Linux, how’s that working out?

I’ve been messing with Mint Linux 15 for about a week now, and to be honest it’s still got lots if ups and downs. The brilliant software manager is not so brilliant, and badly broken if the truth is told, especially when using Nvidia proprietry drivers which I tried to do. Then it hangs the PC, crashes and dies and at times won’t even start up. That leaves me with two options, either an ugly and very awkward thing called “Synaptic Package Manager” which works but is not very user friendly or easy to navigate, or the obligitary command line which demands that you know everything including the name and whether each letter is upper or lower case.
On the plus side, video playback is much improved over Windows, and once I’d got my DVB-T usb stick drivers on there I can actually watch live freeview tv on my PC. The USB stick stopped working completely in Windows some time back and I thought it had died, in Linux Mint it is working beautifully, except for actually getting some working software (VLC works but channel finding and changing is a nightmare, MythTV is an absolute joke just steer clear it’s the worst software interface I’ve ever seen and after hours of fiddling still wouldn’t work) which I’m still hoping to find. Youtube videos play with much less jerking than I ever saw in Windoze, and make viewing the many fail vids much easier on the eyes.
Old video game emulation isn’t as advanced as I thought it would have been, with most emulators being command line driven it’s like going back to 1998 and running emulation in DOS. Seeking out some front ends does help, but even then some emulators run extremely slowly compared to emulating the same platform in Windows, Amiga emulation being one of the worst so far. I haven’t even got around to MAME or MESS yet as there doesn’t appear to be a package to install MESS and no front ends to make life bearable. Then there’s the problem of accessing drives with my games on, probably there’s a workaround but so far Linux doesn’t like to have the games on my old drive as it won’t pick them up after a restart (probably need to run a command line to ensure the drives are mounted each time or something equally bizarre).
In general use though things like internet browsing and running open office suites (Libre Office is installed by default in Mint) would give nobody any cause for concern and you wouldn’t even know you had moved from Windows to Linux. Much of the interface can be customised to how you want it fairly easily.
 As you can see from my desktop screenshot above Mint has a start button (Menu) and bottom bar like the old XP or Windows 7 so it is familiar (unlike Windows 8’s abomination of a start screen with kiddy phone style tiles). It’s only when you do something off the norm that Mint’s geeky underpinnings jump up to nibble at your sanity.

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