Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

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KBD47
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Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:31 pm

The Mint team worked hard through the beta phase of Mint 19 to get us a stable Mint release, and it was stable when they released it. But thanks mostly to upstream Ubuntu updates Mint 19 is now having all sorts of issues. It is not the Mint devs fault.
I would humbly suggest that Ubuntu is releasing kernel bugs fixed long ago by Debian. The future of Ubuntu is uncertain with its owner looking for an IPO:
Canonical will devote more of its time to "putting the company on the path to a IPO. We must figure out what steps we need to take moving forward." That means focusing on Canonical's most profitable lines.
https://www.zdnet.com/article/canonical ... -ipo-path/

Debian on the other hand is a community driven distribution focused on releasing a free, stable, operating system:
https://www.debian.org/intro/about

Debian has become much more user friendly over the past few years. Mint has obviously already thought it a good idea to have Debian as a back up with Linux Mint Debian (LMDE). I would suggest an emphasis on the LMDE release and gradual move toward a complete Debian base for Mint by the Mint 20 release.
Whether or not Ubuntu sells to another owner, I would suggest its motivation and focus is diverging from Mint, and has been doing so for quite awhile.
I am just a user and fan of Mint. Clem and his team have listened to their users more than just about any other Linux distribution. And I have seen them make wise moves all along, from going to an LTS base for main Mint, and Debian Stable for LMDE. Before that when Gnome 2 became an unrecognizable Gnome 3 and Ubuntu changed its DE, Mint did as well, but Mint stayed with the familiar traditional type of DE that has served them so well.
A Mint fully based upon Debian would allow its users the freedom to stick with a Stable release not subject to constant breakage from an upstream Ubuntu base. For users wanting more cutting edge options they could switch sources to either Debian Testing or Debian Sid at their own risk. Yet at this point even Debian Sid looks more reliable than an Ubuntu 18.04 base.
I wish Mint nothing but the best, that is why I am offering this suggestion.

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Pierre
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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by Pierre » Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:36 pm

so, if the project went to Full DEBIAN, then any software from the Ubuntu system,
wouldn't necessary be incorporated into the LinuxMint project.
:)

however, the current LMDE project should get maintained into the for-see-able future.
8)

it is obviously up to the LinuxMint.Team to take on board, any users suggestions,
and whether any do get some merit.
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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by kyphi » Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:50 am

Isn't Ubuntu 18.04 based on Debian unstable ?

Debian has 3 versions, level 1 for those who want stability, level 2 for progressives and level 3 for the adventurous.

Linux Mint is cautious and that is appreciated. The first version release inherits some of the vagaries of its chosen base, point releases thereafter making it progressively more stable.
Progress is not achieved by sitting still.

The door is open to use Linux Mint with a Debian base or an Ubuntu base. Why shut one or the other?
Linux Mint 19 Cinnamon - 64bit

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by gm10 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:43 am

KBD47 wrote:
Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:31 pm
But thanks mostly to upstream Ubuntu updates Mint 19 is now having all sorts of issues. It is not the Mint devs fault.
I would humbly suggest that Ubuntu is releasing kernel bugs fixed long ago by Debian.
Actually the issues are mostly home-made. Ubuntu pulled the bugged kernel after not even 2 days, the reason Mint users are still getting it is because of a bug in the Mint Update Manager. The GRUB2 install issue is also due to a Mint modification to the Ubuntu core. The 18.3 to 19 upgrade failing was also entirely a self-created Mint issue.

There are advantages to having the well supported Ubuntu base at the core of Mint. I vote to stick with it for now.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by michael louwe » Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:32 am

A Debian-only-based Linux Mint 20 or 21 will incur much more work for the LM developer team, which are presently done by the Ubuntu developer team. Imagine the LM team having to provide Linux kernel patches for the various Meltdown & Spectre bugs and to maintain 5-years support for the LTS Linux kernels 3.13, 4.4 and 4.15.

Bear in mind that Debian was a core Linux distro created by Linux software developers, similar to Arch Linux and Fedora/Red Hat Linux = they are mostly used by tech-geeks.
....... Ubuntu was forked from Debian mainly to make Debian more user-friendly for the average masses.

