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Offline perknh

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Why Linux Mint Won
« on: July 15, 2017, 11:20:15 pm »
Why Linux Mint Won

By Matt Hartley for Datamation

Quote
With Ubuntu refocusing on the cloud/server/IoT space with desktop taking a backseat, I think we'll see Mint continuing to grab new users and potentially surpass Ubuntu in the coming years. And while I caution people not to take sites like Distro Watch too seriously, as the download numbers aren't a good way to process popularity, it does provide a lose indicator that Mint isn't going away anytime soon. --Matt Hartley

http://www.datamation.com/open-source/why-linux-mint-won.html


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Offline josephd

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2017, 01:56:30 am »
I've been a fan of Matt's work since his Jupiter Broadcasting days. So I'm biased when I say he was spot on here.

Not to hate on Canonical, but after so many shuttered projects between 2011 and today it's not a surprise that people are skeptical when they start something new.

Offline zebedeeboss

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2017, 02:57:39 am »
Distrowatch today

2878   :  Linux Mint ( Cinnamon/xfce/KDE/LMDE)
3477   :  Total Ubuntu

made up of
1497:  Ubuntu
473   :  Lubuntu
409   :  Ubuntu Mate
312   :  Ubuntu Budgie
311   :  Xubuntu
242   :  Kubuntu
233   :  Ubuntu Gnome

I like Mint - it works well but...  Lets have a fair playing field eh  :D

Matt is right the Distrowatch figures are very very lose...

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2017, 06:53:16 am »
What Zeb said .. and I'll add that most new users aren't even aware of Distrowatch so just use Google to help make their choice, and you'll find thousands of pages about Ubuntu for every one about Mint.

IMHO Mint, good as it is, is still WAY WAY WAY smaller than Ubuntu .. it's "won" nothing (and I doubt if "winning" is even a consideration of Clem's).

In fact if the amount of people bitching about an OS (and writing articles declaring it as having somehow "lost") is any function of popularity, Ubuntu is STILL third to Windows and OS X

Remember that was an article as much about Ubuntu as it was about Mint .. if he's so secure about Mints position he wouldn't have felt the need to mention Ubuntu at all, it simply wouldn't have crossed his mind.

Mint won't have "won" whilst people (and in particular the tech press) are still finding it necessary to compare it to Ubuntu (and Ubuntu's position).

It would have been a much better article (certainly for Mint) if he'd just left Ubuntu out of it .. but then it wouldn't garner as many clicks now would it ? ;)
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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2017, 07:01:20 am »
Let me put the Distrowatch figures into some kind of context...

If you add up ALL the figures for ALL distros on DW, they don't add up to the amount of weekly visits to our main website .. does that mean we're more popular than all the others combined ?

Of course it doesn't .. it's ONLY representative(ish) of DW visitors .. even DW say they're just a bit of fun and don't represent much.
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Offline perknh

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2017, 07:26:14 am »
I happen to agree with Hartley's assessment here too.  Although I was never a huge fan of Mint, I'm beginning to change my feelings about Mint now.  The reason for this is because I know what users are getting when they go to Mint, but, with Ubuntu, I never know what users will be getting any longer.  Ubuntu is now ditching its emphasis from the desktop and placing its focus on the Cloud and the IoT instead.  What's next? :-\

Perhaps a better title for that article would be Why Linux Mint is Winning.  Yes, I still see Ubuntu as strong but I also see it as faltering.  Increasingly, I get the feeling that Ubuntu is becoming less and less relevant --at least for the DE.  In a nutshell, I'm losing confidence in Ubuntu.:(
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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2017, 08:06:24 am »
Not quite sure what you're saying here perknh .. that Mint has won something ? (if there's even anything to 'win')

Sadly the title of the article told me it was clickbait from the outset :( .. it carries some valid points, but for me they're lost in the unnecessary sensationalism.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2017, 08:12:57 am by PCNetSpec »
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Offline scifidude79

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2017, 10:12:03 am »
Fun fact:  I was running Mint when I found Peppermint.  8)

Yep, Mint is a good distro.  While DW is  a good website, it's obviously not the whole story.  Mint has been getting users from Ubuntu since the switch to Unity, though some of those users have likely also gone to Kubuntu, Xubuntu, etc., or even other distributions entirely.  But, by focusing on the desktop and making projects that people like, such as Cinnamon and MATE, Mint has been gaining in popularity and will probably continue to do so.  How high will they go?  It's hard to say.  But, there's no winners or losers here.

Offline pin

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2017, 11:10:00 am »
I don't see a "distro war" as a way forward.
If a person leaves windows or ios to get into linux, that's a win. The more people moving over the better.
I used Mint for a few weeks and found Peppermint, so the important step it's the move itself.

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Online jlschwartz

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2017, 11:20:21 am »
I recently looked at the latest version of Mint and found it a bit difficult to set up.   For example it took several steps and web searches to set up Dropbox which is very easy to set up on a Ubuntu distro and Peppermint.  Had some problems with setting up themes and icons as well.  Maybe it's me, but for a number one distro to have these types of problems I was surprised.  :-\

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Offline josephd

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2017, 12:53:21 pm »
As long as any distro is based on another there will always be a comparison.

