Move to Mint: MATE now or wait for 17.1 xfce?

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Seeking advice from Mint veterans. I ran Mint xfce years ago, and have run Xubuntu for years. I like no-frills desktops and UIs and have been happy with xfce. (Unlike LXDE, which I never liked much, maybe since I read a lot online and the fonts are funky.) Been itching to try MATE. My first Ubuntu install was the mainstream flavor with Gnome circa 2008. I switched to Xubuntu soon after and never looked back---but Gnome without bells and whistles sounds good. Is that what you get with MATE? Anyway, I plan to either install Mint 17.1 MATE real soon, or else go back to Xubuntu, probably 14.04 LTS. I am not a distro hopper but I am ready for a change. What do you recommend and are there are hidden tricks to MATE lying in wait to snag a new user? Thanks much in advance.
 

faramir9

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Also, as referenced by the subject line but I forget to mention in my OP: Another option is to wait for Mint 17.1 xfce. I sort of have an itch to install some Linux OS soon, though. Right now all I have is Windows 7. Need freedom....
 
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Install Mint 17.1 Mate... You won't look back. I am a very happy user of Mint Mate since March... it's my favorite desktop that Mint offers.
 
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Originally Posted By: ClutchDisc
Install Mint 17.1 Mate... You won't look back. I am a very happy user of Mint Mate since March... it's my favorite desktop that Mint offers.
+1
 
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I installed Mint Mate on Dell desktop. XFCE on Thinkpad. Both with older dual core processors. XFCE is faster/lighter. I like both. Version 17 has long term support. I have been updating to 17.1 through update manager.
 
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Y_K

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You could also consider Debian with XFCE. Cleaner than polluted Debian-derivative alternatives. Very easy installation. I ran it on a 9 year old Thinkpad, Better yet, FreeBSD with xfce uses 5 times less RAM than any GNU/Linux, but you'd have to spend a couple of hours. My fave windows manager is Window Maker. A descendant of NeXT. Mint LDME Mate is nice and very easy to install
 
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Originally Posted By: MONKEYMAN
I installed Mint Mate on Dell desktop. XFCE on Thinkpad. Both with older dual core processors. XFCE is faster/lighter. I like both. Version 17 has long term support. I have been updating to 17.1 through update manager.
Don't forget to update the Kernel. I noticed on my wife's machine the update manager updated it to 17.1 but left the Kernel from 17.0. I did a fresh install off the DVD I burnt and had the 17.1 Kernel. I didn't notice any difference but now both machines are using the new Kernel.
 
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Kernals??????????? NeXT???????????? Man I wish I was more tech savvy so I could rid myself of Windows. I was here a while back and some of you had me convinced I could, with little knowledge, successfully make the change. I didn't have much luck. And all the different programs; Mate, Debian with XFCE, Unbuntu, Gnome. Do you really need to be uber tech savvy to utilize these programs. I'm really not what one would consider tech savvy, but I don't consider myself to be an idiot either. Maybe it's "No Guts, No Glory" with me. I got concerned about loosing some capabilities, like printing, or connecting to the internet etc... And I really have no idea what a kernal is or what it does. I do enjoy reading these posts though.
 
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Originally Posted By: Sierra048
Kernals??????????? NeXT???????????? Man I wish I was more tech savvy so I could rid myself of Windows. I was here a while back and some of you had me convinced I could, with little knowledge, successfully make the change. I didn't have much luck. And all the different programs; Mate, Debian with XFCE, Unbuntu, Gnome. Do you really need to be uber tech savvy to utilize these programs. I'm really not what one would consider tech savvy, but I don't consider myself to be an idiot either. Maybe it's "No Guts, No Glory" with me. I got concerned about loosing some capabilities, like printing, or connecting to the internet etc... And I really have no idea what a kernal is or what it does. I do enjoy reading these posts though.
I learned by asking a lot of questions. There are a few guys on this board that were very patient and helpful. I'm still learning and I'm very happy with the change. Time and patience is the key, it isn't that bad.
 
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MATE ***is*** Gnome 2, the one you would have been using in Ubuntu circa 2008. When Gnome moved from the 2.x to 3.x codebase and abandoned Gnome 2, some users took up the (freely-available!) source code and kept the project going. To that end, MATE features more spit-and-polish and is more robust and feature-laden than XFCE and is my preference for low-resource usage. MATE is also one of Mint's two main DE's (alongside Cinnamon) and will probably receive more attention from the developers.
 

