Mint 12 and Cinnamon

I really enjoyed using Mint Linux 11 and was pleased when mint 12 came out, but had not quite got round to installing it since it came out, partially due to the fact that mint uses the backup and restore method of upgrading (which I never seem to have time to do*) and partly due to the fact mint 11 works just right for me

Anyway with far to much work to do on a weekend I decided it was the perfect time to upgrade my laptop (sigh!) so off I went.

The ISO to boot disk went as normal even though mint now provide a hybrid ISO option (see here though this page may expire soon), I just used unetbootin.

The install and configuration was exceptionally easy and I was very gratified that the first things mint tried to do were install suitable hardware drivers (a quirk of linux) and install software updates and patches, exactly what I wanted to do, all things looked ok and all services seemed just fine, so on to restoring my personal settings.

This was also my first time using the full mint upgrade, in that you do a backup, wipe the disk for a fresh install then restore the backup which also installs any software you might have had on before.

You have 2 forms of backup/restore:

Software: This is just the list of software you have on your system fed to the package installer,so obviously it does not restore customs packages you have installed (such as vmware and other purchased products) it does however tell you which ones it has not been able to restore. this worked just perfectly.

User data: This backups/restores basically your home directory (which is everything in a Linux installation) now I have been backing up to a basic tar ball ( the lowest compression of the 3 archive “zip” formats the Mint backup utility supports) which backed up the 200Gb that is my home directory fairly quickly, but good grief who wrote the de-compression gui, I started it running in the evening and next day in was just 20% of the way though the files, I stopped it and did a Command line “tar” and it worked out about 10 to 15 times faster, now I know GUI’s add an over head, but really lads! , now part of this is my fault as the backup utility’s default setting is not to use any compression at all and just copies all the user data to a separate place, in hind sight I should have done that for this kind of thing.

Now to start with I thought that mint had gone back to the standard Gnome 2 bar layout as that was what I was looking at, but this turns out to be just what they have been forced back to during the movement away from Gnome 2, what they have up their sleeve is Cinnamon, which is a reurn to their single bar desktop (which I have now go used to) I am dreadfully torn on this new desktop, it has so much to offer and feels and looks so good but it is still very new and has the odd quirk, thankfully the mint guys let you swap which desktop you use at the login screen,

Now this swapping has turned out to be a must have feature, as Cinnamon is really really unhappy when faced with multiple monitors (powered by nvinda restricted drivers), no menu bars at all, no functionality, just a mouse pointer and hot keys, ICK!! (I suppose I should really register it as a bug, but in the mean time they have still included MATE so I swap back to that when I have 2 monitors on, even this has its ups and downs, you don’t need to do the script fix to get your menu bars back anymore but do need to screw about with your fonts as a load of the standard gnome 2 themes are missing,

I’m also having odd UI issues on all systems on this build, such as inconsistent mouse clicks near the screen edges/function hot zones Edit this turns out to be due to my habit of flicking my mouse cursor out the way when I enter a browser bar End Edit*, repeat keys not working and some hardware buttons sulking, but frankly that is to be expected as its only just out, these people have done an amazing job and all in all I am very pleased, all applications work fine, it is beautiful and very very stable, so I have done my donation for my “licence” (as I see it), as I genuinely see mint as good solid usable distro and worth my support.

yes yes I do use incremental backups using jungledisk

** For reference if the mint boys want to recreate the issue, im backed up to a external WD 2.5 inch USB3 hdd and my machine is a Thinkpad W510 with 2 x 500GB seagate hybrid drives and 16Gig of memeory running the PAE core

New Anime Series- Inu X boku Secret Service

First Episode Review for: Inu X boku Secret Service

Summary : A young and ultra privileged girl moves in to an elite apartment block to find someone has hired a secret service bodyguard for her who is quite insanely faithful, but is the apartment complex all that it seems.

Animation : Subdued tone but good quality throughout, every frame would make a perfect computer wallpaper, I like it, thought some of the backgrounds are a mite plain.

