Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Please post suggestions for improvement of Cinnamon on:
https://github.com/linuxmint/Cinnamon
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altair4
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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by altair4 »

There's a lot a debate here about shell extensions and even a comparison between shell extensions and Firefox plugins. A desktop environment is not an application, it's a platform that a user uses to get something else done. The one similarity between the two is that these extensions / plugins are created by third party developers whose expertise and accomplishments are unknown and who are totally responsible for their maintenance.

Clem has posted in this very topic that these shell extensions are problematic:
The user experience the Gnome team is trying to create isn't the one we're interested in providing to our users. There are core features and components we absolutely need, and because they're not there in Gnome Shell, we had to add them using extensions with MGSE. The extension system in Gnome Shell is handy but core parts of a desktop need to be able to communicate with each others and be integrated properly.
Which is why his goal with Cinnamon is to:
As a distribution we're also guaranteeing we can provide a desktop which implements the vision we have for Linux Mint. And finally, we can add much more many features, integrate our own technology into the desktop itself and do all of this cleanly as opposed to using patches and hacks.
Torvalds made headlines when he basically dismissed Gnome3 as unusable. Then a while later they quoted him as changing his mind:
Hey, with gnome-tweak-tool and the dock extension, gnome-3.2 is starting to look almost usable.
But like many news reports today they never published his full comments: https://plus.google.com/102150693225130 ... TLyn7dqYoR
Hey, with gnome-tweak-tool and the dock extension, gnome-3.2 is starting to look almost usable.

Now I just hope those things become part of the standard gnome shell setup and made available in the regular "system config" thing rather than hidden off. Sure, make them default to off if you want that "clean default", but make them easy to find and part of the standard install.

Or would that be too close to "Ok, we admit we were wong" and thus not politically acceptable?
It would seem to me that these two gentlemen are in agreement at some level.
Last edited by altair4 on Fri Dec 30, 2011 11:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by craig10x »

BIG +1....i hope our friend "bim" reads it... :wink: :)
That is also why i prefer Cinnamon myself...i think by the time Mint 13 comes out it will be excellent and offer a lot...at this point, it is still very basic but i am enjoying it already...

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by truexfan81 »

craig10x wrote:BIG +1....i hope our friend "bim" reads it... :wink: :)
That is also why i prefer Cinnamon myself...i think by the time Mint 13 comes out it will be excellent and offer a lot...at this point, it is still very basic but i am enjoying it already...
+1 I agree, for my acer AOA150 netbook Cinnamon is perfect as it is, and i'm sure as it matures it will only get better :-)

however for the my pc, unless they are able to make it work with xineramma i'm afraid i will have to go with mate after mint 9 reaches end of life. Unless i can find something else that supports it

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by kmb42vt »

craig10x wrote:oh and quick note to bim: yes...for example RIGHT NOW you can't change the list of favorites in the menu (take away what is on there or add new ones) or say, take off or add launchers to the panel...that is right now...it hasn't been added in yet...again have to keep reminding you....this is in alpha!..it is sort of like the foundation of the building has been built but the building itself hasn't been constructed yet...You WILL be able to do those things and many more as it is developed... :wink:

It would be like looking at that building foundation and saying...well, it doesn't have any floors...or offices, or elevators....that's right...because they haven't been CONSTRUCTED YET :lol:
Yup, it's an alpha alright but it's inherent stability comes from creating the fork out of the latest stable gnome-shell (3.2.1). That being said, you can actually add and remove apps from the Panel and the Favorites area of the menu using the 'dconf Editor' application. First you have to install 'dconf-tools' via Synaptic (do not trust the Software Manager to do this) and, once installed, launch "dconf Editor" from the menu.

Once launched, click on the arrow next to 'Org' in the left hand sidebar and then click directly on "Cinnamon" (not the arrow). Then in the right hand panel, you'll see a list of several entries including "favorite-apps" and "panel-launchers". By modifying these two entries you can add and remove apps from the Panel and the Favorites area of the menu.

Note:

1. The list of apps under "favorite-apps" contains items that are not actually shown in the Menu's Favorites area. This is because these apps are not actually installed and are default to a plain vanilla Gnome 3 install, not Linux Mint. These can be removed if you wish but it causes no harm to leave them. I tend to remove them to avoid confusion.

2. Note the syntax of each app item listed in each entry mentioned above (favorite-apps and panel-launchers). Each entry refers to an application's *.desktop file ('firefox.desktop' for example) surrounded by single quotation marks and each item separated by a comma and a space. The entire list of apps is surrounded by brackets. For example (my panel set up):

Code: Select all

['firefox.desktop', 'thunderbird.desktop', 'gnome-terminal.desktop', 'nautilus.desktop']
3. Once you've modified 'favorite-apps' and 'panel-launchers' to your liking, you must then restart Cinnamon the same way you restart gnome-shell. The easiest way to do this of course is to type Alt + F2 and then type 'r' (without quotes) and hit Enter. Then you're modifications will show in the panel and the menu.

