I can’t even remember what started this little experiment off. It was probably to do with me thinking about how as a business we could operate on any platform. That combined with my annoyance of Windows 10 constantly pestering me about updates, Cortana and reminding me to breathe.

So I decided to have a little play with Linux. Now I may have many (many – I’m older than I look!) years expertise in all things tech, but none of that time has been spent using Linux. I thought if it doesn’t give me any hassle to install and it just works, I’ll give it go.

I popped over to Distro Watch to see what flavours of Linux are popular at the moment. I saw the usual names I do know such as Ubuntu, but top of the shop was Linux Mint. I’d also read a recent article (always learning) about someone else had started using Mint, so that was my Distro of choice.

Having downloaded it, setup a bootable USB away I went – making my work computer dual boot (meaning I can choose at startup if I want to use Linux Mint or Windows 10), happy days.

The only issue I had on my work computer was with my wireless adaptor not being picked up (a TP Link one), I read online I might be able to run some commands in a terminal, but this doesn’t float my boat – I just want things to work – I’m no different to any other computer user from that perspective. So I simply swapped my TP Link for a Belkin (we’ve always got spares around the office) and that was detected straight away without me need to do a thing, other than decide if I want a cup of tea or coffee to celebrate my Linux installation skills.

Now I want to keep this article brief, partly because it’s important I keep your attention and partly because it’s only a matter of time before my napping child wakes up, so overall here is what I absolutely love about Linux Mint:

  • It’s super fast – and I mean really, really fast. Starts up in seconds, I click the browser button and it’s there in less than a second. For a man with so much to do and so little time, this is the number one selling point
  • Wireless is faster – yes my wireless connection (my office at work relies on connecting with wireless to our main access point in the next door office) is much more reliable than my connection when in Windows
  • It’s clean – by this I don’t mean it’s had a shower. It’s clean in that it’s minimal, simple and doesn’t beg for my attention every three minutes
  • It’s reliable – it just works, and works really well


As I’m always fair and I always bring balance to the force, here is what I’ve found lacking though:

  • Many of reading this will say ‘obviously’ but for those that don’t know, I can’t put this Linux install onto our Windows domain at the office (probably need a dedicated article about this, watch this space)
  • I can’t use two systems that we use for providing IT Support, as they’re simply not compatible with Linux. Not a huge issue for me, as these days I perform very little IT Support myself as I’m busy running the business. But this does mean I’d either need to find new solutions which are Linux compatible if I wanted to run Linux across the office
  • There is no Dymo software for my Dymo Label Writer printer. This is a big deal. I love labels.


In summary, what I’m saying is – I absolutely love it, even more than Windows, but at this moment in time there are certain jobs I can’t do without Windows. I’ll continue using it at work for the majority of my work, booting into Windows as required. If you’ve got a spare computer at home, I urge you to try out Linux Mint – I think it would be great for kids to play with as their first computer and I think it’s also great for making an old slow Windows computer, perform fast again.

There is so much more I could go on about, but for now, this is just a summary. I may produce dedicated articles on certain aspects in the future, but for now, that’s all folks.

I’d welcome your thoughts and feedback on blog@lucidcomputersolutions.co.uk

This article was written by Gavin Moorhouse, owner of Lucid Computer Solutions who provide IT Services in the West Midlands. His baby girl is still napping.


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