Amul Shah on 1 Dec 2012 05:33:54 -0800

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Re: [PLUG] Cinnamon desktop?

On Fri, Nov 30, 2012, at 11:48 PM, JP Vossen wrote:
> Is anyone using the Cinnamon desktop in Mint or Ubuntu?  Thoughts?
> While I like Unity on some form-factors (like the Mini9) and for some 
> users (non-power), I'm not sure it's what I want on my personal 
> large-screen workstation, or for the kid's laptop.  And with the 2013-04 
> deadline getting closer, I need to finally finish upgrading from 10.04 
> to 12.04 (I'm sticking with LTS).
> For me, it seems like Unity really wants to run most things full-screen, 
> and that's just too much and too ugly on a big screen.  I know you don't 
> *have* to run full-screen, but...  I also really like the Gnome2 
> interface, it just makes sense to me in  way that Windows (and KDE) 
> never did.  XFCE and LXDE are nice too, but lubuntu-desktop is *very* 
> Windows-like (good for switching Windows users though), and I'm just not 
> thrilled with xubuntu-desktop.  (And annoying, Lubuntu 20.04 is *not* LTS.)
> So, is nice, 
> but it's just Gnome2 forked with some minor changes, EXCEPT, no 
> "Indicator Applet Session" in top right.  I could use that or--for 12.04 
> LTS anyway--"Gnome Classic" (handy: 
>  But...
> is *really* 
> cool.  It's a Gnome3/shell fork that still looks a lot like Gnome2, but 
> the menu is actually *much* nicer and cooler, and it combines the best 
> of both worlds with menu discovery and typing speed.  I don't care that 
> much about "pretty" or eyecandy, but that's all there if you want it.
> The default Cinnamon has everything at the bottom (like 
> Windows/Lubuntu), but you can easily change that in the Cinnamon control 
> panel, and it's already 2-panel (Gnome2-like) by default in 
> Another nice thing about MATE and Cinnamon is that they track indicator 
> messages for you!  Why Unity doesn't do this is beyond me; if you miss 
> it it's gone.  Forget about trying to read it, copy and paste from it, 
> etc.  It's just there and gone.  MATE and Cinnamon let you get 'em back 
> and read 'em.  Duh...
> Linux Mint itself looks really nice, but--like Lubuntu--the default 
> looks far too much like Windows for me.  That's easy enough to change, 
> of course, and Mint is 95% Ubuntu anyway, but for now I think I'd rather 
> run Ubuntu + Cinnamon.  For one thing, it's then really easy to just 
> 'aptitude install *-desktop' for something else.
> Cinnamon on Ubuntu 12.04
>      # 
>      * sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gwendal-lebihan-dev/cinnamon-stable
>      * sudo aptitude update
>      * apt-get install cinnamon
> I know why they did it, but the window controls on the left still really 
> bugs me.  Unity and Gnome Classic still do that, all the others have 
> them on the right by default, but Cinnamon is cool because it's really 
> easy to move them around (nice GUI conf, no gconf-editor).
> I have a test laptop with a bunch of this stuff installed on Ubuntu 
> 12.04.  I'm not sure it's an entire hour, but I could bring that and 
> demo this stuff at the next PLUG W/N meeting(s) if nothing better 
> presents itself.
> And by the way, how cool is this?  With a Mac or Windows, you are just 
> stuck with whatever crap the vendor gives you.  (And I don't care what 
> you Mac people say, I hate the Mac GUI.)  With Linux, and to be fair the 
> BSDs and some other systems, you can find something that works well for 
> you, and then change it as needed.  'aptitude update && aptitude 
> full-upgrade', not having to worry about licenses, and above all, all 
> this freedom of choice...  This is why I can't understand why anyone 
> uses anything else.  (Yeah, yeah, games and Windows-only crap...  We're 
> getting there... :)
> Later,
> JP

I've been using the stock Gnome3 interface on Debian testing for a few months. I have avoided customization so that I can get used to it first. Out of the box, the configuration options that I want to change are non-existent.

The default open action opens windows in new desktops. ALT-TAB switches between applications, not windows. Someone decided to pick up the MAC OS X talent of using ALT-` to switch between windows (ugh!). By default the desktops stack vertically where I have always put them horizontally.

The thing I like is that pressing the windows key brings up the application launcher and then all I have to do is type the binary that I want.

It's not too jarring, but the interface looks like they think all applications should be run in full screen mode like Unity. I'm going start playing with Gnome shell and see how it works out before I try out LXDE.

> I also really like the Gnome2 interface, it just makes sense to me 
> (And I don't care what you Mac people say, I hate the Mac GUI.)

JP, there is no accounting for taste. ;) Gnome2 always looked like a poor copy of early Mac OS with start menu in the top left.

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