Linux Mint is a Debian and Ubuntu-based community-driven distro that aims is to be modern, elegant, powerful, and easy to use.
Straight out of the box it provides full multimedia support due to its inclusion of proprietary software that is bundled with several free and open-source apps.
It was created by French IT specialist, Clement Lefebvre in 2006 who at the time had the responsibility of maintaining a website that provided documentation and guides to Linux newbies until when he decided to develop a distro that will fix Ubuntu’s weaknesses.
Linux Mint is available in 3 main editions – MATE, Xfce, and Cinnamon, as well as in Community and Debian editions.
Although Linux Mint is free, it manages to generate revenue from professional support services, advertising, and donations from generous contributors. Currently, the project is being actively developed by the Linux Mint Team and community
It is clear that Linux Mint started to become a fan-favourite as can be seen from its page hit ranking history on DistroWatch. It had a page hit ranking of #44 in 2006, #6 in 2017, and #3 in 2008 till 2011 when it got to #1 and held the spot down till the end of 2017!
Now, in 2018, Linux Mint is second to Manjaro Linux at the #2 spot with up to 2,512 hits per day. Of course, hits per day are not everything, it carries significance because it means that more people are still checking out the distro despite its huge fan base.
It is good that Manjaro is getting some traction because it is a fork of the awesome Arch Linux, and is, itself, a reliable distro. It is common knowledge that the Manjaro and Arch Linux user base combined is less than that of Linux Mint.
Although Ubuntu is the most popular Linux online, many users reportedly end up switching to Linux Mint after finding out that Mint does indeed fix the problems cramped up in Ubuntu and its flavours. And because the same commands work on both distros, switching poses no threat or new learning curve at all. If anything, Linux Mint is simpler to use.
So this is the scenario that I want you to picture:
- Linux newbie searches online for a distro suggestion.
- Installs Ubuntu.
- Discovers how buggy Ubuntu can be even when it is an LTS version.
- Checks online for complaints and solutions only to find out Linux Mint is the ultimate answer.
- Linux newbie installs Linux Mint.
This is probably the case with many other distros out there for one reason or the other and the Mint community is always welcoming them with open arms and it might remain this way till another distro comes to blow it out of the water. Could that distro be Manjaro? Or maybe Deepin. Only time will tell.
Are there other reasons why you think Linux Mint is still the leading desktop distro? Or maybe you don’t think so at all. Drop your thoughts in the comments section below.