How I Switched from Windows 10 to Linux Mint

This article is all about my journey on switching from Windows 10 to Linux Mint 20, how I got easily adapted to the Linux environment, and some resources that helped me to set up a perfect Desktop environment.


Ok, now I have decided to switch to Linux but here comes the first question. Which distro will satisfy my needs both in terms of GUI and other aspects? Linux is not something new to me since I have been working with RHEL based distros in my work for the past 4 years with the command-line.

I know RHEL based distros are good for enterprises but not for personalized desktop environments, at least that’s what I am thinking till now. So I started my research to find the distro that should be easy for me to use and at the same time should have good community support if in case I ran into some problem. Among many Linux distros, I drilled down my list to 4 flavors.

Before deciding the Distro it is necessary you formulate the list of tools/programs or packages needed and check if the distro you choose provides all those features.

For me, I use Linux for two main purposes: one is for my professional development work, writing articles, and second for my personal use like Video editing and Movies. Most of the popular software are created to be compatible with Windows, macOS, and Linux like Sublime Text, VSCode, VLC Media Player, Firefox/Chromium browser. Other than these software, cloud-based services make our life easy Like Microsoft Office 365 or G Suite.

Considering all these I decided to go HYBRID. All my tools or software are cross-compatible or cloud-based so in any case, if I have to switch back to windows or Mac os I can use the same set of tools.

Reason to Choose Linux Mint Over Other Linux Distros?

Well, this is purely a personal choice. Based upon the comparison between different distros like Ubuntu, Mint, Manjaro, and Arch Linux I chose to opt Linux Mint.

Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu and Debian and comes with three different desktop flavors (Cinnamon, MATE, Xfce). Linux Mint is the go-to OS for people switching from Windows to Linux for the first time.

Below are the articles published in this site, which will help you to install and configure Linux Mint on your machine.

Linux Package Management

The first thing I did before installing Linux Mint was to learn how to work with package management. Since I already had some experience with yum command it is easy for me to learn from other package managers. There are many ways we can install packages starting from getting the source binary, Synaptic package manager, Snap store, or via the apt package manager.

Linux Terminal

For me, the real beauty of Linux is the terminal interface. I installed oh-my-bash to make my terminal look cool and aliased my frequently used commands to increase my productivity. I did everything via terminal starting from Monitoring the system, Disk Management, Network Management, Package Management, etc…

List of Software I Use in Linux

Here are the list of software I use for my personal and professional work.

Web Browsers
  • Firefox
  • Chromium
Multimedia Player
  • VLC Media Player
Code/Text Editors
  • Sublime Text
  • VSCode
  • Nano/Micro

I use Python, Bash, Git, and MySQL databases for my day-to-day work so it is necessary for me to set up the correct tools and workflow. The advantage of setting up a programming stack in Linux is I wrote a simple bash script which is a one time work. So next time, if I have to switch to a different Linux distribution I don’t have to spend my time setting up the stack from the scratch. I use Sublime Text 3 and Vscode for my development work and use Nano for command-line editing.

Productivity Suite

On a daily basis, we need tools like an email client, calendar, task creator, to-do list, Powerpoint, Word Processor, Spreadsheet, collaboration medium like slack, Microsoft teams, etc.

There are two ways you can set up the productivity suite. Either find the right set of tools and install it in OS or use cloud-based services. I use cloud-based services (G Suite and Office 365) which satisfies my needs. But there are a bunch of tools you can explore and configure as a productivity suite.

Other than the described tools, below are a set of tools that I use for system management and other purposes.

For all the list of software I mentioned in the above sections I created a bash script that will take care of installation, configuration, and retaining the perfect environment that I created now. Let’s say if I am switching from Mint to Ubuntu then I can retain everything with a single script.

That’s it for today. If you are a Windows user, try installing Linux. As a newbie, you will have some difficult time in scratching the surface, but trust me once you make your hands dirty with Linux you will never regret switching from Windows to Linux. We are excited to hear back from you about your experience with Linux.

Karthick Sudhakar
I am a Big data Engineer from India, Chennai working on a top MNC with a vision of being a bridge between technology and mankind.

