I came across Linux Mint through a few reviews/ posts about it, and thought to try it. It's one of remasters of Ubuntu/ Debian (There's a debian edition too), containing many everyday utilities/ Packages that don't make to Ubuntu's standard distro. Mostly it's because we need alternatives for many programs we use for everyday tasks and the many missing packages necessary for everyday use like codecs/ compression programs/ media players etc.
So I installed Linux Mint 10, and the first thing I noticed was the interface. It's kinda sober looking. Not much flashy, not much glittering, but it's like a mid-range Bajaj bike that gets all the work done and doesn't costs (and looks) much. I liked their menu. The arrangement is very good. And it's one of the reasons I haven't yet touched anything of the interface. Not even the wallpaper.
Well, the desktop looks like this. This one is the Live CD desktop.
This view shows favorites. It's neatly arranged and the brushed look of menu is pleasing to eye.
This is the menu showing all applications. The middle pane lists categories, while right side pane lists apps in that category. A search is also provided which can come handy.
The menu is small, works all the time and beautiful in it's functionality.
I tried out all the things I needed working. The media side is handled greatly with inclusion of codecs and the VLC Player. Totem is there along with Gnome MPlayer. Gnome MPlayer works fine but it gives an error at start about some nvidia so file. I use VLC though for everything that doesn't work on Totem so I don't use it much. Rhythmbox is fine for Audio, but again I don't like the Library like interface so I use Totem for Audio too.
Another good thing with Mint is that libmtp comes pre-installed. So I can connect my creative Zen and transfer music to it. For this one task I use Rhythmbox though. Also included is the CCSM for compiz and it's very helpful when you need to tweak your system to get that slight edge over everything else in term of things.
So my consensus for Linux Mint 10 is that it's exactly the kind of thing a newbie should get hold of in his hands - because it's something that'll let him do all the things that he can do with his Windows 7 and More.
Full 5 Stars!!!