Saturday, March 31, 2012

Fedora, Mint, and thequest for the besk Linux desktop

So, I had a recent rant about Fedora, and how it ends up being very anti-user-friendly.

I decided to try something else, which I had been hearing about a lot, Mint. I decided to try with the LXDE interface, because I like my desktop to take little memory and be responsive.

My criteria for success were as follows, with comments:
  • Keyboard layouts should be easy to configure and switch from. Result: FAIL. I need to open a text file to add a layout. Switching is easy to add though.
  • Buttons should be mapped out of the box. Result: FAIL. The volume doesn't unmute. grrr. Some other buttons don't do anything too.
  • Widgets are easy to install. Weather widget is a must. Result: OK. There is no default option in LXDE, but Mint offers indicator-weather as an easy download. Other widgets are available and are set up painlessly.
  • Memory and CPU usage should be low. Result: WOOT!
  • Desktop should be responsive. Result: WOOT!
  • It should be easy to launch an application using only the keyboard. Result: FAIL. The launcher isn't on the foreground by default. One needs to modify a text file once again.
  • It should be easy to configure my printer/scanner. Result: SUCCESS
  • It should be easy to configure my wifi. Result: SUCCESS
  • It should be easy to play every kind of multimedia under the sun. Result: SUCCESS
  • Battery life should be good.
As of now, I decided to try Cinnamon as my default desktop for some time. I can report key bindings that just work, and a responsive desktop, so that is a step forward.


  1. Could I suggest you to use KDE desktop? It's very configurable and efficient.

  2. I tested KDE on Fedora and found it pretty decent. It has a reputation of being a memory hog sadly.

    But, as silly as it sounds, one of the big things for me is to have the start key doing magic... that's something Ubuntu addicted me on. And KDE won't bind events on only one key it seems.

    As things are, though, KDE may end up exactly where I'll go...