I found a new Linux distro last night, and I am really impressed so far – it’s Linux Mint, and I must say, it’s the most polished, pretty distro that I have ever seen. It’s based on Ubuntu, so it’s pretty much rock solid under the hood as well.
I’d say, if you get a chance – check it out. It’s well worth it. It installed with out a problem on VMWare Fusion as well, and it’s quite snappy.
The install was the super simple ubuntu experience that I have come to expect. Not much different there. It comes with an impressive applications stack set up – so more stuff should “just work” then most linux geeks are used to. Then even include the Ndiswrapper application by default – so if there is not a native linux driver for your wireless card, you should be able to just install the windows version and press on.
All of that can be done on Ubuntu however, so it’s nothing special. It’s nice to have it all set up already. Where Linux Mint shines however is in the time they have taken to polish the look and feel. It’s simply gorgeous out of the box.
They have done a great job of integrating things like slab to provide a excellent experience – you can tell that they have some UI folks working with them.
They have a nice icon set
and their finder is laid out well.
All in all, they simply took away the first task that I had when building a new linux workstation – futzing with the themes until I get one that I like. Well done, Mint!