Plot Potential: Great plot I don’t know if it will hold a full series but they have tons to work with!!

Characters: Brill characters, good fun with plenty of interesting quirk’s , which i’m not going to spoil

Music: Pleasant back ground music sadly nothing that attracted my attention.

Reminds me of: Part Ai Yori Aoshi part Black Butler with a bit of Inuyasha chucked in.

Overall: I cant wait to see where they go with this, please please don’t let them screw this plot line up.

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- Another

First Episode Review for: Another

Summary : A young lad transfers from Tokyo to a strange school in a much smaller town, the only problem is the class he is transferred to is very very haunted (shudder)

Animation : Blood and sand!! the animation is real life quality, by far and away the best I have seen in a long time

Plot Potential: Awesome, a real mystery horror I was glued to the screen the whole episode

Characters: Only a tiny bit stereotyped, no more that you would expect in a school based anime, both plot and setting give them variety and make them enjoyable to watch, partially the primary characters (shame the costumes are so generic it would be a good series to cosplay)

Music: Sounds like Ali Project are back with their trade mark opening music, also some great horror sound effects in just the right places

Reminds me of: Something like Vampire Princess Miyu

Overall: A really really enjoyable start to a series, its been a while since we have had a nice horror anime, I eagerly await episode two.

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- Brave 10

First Episode Review for: Brave 10

Summary : Mysterious priestess meets a rouge ninja in a forest, hooks up with him (against his wishes) and off we go on another whirl wind adventure (with a bit of revenge chucked in for extra fun).

Animation : Good quality dark animation, its not going to win any awards but perfect for this type of anime.

Plot Potential: Nothing yet, but its still early, looks like the feudal Lord they fall in with is gathering a bunch of good super super ninja to take on an unknown bad guy.

Characters: All the normal characters you would expect in a ninja anime, and even the normal names and techniques ( people substituting them self for logs and such).

Music: Nice battle music and good rabble rousing opening and closing tunes, fun stuff.

Reminds me of: Ninja Scroll with a bit of Narutos humour.

Overall: Hooray!! proper ninja battles, its been a while and this is gratefully received, as they say withing 5 mins of this series starting “Bring it on!”.

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- Zero no Tsukaima F

First Episode Review for: Zero no Tsukaima F

Summary : Enter the forth series of the popular Zero no Tskaima where a human lad transported to a magical kingdom is the familiar of a female student wizard

Animation : While clean and clear it has that flat edge that denotes a “made for TV” anime that the animators are starting to get bored with.

Plot Potential: I never read the original light novels so don’t know if this series was part of them, but I’m going to give them 7 out of 10 for the continuatio of the story, the new plot seems a little tacked on but is adding to the growth of the characters.

Characters: The characters are total stereotypes but endearingly done and one of the series best points

Music: Nothing much, pretty normal fair

Reminds me of: Just watch the first 3 series Zero no Tsukaima

Overall: This anime was good for the first series, but now is starting to look a bit tired, the new characters have a shallow feel to them as if each series is bolted on to the next rather than a cohesive long story

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- Senki Zesshou Symphogear

First Episode Review for: Senki Zesshou Symphogear

Summary : A young girl is saved from certain death by a super powered singing duo, one of them dies in the process so the girl vows to follow in their footsteps and then the attack happens!!

Animation : A mixture of good and excellent, whoever is doing the backgrounds deserves a raise all the other animation is crisp and clean, a pleasure to watch

Plot Potential: Surprising for such a cheerful looking anime people actually die in a nasty way which helps the plot considerably

Characters: Costumes are amazing (they would be a devil to build for cosplay) , there is slight stereotyping but the actually threat of death gives them more depth, you feel like they are genuinely fighting for their lives.

