I decided to start off the year 2012 by installing the latest version of Linux Mint 12 codenamed ‘Lisa’. Though my initial intention was to move on to a rolling release distribution to avoid having to reinstall the OS every now and then for a new release. But I decided against it and stuck with Mint which has been my favorite for the past few years.

As one would expect with Mint, the installation was smooth and fast. It took me just over 20 minutes to get from installation screen to a running desktop which is quite surprising for an ageing machine like mine which has less than 1GB of RAM.

I selected the Home directory to be the same as my previous installation hence all the setting of the applications were present and only thing I had to do was to install a few software. Below were the additional softwares which I installed.

  • Multimedia codecs
  • MS Fonts
  • TVTime (For watching TV)
  • Firefox & Thunderbird (came preinstalled but I use beta versions!)
  • Hotot (Twitter Client)
  • Skype
  • Dropbox
  • Ubuntu Tweak
  • Chromium Browser
  • DeaDBeef (Minimalistic Music Player)
  • VLC
  • MATE Desktop

All the above installations went fine the only manual configurations that I had to do was:

  • To get my monitor resolution to 1366x766, copied and pasted xorg.conf from my previous installation to /etc/X11/ folder.
  • To get the TV tuner (SAA7134) working, I created a file options.conf in the folder /etc/modprobe.d and added the following text ‘options saa7134 card=2 gbuffers=6 tuner=37’, sans quotes.

The most funny and frustrating part was when I ran TVTime there was no audio from my card (SAA7134) but when I checked in Sound Preferences, the input tab was showing sound in the sound monitor. So I connected the speaker directly to the line out of my tvtuner and sound was there. So where was it getting lost, I checked alxamixer and set all the volumes to maximum, still no sound. After digging for one hour came the Eureka moment, though the sound was set to maximum for Line In, the mixer was set to Mute. Show me the genius who allowed the mixer to be on mute by default even when we changed the sound volume from 0 to maximum.

The Gnome3 fallback mode was not to my liking on my ageing machine so the final thing I did was installing MATE, the Gnome2 fork and with it ended the first day of 2012.