faramir9

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Originally Posted By: Sierra048
Kernals??????????? NeXT???????????? Man I wish I was more tech savvy so I could rid myself of Windows. I was here a while back and some of you had me convinced I could, with little knowledge, successfully make the change. I didn't have much luck. And all the different programs; Mate, Debian with XFCE, Unbuntu, Gnome. Do you really need to be uber tech savvy to utilize these programs. I'm really not what one would consider tech savvy, but I don't consider myself to be an idiot either. Maybe it's "No Guts, No Glory" with me. I got concerned about loosing some capabilities, like printing, or connecting to the internet etc... And I really have no idea what a kernal is or what it does. I do enjoy reading these posts though.
You will find out about kernels soon enough if you move to Linux. The true gurus will tell you to always update to the latest kernel on principle. That's great for true gurus. The only time I ever hosed a Linux install was on Xubuntu 10.04 LTS, near the end of its support cycle. For some reason the system did not auto-update to the latest kernel, so I installed it manually through the terminal.....and the system would not boot. I finally got back in via command line, after much research and head-banging....but from now on I leave kernels alone. At this point 3.x kernels seem quite stable, anyway. No, you don't have to be uber tech savvy to use any of the Ubuntu family or Mint. (For the more vigorously old-school Linux OS's, maybe.) You can't be a total tech-illiterate, but it mainly takes a willingness to try new ways of doing things and patience when things don't always work right the first time. I've yet to have trouble printing from any Linux system. There are always the rare programs or hardware that won't work on Linux, but that is 'very' rare these days in Ubuntu/Mint. If you want to try it, wait till you have a day or two free to dig into it---and go to town. Just be sure not to wipe out your Windows install when partitioning, (I've never done that but came close once) and be patient as you learn your way around Linux-land. Enjoy.
 

faramir9

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Originally Posted By: uc50ic4more
MATE ***is*** Gnome 2, the one you would have been using in Ubuntu circa 2008. When Gnome moved from the 2.x to 3.x codebase and abandoned Gnome 2, some users took up the (freely-available!) source code and kept the project going. To that end, MATE features more spit-and-polish and is more robust and feature-laden than XFCE and is my preference for low-resource usage. MATE is also one of Mint's two main DE's (alongside Cinnamon) and will probably receive more attention from the developers.
Yes, the last point is key for me. The Xubuntu take on XFCE is great, but XFCE in Mint seems less refined. If MATE (minus eye candy; I don't plan to use Compiz) is close to as sleek as is XFCE on Xubuntu, but also offers more features from the upstream Ubuntu/Gnome world, it could be the best of all etc. for me. Next day off, I plan to install some Linux OS. As of now, leaning toward Mint 17.1 MATE.
 

Y_K

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Originally Posted By: Sierra048
Man I wish I was more tech savvy so I could rid myself of Windows.
1. it is not that difficult, just another abstraction layer 2. if the folks who bash Windows put as much effort to learn MS products as they are forced to with other dinky systems, they would be on the same level with them there is a lot of stuff built into Windows that is quite accessible, but not on the surface. Use your own head. I remember headlines "Munich ditches Windows and moves to Mandrake" over 10 years ago. Now we have "Munich ditches Windows and moves to Ubuntu". What happened with the previous ditching campaign? It was not production usable on a serious level until huge, nefarious corporation infused billions into the project, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, SUN, Intel, etc. They had salaried engineers working for Linus at no charge to him. Still have. They have been killing Windows for decades now. Instead, they killed their own roots - UNIX. Like a virus, eating the body it feeds off.
 
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I'm just a newb with Mint, but I really like 17.0 Xfce and am waiting for 17.1 Xfce to come out to do a clean install and replace 17.1 MATE [upgraded from 17.0]. Xfce uses less resources and can be made to look nicer [to me]. MATE has better menus, but doesn't seem to be as readily configurable. On my work desktop I have 17.1 MATE as the main OS installed on a SSD and 17.0 Xfce as a rescue OS on the HDD. At an idle, MATE uses ~ 9% RAM and Xfce ~ 5% RAM. Xfce feels faster, even though it runs from a platter and MATE from a SSD. Often, MATE doesn't properly recognize my ancient Trinitron monitor that runs at an odd refresh rate, but Xfce has always recognized that it needs 85 Hz [so far]. I tried Xubuntu before I committed to Linux and disliked it, but I really like Mint's and especially Manjaro's [0.8.10, not 0.8.11] spins on Xfce.
 
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Thanks for the vote of confidence and inspiration for trying this out. A lot of what you all spoke of after my post is still pretty "Greek" to me. As a novice, what would your suggestions for me be moving forward with this process. I'm not a power user/gamer. Just web surfing and word processing/spreadsheets. Of the many programs I've seen mentioned, and honestly not knowing about them, which would you suggest as the easiest, and the most logical first step. My hope is that once able, hopefully, to make the transition, and still have my present capabilities, I would be more confident to experiment. I'm no spring chicken and my children helped me get to the point I'm at now. Unfortunately, neither are close anymore, nor do they have the time, to guide me through this journey. Thanks again for all the help.
 
