What is Linux Mint?

Chat about anything related to Linux Mint
Nut_Job
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:08 am

What is Linux Mint?

Post by Nut_Job » Wed Sep 23, 2015 3:56 am

I read the Wikipedia Article on Linux Mint and didn't learn a thing. Other places I've read say that it's a mix of Ubuntu and Debian. The whole idea of different distros throws me off as I can't understand how or why you'd need a bazillion differnet kinds of linux. Seems to me that if one is good then two is bad and three is worse.

But okay, since LInux Mint seems to be built for desktops (versus what, I wonder. Industrial? Mobile Devices?) then why is it a "mix" of Ubuntu and Debian. Why not pure, 100% unadulterated Ubuntu, or pure Debian, but why the mix? And "how" the mix too, because you can't mix Ford and Toyota cause their parts don't fit together. The idea of taking pieces from two different things and putting them together seems weird to me because if they go together THAT easy, then they weren't all that different to start with.

Right? They're both Linux, so they can "mix", but then they're different, but then how? And why?

And all these goofy and fundamental questions serve as a huge impediment and obstacle to people's development (mine) because it's like taking advice from someone that is mentally unbalanced, or insane. If the very core of their identity is unfathomable and they do things for strange and arbitrary reasons, then emulating their behaviors and taking their advice on things makes YOU crazy too. Right? So, there's a part of me that has to know this stuff, because if feels weird, off-balance and nutty. All these distros that are the same (linux) but not the same (ubuntu and debian) that are by themselves, but they can be "mixed" (linux mint) for special purposes (but desktops are all that special, right?).

It's crazy. Like talking to someone that's on drugs. Sure THEY know why that canfrankistan in the transmogrified forest; it makes perfect sense to THEM, and in their particular corner of the unverse it's absolutely necessary to croncalculate the blarnfrazzle in the himma-jimma, but why would *I* do that?

Seriously, why would I do that? I'm not on drugs.

Am I?

So (full circle now), exactly what is LInux Mint, why is it both Blarnk and Frompt and also what part is Blarnk and what part is Frompt? Are disk operations Blarnkacious while networking is Fromptilian? What would have happned if LInux Mint developers had made Linux Mint 100% Blarnk? Or Frompt? Matter/Anti-Matter explosion? Does 7 of 9 get a twin sister and become 2 of 3? Cause I'll run that on my computer, any day.

User avatar
Pierre
Level 19
Level 19
Posts: 9055
Joined: Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:33 am
Location: Perth, AU.

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Pierre » Wed Sep 23, 2015 4:10 am

the base system is Debian.
so LinuxMint is based on the Ubuntu system which is based on the Debian system.

and since LInux Mint seems to be built for desktops or Laptops, but *not* for Mobile Devices.
- it could be run on some Industrial PCs though.

Yes - there are lots of Linux Distributions & some say that there are too many to choose from,
and that makes it confusing to a N00B

some also say to start at a site like Distrowatch, which will give an idea of popularity.
whereas others will say that sites like that are misleading.
- but a N00B has to start somewhere, and those site(s) are as good as anywhere else.
Image
Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] - when your problem is solved!
and DO LOOK at those Unanswered Topics - - you may be able to answer some!.

User avatar
xenopeek
Level 24
Level 24
Posts: 24097
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:58 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by xenopeek » Wed Sep 23, 2015 4:31 am

Linux Mint doesn't mix Ubuntu and Debian as you seem to have understood. Linux Mint releases are based on Ubuntu. LMDE (Linux Mint Debian Edition) releases are based on Debian. Besides both being developed by Linux Mint there is no mixing of Ubuntu with Debian. While the (English) Wikipedia article could perhaps be worded better in the introduction, it does say the same.

Linux Mint uses both the Linux Mint and the Ubuntu software repositories. The Ubuntu software repositories are the base, from which most of the invisible parts of the operating system come and from which most additional applications would be installed. The Linux Mint software repositories have the visible part of your operating system (your desktop environment; e.g., Cinnamon, MATE, KDE, or Xfce) and the applications developed by Linux Mint (e.g., Software Manager and Update Manager). The Linux Mint software repositories may also have patched versions of operating system parts (if Ubuntu won't patch a known error) or newer versions of applications (e.g., Linux Mint comes with a newer version of LibreOffice than Ubuntu). It's the same for LMDE and Debian.

