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Linux Top 3: Linux Mint 14, Vyatta 6.5 and Cinnarch

  • November 26, 2012
  • By Sean Michael Kerner

There is no shortage on the Linux Planet of different Linux flavors to enjoy This past week, we saw three very different distributions put out milestone releases to suit different user tastes.

1) Linux Mint 14

Ever since it first appeared on the Linux scene, Linux Mint has been an attractive Linux flavor for desktop usability.

Linux Mint founder Clem Lefebvre has been a leading voice for alternatives to Gnome 3's Unity and Shell, providing users with viable Gnome based alternatives. The Mint 14 release provides the latest version of the MATE and Cinnamon Linux desktops as well as providing users with the latest Linux goodness. Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu 12.10 and leverages the Linux 3.5 kernel.

Mint 14 includes MATE version 1.4 which according to the release notes, " …not only strengthens the quality and stability of the desktop but it goes beyond GNOME 2 by fixing bugs which were in GNOME 2 for years and by providing new features which were previously missing."

While MATE is based on Gnome 2, Cinnamon is based on Gnome 3 and provides it's own set of innovations with Linux Mint 14.

"Within this release cycle, Cinnamon developed at an amazing pace and its development was frozen in preparation for Linux Mint 14," the release notes state. "The result is impressive and despite all these new features, Cinnamon 1.6 is more stable than its predecessor."

One of the key new features in Cinnamon 1.4 is the Nemo file browser which is intended as a improvement over the Nautilus file browser that is typically the default in Gnome.

2) Cinnarch

While Linux Mint Founder Clem Lefebvre created the Cinnamon desktop, it's a project that is open source and available to any that choose to embrace it.

One such project that has chosen to spice its distribution with Cinnamon is the Cinnarch distributions. Cinnarch leverages the Cinnamon desktop on top of the Arch Linux distribution.

Arch is a rolling release, and as such the Cinnarch 2012.11.22 release is really a milestone snapshot for media. For those users looking to install a fresh system, there are still some bits that aren't quite as friendly as they one day will become.

For one, Cinnarch 2012.11.22 still does not yet have its own graphical installer (so command line goodness it is!).

3) Vyatta 6.5

While Linux Mint and Cinnarch are all about the desktop experience, Vyatta is about the network.

This past week Vyatta released Vyatta Core 6.5, the latest release of its network operating system. The new release provides a new Virtual Tunnel Interface (VTI) features for VPNs.

"A VTI provides a termination point for a site-to-site IPsec VPN tunnel and allows it to behave like routable interfaces," Vyatta staffer Stephen Harpster wrote. "In addition to simplifying the IPsec configuration, it enables many common routing capabilities to be used because the endpoint is associated with an actual interface."

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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