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Linux Mint 8 KDE Edition

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http://thelinuxblog.net – Linux Mint is one of the most popular Ubuntu based distro’s, possibly for the fact it brings something new to the table rather than just a different set of wallpapers. Its always been one of my favorite distros, and like the main Ubuntu project, it has more than one ‘flavour’. The main edition, which features the GNOME desktop has been out for a while, but the latest KDE release, was released about a week ago. The installation was smooth and simple, the installer being a slightly modified version of the Kubuntu one, with a list of tabs down the side that you ‘progress’ through. With a reboot I was booted up into a KDE 4.3 desktop with a blue version of the Linux Mint background. Sadly my blue wireless light was not lit. There was also a welcome screen, giving me some links to the community and how to get involved. I’ve never been a massive fan of this sort of thing, as I pretty much just skip straight to the ‘Show This Dialogue At Start Up’ box and uncheck it. Straight away I needed to get wireless working. Digging out a network cable, I started the Hardware Drivers program. Unlike Ubuntu 9.10, my wireless card was picked my and 2 drivers were shown. Having had experience with the b43 one (i.e. it doesn’t work) I went with the Broadcom proprietary driver. A reboot later, the wireless light was illuminated. Music time now. One of Linux Mint’s most prevalent features when it was new was the inclusion of codecs to allow playing of all media. While pretty much every Ubuntu spin off now has it, it does make life easier as I could just fire up Amarok and (after a bit of button bashing) load up my music collection, and most importantly, play it. Another feature of Linux Mint is the software manager has a selection of software and a description of what it does, along with ratings from the community and some screenshots. Ubuntu also has a similar piece of software, but Mint’s has a few more features. A much less useful, but more amusing feature is the addition of fortunes in terminal. It just shows a quote everytime you start a terminal. All in all, this has been another good release from the Linux Mint guys. While there are still improvements to be made (like wireless support) they have built upon a not-so-good version of Ubuntu, solved a fair few of the bugs, and added their own features. While I’m not the greatest KDE fan, it certainly is a nice implementation of the KDE 4 desktop. (Distributions)