What Pierre addressed is that Ubuntu "piggy-backs" on Debian. About 75% of the packages found in the Ubuntu software repositories originate from Debian. These are imported from the Debian software repositories by Ubuntu developers and repackaged to work with Ubuntu and made available in the Ubuntu software repositories.
Image

User avatar
Pjotr
Level 21
Level 21
Posts: 13497
Joined: Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:18 am
Location: The Netherlands (Holland)
Contact:

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Pjotr » Wed Sep 23, 2015 4:53 am

Linux Mint is an operating system. Your computer can run on it. It works well. I highly recommend it. :mrgreen:

Basics:
Upstream, people are creating nice things. Like the Linux kernel, web browsers Firefox and Chrome, office suites like Libre Office, media players like VLC, et cetera.

Downstream, someone collects a selection of those nice upstream things, glues them together with a glue of his own making in order to make them work well together, and lo and behold: there's a new Linux distribution for you.

Now and then, someone downstream simply takes a *complete* Linux distribution off the shelves, adds some stuff and tweaks of his own, and yet another Linux distribution is born.
In that way, Ubuntu takes Debian off the shelves, and Mint in its turn takes Ubuntu off the shelves.

There are no intellectual property obstacles to all of this: share and share alike. It's free (libre) and open-source software.
--Edit: this is an oversimplification of the legal framework of open source software, only intended to highlight the big picture.

That's how it works in Linux land. :mrgreen:
Last edited by Pjotr on Wed Sep 23, 2015 7:30 am, edited 3 times in total.
Tip: 10 things to do after installing Linux Mint 19.2 Tina
Keep your Linux Mint healthy: Avoid these 10 fatal mistakes
Twitter: twitter.com/easylinuxtips
All in all, horse sense simply makes sense.

fraxinus_63
Level 4
Level 4
Posts: 219
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2010 2:25 pm

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by fraxinus_63 » Wed Sep 23, 2015 5:30 am

@Nut_Job - I hope that answers above by Pjotr, xenopeek and pierre have clarified things, particularly regarding the "mix" that makes Linux Mint what it is.

Perhaps the intro to the Wikipedia article could be a little more accessibly written for people with limited Linux experience. However, there is definitely no need for alarm or panic when it comes to Linux Mint, as it works superbly well - and is the distro of choice for many power users as well as for newcomers who value its friendliness (both of the distro itself and of the community here that supports it). Give it a try.

User avatar
xenopeek
Level 24
Level 24
Posts: 24097
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:58 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by xenopeek » Wed Sep 23, 2015 5:38 am

Pjotr wrote:There are no intellectual property obstacles to all of this: share and share alike. It's free (libre) and open-source software.
That's oversimplifying things. There is also non-free software in the repositories. Even with free software you have to consider trademarks and applicable copyrights and software licenses. You can't just take somebody else's work, even free software, slap your label on it and call it your own.
Image

User avatar
Pjotr
Level 21
Level 21
Posts: 13497
Joined: Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:18 am
Location: The Netherlands (Holland)
Contact:

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Pjotr » Wed Sep 23, 2015 5:51 am

xenopeek wrote:
Pjotr wrote:There are no intellectual property obstacles to all of this: share and share alike. It's free (libre) and open-source software.
That's oversimplifying things. There is also non-free software in the repositories. Even with free software you have to consider trademarks and applicable copyrights and software licenses. You can't just take somebody else's work, even free software, slap your label on it and call it your own.
That's true, but what I wrote is the big picture (Dutch: hoofdlijnen)....
My impression is, that the OP is looking for just that. :)

But in order to avoid misunderstandings, I'll add some extra explanation to my previous message.
Tip: 10 things to do after installing Linux Mint 19.2 Tina
Keep your Linux Mint healthy: Avoid these 10 fatal mistakes
Twitter: twitter.com/easylinuxtips
All in all, horse sense simply makes sense.

User avatar
Crewp
Level 9
Level 9
Posts: 2517
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:36 pm
Location: Connecticut,USA

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Crewp » Wed Sep 23, 2015 7:32 am

Yes, and although Ubuntu is based on Debian, it is so far developed, that things that run on Debian will not run on Ubuntu, and visa versa, ( for the most part ) hence the two Mint versions, Linux Mint Main Edition is based on Ubuntu's Long Term Support ( LTS ) version. And LMDE ( Linux Mint Debian Edition ) For us Debian fans. It's really not the hodge podge of mixed OS's you seem to think it is. Because what makes it all Linux, is the Linux kernel, which is developed by Linus Torvalds, which all these distro's base there OS on.
Image

Nut_Job
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:08 am

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Nut_Job » Wed Sep 23, 2015 10:50 am

Thanks for all of the responses. I'm a visual person. Is there some kind of chart or graph that shows all the various paths and off-shoots of Linux versions?