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Originally Posted By: Sierra048
Thanks for the vote of confidence and inspiration for trying this out. A lot of what you all spoke of after my post is still pretty "Greek" to me. As a novice, what would your suggestions for me be moving forward with this process. I'm not a power user/gamer. Just web surfing and word processing/spreadsheets. Of the many programs I've seen mentioned, and honestly not knowing about them, which would you suggest as the easiest, and the most logical first step. My hope is that once able, hopefully, to make the transition, and still have my present capabilities, I would be more confident to experiment. I'm no spring chicken and my children helped me get to the point I'm at now. Unfortunately, neither are close anymore, nor do they have the time, to guide me through this journey. Thanks again for all the help.
First thing would be to download the LinuxMint DVD and burn it. This will allow you to boot from the DVD and try it out; it will not touch your HD (Windows installation) unless you opt to install it. They you can give it a look-see and see if it is something you are interested in.
 

emg

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Originally Posted By: Y_K
It was not production usable on a serious level until huge, nefarious corporation infused billions into the project, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, SUN, Intel, etc. They had salaried engineers working for Linus at no charge to him. Still have.
Not sure when that would have been, but Linux was certainly more robust than Windows in the NT3.5 era. Most of the company I worked for at that time ran on Linux, and just opening an email could cause the NT machines we had to blue-screen. IBM dropped their desktop PC business about ten years ago. Now, I believe, they make a lot of their money running Linux on mainframes. Oracle only care about the operating system you run their software on because they own SUN, who kept selling Solaris to the end, and took an anti-Linux stance by ensuring that the ZFS license was Linux-unfriendly. Intel make their best profit margins on server CPUs, and most real servers run Linux or some other Unix. Can't comment on Cisco as I know little about them.
Quote:
They have been killing Windows for decades now. Instead, they killed their own roots - UNIX. Like a virus, eating the body it feeds off.
The funny part is that Microsoft killed Windows by trying to beat Unix on mobile devices. Windows 8 was a disaster because it tried to compete with Android (Linux) and iOS (Unix). Back more on topic, I run Mint 17 MATE on my laptop with few issues. Most of them due to buggy Intel video drivers and buggy Realtek wi-fi drivers. It's by far the most usable Linux UI since the Linux developers decided everyone must want a tablet UI on their desktop. You can apparently do a straight upgrade to 17.1, but I'm giving it a month or two to stabilize first.
 
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Originally Posted By: Sierra048
Thanks for the vote of confidence and inspiration for trying this out. A lot of what you all spoke of after my post is still pretty "Greek" to me. As a novice, what would your suggestions for me be moving forward with this process. I'm not a power user/gamer. Just web surfing and word processing/spreadsheets. Of the many programs I've seen mentioned, and honestly not knowing about them, which would you suggest as the easiest, and the most logical first step. My hope is that once able, hopefully, to make the transition, and still have my present capabilities, I would be more confident to experiment. I'm no spring chicken and my children helped me get to the point I'm at now. Unfortunately, neither are close anymore, nor do they have the time, to guide me through this journey. Thanks again for all the help.
Like simple gifts suggested, burn a DVD (have to burn as an ISO image) or make a boot-able flash drive if your computer will accept it. Most of the newer ones will. When using Linux from a DVD or USB drive, NOTHING is permanent and does not affect your original operating system in any way- though you do have the option to install it from the same screen that you would select "Try Linux without installing". A few of the common, heavy hitters are Ubuntu, Mint (both MATE and Cinnamon), Lubuntu and Xubuntu. Zorin is a neat one, Elementary is another. There are literally HUNDREDS to choose from! I too was in the same boat as you- it's truly not that hard to do! In fact, it's so easy to switch- it literally only takes about 15 minutes or less to be working on the computer once you've started the install process. Most of the distributions contain pretty much every driver you'll need to be up and running- in fact I have only had to search for one so far for our shop computer (after several installs of various distros). It was out there, but wasn't installed yet on the distro we have on the shop computer (we had the old version of it, which didn't work with our brand new printer). I'm still not tech savvy, but as was mentioned, there are a couple of quite knowledgeable people here who are always willing to help a fellow out- which I greatly appreciate. There's also a huge online community out there, and they're also very willing to help. Heck, it even goes so far that there's Linux User Groups (LUGs) who will actually do things for you in person. None in my area though... So I encourage you to take the plunge! Which ever distribution you choose will more than likely have everything you need already installed to get moving. If there's something you want that didn't come with it- it's typically out there and free. I hope this spurs you on, to burn a few ISOs or USB flash drives and take look!
 
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Thanks all. The_Eric, you have given me the motivation to go for it. I'll report back with my progress because I'm sure I'll need further guidance.
 
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Originally Posted By: Sierra048
Thanks all. The_Eric, you have given me the motivation to go for it. I'll report back with my progress because I'm sure I'll need further guidance.
You'll love it! Best move I made. Opinions vary.
 
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