In turn, LM was forked from Ubuntu mainly over differences in opinion by the developers, eg LM developers did not like Ubuntu's Unity desktop but both are quite user-friendly to the average users. This is similar to how Palemoon, Waterfox, etc were forked from the Firefox browser. ...
https://www.zdnet.com/article/a-tale-of ... inux-mint/ (A tale of two distros: Ubuntu and Linux Mint: Linux Mint's recent climb to the top of the DistroWatch rankings and strong reactions to Ubuntu's Unity shell have led to speculation that Ubuntu's glory days could be over. We examine these two popular distros to see where they came from, where they stand and where they may be headed. - 10 Feb 2012)

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:31 am

Pierre wrote:
Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:36 pm
so, if the project went to Full DEBIAN, then any software from the Ubuntu system,
wouldn't necessary be incorporated into the LinuxMint project.
:)
Pretty much anything that runs on Ubuntu can run on Debian. I've yet to find any app I need that won't run on Debian.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:41 am

kyphi wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 12:50 am
Isn't Ubuntu 18.04 based on Debian unstable ?

Debian has 3 versions, level 1 for those who want stability, level 2 for progressives and level 3 for the adventurous.

Linux Mint is cautious and that is appreciated. The first version release inherits some of the vagaries of its chosen base, point releases thereafter making it progressively more stable.
Progress is not achieved by sitting still.

The door is open to use Linux Mint with a Debian base or an Ubuntu base. Why shut one or the other?
I believe the day is coming when Ubuntu does something so stupid Mint will not have a choice. I would love to see Mint get ahead of that, and I'm not sure at this point there is any real advantage to sticking with an Ubuntu base.
My understanding is that Ubuntu LTS is built upon the Debian Testing base, while other Ubuntu releases are built upon Debian Unstable. Debian Stable is the end result of software moving from Unstable to Testing to finally land in Stable. Debian Stable can run newer applications and even a newer kernel through the use of the backports repository. For instance, I am running the 4.16 kernel right now on a Debian Stable installation. I'm also running Cinnamon on Debian Buster (Testing) and most people could tell no difference between it and running on an Ubuntu base.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:46 am

gm10 wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:43 am

There are advantages to having the well supported Ubuntu base at the core of Mint. I vote to stick with it for now.
My suggestion is for a move in two years with the Mint 20 release, and laying the groundwork now, especially with the upcoming LMDE release.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:56 am

michael louwe wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:32 am
A Debian-only-based Linux Mint 20 or 21 will incur much more work for the LM developer team, which are presently done by the Ubuntu developer team. Imagine the LM team having to provide Linux kernel patches for the various Meltdown & Spectre bugs and to maintain 5-years support for the LTS Linux kernels 3.13, 4.4 and 4.15.

Bear in mind that Debian was a core Linux distro created by Linux software developers, similar to Arch Linux and Fedora/Red Hat Linux = they are mostly used by tech-geeks.
....... Ubuntu was forked from Debian mainly to make Debian more user-friendly for the average masses.

In turn, LM was forked from Ubuntu mainly over differences in opinion by the developers, eg LM developers did not like Ubuntu's Unity desktop but both are quite user-friendly to the average users. This is similar to how Palemoon, Waterfox, etc were forked from the Firefox browser. ...
https://www.zdnet.com/article/a-tale-of ... inux-mint/ (A tale of two distros: Ubuntu and Linux Mint: Linux Mint's recent climb to the top of the DistroWatch rankings and strong reactions to Ubuntu's Unity shell have led to speculation that Ubuntu's glory days could be over. We examine these two popular distros to see where they came from, where they stand and where they may be headed. - 10 Feb 2012)
Debian has Long Term Support for 5 years on the Stable branch. Kernel security patches are taken care of by Debian. Their 4.16 kernel has patches for spectre and meltdown.
Yes, Debian began mostly for servers, and was a more geek oriented release years ago when Ubuntu formed. But those days are long gone and it can be argued that rather than taming Debian, Ubuntu wrecks it at this point. Codecs was another reason many end users avoided Debian, but Debian comes with many of those codecs now and it is easy enough to add the rest. One can even install Debian with the non-free iso and be ready to go out of the box. I began using Debian as my first distro 7 years ago, and from firsthand knowledge I can assure you it is a much easier distro today and no longer a challenging distro just for geeks.
Interesting side note, Google recently moved from Ubuntu to Debian:
http://www.itpro.co.uk/software/30308/g ... -to-debian
Last edited by KBD47 on Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by gm10 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:02 am

KBD47 wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:46 am
gm10 wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:43 am

There are advantages to having the well supported Ubuntu base at the core of Mint. I vote to stick with it for now.
My suggestion is for a move in two years with the Mint 20 release, and laying the groundwork now, especially with the upcoming LMDE release.
It's the stated reason of LMDE's existence to prepare for the eventuality of the Ubuntu base becoming unavailable. That doesn't mean it's the preferred course of action.

