Cinnamon: Gnome-Shell with a twist

Cinnamon: Gnome-Shell with a twist

As we continue with the intense debate of Gnome Shell vs Unity, which is more user (un)friendly, a  new fork of Gnome 3 released by Linux Mint lead developer and founder is quietly gaining stability and maturity.
The Cinnamon Desktop

Cinnamon, that’s the name of the fork, was released with Linux Mint as Mint Gnome Shell Extensions. It was then merely a few extensions on top of Gnome Shell. On December  22, 2011, Clement Lefebvre officially released the  new desktop based on Gnome 3 christening it Cinnamon. 

Cinnamon is an interesting project. It tries to cash in on the goodness of Gnome 3 while keeping the simple desktop layout of Gnome 2. All those avid drop down menu users can now use the new Gnome 3 and stop complaining about loss of productivity. 
Traditional menu

The Cinnamon desktop is a clean interface. On logon, is presented with a lower panel with all the tray icons on the right and a menu on the left. The default desktop theme is a theme based on the default Gnome Shell theme, Adwaita. 

The application menu is a recreated Linux Mint menu present in gnome 2 . It  houses a favourites bar on the left and a search bar on to quickly search for applications and system settings options apart from the regular application categories. Right clicking on the icons in the menu will open options to either send the icon to the desktop, panel or the favourites bar. 

 On the panel , quick launchers are available for Show Desktop, Firefox, Terminal and File Manager by default. Others can be added by right clicking application icons from the menu. Cinnamon is still at an early stage of development, so options to add items to the panel by right clicking is missing. 

Window selector

As you can see from the picture on the left, the window picker from Gnome Shell is still present in Cinnamon, which I really liked. I think that is one of my favourites of Gnome Shell. I will be really disappointed if this option is removed from future versions of Cinnamon. The window picker can be activated by moving the mouse to the top left hand corner of the screen where an infinity icon is present.

Theme selector

The Cinnamon desktop also supports themes and they can be selected easily from the themes menu. It also supports switching of multiple desktops and also supports all unity indicator items. All the indicators that can be seen in the screenshots are Ubuntu Unity indicators. 

Cinnamon can be downloaded from githut repositories. Although it is at a nascent stage, the desktop is exceptionally stable. I was able to take screenshots, write a whole document and play some videos without a single visual glitch or a crash. According to me this fork holds great promise if developed properly.
To download click the link below or copy paste the url in your browser.

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