Cinnamon is a fork of GNOME Shell developed by Linux Mint Team that brings innovative features of GNOME Shell and simple layout of GNOME 2. Before we jump into the rest of article, please take a look at the figure below.

As you can see, Cinnamon comes with single panel contains "menu" button on the left, followed by "quick launch" icons and window list. Indicator applet and another notification icon is positioned on the right of panel. Pretty simple, huh? Application launcher is simplified too, with single large box containing installed applications shortcut, favorite applications, and session control to logout, etc.

Installing on Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot
Although Cinnamon is developed and intended for Linux Mint, it can be installed on Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot. First thing first, install GNOME Shell by typing the following command:
  • sudo apt-get install gnome-shell
Once installed correctly, please download the Cinnamon installer here. Download both "cinnamon" and "cinnamon-session" packages and install them:
  • sudo dpkg -i cinnamon_1.1.2_i386.deb
  • sudo dpkg -i cinnamon-session_1.0.0_all.deb
Now, you may logout and select "Cinnamon" on session choices when login.
Cinnamon is in early development, so use with your own risk!

Good luck!