Linux Mint Xfce: a fine replacement for Windows 7, Vista and XP

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When you have an elderly computer, for example one running on an obsolete Windows XP or Vista, or even on Windows 7, then the lightweight Xfce edition of Linux Mint is an excellent alternative operating system. Very easy and simple to operate; the average Windows user can handle it right away. No learning curve to speak of!

Beautiful and free (no charge)

This particular Linux is extra light, so the system requirements of this modern operating system are modest. But in spite of being lightweight, it's complete, beautiful and well-polished.

Linux Mint is also entirely free of cost, which is of course an advantage in these times of economic crisis.... Linux Mint doesn't generate any direct sort of income. It's funded only by advertising on its website and support forum, and by sponsoring and donations.

Linux Mint Xfce is the ideal alternative for the Windows XP on your computer. Because Windows XP isn't supported anymore since April, 8  2014, which renders it much too insecure for the internet. If you want to continue using Windows XP, then it's only safe to do so when you've disabled all network connections in XP.

An older version (Mint 17.1) or the latest version (Mint 18.2)?

1. You have two options: there's the latest version (Mint 18.2) and the older version (Mint 17.x). In short: do you have a computer that was sold with a pre-installed Windows XP or Windows Vista? Then Linux Mint 17.1 Xfce is sometimes your best choice.

Because Mint 17.1 has a kernel from an older series (3.13) and also an older graphics stack, which some older hardware needs (noticeably some older Nvidia video cards). Most old computers run fine on Linux Mint 18.2 Xfce, but even more old computers run well on Linux Mint 17.1 Xfce.

Do you have a more modern computer that was sold with a pre-installed Windows 7, 8.x or 10? Then Linux Mint 18.2 is definitely the best option for you. Because Mint 18.2 is optimally suited for modern hardware.

More about Linux Mint 17.1 here (tips and download links).

Download Mint 18.2 Xfce

2. Click on the blue button to download a free copy of Linux Mint 18.2 Xfce (64-bit):

Note: you have to burn the iso file on a DVD in a special way. You can even make a bootable USB memory stick, when you have no DVD burner.

The download link is for the 64-bit edition. You can get the 32-bit edition here.

Screenshots of the desktop

3. Below you see a screenshot of Linux Mint 18.2 Xfce, with a wallpaper that's part of the default selection of wallpapers (not the default blackish wallpaper). The elegant and polished desktop, with expanded menu (click on the image to enlarge it):

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Minimal system requirements

4. The minimal system requirements are as follows:

Reasonable performance (my own measure):
RAM memory: 1 GB
Video card: 64 MB
Hard disk space: 10 GB

With that, Linux Mint Xfce will run reasonably smoothly, provided that you've decreased the swap inclination (I explain how to do that on this page).

Doesn't your computer meet these requirements? Then take a look at Lubuntu, which is even lighter.

Install Mint alongside Windows (dual boot)

5. It's very easy to install Linux Mint Xfce alongside Windows, so that your computer becomes a dual boot. Then you can choose which operating system to boot, every time you power on your computer. This is how you create a dual boot.

What to do right after installation

6. Out of the box, Linux Mint Xfce is very complete. Yet there are some things that you can do right after installation, which will make it even better.

I have divided the actions into three categories:
- the absolutely essential ones (part 1);
- the recommended ones (not essential, part 2);
- the maybe useful (part 3).

You can find the to-do list here.

Tips and tweaks for Linux Mint 18.2 Xfce

7. You can find many useful tips and tweaks for Linux Mint 18.2 Xfce on this page.

Get help

8. You can get quick and friendly help on the official Linux Mint forum.

Want more tips?

Do you want even more tips and tweaks? There's a lot more of them on this website!

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