Music: Amazing music throughout (i loved the battle songs) complemented by good use of sound especially the use of interrupted rain noise and the sounds of clothing moving

Reminds me of: Sailor Moon crossed with Dirty Pair directed by Quentin Tarantino

Overall: Well dang me what a moving anime, quite gave me the shivers, particularly as it should be in the normal “transforming schoolgirl” mold, definitely one to watch

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- Rinne no Lagrange

First Episode Review for: Rinne no Lagrange

Summary : A high achiever girl (especially at sports) is watched by what looks like a cute version of the dirty pair who want her to pilot a robot against hear older sisters wishes

Animation : Another high quality soft touch anime, with excellent opening animation, I simply cant get enough of these and this has a high level of detail as well as camera focus/blur moments

Plot Potential: A very nice spin on the old “only a certain teenager can pilot the world saving robot” I don’t know where they are going to go with it but this first episode is very promising

Characters: Characters that are both Original in Looks and Original in behaviour, that’s a first for this season.

Music: Good opening, random piano stuff during the anime its self

Reminds me of: A cheerful neon genesis evangelion

Overall: This is the first anime this season that I have really enjoyed, an excellent all round story and its nice to get a first time mecha pilot that is not all “oh no what do i do!!” and just gets on with the butt kicking

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- Ano Natsu de Matteru

First Episode Review for: Ano Natsu de Matteru

Summary : A lad is killed then saved when an alien space ship crashes one night, unsurprisingly the alien turns out to be a beautiful girl his age who transfers to his class at school (will the surprises ever end)

Animation : Very pleasant indeed, the slightly faded type I like but mixed with changes in style as if its being viewed through a movie camera

Plot Potential: Well it might be a good plot, but they are going to be hard pressed to find something that we have not all seen before, it even has the obligatory “towel falling open just as someone walks in” scene

Characters: The normal array of characters for the traditional “transfer student with super powers at school” anime, nothing at all stands out

Music: Easy going and bouncy but nothing spectacular

Reminds me of: Where to start? maybe Tenchi Muyo or Birdy the Mighty

Overall: This was a fun anime to watch but did not exactly strain the grey cells, an excellent background anime but nothing seen so far has me gripping the side of my seat

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- Knight in the Area

First Episode Review for: Knight in the Area

Summary : A lad who is the token manager in a Japanese schools football club and who lives in the shadow of his gifted brother struggles with a past trauma, enter a female childhood friend who can also play football

Animation : Presentable but a bit flat

Plot Potential: Well judging from the horrors that real football players get up to, there should be plenty of material and add to it a bit of full on sibling rivalry

Characters: The main character is a bit winy and his brother is a bit of an ass but they are reasonably well rounded and looks like there will be plenty of growth

Music: Not bad, quite dramatic and upbeat in the right places

Reminds me of: A naffer Prince of Tennis

Overall: Groan, I cant do it i just cant like a football based anime, it feels like a betrayal to sully anime with that bladder kicking horror that pollutes all life, in the spirit of being fair I tried to compare it with Price of tennis which has just started a new series and even then its not much fun, sorry there is nothing wrong with it from an anime series but i wont be watching it, ick

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!

New Anime Series- New Prince of Tennis

First Episode Review for: New Prince of Tennis

Summary : The characters from the first “Prince of Tennis” are back, this time at a selection camp where they are the talented but young underdogs

Animation : Good quality edged animation, titles slightly better than the actually episode quality, and tons of special effects, slightly dragonball-z in the flashy bits.

Plot Potential: Now i did not either watch or review the first series not being much of an sports anime fan and this does seem a lot like the normal competition style anime with climax following climax but it does look like a good implementation of it

Characters: My grief!, its yaoi characters playing sports

Music: Not much that stuck out, but quite a lot of atmospheric background music

Reminds me of: Well i guess the original Prince of Tennis

Overall: Now I still don’t get sports Anime, but this is quite fun and I suspect one for the ladies, I might go back and watch the original series so see if it as good as this one looks

Disclaimer: These are mini reviews of anime’s that are fresh out in Japan and are not licensed in the UK, buy them once they have been licensed or at the very least buy the merchandise, remember if the anime makers make a loss, THEY WILL STOP MAKING ANIME!!