Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Linux Mint is a distribution very closely based on Ubuntu. At first thought, you may think the two would be virtually indistinguishable, save for some small cosmetic changes. Indeed, many forks are just that, a visual polish with little or no changes underneath the hood.
Considering my tremendously mixed experience with the latest Ubuntu releases, including a mild disappointment with the Gnome edition, a very decent ride with Kubuntu, and a big flop with Xubuntu, the Helena test is a total gamble, a shot in the dark. I really did not know what I was getting into.
On paper, Linux Mint promises to be all that Ubuntu is, and then some. Better usability, multimedia codecs out of the box, extra polish. But Karmic Koala did not make a revolution this October. Well, the only way to find out is to place the CD into the tray and boot.