While many arguments can be made for using Linux Mint and not Ubuntu, there are counter-arguments for the opposite installation. Here are five reasons why you would use Ubuntu and not Linux Mint.
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Unity Is Easier to Navigate than Cinnamon and Mate
One argument for Mint over Unity is that Windows users would find Linux Mint more familiar because the Cinnamon desktop is much like the Windows desktop that has been used for the past 20 years.
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However, time has moved on, and whether people like to admit it or not, Unity is a dream to navigate and use.
The launch bar down the left gives instant access to all of your favorite applications and any other application can be access from the Dash.
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Unity is probably what Microsoft was aiming for when they came up with Windows 8. Unity does everything right that Windows 8 got so wrong.
There is nothing wrong with Cinnamon, and if you like the traditional desktop, it is perfect.
Ubuntu is breaking new ground and daring to try out new things and for those people who are yet to try Unity because they have heard bad things, give it one month and you will change your mind.
One great thing about Unity is the keyboard shortcuts, and how easy it is to pull up a window showing what the keyboard shortcuts are.
Windows has loads of keyboard shortcuts and when you have learned them you will realize that it actually becomes quite usable. The trouble is that they aren't clearly documented.
With Unity, you can hold down the super key (Windows key) on your keyboard and a list of shortcuts appear.
This is a feature that every desktop environment should consider adding.
Another thing that Ubuntu does really well is to integrate audio, video, social media, photos, the internet, and social media into the desktop.
When you use Linux Mint each program is a stand-alone application.
Thanks to the way Unity works though it is possible to play music, watch videos, look at photos and view social media messages straight from the Dash.
This makes using Ubuntu a seamless experience and is another example of improvements being made to modern desktops.
One of the reasons to use Linux Mint over Ubuntu is that Ubuntu included shopping results as part of the search results.
The flip side to that argument, of course, is that some people probably like the shopping results. For instance, if you are searching for a song to listen to and you see an option to buy another track by the same artist, that is a good thing.
Scopes and Lenses
Lenses provide a way to integrate different types of data such as documents, music, videos, and photos onto the desktop.
A number of lenses are provided as part of the default Unity setup but there are a number of custom lenses made by third-party developers which add to the Ubuntu experience.
Scopes make it possible to integrate the best of the web into your desktops such as Gmail and Reddit.
People probably spend as much time using online services as they do offline applications nowadays, so it makes sense to integrate online and offline results when searching for things on the desktop.
Ubuntu is the base for Linux Mint and therefore it is always one step ahead and the fact that Linux Mint has aligned itself with the LTS release of Ubuntu means that Ubuntu and Linux Mint are going to be very different by the time we get to the next LTS release.
Upgrading from one Ubuntu release to the next is fairly straightforward and has been that way for a number of years. Linux Mint however only lets you upgrade minor releases.
The best way to find out which of these Linux distributions to use is obviously to try them both out.
I officially became a Linux user about 30 minutes ago when I successfully managed to install Linux Mint on my old, crashed, Dell Vostro V131.
I have the technical skills of a cucumber so please use short words and long descriptions when trying to answer this...
I have a Dell Vostro V131 with Intel i5 chip, 1st gen I believe. Windows 7 crashed irreparably and instead of rebooting with Windows I thought I would give this Linux thing a crack! I have successfully installed Linux Mint (Yay me!) But I also want to install Ubuntu to see which I like the feel of most. I would then like an additional drive to store all of my data that is available to both partitions. Is this needed? But, I'm confused! Why does Mint require so many different partitions? I have hoping to take my 1TB HDD and partition it into three virtual drives, have Mint on one, Ubuntu on another and all of my data on a third. I couldn't understand the partitioning though, can anyone helpZanna
When you reach the partitioning procedure, choose 'Something else'. All you need is a
ext4 partition with
/ mount point (that's where the system will be installed) and a swap partition (the swap size must be between the size of your RAM and twice that size, but you would probably already have one from the mint installation so you don't need a 2nd). Some prefer to create also a separate
/home partition but it's not necessary. See some more info here: How to use manual partitioning during installation?
You can also share the same
/home partition between mint and ubuntu but it's not a good idea because applications store their settings there and different versions on different distros can cause problems. So if you want a data partition, just create another partition (without any mount point) or leave an empty space and after the installation use
Disks (gnome-disk-utility) to create a partition of your empty space (you can also make it to be mounted at startup).