless and useless dance of clicking "next" till I get the program installed (oh, and along the way agree to some EULA that takes rights away from me).
  • All my installed programs are updated through Update Manager, instead of each program having--or not having--its own updater. Not only is the inconsistence annoying, but all those updaters running is wasting resources. And Update Manager doesn't bother me with pointless and time waisting screens from each individual application that has an update.
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MartyMint
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by MartyMint »

NewToLinuxxx wrote:...have never ever had security/malware issues on another OS platform...
You're not trying hard enough.
:wink:

NewToLinuxxx wrote:...and there's a huge functinoality/compatability loss w/ linux compared to windows.
Largely subjective.

If you're computing reality is built around your experience/knowledge of Windows, then you come into Linux expecting it to be an "alternative" to Windows.
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DrHu
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by DrHu »

I use Linux because I find it (the OS and desktop) + OSS applications more than sufficient for my purposes

I also tend to think that if you do come from windows OS (I usually don't expect Apple OS-X users to switch; even though Linux long ago fixed the UNIX backspace/delete key function so that it operates more like windows did, forward or backward from cursor position deletes, not just backspace )

However if you do come from windows, don't expect all the windows defacto functions/styles and operations to work in the same manner
--since most desktops are wimp interfaces, and pretty much similar: that really shouldn't be the (BIG) problem it is made out to be..
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WIMP_(computing)

After all we have all gotten used to Android and IOS and win 8x for smartphones or tablets and now LG will be using palm software for their phones..
  • All without even a twitch (Android to win8x to IOS etc etc..
Last edited by DrHu on Fri Jun 20, 2014 3:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
NewToLinuxxx
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by NewToLinuxxx »

very good stuff, guys- appreciate real replies and not bs, was half-expecting nothing but flames, lol!

Lemme ask a q on distro-selection: is linux mint a "truly free/open" distro, and if so, why isn't it on the FSF list (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_L ... Foundation )
/yes, I mean "free as in freedom" not as in free beer ;)

Again, much thanks for the replies, I'm definitely keeping a linux-type system on my computer and just need to determine which is best for me, as all the systems I've used I kind of just stumbled upon, never actually knew much of their differences (or how many there are- jesus there like 100+ OS's to choose from! Don't even know where to begin my determination of what's good for a basic, offline apache environment for development! Reco's outside fo mint, if it's not ideal, would be appreciated if known! Aside from open office, the only thing I'm on linux for is apache/mysql/php stuff, but as far as I can tell all the linux distros seem suitable, though unsure why on earth there are so many in the 1st lol! )
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by kurotsugi »

FSF have different way to describe 'free'. as you can see, even the strict debian isn't listed as 'free' distro on their list. free in their term means completely free without propietary software/codecs/driver. in this case, debian still have several propietary driver on their repo list while mint have propietary codecs and several apps like firefox and thunderbird which not categorized 'free' by FSF.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by MartyMint »

kurotsugi wrote:FSF have different way to describe 'free'. as you can see, even the strict debian isn't listed as 'free' distro on their list. free in their term means completely free without propietary software/codecs/driver. in this case, debian still have several propietary driver on their repo list while mint have propietary codecs and several apps like firefox and thunderbird which not categorized 'free' by FSF.

It doesn't have to be "proprietary"...it just has to be non-GPL to be considered "non-free" by the FSF.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by xenopeek »

Linux Mint prefers free software, as defined by the FSF, demonstrated for example by all software that Linux Mint develops being licensed under the GPL. However Linux Mint is also pragmatic, and if no good free software alternatives are available for a certain task--non-free software may be used. Examples would be Adobe Flash being installed on Linux Mint, proprietary drivers being available for installation, and applications like Skype being available for installation from the repositories. On a free GNU/Linux distro none of those would be available, while the majority of Linux Mint users do expect Flash to just work and do expect to be able to install Skype easily to communicate with family and friends on that other operating system.

