Linux Mint 16 KDE and Xfce released

Today in Open Source: Linux Mint 16 KDE and Xfce released. Plus: SteamOS beta updated, and Enlightenment 18 released

By , ITworld |  Open Source, Linux, linux mint

Linux Mint 16 KDE and Xfce
The KDE and Xfce versions of Linux Mint are now available.

KDE is a vibrant, innovative, advanced, modern looking and full-featured desktop environment. This edition features all the improvements from the latest Linux Mint release on top of KDE 4.11.

New features at a glance:

KDE 4.11
Samba Mounter
Login Screen
USB Stick support
Performance improvements
Software Manager
System Improvements
Artwork Improvements
Main Components

System requirements:

x86 processor (Linux Mint 64-bit requires a 64-bit processor. Linux Mint 32-bit works on both 32-bit and 64-bit processors).
1GB RAM
8 GB of disk space
Graphics card capable of 1024×768 resolution
DVD drive or USB port

 
Image credit: Linux Mint Blog

More at Linux Mint Blog

Xfce is a lightweight desktop environment which aims to be fast and low on system resources, while still being visually appealing and user friendly. This edition features all the improvements from the latest Linux Mint release on top of an Xfce 4.10 desktop.

New features at a glance:

Xfce 4.10
Whisker Menu 1.2
Pulse Audio
Login Screen
USB Stick support
Performance improvements
Software Manager
System Improvements
Artwork Improvements
Main Components

System requirements:

x86 processor (Linux Mint 64-bit requires a 64-bit processor. Linux Mint 32-bit works on both 32-bit and 64-bit processors).
384 MB RAM (1GB recommended for a comfortable usage).
5 GB of disk space
Graphics card capable of 800×600 resolution
DVD drive or USB port

 
Image credit: Linux Mint 16 Xfce

More at Linux Mint Blog

I'm very glad to see these released, there will be a lot of happy Xfce and KDE Linux Mint fans. I liked the Cinnamon version of Linux Mint 16 a lot, so I'm sure the Xfce and KDE versions will be great too.

I must confess that while I like both desktops, I tend to lean a bit more toward Xfce. I like the minimalist appeal of it just a bit more than KDE. You really can't go wrong with either one though, it all gets down to your personal preferences.

SteamOS Beta updated drivers
A new version of the SteamOS beta has been released with updated drivers.

SteamOS 12/19/2013 alchemist_beta update

Updated Intel graphics stack to Mesa 10.0.1
Applied an Intel kernel fix to re-enable KMS support
Fixed a problem where Trine 2 could cause audio to stop working by restricting direct audio access to the sound server
Enabled audio from the desktop session; the default audio device is still hardcoded to discrete graphics HDMI audio for now
Enabled 3D passthrough in the VMWare driver
Fixed Steam controller firmware upgrade by adding USB auto-mounting
Added NTP time support
Added XDG directory helpers
Added text feedback when building kernel drivers during first boot

More at Steam Community

Hat Tip: Phoronix

It's great to see SteamOS rolling right along, Valve is wasting no time improving it. I can't wait for the final release. The way they are going we shouldn't have to wait too long for it.

Enlightenment 18 released
You can now get Enlightenment 18.

No release announcement is complete without a taste of what's different, so here's what I consider the big changes and features:

Compositing merged into core
No longer (as) optional
No longer (as) buggy
Wayland client support added
Teamwork module added
Fixed at least 10 crashes
User experience while crashing improved; some users have reported over a 200% improvement here
New modules for improving desktop integration:
music-control - Control your music!
bluez4 - Control your bluetooth!
appmenu - Control your DBus application menus!
conf_comp - Control your compositor settings!
Improved systemd integration
Internal theme merged into Elementary
Theme migration guide for themers looking to update their E17 themes to work with E18
RandR and binding config domains have been split into separate files to make copying and updating easier
MANY filemanager improvements
udisks2 support
Directory listing is now more accurate
Seriously, too many improvements to name

More at Enlightenment

If you aren't familiar with Enlightenment, be sure to read the About page for it.

Here's a description from that page:

Enlightenment is the flagship and original name bearer for this project. Once it was just a humble window manager for X11 that wanted to do things differently. To do them better, but it has expanded. This can be confusing so when we refer to Enlightenment, we may mean the project as a whole or just the window manager proper. The libraries behind Enlightenment are referred to as EFL collectively, each with a specific name and purpose.

The window manager is a lean, fast, modular and very extensible window manager for X11 and Linux. It is classed as a "desktop shell" providing the things you need to operate your desktop (or laptop), but is not a whole application suite. This covered launching applications, managing their windows and doing other system tasks like suspending, reboots, managing files etc.

Enlightenment can be a great choice for a desktop environment if you are a minimalist. You can get it with distros like Bodhi Linux.

What's your take on all this? Tell me in the comments below.

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