Linux Mint 14 "Nadia" released
Arriving in two flavours and with many improvements, Linux Mint 14, code-named "Nadia", has been released by Linux Mint project founder Clement "Clem" Lefebvre. Linux Mint 14 is based on Ubuntu 12.10, but offers a more traditional choice of desktop environments instead of Ubuntu's often controversial Unity interface. The two flavours available offer two different desktops, one with the project's own custom-built Cinnamon (a GNOME 2-like user interface based on GNOME 3) and the MATE fork of GNOME 2.
According to the developers, version 1.6 of Cinnamon is more stable in Nadia than its predecessors. Instead of GNOME's Nautilus, Cinnamon 1.6 uses the Nemo file manager; Nemo is a Nautilus fork that doesn't include various recent changes to the GNOME 3 file manager that have been controversially received by users. The new version of Cinnamon allows users to name their workspaces and, unlike in GNOME 3, these are permanently saved rather than being created on demand and lost when a user logs out or a system is rebooted. The names will be displayed when switching between workspaces, making it easier to configure predefined work environments in different workspaces.
New applets provide a more convenient desktop experience: the Window Quick-List applet displays a list of all windows, sorted into workspaces; the Notification applet stores notifications; and the Brightness applet provides screen brightness controls. The Mint display manager (MDM) has been improved and can display an optional user list. Mint's software manager now uses a custom Apt client instead of the Apt daemon – according to the developers, this has improved the tool's stability. A dedicated tool (MintStick) is available for writing images to USB flash drives. Gedit 3, the default editor under GNOME 3, has been replaced by gedit 2.30, a version that, the developers say, is more mature and stable.
Bluetooth and the GNOME keyring are said to work better in MATE 1.4. The Caja file manager now supports Dropbox and can directly compare files. Numerous bug fixes should make the desktop more stable and functional.
Like Ubuntu 12.10, Linux Mint 14 uses a Linux 3.5 kernel. All other system components and applications – apart from the desktop – are also largely identical. The developers point out that, on some computers with Intel graphics, the system reverts to llvmpipe instead of using the Intel driver with 3D acceleration, and that this can cause increased CPU loads. Instructions for solving this problem can be found in the release notes.
Eight ISO images (with MATE or Cinnamon/with or without codecs that may potentially have licensing issues/32-bit or 64-bit) of Linux Mint 14 are available to download. The image sizes range between 850MB and 970MB.