I've included all the extra details above for any new users that might hanging around with us "old Linux folks" so to speak. :D
"Humph. Choice, it is the quintessential Linux delusion, simultaneously the source of it's greatest strength, and it's greatest weakness." (All apologies to The Architect)

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by Lolo Uila »

Yes, I know that MATE and Cinnamon are still in early development, and will improve over time, but no one really addressed my original question.

Why bother adding all this stuff to Gnome3/Shell instead of just replacing it with an established, user friendly DE. As I understand it, MATE/Cinnamon will never really be Gnome-2. And besides, adding bloatware on top of something else to "fix" it is the MicroSoft way, not the Linux way.

It still just seems like wasted effort. Not that I don't appreciate the effort. I know Clem and team are trying to do what they think is right. But perhaps that effort is misguided...

That same effort could be put towards moving main edition away from Ubuntu/Gnome3 to Xubuntu, with it's more efficient, more user friendly DE (Xfce). If that effort were used to tweak Mint to really take advantage of the lighter Xfce DE we'd end up with a lean, high performance OS, instead of the Linux version of Windows-7.

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by Lolo Uila »

And yes, I know that Xfce can be had with the LMDE base, but it's a less user friendly OS, and it's not as compatible with the diverse range of hardware we all use. I've never been able to get LMDE working right with my systems. It seems like every time they fix one thing, something else breaks. Ubuntu-based just works better for me.

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by kmb42vt »

Lolo Uila wrote:Yes, I know that MATE and Cinnamon are still in early development, and will improve over time, but no one really addressed my original question.

Why bother adding all this stuff to Gnome3/Shell instead of just replacing it with an established, user friendly DE. As I understand it, MATE/Cinnamon will never really be Gnome-2. And besides, adding bloatware on top of something else to "fix" it is the MicroSoft way, not the Linux way.

It still just seems like wasted effort. Not that I don't appreciate the effort. I know Clem and team are trying to do what they think is right. But perhaps that effort is misguided...

That same effort could be put towards moving main edition away from Ubuntu/Gnome3 to Xubuntu, with it's more efficient, more user friendly DE (Xfce). If that effort were used to tweak Mint to really take advantage of the lighter Xfce DE we'd end up with a lean, high performance OS, instead of the Linux version of Windows-7.
Well, in answer to your question (hopefully) I should probably start by saying you should never take what you "hear" to heart. Unless you experience it directly yourself, what you "hear" is mostly bunk and in this case, it's all bunk. Saying that Cinnamon and MATE will never be Gnome-2 is like saying that you or I (or anyone else for that matter) can foretell the future which of course, no one can. This type of gossip you can ignore. But to get to the point.

Gnome 2 was and still is the most popular DE for GNU/Linux above and beyond all the rest including KDE, LXDE and Xfce. That doesn't mean that any of the other DEs are any "less" so to speak, it's just Gnome 2 appealed to most of the users--who can say why? It just is. That being said, Cinnamon is not intended to be Gnome 2 in any way, shape or form and never was. Cinnamon is a fork of gnome-shell and is entirely dependent on Gnome 3. The intent of Cinnamon is to provide the familiar Linux Mint styled Gnome 2 interface for those who want to use the new technologies of Gnome 3 but do not like the experience that the original gnome-shell provides with or without the use of extensions. This appears to be a whole lot of users.

On the other hand, MATE is a direct fork of the latest version of Gnome 2 (2.32) and, once released, will be everything that Gnome 2.32 was and more since it will be under constant development. There are plenty of Gnome 2 users who have felt left behind by Gnome.orgs' decisions of late and they rightly should be. So there is a whole lot of effort behind the development MATE to fill the gap that was left behind when Gnome 2 was deprecated. Also, MATE directly runs on Ubuntu and has nothing to do with Gnome 3 or gnome-shell.

Now, none of the DEs offered in Linux Mint 12 or what will be offered in 13 can really be considered "bloatware". Either you run Gnome (Gnome 3/gnome-shell with or without MGSE), Cinnamon (Gnome 3/Cinnamon) or MATE (stands alone). One isn't layered over the other, they're all separate DEs. And I "hear" :D there are also plans to release a separate MATE only edition for those who want strictly a Gnome 2 experience.
"Humph. Choice, it is the quintessential Linux delusion, simultaneously the source of it's greatest strength, and it's greatest weakness." (All apologies to The Architect)

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by Joe_Linux »

How do you find the names of the exact programs to add? For example dconf Editor

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by cwwgateway »

Lolo Uila wrote:Yes, I know that MATE and Cinnamon are still in early development, and will improve over time, but no one really addressed my original question.

