5 Things I Would Miss in Linux Mint

30 07 2009

mintbubbleSo after my last post, I figured it would be interesting to ask myself, “what would I miss in Linux Mint?” if I were to go back to Windows Vista today.  I came up with 5 nontrivial things.

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6 Things I Miss About Windows Vista in Linux

27 07 2009

missvistaAs I go through the daily grind on my trusty Thinkpad,  I once in a while notice quirks in Linux Mint / Ubuntu that makes me miss certain small but important conveniences from Windows Vista.  I’ve been taking notes, and here’s my list.

update: thanks to some wonderful tips below, my list has quickly gone down to 3 in the last 24 hours.

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Finally, good themes for Ubuntu / Mint

12 07 2009

dessin6-297x300

The standard theme in Linux Mint 7, with the green wet windshield effect and dark grey window trimmings, is really quite nice.  But seeing all that green can get tiring after a few weeks.  Unfortunately, I haven’t been contented with the alternative themes that come with my Mint system.

So like any good Internet user, I googled* for Linux Mint themes. Read the rest of this entry »





Google’s Linux OS: what’s going to be special about it?

9 07 2009

googleos

Google just announced that they will be launching their own open-source operating system that would compete against the venerable Microsoft Windows. Story here.

According to Google, the core benefit of this product is that it will offer a better online experience:

“The plan is part of Google’s bet that a huge shift in computing is under way. In Google’s view, Web connections will become so fast and browsers so powerful that most of the programs that currently run on PCs will be replaced by online applications.”

If there’s two things I’ve learned from my switching experience into using Linux, Open Office, and the like is that this may not be enough reason to switch: how hard is it anyway to go online using a Windows or Mac system?  Quite easy actually. And no harder than using any other connected device–be it a cell phone, iPod touch or whatnot. Read the rest of this entry »





Improving Battery Life on Linux Mint by 50%

1 07 2009

Penguin_Charger.resized

In one my first posts, I noted that my biggest concern with moving 100% to Linux from Windows is the higher consumption in power which leads to degradation in battery life when unplugged.  I use a Lenovo ThinkPad X200 with a 6-cell battery.  A recent business trip reminded me how important longer battery life is.

So I did a little research, experimentation and tweaking to improve my situation.  Below are the steps I took to get up to a 45% reduction in power consumption as measured in Watts (from about 15W to 8.3W) and about 50% more working time on my unplugged computer (from 3 to 4.5 hours). Read the rest of this entry »





Personal ad idea for Mint 7

24 06 2009

In my previous post, I asked why I had to upgrade to version 7 of Linux Mint.  After going through a major troubleshooting experience with my Thinkpad, I was finally able to think of one new benefit that I didn’t have back in version 6: the ability to suspend and hibernate my notebook properly.

travelwell-ad

Click image for full-size version

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Why Did I Upgrade Again?

23 06 2009

why7

I upgraded my Linux Mint 6 system to version 7 a few weeks ago.  Why? You know what, I honestly can’t say.

I pointed out in an earlier post that I did a not-so-simple-but-easy-enough upgrade from version 6 to 7.  Since upgrading, I faced an annoying slow graphics issue with my Thinkpad X200 that grew frustrating enough that I almost gave up on Linux (if you’re experiencing similar problems, check out these helpful hints in the Mint or Ubuntu sites).  My opinion on version 7 may be jaded because of this problem, but I couldn’t see anything really new with version 7.  If nothing else, it just made my notebook feel slower!

That experience made me reflect on my actions: why did I upgrade again? Read the rest of this entry »