Linux Mint 18: My Review Part 2 – My Experience with using it!

Hi all, this is the second and final part of a multi-part post about Linux Mint 18. In these posts I’ll talk about my experience with upgrading and using the new Mint. This part is about my immediate experience with using it, and why it’s so great XD. By the way, I’m using the Cinnamon version of Mint.

Initial Impressions of Mint 18

Probably the first thing I noticed about Mint 18 was the menu effects: they now slide into view, which I really like (see below).

You can turn this off if you want to, which leads me on to something else: the indicator support was turned off when I upgraded! This is a bit annoying, but really all it means is normal indicators aren’t displayed with Cinnamon’s theme (see video below).

Yes, that is Wine Autostart… It feels a bit cheap plugging my own program, in my own blog. It’s the most complicated indicator I had at the time, so I have an excuse 🙂

I liked the improvements they made to the update manager, particularly the update policy one. Personally, I think this is really important, because I felt the old way of configuring dissuaded users from installing all the updates, which was a security problem. Of course, I ignored the warnings and installed the updates anyway (no problems by the way!), but less experienced users may have been worried about breaking their system by doing that, even though that doesn’t happen often.

Update Policies in Mint 18
Update Policies in Mint 18

The new theme and the X-Apps

One of the next things I did was try the new theme, which is quite nice, but not quite my style. Given the X-Apps are installed during the upgrade, I thought it weird that Mint-Y needed to be installed manually. If you want to install it after upgrading, you can run:

“sudo apt-get install mint-y-theme mint-y-icons”

In a terminal, or search for those package names in the Synaptic Package Manager. I think they did a really good job with it though. Here is a screenshot of how it looks on Cinnamon:

The Mint-Y theme in Cinnamon
The Mint-Y theme in Cinnamon

I like it, but normally what I use is a mixture of 4 different themes. Sounds terrible, but it works out okay, it’s what I’ve used in my little screen captures. It’s KDE’s Oxygen icon theme, paired with Mint-X controls, the OS X Snow Leopard Cinnamon theme, and the Zukimac window borders XD. It actually turns out surprisingly well, and it gels together much better than you’d think 🙂

Lastly, the X-Apps. I’m used to using the GNOME apps, mostly being Gedit for programming, and before that, Pluma from MATE. As far as I can tell, they are almost exactly the same! I think they’re based on QT rather than GTK (correct me if I’m wrong!), but they still seem to look exactly the same. All of that is quite impressive given they probably had to rewrite all of these programs, but they seem great to me, no complaints at all 🙂


To summarise, I’ve enjoyed using Mint 18 a lot since upgrading. I was immediately impressed with it. This is my last post on Mint 18, so now I leave it in your hands: will you upgrade?

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About Hamish McIntyre-Bhatty

I'm a self-employed software developer working on Free Software projects, as well as studying for my degree with the Open University. Being pedantic when it comes to detail is fortunately useful for both of these things! A strong believer in free software, I have a few pay-for programs available under the GPLv3 and enjoy reporting bugs and helping to improve various open source projects, including volunteering at Wimborne Model Town to work on their river control system.

2 Responses to Linux Mint 18: My Review Part 2 – My Experience with using it!

  1. Amal says:

    Hello There , I use mint since 3 years from know And I like it , but when i try mint 18 I did not like it at all because it is seem to me , it is slower then mint 17 and boot time it is also take longer

    • Hamish McIntyre-Bhatty says:


      I’m surprised you find it slower, I find it much quicker! Granted, I am on pretty strong hardware.
      Did you switch from the MATE to Cinnamon version? Often the Cinnamon one runs slower because it’s more demanding.


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