Linux Mint 20.3, whose code name is Una, is already among us to continue the path of the most popular Ubuntu derivative, which is mainly responsible for facilitating the transition from Windows to Linux thanks to the fact that in its three editions it offers desktops of the style that has generally spent the Redmond giant.
We start with what is the most visible face of this distribution: the desktop environment Cinnamon. This time we find the version 5.2.5 along with certain aesthetic changes and accompanied by a large number of graphical tools that make life easier for the user, among which are TimeShift for the creation and management of snapshots and the driver manager.
Seeing that the desktop is essentially more of the same, applications end up having more prominence. In the first place it has been mentioned Hypnotix IPTV, the streaming application that supports TV channels, movies and series. According to distributors, Linux Mint 20.3 looks better than ever thanks to the addition of support for dark mode. In addition, it supports the Xtream API, has incorporated M3U support and local playlists and included a search function to find TV channels, series and movies.
One of the real news that the user will find is the new XApp application, Thingy, which is a document manager It offers quick access to your favorite and recently accessed documents. It is also capable of saving the part in which a document has been left after closing it so as not to lose progress. On the other hand, the notes application has been improved with a search function, the ability to embed the title in the note and a new control in the toolbar to control the size of the text.
There are several things to highlight about the aesthetic finish of the edition with Cinnamon. For starters, the size of the buttons has been increased in the title bar, which are now easier to identify thanks to their new design, while the upper corners have been rounded. The Mint-Y theme has been modified to be more pleasing to the eye.
Linux Mint also has official editions with MATE and XfceTherefore, it can be considered as a strong exponent of GTK within the Linux spectrum. Of first desktop we have version 1.26 and the second version 4.16, with all the news and improvements that have been incorporated since the previous launch of the distribution.
Various performance tests have shown that, in most cases, User Folder encryption performs worse than Full Disk Encryption. The reason is that the migration to systemd has caused a regression in EcryptFS, the component in charge of encrypting user folders. Apparently the solution has been to make encrypted user folders not unmounted when the session is closed.
Guest session is now disabled by default, although it can be re-enabled from the “Login window” utility. On the other hand, from now on the default driver for touchpads is ‘libinput’, which is served with the package ‘xserver-xorg-input-libinput’. Those responsible for the distribution have recommended opening the Synaptic package manager in case of detecting problems and replacing it with the Synaptics driver (the brand of touchpads) present in the package ‘xserver-xorg-input-synaptics’.
We remember that Linux Mint has long used only the Ubuntu LTS base in order to offer a more stable framework. In this release we find Linux 5.4 LTS as the default kernel. While it should still be supported, it may be advisable to upgrade to a newer version to ensure proper operation on recent hardware. Luckily Linux Mint offers a graphical tool on this front that allows you to solve the problem with just a few clicks and a restart.
Full details on Linux Mint 20.3 and its various editions are available in the corresponding official announcements (Cinnamon, Xfce, and MATE), what’s new lists (Cinnamon, Xfce, and MATE), and the release notes. The systems can be obtained from the download section of the distribution’s official website.