Cinnamon 1.3 released

Cinnamon 1.3 is out!

This is another major update for Cinnamon.

Read below for a brief overview of the new features and major improvements.

Applets improvements

In Cinnamon 1.3, every panel component is an applet. This means you can remove the default menu or window list and replace them with 3rd party applets.

Another important feature in this release, is the fact that applets can now be dragged and dropped with the mouse and placed wherever you want within the panel(s). So you can now move any part of the panel(s) around and really fine-tune the layout of your desktop to what works best for you.

Your panel, your rules. You can now drag and drop applets and order things in your panel exactly the way you want (The screenshot above is an extreme example of this).

Settings improvements

Cinnamon Settings gained a lot of new features and a lot of new tabs. You can now use it not only to change Cinnamon preferences themselves, but also to configure your fonts, windows, desktop icons, window, cursor, gtk+ themes..etc.

It’s graphical interface was also changed, for the tool to be able to show more information without using more screen estate.

A new UI for Cinnamon Settings, similar to Gnome Settings, which allows the tool to feature more settings and use less space on the screen.

Menu improvements

The menu received the following improvements:

  • New hover delay preference
  • Better icon sizes (crispier icons)
  • Fixed menu size when the number of favorites is high
  • More exhaustive search results

Other notable improvements

  • Panel launchers can now be re-ordered by drag & drop
  • Improved visuals in the default theme
  • Workspace navigation is now possible in scale mode (note that we’re still planning an Expo mode)
  • Multiple bug fixes

Impact for themes artists

If you’re developing a new theme, simply start from scratch using the following tutorial.

If you made a theme for Cinnamon 1.2:

  • You don’t really need to add anything for your theme to work
  • The default theme was slightly improved, in particular it now uses more transitions and shadows, and it defines “ltr” sections for things to look better on Left-to-right locales (Arabic, Hebrew..etc). Have a look at the diff (list of changes) made to cinnamon.css: cinnamon.css.diff
  • PanelMenu isn’t used much anymore. Instead, all core components of the panel now are applets, so make sure your applet section of your theme (at the complete bottom of cinnamon.css) is up to date.

Here’s the Applet style section present in cinnamon.css in Cinnamon 1.3:

CSS
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/* ===================================================================
* Applets (applet.js)
* ===================================================================*/
.applet-box {
margin: 1px;
padding: 1px;
color: #ccc;
text-shadow: black 0px 0px 2px;
transition-duration: 300;
}
.applet-box:hover {
color: #fff;
}
.applet-label {
padding-left: 4px;
padding-right: 4px;
font-weight: bold;
color: #ccc;
}
.applet-label:hover,
.applet-box:hover > .applet-label {
color: #fff;
text-shadow: white 0px 0px 5px;
}
.applet-icon {
color: #ccc;
}
.applet-icon:hover,
.applet-box:hover > .applet-icon {
color: #fff;
icon-shadow: white 0px 0px 3px;
}

As you can see, it defines a different behavior when the applet is hovered, and it triggers a different behavior on applet-icon and applet-label as well. In the default theme we use this to add text-shadows and icon-shadows to applets when the mouse goes over them.

Impact for applet developers

Unless your applet is tightly linked to our code or referring to other panel components, it should continue to work in Cinnamon 1.3 the same way it did in Cinnamon 1.2.

Impact for extension developers

For all extensions, you need to change the version of Cinnamon from 1.2 to 1.3 in the metadata.json file.

If your extension refers to any part of Cinnamon that is a panel component (for instance: menu.js, windowlist.js, dateMenu.js, status/bluetooth.js, status/keyboard.js….etc), it will no longer work in Cinnamon 1.2. All these components were migrated to applets and are now located in /usr/share/cinnamon/applets.

Extensions which design was to modify the behavior of a particular applet component (for instance: an extension which hides the bluetooth icon in the panel) should be abandoned. Applets can be removed, and rather than modifying them using extensions, developers should write their own modified versions of them as applets.

Extensions which design was to add new content to the panel (for instance: the weather extension), will continue to work.. but we STRONGLY recommend they get migrated to applets. Extensions are stuck to a particular place in the panel and users won’t be able to drag and drop them and move them around like they do with other applets.

If your extension has nothing to do with panels, then it should continue to be an extension.

If you encounter any problems, please log in the IRC and ask us for help at #linuxmint-dev on irc.spotchat.org

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