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46 thoughts on “How I Switched from Windows 10 to Linux Mint”

  1. Unfortunately, businesses have only one choice, Windows. No perfect alternative for MS Office and Accounting software as QuickBooks pro. And no professional software like Adobe Creative Suite either. If I could get I will ditch Windows 10 for Linux.

  2. I made the switch years ago, went to upgrade my system to windows 10, had heaps issues, so spat the dummy installed Linux Mint 17 and never looked back, running Mint 20 currently, even got rid of windows of my wife’s laptop and installed Mint, she is totally computer literature, as long as she got Facebook, able to surf the web, Gmail, libre office, she happy, Mint so stable and easy for Linux newbies too use

  3. I am using Linux Mint since version 17 and made around over 30 people switch to Linux. I give them support. I can tell you while Linux is free your time isn’t. I spent a lot of my time fixing problems.

    Yesterday I had to stay home take one day off at work to fix why Evolution keeps asking password for the keyring. Later on, I was told disable auto-login (passwordless login) as this can cause the issue. For me, these things would have been flagrant with windows but searching for that solution in Linux was a pain.

    I don’t know who is faulty but this keyring issue has been around for a long time. Second issue if you set up mysql, PHPMyAdmin, Apache, 99% chance you won’t be able to login PHPMyAdmin without messing with resetting the root password or use a command tool to create a new mysql username.

    For windows users jumping to Linux isn’t free. Get prepared to spend days what you can do in minutes with windows.

    Before you start hammering me. I am not paid by Microsoft. I am using Linux and teaching others to use Linux because today Winx users are at the mercy of hackers while Linux is still safe, I know need to take precautions as well. To mitigate risk a Linux backup is a good idea.

    • “Get prepared to spend days what you can do in minutes with windows.”

      How long did it take you to learn Windows to the point where you can do tasks in minutes? After you spend that amount of time using Linux, you will be able to do those tasks in minutes also. It takes long time Linux users hours to do things in Windows that they can do in minutes in Linux. Nobody is born with the knowledge of Windows (or any other O/S). Every O/S has to be learned from the ground up.

  4. I converted my 81-year-old dad’s super slow Windows laptop and put Linux mint 19 on there, and it’s not only like a new computer, but it performs better than any laptop in the world. Windows is malware.

  5. I use Vivaldi which is Chromium-based. All of its extensions come from the Chromium store. I have been using it since its early beta days and find it very satisfying. Jon Von Tetschner, who created the Opera browser, also founded the Vivaldi project. And Vivaldi is available for Linux, Mac, and M$Windows.

  6. I do graphics work, in past I used manjaro Linux but, I need adobe products, Linux need more support for graphics app, now I had to switch windows, but windows 10 is not perfect

    • “Linux needs more support for graphics app”.

      Most definitely but it is for companies that develop those graphics apps, like Adobe, not distro developers, to provide that support.

  7. You know you can use more than one computer, right? You only need Windows and macOS for commercial software like AutoCAD.

    Windows uses ever-increasing resources forcing you to replace your whole computer.

    Windows is where most viruses thrive.

    • So, if I have to use two computers to do my job, why would I have Linux if it didn’t run all the software I needed? So many replies seem to be from home users, rather than from the business perspective of budgets and resources. I have 25 users who need products not available on Linux. Why would I suddenly want to manage 50 machines with different requirements?

      Does everyone have the luxury of not having to deal with the reality of having to pay for things?

      And rather than your personal opinion claim of “Windows uses ever-increasing resources forcing you to replace your whole computer. Windows is where most viruses thrive.”…

      I”m a business. A business makes decisions based on costs and risk and business need. Not on someone’s personal preference. If you were trying to convince me to go to that business model, you better bring facts to the table and give a cost assessment that should it’s a good financial move. I don’t see any of that review in any of the posts pro Linux…at least for business. Maybe as a single home user, but that’s not what I have to manage.

      • You and others with similar posts are creating a straw man. Nobody is taking away your Windows. Nobody is forcing you to switch to Linux or even run it alongside Windows. This article is the author’s private opinion aimed at those that CAN or are willing to switch to Linux.

        If the applications you need to use do not exist in Linux or if the applications that do exist in Linux are inadequate, by all means, you should keep using Windows and not bother with Linux. OTOH, there are many businesses that see no problems with switching to Linux. I have participated in several Windows to Linux while working for a large county government.


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