Linux Mint - Applications Updating

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Ineedhelpplease
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Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by Ineedhelpplease » Fri Aug 17, 2012 1:16 am

I was using Ubuntu 12.04 for a short while recently. I have gotten very, very displeased with the OS mainly because of 1)...applications updating is unsatisfactory at best and 2)...if I wanted to update manually it is very involved/complicated, especially for a newbie like myself, that has no experience using "Terminal". So, my main question is this. When an application is updated, how soon is the new version updated in Mint? In Ubuntu, LibreOfice v3.4 is installed. LibreOffice released v3.5 but took forever to be updated by Ubuntu. And now, LibreOffice has release v3.6.x and it may not be until September or October or maybe when Ubuntu v12.10 is released. I am currently using Windows XP Home w/SP3 and I really like the ability to manually do application/utility updates pretty much as soon as the update is released. I would like to get off Windows, if feasible. Thanks for listening.

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mads
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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by mads » Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:12 am

Ineedhelpplease wrote:...I really like the ability to manually do application/utility updates pretty much as soon as the update is released. I would like to get off Windows, if feasible...
What you want to achieve is not possible with Mint or Ubuntu.
There might be other Linux distros, but one that I know about is openSUSE Tumbleweed. It provides the latest stable versions of all software.

den68
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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by den68 » Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:20 am

Hi,
you want might to learn just a bit of terminal command to add a custom application repository PPA (I'm sure you know a bit of DOS if using Windows)
for Libreoffice, all you need to do in a terminal is :

Code: Select all

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:libreoffice/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
for other software, you can usually look in google for the related PPA, or for example in the Ubuntu wiki : https://wiki.ubuntu.com/LibreOffice

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xenopeek
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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by xenopeek » Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:36 am

If you want the latest version of applications, you should look into running a "rolling release" distro instead of a distro that aims for stability. A rolling release distro is one that you install once, and almost as soon as a new application version is published it will be in your update manager ready to be installed. The downside of course is that stability of the system can be at risk, as the new version may introduce bugs or incompatibilities with other applications installed.

Ubuntu does extensive integration testing on its releases, making sure the versions of the applications installed all work together nicely and don't carry show stopping bugs. Once a release has been published, it will be supported for 18 or 60 months (regular vs. LTS release) and during the support period you can expect minor updates (security fixes and bug fixes). The aim is kept at stability. Once published, work starts on the next release and that may have new versions of applications.

Even Ubuntu doesn't have unlimited resources and so the additional integration and regressing testing needed to safely update all applications to the latest versions during the support period goes beyond what they can do. It also goes beyond what they want to do. For the average user, the current Libre Office version installed works just fine and there is no need to go to the latest version. Sure, it would add some features but if you're not needing those then why should you want to upgrade? The average user installs Ubuntu and expects it to "just work" during its support period.

Of course, if you do need the newer version there is any easy way to install that. Find the PPA from the maintainers of the Ubuntu package or the developers of the application, and usually that has a newer version than is available through Ubuntu's repository. Installing it is then your risk, and not the risk of all the other users. A trade-off to stability. You can add PPAs through the Software Sources application, or you can install the Y PPA Manager for a nicer way to work with PPAs, or you can install through the terminal as shown by den68.

How does all this apply also to Linux Mint? As you probably know, Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu. That means that most applications you have installed (or can install) come from Ubuntu's repository. For the applications that Linux Mint adds through its own repository, the same approach is taken.

Taking a step back, yes you can also go for a rolling release distro. For example, LMDE (Linux Mint Debian Edition) is a rolling release distro (though even LMDE has taken steps to not overwhelm you with application versions that will break your system). As shown in the LMDE FAQ, you can also tweak LMDE in various ways to be even more bleeding edge and have the latests versions of applications. You may also consider distros like Arch Linux, which are from the ground up designed as rolling release distros. That sais, I would recommend neither of these to you, as you need to be very comfortable with the command line to use such distros.
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Ineedhelpplease
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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by Ineedhelpplease » Fri Aug 17, 2012 6:13 am

Thanks to all. Now I'm confused as to which Mint to get. I look at the download for Mint and find .... MATE .... CINNAMON .... KDE .... XFCE. My system is 32bit so that I can readily understand. But which Mint do I get?

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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by xenopeek » Fri Aug 17, 2012 6:51 am

You download the 32 bit version of whichever edition you like (here http://www.linuxmint.com/download.php). Yes, it can be confusing to pick one. Welcome to having a choice :D MATE, Cinnamon, KDE and Xfce are all desktop environments. A desktop environment provides the graphical interface to the operating system; the menu, the panel, the way windows and buttons are drawn, and so on (oversimplifying things a bit, but that is the core of it). It also provides the basic applications, like a text editor, the terminal, and such. While you can run all your applications on all desktop environments, the way it looks or the features it has can make you prefer one over the other.

Have a look at the dekstop environment popularity poll for some inspiration: http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.p ... 3&t=100787. Cinnamon is by far the most popular. Not surprising, as it is a modern desktop environment being developed by the Linux Mint developers and a whole bunch of awesome contributors (it's based on Gnome 3, if that means anything to you). MATE (a fork of Gnome 2), KDE and Xfce are independent projects. If you Google "linux mint 13 review" and add the name of the desktop environment you are interested in, you can find plenty of reviews (both text/pictures and video).

Let us know if you need any further ideas on this.
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Ineedhelpplease
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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by Ineedhelpplease » Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:29 pm

Another question. I saw that Mint is based on Ubuntu. Can I use Wubi to install Mint?

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xenopeek
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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by xenopeek » Sat Aug 18, 2012 1:51 am

No. As you can see on the linked download page, only the 64 bit versions of MATE and Cinnamon have the option to be installed from Windows.
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Ineedhelpplease
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Re: Linux Mint - Applications Updating

Post by Ineedhelpplease » Sat Aug 18, 2012 4:54 am

Ok then, thanks. I was hoping not to have to "dual boot" but I can live with that. Thanks again. I'm outta here.

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