User avatar
Pjotr
Level 21
Level 21
Posts: 13497
Joined: Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:18 am
Location: The Netherlands (Holland)
Contact:

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Pjotr » Wed Sep 23, 2015 10:58 am

Nut_Job wrote:Thanks for all of the responses. I'm a visual person. Is there some kind of chart or graph that shows all the various paths and off-shoots of Linux versions?
From 2012 (how big is your display?):
http://futurist.se/gldt/wp-content/uplo ... dt1210.png

Note the three big families: Debian, Slackware/SUSE, Red Hat. The Big Three. :mrgreen:
Tip: 10 things to do after installing Linux Mint 19.2 Tina
Keep your Linux Mint healthy: Avoid these 10 fatal mistakes
Twitter: twitter.com/easylinuxtips
All in all, horse sense simply makes sense.

User avatar
Chiefahol
Level 4
Level 4
Posts: 473
Joined: Thu Jun 11, 2015 12:32 am

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Chiefahol » Wed Sep 23, 2015 11:47 pm

Nut_Job wrote:Seriously, why would I do that? I'm not on drugs.

Am I?
I dunno.. are you? :lol:

Linux has been forking itself for over 20 years. So there's an epic selection of operating systems to choose from.

For most people, something like mint/ubuntu would be most appropriate.
Donate to your favourite distros!

Nut_Job
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:08 am

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Nut_Job » Thu Sep 24, 2015 5:06 am

Chiefahol wrote:
Nut_Job wrote:Seriously, why would I do that? I'm not on drugs.

Am I?
I dunno.. are you? :lol:

Linux has been forking itself for over 20 years. So there's an epic selection of operating systems to choose from.

For most people, something like mint/ubuntu would be most appropriate.
It's all these goofy words that don't mean anything. I say goofy meaningless words and people respond with more goofy and meaningless words and act like not only that I said something, but it actually meant something. "It's a bad drug trip, and someone spiked my cheetos." is one possibility to consider.

If Ubuntu is an offshoot of Debian and Linux Mint is an offshoot of Ubuntu and they are all "linux" then what is the "mint" component of Ubuntu and why is it not called "Ubuntu Mint"? What makes "Linux Mint" "Not Ubuntu". And "Ubuntu" is a goofy word. Earlier today I had the word in my head and I kept saying it, over and over again, hoping to get it out. But it didn't work and the cashier at Walmart called Security and this guy kept eyeballing me up and down like I was going to do something crazy. So I stopped saying "Ubuntu" over and over again at least until after I got out of the store and into the car and then I started saying it again. Driving down the road, saying "Ubuntu" over and over again. Crazy, I tell you.

User avatar
Pjotr
Level 21
Level 21
Posts: 13497
Joined: Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:18 am
Location: The Netherlands (Holland)
Contact:

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Pjotr » Thu Sep 24, 2015 5:08 am

Tip: 10 things to do after installing Linux Mint 19.2 Tina
Keep your Linux Mint healthy: Avoid these 10 fatal mistakes
Twitter: twitter.com/easylinuxtips
All in all, horse sense simply makes sense.

BlackVeils
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 589
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2013 9:26 am

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by BlackVeils » Thu Sep 24, 2015 7:35 am

it simply comes down to this, you don’t seem to like the concept of modularity. and example of this would be lego, the little bricks kids used to play with to build whatever they wanted.

just because you may not like that people have more options, doesn’t mean it should all be one way.

Nut_Job
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:08 am

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Nut_Job » Thu Sep 24, 2015 9:07 pm

BlackVeils wrote:it simply comes down to this, you don’t seem to like the concept of modularity. and example of this would be lego, the little bricks kids used to play with to build whatever they wanted.

just because you may not like that people have more options, doesn’t mean it should all be one way.
Who said that? I didn't say that. I said the words were goofy and meaningless, and all their definitions rely upon pretending to believe in the definitions of other words that are also goofy and meaningless. I'm all in favor of "modularity" I can play .mp4, .mp3, .avi and .mvk files in (kLite) Media Player Classic and VLC in Windows, and all of them except .mvk files will run on VLC in LInux, but MPC doesn't have a Linux version. "Modularity" doesn't suck. Not having modularity is what sucks. There's a bazillion different "Distros" but none of them will play x265 .mkv files, and none of them will run MPC. All those "choices", but not one of them will run a basic, common, freeware video program.