Currently the Mint team has a fairly small selection of self-created tools to maintain and as we saw with the Mint 19 release, they are struggling with even that. Making a debian-based release fully mainstream compatible (the job that currently Canonical is doing for them) is quite a bit of a heavier workload, and I honestly doubt they could shoulder it right now.

On the other hand, if you just want vanilla Debian with Cinnamon on top, you can already have that right now.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by DavePlummer » Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:32 am

Debian already offers live dvd's with a good choice of desktop environments. I have tried Debian "Stretch" with Cinnamon. It seems to be rock solid. I may soon install it on one of my two home machines to confirm my first impression.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:35 am

DavePlummer wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:32 am
Debian already offers live dvd's with a good choice of desktop environments. I have tried Debian "Stretch" with Cinnamon. It seems to be rock solid. I may soon install it on one of my two home machines to confirm my first impression.
Cinnamon is sweet on Debian :)
I was not a big fan early on of Cinnamon, though I appreciated what the Mint devs were doing with it. Yet in a short space of time it has become a full-fledged DE that can compete with, and surpass most other DE's available on Linux. It has won me over.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by michael louwe » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:03 pm

@ KBD47, .......
KBD47 wrote:Interesting side note, Google recently moved from Ubuntu to Debian:
http://www.itpro.co.uk/software/30308/g ... -to-debian
.
Linux Mint =/= Google.

Google has an annual revenue of multi-US$billions(US$19billion profit from revenue of $87billion in 2016) mostly from digital ads. Google has the financial and manpower resources to recently bypass Ubuntu(= Goobuntu) and developed her own Debian-only-based inhouse OS(= gLinux) = no need to pay Ubuntu or pay M$ for hefty Windows licensing fees. ... https://itsfoss.com/goobuntu-glinux-google/

Google can even afford to spend and lose nearly US$4billion in 2016 on their fantasy or "Other Bets" projects, eg Google Glass, Balloon Internet, self-driving cars, Google Fiber ISP, etc. I doubt LM can afford to lose even US$4million a year. ... http://www.businessinsider.com/breakdow ... 17-2/?IR=T

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:39 pm

michael louwe wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:03 pm
@ KBD47, .......
KBD47 wrote:Interesting side note, Google recently moved from Ubuntu to Debian:
http://www.itpro.co.uk/software/30308/g ... -to-debian
.
Linux Mint =/= Google.

Google has an annual revenue of multi-US$billions(US$19billion profit from revenue of $87billion in 2016) mostly from digital ads. Google has the financial and manpower resources to recently bypass Ubuntu(= Goobuntu) and developed her own Debian-only-based inhouse OS(= gLinux) = no need to pay Ubuntu or pay M$ for hefty Windows licensing fees. ... https://itsfoss.com/goobuntu-glinux-google/

Google can even afford to spend and lose nearly US$4billion in 2016 on their fantasy or "Other Bets" projects, eg Google Glass, Balloon Internet, self-driving cars, Google Fiber ISP, etc. I doubt LM can afford to lose even US$4million a year. ... http://www.businessinsider.com/breakdow ... 17-2/?IR=T
I'm not saying Google and Mint are equivalent, I don't care much at all for Google actually. I just thought it interesting that Google recently dropped Ubuntu. One reason I heard was that Google can more easily submit patches and fixes back into Debian than Ubuntu.
I don't think people realize how big Debian is. It has support from many large companies and one of the largest package bases of any distro. It is not some poor mom and pop outfit that can't stand on its own two feet. I believe Mint would have much less work to do if it ran on a purely Debian base. And would be less subject to breakage and bugs. There are many Debian users who have used the same OS for years, merely upgrading from one release to the next without interruption. Not many Ubuntu users can say or do that.
Debian partners:
https://www.debian.org/partners/
Here is some info about LTS support for Debian and some companies involved:
https://www.freexian.com/en/services/debian-lts.html
Last edited by KBD47 on Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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michael louwe
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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by michael louwe » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:44 pm

@ KBD47, .......
KBD47 wrote: I began using Debian as my first distro 7 years ago, and from firsthand knowledge I can assure you it is a much easier distro today and no longer a challenging distro just for geeks.
Not really correct.
.
https://www.pcworld.com/article/3203405 ... works.html (Debian Gotcha moments.!)

