Last night I decided to try Linux Mint 14 Cinnamon (Ubuntu based) on a USB2 hard drive. I was pleasantly surprised!
- The installation seemed as painless as Ubuntu 12.10
- The presentation overall seems a bit more visually polished that Ubuntu 12.10
- The kernel and Libre Office are a bit older versions
- Cinnamon was a bit more responsive on this old laptop than Unity
- I choose classic gnome - no effects because native cinnamon was still a bit sluggish for my liking
HP | Intel iCore 7 3.2Ghz | 12 Gb mem | SSD Win7 | HDD Trusty
Dell laptop | Intel iCore 3 2.1Ghz | 4 Gb mem | Win 7 + Trusty