I appreciate the help and all, but let's not get too fanboy here. Having 2,875 Distros is not a big deal, having one version of Linux that will play Season 1, Episode 7 of "Narcos" in the new x265 video format, .mkv file is what I would call "adequate". Maybe even "good" if I were feeling generous. Note that Win10 Users aren't having this problem, and aren't celebrating the fact that they can play .mp4 files now. It's not just goofy and meaningless words, it's also goofy and meaningless value systems. I have 2,875 ways in which to NOT play the file I just downloaded. THAT is the "big deal". Modularity shmodularity. People point to meaningless options as if they are important and then ignore the absence of basic functionality (much less "options" in that functionality) and pretend like it's no big deal.

It's a big deal.

Are my thoughts on the matter. Not that I'm complaining; it's better than getting the anal probe from Microsoft 24/7. I just think it's important for all the chickens in the henhouse to have a common understanding on the things that are most important and not pretend to believe in the lies everyone is telling each other.

Anyways I'm still wondering about my last question, about why it's called "Linux Mint" and not "Ubuntu Mint" if Linux Mint is Ubuntu? It's bad enough there's all these goofy and meaningless words, but the naming protocols are random and nonsensical too.

User avatar
Reorx
Level 11
Level 11
Posts: 3931
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 7:14 pm
Location: SE Florida, USA

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Reorx » Thu Sep 24, 2015 9:40 pm

Think of Linux as analogous to the internal combustion engine. Would you ask why there are so many different cars/vehicles if they all have internal combustion engines (a basic similarity)? If one kind of car is good, is 2 bad and 3 worse?!?!? Not to folks who understand the reasons for the differences!

As mentioned in a post above, DistroWatch is a good place to start in a attempt to understand some of the differences between distros and some of their design features and intended uses.

Good luck on your quest to understand Linux varieties.
Nut_Job wrote:...Anyways I'm still wondering about my last question, about why it's called "Linux Mint" and not "Ubuntu Mint" if Linux Mint is Ubuntu? It's bad enough there's all these goofy and meaningless words, but the naming protocols are random and nonsensical too.
Interesting question... There are some Mint versions that use Ubu as a code base but there are also versions of Mint that use no Ubu but rather Debian stable as a code base... But Ubu also uses Debian as a code base - so why isn't it called Debian Ubu??? Yeah, the Linux family tree is complicated! This is a part of the tree, it's only the Debian branch (click to enlarge) >>>

Image
Last edited by Reorx on Thu Sep 24, 2015 11:46 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Full time Linux Mint user since 2011 - Currently running LM19 Cinnamon.

Image Image

George99
Level 3
Level 3
Posts: 106
Joined: Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:59 am

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by George99 » Thu Sep 24, 2015 10:39 pm

Nut_Job wrote:why it's called "Linux Mint" and not "Ubuntu Mint"
trademarks legal stuff lawyers...

Nut_Job
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:08 am

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by Nut_Job » Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:51 am

Reorx wrote:Good luck on your quest to understand Linux varieties.
Thanks, I appreciate the tolerance of my ranting and whining. I've already made the decision I'm in this for the long-term, so it's not a question of "if" (I'm going to get very comfortable with Linux) but rather a question of when.
George99 wrote:
Nut_Job wrote:why it's called "Linux Mint" and not "Ubuntu Mint"
trademarks legal stuff lawyers...
Yeah I get vague shadings of copyright and freeware and not sure what to make of all the radar blips. I assume the kernal is free, and I also think some entire distros are free, but some are only free for non-commercial use while others are free but the support is what you pay for. I assume those are big, corporate versions for large-scale situations.

But then I'm seeing copyright/trademark/intellectually property situations on a (let's use the word) "component" basis, example there's a c-something that you can pay for in order to run Civilization III, something like a paid-for version of WINE, and Linux Mint makes a point of telling me that my video driver is "proprietary" which makes me wonder all sorts of stuff like whether or not nVidia can wake up one day and decide that I'm no longer allowed to use my proprietary video driver, otherwise why bother to tell me? And why would nVidia make a linux driver and then not have it be "free" like any other driver? Or are all drivers "owned" and/or "licensed" in some way, and I just never noticed it using Windows because the hardware manufacturers made some kind of deal with Microsoft that had nothing to do with me the Windows User, but now that Linux is free, the hardware manufacturer's role regarding the existance of "their" video driver (or whatever) is now different, and relevent to something?