Why bother adding all this stuff to Gnome3/Shell instead of just replacing it with an established, user friendly DE. As I understand it, MATE/Cinnamon will never really be Gnome-2. And besides, adding bloatware on top of something else to "fix" it is the MicroSoft way, not the Linux way.

It still just seems like wasted effort. Not that I don't appreciate the effort. I know Clem and team are trying to do what they think is right. But perhaps that effort is misguided...

That same effort could be put towards moving main edition away from Ubuntu/Gnome3 to Xubuntu, with it's more efficient, more user friendly DE (Xfce). If that effort were used to tweak Mint to really take advantage of the lighter Xfce DE we'd end up with a lean, high performance OS, instead of the Linux version of Windows-7.
I personally like xfce. But, I and many others feel that it is a step back from gnome 2. Because it is inherently meant to be a lightweight desktop, it lacks some features found in gnome 2 or/and cinnamon. In addition, mints goal is not to have a super fast distro, but to have a fully featured distro. MATE, as the above poster said, will become exactly like gnome 2 in time. Also, cinnamon, which is ALPHA, will have features which surpass xfce in time. Again, as the other poster said, these DEs are causing bloat. MATE is just like gnome 2 except with the different package names. It is no more bloated than gnome 2. Cinnamon changes the code in the gnome shell, but it doesn't add any code that causes bloat. In my experience, it is actually faster than gnome shell.
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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by bimsebasse »

Joe_Linux wrote:How do you find the names of the exact programs to add? For example dconf Editor
If you don't have alacarte (aka Main Menu) installed, a handy way to see the actual launch names of programs is to navigate to usr/share/icons/mint-x/apps/scalable/ - the icon names are also the program launch commands.
Thank you for this thread. That’s all I can say. You most definitely have made this forum into something special. You clearly know what you are doing, you’ve covered so many bases. Thanks!

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by maxdule »

I agree that it's mostly a matter of personal affinity - but, from my point of view - Cinnamon is one large, huge, 7 mile step from Gnome MGSE. I find default appearance in MGSE (without extensions) very hard to work with on a regular basis (for fun and leisure activities not so important anyway).

Very glad to hear as well that some customization sfuff are going to be implemented (e.g. reordering items, for me - very important feature).

However, I do have some problems with Cinnamon - don't know what is the cause, but after as much as 15 mins looking at display, my eyes almost hurt (the feeling is the same as on old CRT monitors without setting the proper frequency rate). It's Dell Inspiron 1545 with ATI HD4330 graphics. I do not experience this in MATE environment.
Just to note, it's not possible for me to install proprietary 3D acceleration driver offered - as it crashes desktop (it works, but colors are all over the place and I see almost nothing of text). This driver does not create any trouble in MATE environment (but again to note, haven't been using it in earlier Mint versions - nor 9,10 or 11 because of known issue - not being able to come back from suspend when lid is closed).

@Bogie (aka bimsebasse) At first I thought that you're being very boring with your stubborn spamming with your personal feel and vision about MGSE and Cinnamon and Gnome 2 and Gnome 3... But then I looked closely to your desktop screenshot, I saw the language and it all became clear. Forgive me, my brother. :mrgreen:

EDIT: And I forgot to mention, I have keyboard layout items twice displayed in system tray (pls check http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/23 ... p001u.png/). When clicking on "show keyboard layout" on this right (with language shortcut) pop-up message says "executing 'gkbd-keyboard-display' command failed ... command not found".
Click on "show keyboard layout" on left item (gnome classic look) works correctly - keyboard is displayed.

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by roger64 »

kmb42vt wrote:
I've included all the extra details above for any new users that might hanging around with us "old Linux folks" so to speak. :D
All your details above are very useful and I had also to follow all these steps. Soon, it will be a well trodden path. I use Cinnamon this way and find it very handy and stable:
Image

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by roger64 »

craig10x wrote:oh and quick note to bim: yes...for example RIGHT NOW you can't change the list of favorites in the menu (take away what is on there or add new ones) or say, take off or add launchers to the panel...that is right now...it hasn't been added in yet..
You can now. :D (see screenshot above). Since version 1.1.2 in fact (23 DEC)