Linux Mint is thus not a free GNU/Linux distro as per the FSF definition (or anybody's definition in fact :wink:), though the developers do only write free software.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by Tz2001 »

I use linux because it does everything I need from my PC. I used to be a heavy gamer but these days mostly use my PC for work (Web development) and casual web browsing. For these needs Linux works faster and better than Windows. That said, I was mostly happy with Windows until they destroyed the interface in Windows 8.

Having tried Linux on the desktop various times (Every few years) and various distros over the last 15 years I'd always previously found it lacking compared with Windows. That balance had shifted this time (around a year ago, although it may have happened well before this, it just happens that's when I tried linux most recently). Since installing LM14 around a year ago I haven't looked back.

That said, having tried a few of the Desktop Environments, if it wasn't for KDE I probably wouldn't have stuck with Linux at all. I want a desktop that looks and feels modern and sleek. LXDE and to a lesser extent XFCE look like they're from the late 90s and the Gnome based DEs seem to all suffer from very amateurish and/or dated looking art styles with large gradients, shiny looking buttons, etc. (Unity in particular looks like it's something that was designed for small children).
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by SignorBari »

DrHu wrote:I usually don't expect Aple OS-X users to switch;
I'm a long-time Apple user who's been moving to Linux of late. (I use Windows at work, because I don't have a choice (though my PC is due to be upgraded soon to a new Mac, so that's some progress at least). For a variety of reasons--not the least of which is the trend of Apple making the macs more like their iOS devices--closed-box consumer appliances, with limited hardware choices. For the moment, I still have an iMac at home, but I've been using my Linux laptop more and more. I haven't decided yet what I will do when my iMac finally dies. I like the ideals of the open software movement, even if as a practical matter, it doesn't always live up to the ideal. I am not opposed to commercial or proprietary software, but it is good that there is an alternative. Using Linux is perhaps not quite as much of a wild frontier as it used to be--we have electricity and indoor plumbing now--but actually getting all the hardware properly configured in my new laptop was a PITA. But I guess if you want to live outside the security of the walled garden, that's the price.

I do like the fact that going between Linux and OS X is relatively easy--open up the terminal window, there's the bash shell, things are more or less in the same places.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by austin.texas »

My decision to move to linux was made when I was faced with the choice of spending about $400 for Windows for my computer, my son's computer, my daughter's computer, and my wife's computer, (since they were all home-built) plus hundreds more for software. Linux allowed me to donate $100 (which I did) and have access to an OS that I could put on any machine I own.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by Incentive I.C »

austin.texas wrote:My decision to move to linux was made when I was faced with the choice of spending about $400 for Windows for my computer, my son's computer, my daughter's computer, and my wife's computer, (since they were all home-built) plus hundreds more for software. Linux allowed me to donate $100 (which I did) and have access to an OS that I could put on any machine I own.
I believe Windows 8 is ALOT cheaper if you choose to to upgrade from xp,vista,or 7. 40 buck i believe. I wonder why they got rid of areo. With the right them areo looked very nice.
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by NewToLinuxxx »

^your signature is misspelt, fwiw ;)

Is this OS more like debian, or ubuntu? I imagine both are 'linux distros' but i'm trying to download an app (utorrent) and under linux, it just has those 2 builds (in 64b versions as well for 4 choices).
/this kind of sucks, I feel like I won't even be comfortable until I've played around w/ several OS's but...that's a real PITA to keep setting-up over and over :/
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Re: I have/like Mint- but...WHY? What was the point??

Post by pgmer6809 »

If you are content with the apps that are available for linux and can use them, then the eco system of Linux, the methods of updates etc. are much superior to Windows. (and I think Mac OS).
But in addition there is the issue of my privacy.

Ever since XP, if you read the EULA, MS has claimed the right to snoop on your machine at will. I just don't like the feeling that anything I do on my machine may or may not be reported to someone else, where it is none of their business.
We just don't know what back doors are built into the OS, web browsers, email clients etc of the proprietary systems we buy.
Take Windows MediaPlayer for example; it makes a note of every track you play, and may or may not report it.
Ever since Vista, MS has been building Windows more for the benefit of the content companies (RIAA, MPAA, Sony etc.) than the home user.
I just don't like that feeling. Hence Linux.
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