And if so, what? Again, otherwise why do I, as a LInux User, need to know that my nVidia driver is "proprietary"?

As an FYI I'm becoming more comfortable with Linux. I haven't booted to Windows in over 2 weeks. Maybe 3 weeks. This is the stage I was in when I was quitting smoking when I knew that I was actually going to do it.

User avatar
xenopeek
Level 24
Level 24
Posts: 24097
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:58 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by xenopeek » Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:37 am

Nut_Job wrote:I assume the kernal is free
The Linux kernel is copyrighted and licensed under the GPLv2 license. The license has more of those what you call "words". The folks over at tl;dr legal have summarized what you can, cannot, and must do to comply with the license: https://tldrlegal.com/license/gnu-gener ... license-v2. The "free" in "free software" is about liberties, not price (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_software), though often "free software" is also gratis.

Aside from that, "Linux" is a trademarked name (http://www.linuxfoundation.org/programs/legal/trademark). Linux Mint for example has permission to use "Linux" in its own trademarked name.
Nut_Job wrote:Or are all drivers "owned" and/or "licensed" in some way, and I just never noticed it using Windows because the hardware manufacturers made some kind of deal with Microsoft that had nothing to do with me the Windows User, but now that Linux is free, the hardware manufacturer's role regarding the existance of "their" video driver (or whatever) is now different, and relevent to something?

And if so, what? Again, otherwise why do I, as a LInux User, need to know that my nVidia driver is "proprietary"?
Install a Windows program or driver and you almost always have to accept a EULA (end-user license agreement) during the "next-next-next-done" clickfest that is the average Windows installer.

Copyright law applies automatically to software source code. Most software comes with a license to say what you can and cannot do. Not all software is "free software"; that is, not for all software is the source code available to end-users and even if it is the license may limit what they can do with it. "Proprietary" is a term used for software for which the source code is not available to end-users. "Closed source" is another term for it. "Freeware" is another (that one also meaning it's gratis).

Why would you care whether your driver is proprietary or not? If it is proprietary you're locked into that one vendor; you'll have to wait for them to investigate and fix any problems the driver might have with your hardware. You're dependant on them to do any work (optimize, add new features, make it compatible with new operating system versions, fix security issues, etc.) on the driver for your hardware. If the driver were free software, anybody could look into it and publish a fix for it.

Nvidia and AMD release proprietary drivers because they want to keep some things secret from their competitors (well, each other really). Planned obsolescence might be another reason, where after some time they stop updating their drivers so your perfectly fine graphics card won't work right with a newer Windows version; forcing you to buy a new graphics card. Or they might be doing things in their drivers they don't want end-users to know, like through the driver limit the performance on a "budget" graphics card that otherwise has the exact same hardware as a mainstream graphics card. Or through the driver limit what content you can and cannot watch or other ways to put the interests of corporations over the interests of owners (end-users). For Nvidia and AMD both there are also free software drivers (under MIT license), which allows anybody to see the source code or to work on it.
Nut_Job wrote:There's a bazillion different "Distros" but none of them will play x265 .mkv files, and none of them will run MPC. All those "choices", but not one of them will run a basic, common, freeware video program.
x265 is not a video format but a free software library. x265 is used to encode video in the h265/HEVC video format. I downloaded a sample h265/HEVC .mkv file from http://www.h265files.com/ and a sample h265/HEVC .mp4 file from https://x265.com/hevc-video-files/. Both play without problems in VLC for me.

As for MPC, from the website: "MPC-HC is an extremely light-weight, open source media player for Windows". If it's written for Windows only, it runs on Windows only.

Anyway, Narcos being a Netflix show you can watch it on Linux using Google Chrome. Netflix may also be watched on Chromium with some plugins added.
Image

DeMus
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1029
Joined: Sat Aug 15, 2009 5:11 pm

Re: What is Linux Mint?

Post by DeMus » Fri Sep 25, 2015 10:52 am

Xenopeek wrote:
I downloaded a sample h265/HEVC .mkv file from http://www.h265files.com/ and a sample h265/HEVC .mp4 file from https://x265.com/hevc-video-files/. Both play without problems in VLC for me.
Xenopeek, I downloaded the same movie, but on my MInt 17.2 KDE-64 it doesn't play at all. What is different in your installation, what do you have extra?

Post Reply

Return to “Chat about Linux Mint”