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by Kevin108 »

bimsebasse wrote:In what way is Gnome Shell a tablet interface?
Because instead of desktop icons or a nice, clean menu activated from the corner, it has big, stupid buttons spread around for you to push with your fingers. It's pretty obvious what it is to most people. It's fine if you like it. It would be great on a tablet, I'm sure, but on my desktop I have no use for it or the similarly-configured Windows 8.
Among a certain segment of Linux users any setup that isn't strongly reminiscent of Windows 95 is a tablet interface, tertium non datur, it's just a chant to excuse inability to adapt to change or different ways of doing things. Gnome Shell's desktop works perfectly and intuitively for me and many, many other desktop users - the way you feel in Gnome Shell, tied, hindered, hard to get work done, that same way I feel in Gnome 2 (ricochets off stone).
For many of us, the difference between using a traditional interface like Gnome 2 offered us and what Gnome 3 offers is like the difference between riding a bike somewhere and flying a plane. Both are transportation but one is hell of a lot simpler and what more people have used and are comfortable with. Fortunately, we're Linux users. By very definition, we have software choices - to use, not use, change or create something new - to replace what we don't like.
And I didn't mean to moan about MATE or Cinnamon, I just don't see them ever really taking off, don't see their potential beyond perhaps a decade at best. And certainly not moaning about Gnome Shell where I like to be, despite glitches and quirks. MGSE soon to become a thing of the past is likewise not a moan but what you can read between the lines as Mint's main developer has abandoned Gnome Shell to work on a fork. It would be patently odd with all the demands on Mr. Lefebvre's time from waiting Mint KDE and Debian users if Cinnamon was just a hobby or an experiment, it's gonna replace MGSE. MGSE had the benefit of sharing userbase with the main editions of Fedora, OpenSUSE, Pinguy and every distro using Gnome Shell. Cutting yourself off from GNOME's main desktop and the large community using it and developing on it for a fork created only in order to easier mimic an older desktop setup doesn't strike me as a plan - in the short run, probably, not in the long run, when traditional desktop fans become fewer and fewer. I guess Mint can always jump back to Gnome Shell again when it's matured more.
Mint's main edition includes Gnome. Whatever else the users of other variations are waiting for, they are prioritized differently. Not quickly recognizing and addressing the obvious displeasure with Mint 12 and Gnome 3 would be equivalent to ignoring the sudden appearance of a large hole in your beer mug. I'm sure Clem has no interest in watching Mint users spill out into other distros, so he's doing the right thing and working to fix what most of us see as a significant problem with the main edition development. I, for one, applaud the decision. For the first time in over a decade, I've been able to stick with Linux and it's thanks in no small part to his work and good decision making concerning this distro. What you call cutting us off from Gnome's main desktop, many of us see as making a proper move to pioneer a better interface that stands to benefit all Gnome-based distros and a move that is certainly saving Mint from what the Gnome devs are doing. If someone decided to no longer use Mint because of Gnome 3, what would he move on to? Ubuntu and Fedora are just as broken. If Clem wasn't doing the work he currently is, there are a lot of us who would stay on Mint 11 until EOL then go to Mint 12 with LXDE or some other DE that was not Gnome 3 or KDE 4.
Last edited by Kevin108 on Sun Jan 01, 2012 12:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by Arrow2Knee »

I would like to help develop some code. I know how git works by getting the latest repo version and stuff. But how do I compile and run that code? I never compiled a Desktop Manager

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by secipolla »

Arrow2Knee wrote:I would like to help develop some code. I know how git works by getting the latest repo version and stuff. But how do I compile and run that code? I never compiled a Desktop Manager
GNOME has its own build tools and maybe Cinnamon use those.

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by maxdule »

I didn't see that anyone has mentioned earlier (neither here nor on github) but it's not possible for me to add local printer (e.g. CUPS pdf printer). I had to remove the default one as it was printing blank pdf pages (same thing I had to do in Katya).

P.S. I resolved this as anything else I needed (like adding launchers, for instance) - logout, log into MATE, set what I need to, logout, and log into Cinnamon again :mrgreen:

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by Joe_Linux »

Can't get mintupdate to show up on my favorites on the main menu. Here's my alleged code entry:

['firefox.desktop', 'nautilus.desktop', 'synaptic.desktop', 'mintupdate.desktop', 'gnome-terminal.desktop']

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by Arrow2Knee »

2 issues to be solved and 1.1.3 will be released.

Found some info here: http://live.gnome.org/GnomeShell#building

As Cinnamon is forked from Gnome Shell, I am still looking for a way to implement this.

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Re: Another DE option for Mint 12 - Cinnamon

Post by kmb42vt »

Joe_Linux wrote:Can't get mintupdate to show up on my favorites on the main menu. Here's my alleged code entry:

['firefox.desktop', 'nautilus.desktop', 'synaptic.desktop', 'mintupdate.desktop', 'gnome-terminal.desktop']
Now this is interesting and it might even have to do with Mint Update not auto-starting in MATE.

Anyway, I checked into this and the solution is: Capitalize the U so it reads 'mintUpdate.desktop'. Then it should show up in your menu.
"Humph. Choice, it is the quintessential Linux delusion, simultaneously the source of it's greatest strength, and it's greatest weakness." (All apologies to The Architect)

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