Goat Farmer’s First Impression: Mint 18

I have been so looking forward to Linux Mint 18. As much as I like Mint 17.3, it is based on the older Ubuntu Trusty base files and software that I really wanted to upgrade, I simply couldn’t.

I do a lot with Twitter, so wanted to upgrade to the latest Choqok version, or maybe even try Corebird. I also really wanted to run the newer versions of kdenlive video editing software.

After downloading the Beta version of Mint 18, and burning it to a USB stick. I preceded to install it. My only problem was that after booting to my USB stick, Mint could not see my network adapter. I went ahead and added my wireless network manually, and after that was done, unplugged and then hot plugged the WiFi dongle back in. This let Mint find it, and everything worked fine after.

Installing was as expected. Make sure you check the tick box that you want to install the multimedia codecs, as they are no longer contained in the disk image.

After installation, Mint 18 booted up just fine, and this time the WiFi adapter was working. Next, came doing a cache update and installing all the available updates.

On my Acer Aspire machine that I’m running Mint 18 on, I had previously had problems with the system freezing up at random times. This proved to be a kernel problem, and I’d found that running kernel 3.16 eliminated those freezes. Mint 18 comes packaged with kernel 4.4

Yes, the freezes were back, and unfortunately, there isn’t an easy way to revert to an older kernel with Mint 18. I did find however that the freezes became fewer after I loaded the propitiatory driver for my Intel processors.

Intel Driver

Intel Driver

Further, I find that the system will completely freeze if I attempt to do a Normalize on an audio file when using the Audacity audio editor.

The freezes are down to one a day, with no pattern to them. I find this acceptable for now, and hoping for a patch that fixes it.

Mint 18

My only other head scratch, was that though I installed Mint 18 on an empty drive, it didn’t create and set up a swap partition. Seems unnecessary anyway, as I have 8 gigs of RAM in the machine and even when I had a swap under 17.3, it never got used.

Kdenlive video editing is found to be much faster under Mint 18, with rendering a 5 minute video taking about 18 minutes, where it used to take 35-40 under version 17.3. This is a bonus, as I edit a lot of video!

Final verdict, I’m keeping it!