Originally Posted by davidandmargaret
what is an i386 file as opposed to ordinary software
As previously mentioned i386 denotes 32bit
32bit packages are included in 64bit distros for compatibility.
As a rule of thumb you can ignore the i386 versions in Linux Mint software manager
( assumes you are indeed running 64bit on a 64bit system )
If a package needs any 32bit packages it will automatically install/flag them while resolving dependencies.