Also DIstrowatch numbers are page views within their own website. I don't know about you guys but I haven't visited the DW page for Peppermint in years, so my interest wouldn't be counted.

Offline scifidude79

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2017, 02:20:18 pm »
Also DIstrowatch numbers are page views within their own website. I don't know about you guys but I haven't visited the DW page for Peppermint in years, so my interest wouldn't be counted.

Yep, that is so true.  I know before DW that a release is coming, so why go there?  ;)

Also, the fact that you click on the page for a distro doesn't mean you download it.  Every distro that's featured on the main page immediately gets more attention, because it's right there.  DistroWatch Weekly also gives distros a shot in the arm, with reviews or even just mentioning a distro.  DistroWatch actually has no way to track downloads unless people use the direct links in the release announcements, as the links on the distro pages just go to the site for the distro.

For example, Mageia is currently top center of the main page.  I just clicked on it and may even visit their site.  (I've used Mageia in the past)  But, that doesn't mean I'm going to download it and, even if I do, it doesn't mean I'm going to run it after checking out the live session.

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2017, 03:56:49 pm »
Personally I see no "war for newbies" .. just two disto's doing their own thing

But for those that see one, and think Mint has won this non existent war, think about this...

Ubuntu - Mint = Ubuntu

Mint - Ubuntu = what ? .. Mint Debian ? (would that still stay on top with no PPA's, Ubuntu polish, and documentation ?)

Mint are simply not big enough at the moment maintain all the packages that make up Mint/Ubuntu which is why they rely on the upstream package maintenance, nor do they have the infrastructure to host and build all the packages (as well as providing PPA hosting) such as launchpad.
(a larger problem is currently without some seed change in the way Linux is distributed and paid for there's no way to foresee them ever becoming big enough .. I gather even Canonical/Ubuntu loose money doing this, luckily they have a stupidly rich benefactor)

Mint IMHO are also getting a bit lost themselves lately .. they championed things like the DE independent Xapps when everyone else seemed to be integrating all their stuff inextricably from their DE, but lately Mint seem to be going down the same path, for example the new mintupdate is useless outside Mint, near-forcing you to accept their update "levels", odd repo structure, and a ton of their other backend stuff. More and more of their software is becoming very difficult (or impossible) to extricate from Cinnamon.

The only "war" I personally see is the shift from the UNIX philosophy of "do one thing and do it well" modularity, and more towards DE specific integration .. sadly the UNIX philosophy of shared single task (but chain-able) code and application modularity is loosing, with Mints Cinnamon as guilty of this as Ubuntus Unity was.

If Ubuntu disappeared tomorrow it would be a disaster for MANY distros that rely on not only their upstream package maintenance, but FREE services such as launchpad, and that includes Mint. Conversely if Mint disappeared tomorrow the only way Ubuntu would notice is by their downloads going up.

Tell me now who's leading who ? .. and who does more for the Linux community (including newbies) as a whole ?

Mint is a terrific distro, but it's "won" nothing .. nor would they want to, or even see it in those terms .. the beauty of the Linux ecosystem is we all need each other and work best when we compliment each other through code, applications, and resources rising to the top and being shared, forked, and reused .. THERE IS NO WAR even though as clickbait the tech press would have you believe differently.

Mint are free to use Ubuntu resources/code/apps/etc. .. Ubuntu are free to use Mints (or Fedoras, or Gnomes, or....) .. when you use one you compliment ALL, don't listen to anyone that attempts to promote division with terms like "distro wars" then we're ALL "winners" ;)
« Last Edit: July 16, 2017, 08:17:14 pm by PCNetSpec »
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Offline AndyInMokum

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2017, 07:30:24 pm »
Exactly my sentiments too  ;).
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Offline scifidude79

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Re: Why Linux Mint Won
« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2017, 12:07:26 pm »
One thing that irks me about Mint is *their* versions of software that's available in the Ubuntu repositories.  Mint has their own repos for a few things like Mintupdate and other exclusives, but they also have some redundant software in there.  One example is Steam.

Last time I ran Mint (Mint 18) installing steam required installing a package called steam-launcher, or something like that.  It's their version of the Steam software, presumably something they compiled themselves.  However, it ran like crap on my system, which is set up for gaming.  I don't remember what the issues were, I just know it didn't work right.  Meanwhile, Ubuntu and other distros based on it use a package in the main repositories called steam:1386.  I've never had any issue with that package, it run smooth as glass, especially on Peppermint.  So, as long as Mint is making boneheaded decisions like fixing stuff that's not broken, I won't run them.  If Peppermint disappeared tomorrow, I'd probably either go back to Ubuntu or one of the official flavors like Xubuntu.  I wouldn't go back to Mint because of some of the things they do.

(Also, Mint Debian, or LMDE was dreadful)

I think Ubuntu would be the clear winner in any war, if there was one.  Think about how many distributions are based on Ubuntu, more than any other OS on the planet.  Why?  Because Canonical does a fantastic job.  They pretty much came onto the scene and stole Debian's thunder almost immediately.  So, that's saying a lot.  Mint is a good project but, as Mark said, without Ubuntu, they'd be nowhere.