https://linuxhint.com/how-to-upgrade-ke ... om-source/ (How to Upgrade Kernel of Debian 9 Stretch from Source - 7 months ago) Only tech-geeks will know how to upgrade the Linux kernel of Debian 9 from the default kernel 4.9 to newer ones, eg 4.14 or 4.15 or 4.16 = for newer hardware like AMD/Intel 8th-gen CPUs. It's much simpler in Ubuntu/LM = for the average users.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by KBD47 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:53 pm

michael louwe wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:44 pm
@ KBD47, .......
KBD47 wrote: I began using Debian as my first distro 7 years ago, and from firsthand knowledge I can assure you it is a much easier distro today and no longer a challenging distro just for geeks.
Not really correct.
.
https://www.pcworld.com/article/3203405 ... works.html (Debian Gotcha moments.!)

https://linuxhint.com/how-to-upgrade-ke ... om-source/ (How to Upgrade Kernel of Debian 9 Stretch from Source - 7 months ago) Only tech-geeks will know how to upgrade the Linux kernel of Debian 9 from the default kernel 4.9 to newer ones, eg 4.14 or 4.15 or 4.16 = for newer hardware like AMD/Intel 8th-gen CPUs. It's much simpler in Ubuntu/LM = for the average users.
And depending upon the hardware any user can have a hard time upgrading, and others no issues at all. The point is that you will have an easier time in general upgrading from Debian than Ubuntu. I speak from experience doing both over 7 years. It is a miracle when an Ubuntu upgrade works for me, Debian generally moves to the next dist-upgrade without issues for me.

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by BG405 » Tue Jul 17, 2018 2:36 pm

I believe the Mint Devs are already thinking of this, especially since it's been stated on several occasions that Debian is the fall-back option.

I've tried LMDE in the past & had no problem with it; just preferred the more fully-fledged Mint editions. I wouldn't object to a change to straight Debian base. Or even Arch base, for that matter .. but this would no doubt create a massive learning curve for many existing Mint users.
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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by michael louwe » Fri Jul 20, 2018 3:38 am

@ KBD47, .......
KBD47 wrote:Debian has become much more user friendly over the past few years. Mint has obviously already thought it a good idea to have Debian as a back up with Linux Mint Debian (LMDE). I would suggest an emphasis on the LMDE release and gradual move toward a complete Debian base for Mint by the Mint 20 release..
.
xenopeek wrote:16 Feb 2017 - But I think we're drifting from the topic at hand. Unless I'm mistaken OP is asking if it is possible to make a minimal ISO and if so how. Not if Linux Mint will do a minimal ISO, which as everybody I think already understands doesn't align with Linux Mint's ideas (full functioning out of the box) and comes at the cost of cutting one of the current releases (going through development, QA testing, beta testing, and maintenance takes a lot of effort and we will maintain the current workload — not add it it, so if there needs to be a new ISO it means another will be cut).

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Re: Suggestion: For Mint 20 to go full Debian

Post by xenopeek » Sat Jul 21, 2018 8:12 am

Disclaimer: my personal opinion.

Red Hat, CentOS and Fedora are thriving despite Red Hat's IPO 19 years ago. IPOs by itself aren't a negative.

Sure, there were a few bumps in the road with Linux Mint based on Ubuntu as you could read in this month's news. How should these few bumps affect what Linux Mint will do 2 years from now? Bit early :) We have 2 years remaining on this package base with 19.1, 19.2 and 19.3.

If early/mid 2020 Ubuntu is deemed by the developers to no longer be the best package base to work with, as it is consider currently, then sure for Linux Mint 20 they could considering moving to a new package base. But it's 2 years to early to commit to doing that, besides a few bumps don't warrant that, or to commit to what package base to move to. Who knows what Debian will look like in 2 years? It's not like Debian is without issues right now.

As shared in last month's news, LMDE is important to Linux Mint but not as a "we're planning to move away from Ubuntu" kind of way.
[...] LMDE is an interesting project, because it has a small audience but one of the most passionate. It’s also a very important project for us because it challenges us to design our software with more than one development target in mind and because it shows us how far we can go without our best upstream component, Ubuntu. How Minty can we be without Ubuntu? How similar, alike, close to Mint can we make LMDE? How much effort, how many resources, how long would it take for us to make Mint again if Ubuntu was ever to disappear? LMDE answers this for us and this is the key aspect of the LMDE project. It’s never been a priority, it doesn’t need to succeed as a distribution, it’s a challenge which tells us more about ourselves, which we need to face and in which we need to do well, not for you, not for anyone, but for us. [...]
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