back to article Mint Linux freshens up web searches

Tired of having your search habits hoarded by Microsoft and Google and want a little anonymity online? Linux Mint could be your answer. Linux Mint 12, just released, has been delivered with an independent search option: DuckDuckGo. It's Mint's default search engine under a partnership with the makers of the distro, also just …


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  1. Escape Velocity

    "DuckDuckGo is a three-year-old search project with venture backing that promises to torpedo the business model Google and Microsoft's Bing are predicated on: making money from your search data by selling it to others."

    Well, I'm all for torpedoing any monopoly of information. However your business model is a little off... SBBs (Search Big Brothers) make money when people use their search engine by way of the pay-per-click business model (simplified take on today's model, but true enough). They do get a little fluff when they sell the user data, but its nohere near another PPC battleship of a business model.

    I'm really quite excited by the peer-to-peer search projects underway.... this is the most likely way to achieve large scale success in making censors and marketeers impotent once again.

  2. Wcool

    Extremely pleasant search engine

    DDG is my default search engine for a year now. It is not as good on serch results as Google but the features, interface and privacy policy are excellent.

    A breathe of fresh air, hopefully this will lift them even more

  3. Anonymous Coward

    "Tired of having your search habits hoarded by Microsoft and Google and want a little anonymity online? Linux Mint could be your answer." ....

    The benefits of Linux and Unix boxes to one side for a moment. Would it not be simpler to point your browser at than to download and install an operating system?

    This article confuses me, it starts out being aimed at a search engine but reads like an advertisement for Linux Mint and, as far as I can see, lacks any links to the actual search engine page. The "According to the DuckDuckGo site here" link actually takes you to the Linux Mint blog.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I tried DuckDuckGo some time back.

    It may have improved since, but the fine filtered results I've come to expect from Google just aren't there with DuckGo.

    I'll suffer the privacy issue if I can get to what I'm looking for quickly, with DuckGo, I simply couldn't.

    As for Linux Mint - yeah, tried it once in a VM, nice little distro for novices, but to all intents and purposes, just an alternative to Ubuntu (or Debian).

    But hey, all things are subject to improvement and change, good luck to the both of them.

    1. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

      Use Startpage instead? is a spinoff of a Dutch project (whose name escapes me at the moment, sorry) and combines anonymity with a search that also includes Google results (caveat - this seems to be, not the regional variations such as - you could call that another data leak).

      You can even make it create a home URL which holds your settings rather than allow a cookie.

      I found these guys after looking for a DuckDuckGo alternative (mainly because DDG wasn't providing me with what I need in a search engine).

  5. Keep Refrigerated

    Results from Bing, Powered by Yahoo!

    I've used DuckDuckGo. I saw this floating by the side of the results so I clicked through to their FAQ and searched for bing:

    "DuckDuckGo gets its results from over 50 sources, including DuckDuckBot (our own crawler), crowd-sourced sites (in our own index), Yahoo! BOSS,, WolframAlpha, EntireWeb, Bing & Blekko. For any given search, there is usually a vertical search engine out there that does a better job at answering it than a general search engine. Our long-term goal is to get you information from that best source, ideally in instant answer form."

    So it does seem they have their own crawler, but anyone looking for a pure 'stick it to the Google/MS man' approach to search needs to keep... well... searching.

  6. AdamWill


    "Tired of having your search habits hoarded by Microsoft and Google and want a little anonymity online? Linux Mint could be your answer."

    Yes, switching operating system (or distribution) entirely is clearly the best way to adopt a new search engine!

    Sheesh. It's not exactly difficult to switch to DDG in any *other* distro, or operating system, for that matter.

  7. masked_freetard

    Worth bearing in mind that DuckDuckGo uses results from a number of sources - including Bing, so you're not free of the big players just because you're not using their search engines directly.

  8. paleoflatus


    In 15 years of linux use, I've always regarded the default search engine as being as transient and changeable as the default wallpaper, cube background, browser, software choice etc. These things are so easy to change - at least in Debian sid, where I use non-default KDE, wallpapers, Google chrome (previously Firefox), Ixquick (previously metacrawler), moc etc. It's a trivial issue. I had trouble with k3b trying to burn an iso image recently, so installed brasero (a quick and easy apt-get command and Hey Presto!), rather than keep fiddling with it. No problem!

  9. edge_e

    You don't need to install mint

    just add it to iceweasel/firefox here

  10. Will Godfrey Silver badge

    More and more, Mint seems to be going where the others should be.

  11. Anonymous Coward


    You can have Duck Dick Go as your search engine on any operating system, certainly in Firefox, probably in other browsers too

    Just check your firefox search engine list and select it. Leave it selected if you want it to be the deafult.

    Can't see that Mint has any more to do with this than, err, Windows! Maybe they preset it as the deafult. No big deal.

  12. petur

    Business model?

    What isn't mentioned, is what their business model is... servers, bandwidth and sometimes staff need money.

  13. HMB

    Jimmy Needs Money

    So when is this new search engine going to start begging for my money?

  14. ChrisInAStrangeLand
    Thumb Down

    Duckduckgo is powered by bing, but somehow they've made the results even more dreadful.

    1. Nun of Thee Above
      Thumb Up

      then thank goodness

      that you can change it . . . here are but a few of many possibilities:

  15. Rombizio

    Early adopter of Mint here....

    ...and still happy. Go green.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Using this model ...

    "Similarly, we may add an affiliate code to some eCommerce sites (e.g. Amazon & eBay) that results in small commissions being paid back to DuckDuckGo."

    Oh ... that model. The model of steering me towards people who don't care about my privacy. Unless affiliates really aren't going to get preferential rankings. Ever. But without access to the algorithms ...

    "DuckDuckGo is calculated to have just under 200,000 unique users"

    Although they also claim not to collect personally identifiable information ...

  17. 27escape
    Thumb Up

    DDG plugins for most browsers, and useful search shortcuts

    At the very least its excellent for its search shortcuts, works from the address bar, or the search bar

    !amuk shopping items

    will forward a search to

    !wa forwards search to wolfram alpha

    !google if you really need it

    more info at and fun things from

  18. Wombling_Free

    Business model...

    1. Build search engine

    2. ...

    3. PROFIT!

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not exactly new

    Midori is configured to use DDG by default and has been for a while.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Mint 11 LXDE here on old hardware and it works fine

    The built in "Google search enhancements" with Mint 11 were refusing to work with Javascript disabled.

    DDG works fine.

    Not yet happy with Mint 12 in a VirtualBox instance on up to date kit. A note on the Mint site telling reviewers to whop up the video memory if running under VirtualBox tells me there's probably more work to be done for that environment.

  21. scientific_linux_01

    Need to give this a try

    I have typically been a hardened CentOS now to Scientific Linux since the patches updates are fast.

    I am going to give this a go.

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