Linux Mint facts for kids

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Linux Mint
Linux Mint Official Logo.svg
Mint 18 mate.png Mint 18 cinnamon.png
Linux Mint 18 ("Sarah") running MATE 1.14 (top) and Cinnamon 3.0 (bottom)
Company / developer Clement Lefebvre, Jamie Boo Birse, Kendall Weaver, and community
OS family Unix-like, based on Ubuntu, optionally based on Debian (LMDE) Linux Mint Xfce Linux Mint KDE
Working state Active
Source model Open source
Initial release 27 August 2006; 13 years ago (2006-08-27)
Latest stable release Linux Mint 18 ("Sarah") / June 30, 2016; 3 years ago (2016-06-30)
Available language(s) Multilingual
Update method APT (+ mintUpdate, Synaptic)
Package manager dpkg
Supported platforms i486, x86-64
Kernel type Monolithic (Linux)
Default user interface 1.0-8: KDE
9: GNOME 2
12: GNOME 3 with MGSE
13-17: Cinnamon/MATE/Xfce/KDE
License Mainly GPL and other free software licenses, minor additions of proprietary
Official website

Linux Mint is a Linux distribution for desktop computers based on and compatible with Debian or Ubuntu.

While at the core Linux Mint is mostly based on Ubuntu, the design of the desktop and User interface are very different. These differences include a very unique desktop theme, a custom Linux Mint menu and the MintTools, a collection of system tools designed to make managing the computer easier for users.


Originally, Linux Mint did not follow a predictable release cycle. The project first defined the goals for the next release,

Colour Meaning
Red Old release; not supported
Yellow Old release; still supported
Green Current release
Purple Test release
Blue Future release
Version Code name Release date Support status
1.0 beta Ada 2006-08-27 Obsolete since April 2008. Unstable.
2.0 Barbara 2006-11-13 Obsolete since April 2008.
2.1 Bea 2006-12-20 Obsolete since April 2008.
2.2 Bianca 2007-02-20 Obsolete since April 2008.
3.0 Cassandra 2007-05-30 Obsolete since October 2008.
3.1 Celena 2007-09-24 Obsolete since October 2008.
4.0 Daryna 2007-10-15 Obsolete since April 2009.
5 LTS Elyssa 2008-06-08 Long-term support release (LTS), obsolete since April 2011.
6 Felicia 2008-12-15 Obsolete since April 2010.
7 Gloria 2009-05-26 Obsolete since October 2010.
8 Helena 2009-11-29 Obsolete since April 2011.
9 LTS Isadora 2010-05-18 Long-term support release (LTS), obsolete since April 2013.
10 Julia 2010-11-12 Obsolete since April 2012.
11 Katya 2011-05-26 Obsolete since October 2012.
12 Lisa 2011-11-26 Obsolete since April 2013.
13 LTS Maya 2012-05-23 Long-term support release (LTS), supported until April 2017.
14 Nadia 2012-11-20 Obsolete since May 2014.
15 Olivia 2013-05-29 Obsolete since January 2014.
16 Petra 2013-11-30 Obsolete since July 2014.
17 LTS Qiana 2014-05-31

v2 "respin" 2014-06-29

Long-term support release (LTS), supported until April 2019.
17.1 LTS Rebecca 2014-11-29 First of 17.x series of releases, Long-term support release (LTS), supported until April 2019.
17.2 LTS Rafaela end of May 2015 Second of 17.x series of releases, Long-term support release (LTS), supported until April 2019.
17.3 LTS Rosa 2015-12-04 Third of 17.x series of releases, Long-term support release (LTS), supported until April 2019.
18 LTS Sarah 2016-06-30 Long-term support release (LTS), supported until April 2021.

Comparison with Ubuntu

Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu and both distributions have a lot in common. Both distributions use the same software repositories. For instance, release 2.2 (“Bianca”) uses the package pools of Ubuntu “Edgy Eft” (6.10). Most packages are the same on both distributions and the two systems behave almost identically.

Most differences are on the desktop. Ubuntu and Linux Mint both focus on usability, but Linux Mint offers a different user experience, and it includes a number of applications that are not available in Ubuntu (see aforementioned Mint Tools).

Many popular multimedia codecs are installed by default in Linux Mint. Ubuntu, and many other gratis GNU/Linux distributions, do not distribute these codecs with the initial install media due to patent encumberment issues.

Ubuntu has a vastly larger support community than Linux Mint. However, the majority of Ubuntu help and advice is also applicable to Linux Mint. Ubuntu supports more languages from the LiveCD, and comes with better localization.

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