MATE 1.6 running on Debian Wheezy
|Developer(s)||Perberos and MATE Developers|
|Initial release||August 19, 2011|
|Stable release||1.8 / March 4, 2014|
|Written in||C, C++, Python|
|Operating system||Unix-like with X11|
|License||GNU LGPL, GNU GPL|
MATE (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈmate]) is a desktop environment forked from the now-unmaintained code base of GNOME 2. It is named after the South American plant Yerba mate and beverage mate. The use of a new name ("MATE" instead of "GNOME") avoids conflicts with GNOME 3 components.
GNOME 3 replaced the classic desktop metaphor; this concept design is realized through its native user interface: GNOME Shell. It led to some criticism from the Linux community. Many users refused to accept the new interface design of GNOME and called for someone to continue development of GNOME 2. The MATE project was started by an Arch Linux user in order to fulfill this task.
Several GNOME applications have been forked and renamed (note that most of the names are in Spanish):
- Caja (box) – File manager (from Nautilus)
- Pluma (quill) – Text editor (from Gedit)
- Eye of MATE – Image viewer (from Eye of GNOME)
- Atril (lectern) – Document viewer (from Evince)
- Engrampa (staple) – Archive manager (from File Roller)
- MATE Terminal – Terminal emulator (from GNOME Terminal)
- Marco (frame) – Window manager (from Metacity)
MATE currently only supports GTK+2 but will also support GTK+3 in the next upcoming release, so the next version will be compatible with both GTK+2 & GTK+3. The project is supported by Linux Mint developers:
We consider MATE yet another desktop, just like KDE, Gnome 3, Xfce etc. ... and based on the popularity of Gnome 2 in previous releases of Linux Mint, we are dedicated to support it and to help it improve.
MATE 1.2 was released on 16 April 2012. MATE has been one of the default desktop environments shipped with Linux Mint since version 12 "Lisa", Linux Mint Debian Edition 201303,    Snowlinux 2 "Cream", Sabayon Linux 10, and Fedora 18. MATE packages are also available for Arch Linux, Debian, openSuse, Ubuntu, and Salix OS. Version 3.5 and up of GhostBSD include MATE as the default desktop environment, making it the first inclusion of MATE as a default desktop outside of Linux.
- Cinnamon (software) - a related Mint project Desktop
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