Linux Mint 17.2 - Rafaela


Jarret W. Buse

Linux Mint 17.2 - Rafaela

For those out there running Linux Mint, or wanting to, there is a new version available. The official release took place on June 30, 2015 and includes many improvements.

Linux Mint has minimal System Requirements. The requirements are:

  • 512MB RAM (1GB recommended for a comfortable usage)
  • 9GB of disk space (20GB recommended)
  • Graphics card capable of 800×600 resolution (1024×768 recommended)
  • DVD drive or USB port
Let's look over those improvements with the new release:

  • Cinnamon 2.6
  • Software Sources
  • Update Manager
  • Language Settings
  • Login Screen
  • Better support for UEFI, NVIDIA and Optimus cards
  • System Improvements
  • Artwork Improvements
  • Other Improvements
  • Main Components
  • LTS Strategy

The Cinnamon upgrade helps reduce Desktop freezes which may have occurred before the new release. If a freeze occurs, the keyboard shortcut of CTRL-ALT-ESC will restart Nemo with Cinnamon settings. The shortcut is not like CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE which will terminate the running session and start over at the logon screen. New developments in the code has produced better Central Processing Unit (CPU) usage. Cinnamon also provides animation as a screensaver. There are other improvements as listed:

  • Multi-monitor and multi-panel support
  • Panel and applet improvements
  • Better settings
  • Nemo improvements
  • Accessibility improvements
The Software Sources configuration tool allows you to open the PPA archives and browse the packages. The tool also handles foreign language packages as well.

The Update Manager allows for packages to be aliased.

The Language Settings have been changed for various purposes.

The Logon Screen uses MDM 2.0. The new features include:

  • Avatars for users with encrypted Home Folders
  • Flags for minoritarian languages are supported
  • Screensavers are faster when unlocking
  • Screensaver unlocks are supported with logind

Linux Mint 17.2 has has better support for UEFI, NVIDIA and Optimus cards. UEFI support is due to a newer version of GRUB. The NVIDIA drivers were updated to support newer NVIDIA chipsets. For NVIDIA, MDM allows for a switch between INTEL and NVIDIA card with a logout and not a reboot.

System improvements include BASH completion improvement. The BASH history does not accept duplicate command entries. A new APT command is included for listing the missing recommended packages for a specified package. A new command is included to list the signals managed by a specified process.

Artwork improvements are included in the new version. The set of pictures included for backgrounds is a new set, as well as including the older sets from previous versions.

The Other Improvements includes a better USB Image Writer. The USB Image Writer manages USB partitions better, USB device recognition, boot flags and more. Linux Mint 17.2 includes a newer version of Libre Office. HPLIP was updated to support more HP printers. Inkscape was updated as well in the newer version.

The Main Components are Cinnamon 2.6, MDM 2.0, a Linux kernel 3.16 and an Ubuntu 14.04 package base.

The LTS Strategy is that security updates will be provided until 2019.

Now, we have the basics covered. So, let's look at actually getting Linux Mint 17.2.

To download Linux Mint 17.2 as a Torrent file, use on of the following:

For direct downloading from a site in the United States, try one of these:

If you are already running Linux Mint, you can perform an upgrade very easily. Start by opening your Update Manager. Perform any updates you may have currently available which may seem important to perform an upgrade. For example, any upgrades for you networking, hard drive, etc. Select “Edit” and then at the bottom of the list should be an entry for “Upgrade to Linux Mint 17.2 Rafaela” as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1.jpg


After selecting the option, you should see a screen similar to Figure 2. Select the “Continue” button to proceed with the upgrade.

Figure 2.jpg


After selecting “Continue”, you are shown a screen like Figure 3 and asked look over the Release Notes. To proceed, click “Continue”.

Figure 3.jpg


Figure 4 shows a window which allows you open a connection to a website which shows the updated features of Linux Mint 17.2.

Figure 4.jpg


After selecting “Continue”, the next screen may prompt you to install any prerequisite packages before the full update can continue. Once you select the button, you will be prompted to enter the root password to perform an upgrade. Figure 5 shows an example of possible updates.

Figure 5.jpg


Once any necessary updates are completed, the screen should be like Figure 6. Simply click on the box that you understand the risk and wish to perform the upgrade. When selected, press the “Apply” button. You will be prompted to enter the root password to perform an upgrade. Once everything is completed, you should be shown a screen with a Summary of the upgrade as in Figure 6.

Figure 6.jpg


Now, you have the latest version of Linux Mint.


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