What is it?
Cinnamon was first announced on Dec 22nd 2011, and released the next day as version 1.1.2, and is a fork of the Gnome Shell. It uses Muffin as its window manager. Muffin is a fork of Mutter.
The latest version made available is 1.67, released on Nov 14th 2012. Cinnamon was first included in Linux Mint 13.
Nemo, a fork of the Gnome Nautilus file manager, is now part of the Cinnamon development process. It is up to version 1.12. It made its distro debut in Linux Mint 14.
Traditional layout, advanced features, easy to use, powerful, flexible.
15 separate areas where a user can customize their desktop environment.
- Menu – set the text and icon that shows on the panel (start button), as well as hover delay, the showing of places and bookmarks and recent files
- Panel – choose whether to auto-hide panel, set delay, panel position, number of panels (top & bottom), panel size and panel edit mode
- Calendar – Choose to show week dates, date format, use of network time or manually set date, time and time zone
- Hot Corner – choose to make the hot corner icon visible, enabled or disabled, hot corner position, function (scale or expo), whether to have an expo or scale applet
- Themes – choose theme, choose window theme, whether menus and buttons have icons, and cursor, keybinding, icon and GTK+ theme selection
- Effects – Enable or disable desktop effects, enable for dialog boxes, choose effects and duration for closing, mapping, minimizing, maximizing and unmaximizing windows
- Applets – enable or disable any installed applet or get additional applets.
- Extensions – enable or disable any installed extension or get additional extensions.
- Desktop – choose icons that show on desktop including computer, home, network servers, trash and mounted volumes.
- Windows – choose resulting actions from double-clicking, middle-clicking and right-clicking on title bar, how to obtain focus on a given window, the position of the minimize, maximize and close buttons, enable or disable aero snapping, edge flipping, attaching dialog windows to the parent windows, setting of alt-tab switcher style, mouse wheel scrolling through window list applet, and enabling the ability for windows which require attention to come to the current workspace.
- Workspaces – enable workspace OSD, choose duration and position of OSD, limit workspaces to primary monitor and display Expo view as a grid.
- Fonts – set text scaling factor, default, document, monospace and window tiling font, set hinting and antialiasing.
- General – enable Looking Glass logging, enable middle click emulation by clicking both left and right mouse buttons, enable or disable notification display
- Keyboard – enable key repeat and text cursor blinks, and set their rate, view, set and create keyboard shortcuts
- Backgrounds – choose your wallpaper and its aspect, gradient and colors.
Themes can customize the look of aspects of Cinnamon, including but not limited to the menu, panel, calendar and run dialog.
To install a theme: Download it and decompress it in ~/.themes (or /usr/share/themes to install it system-wide).
There are over 100 themes available on the website. Getting, installing and changing themes is very easy, and can radically change the way your desktop appears. You can also create your own theme following the tutorial on the Cinnamon website. There is also a tutorial for how to create an applet.
Applets are icons or texts that appear on the panel. Five applets are shipped by default, and developers are free to create their own. A tutorial for creating simple applets is available.
To install an applet: Download it and decompress it in ~/.local/share/cinnamon/applets.
Some useful stock applets include one for Accessibility, Brightness (helpful for laptop users), and windows quick list (great if you use workspaces).
If you click on Get new applets, you are taken to the Cinnamon website where there are a large number of applets including one for weather, screenshots, virtual box launcher and much more.
Extensions can modify the functionalities of Cinnamon, such as providing a dock or altering the look of the Alt-Tab window switcher.
To install an extension: Download it and decompress it in ~/.local/share/cinnamon/extensions.
Extensions appear to be the least developed of these three cinnamon extenders. I had none by default on my Mint 13 box, and there are only 14 up on the website (as compared to 95 applets).
The caret symbol near the system tray is the Cinnamon applet. Clicking on it gives you the “Settings”, “Troubleshoot” and “Panel Edit mode” menu choices. From the “Troubleshoot” menu you can restart Cinnamon, start Looking Glass (more on that in a moment), or restore all settings to default. This is great because you can play with all the themes you want and then reset your desktop environment to the default.
(not to be confused with Project Looking Glass)
Panel Edit mode
When moved to the “On” position, you are able to edit the panel, moving icons around, adding applets, and dragging and dropping applets to change their position.
More Cinnamony Links:
Your browser does not support the audio element.