Linux Mint – Getting help from the community

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As mentioned earlier in this section, you can always seek help from online communities should problems that you’re unable to solve arise. One of the biggest benefits of Linux is its helpful communities, with entire sites dedicated to helping users overcome their problems or to answer questions.

When creating support requests, such as posts in a forum, always include as much pertinent information as you can. Community volunteers are often very helpful, but their time is not infinite. The more information you provide, the better equipped they would be to assist you. Consider including information such as sections of relevant logfiles, exact error messages, computer make and model, exact edition of Mint (Cinnamon, MATE, and so on), exact steps to reproduce the issue, as well as what you’ve tried to solve the problem so that others don’t duplicate your efforts.

Many great sites exist for finding help, a few of which are as follows:

  • The Linux Mint forums (http://forums.linuxmint.com/):

    The Linux Mint forums are a great place to go, because no one knows Mint more than its own community. While Mint’s forums are certainly not the largest in existence, they are specifically targeted toward Mint, so it’s a great place to start.

  • LinuxQuestions.org (http://www.linuxquestions.org/)

    Although not specific to Mint, LinuxQuestions.org does feature a dedicated section to Mint, so feel free to check out this forum for answers. In addition, if you ever venture to other distributions outside of Mint, LinuxQuestions.org has sections for most popular distributions, so you can also get help with other distributions as well.

  • Ubuntu Forums (http://ubuntuforums.org)

    Although not for Mint, Mint is based on Ubuntu, and the Ubuntu Forums actually hosts a section specifically for talking about other distributions, so you can also post Mint questions there.

In addition, you can also request live help via IRC. Xchat is included with Mint, and by default, a Linux Mint chat room opens when you open the application. IRC chat is very old but still a very fun way of interacting with other people. If you plan on using IRC (and you should consider doing so), you may want to spend some time researching some IRC commands. However, on its own, simply opening Xchat is easy enough, since it immediately connects you with the community, and all you need to do for basic usage is type messages and press Enter.

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