How to Create Application Launchers on Ubuntu 13.04, 12.10, 12.04

Hello Linux Geeksters.

In this article I will show you how to create application launchers on Ubuntu 13.04 Raring Ringtail, Ubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal and Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin.

To create an application launcher and add it to Unity in Ubuntu, do this:

Install Gnome-Panel:

$ sudo apt-get install --no-install-recommends gnome-panel

After installing gnome-panel, do this, to create an application launcher in /usr/share/applications:

$ sudo gnome-desktop-item-edit /usr/share/applications/ --create-new

Next, you will get a small window where you need to fill in the type, name, command and comment for the launcher.

As an example, I prefered creating a launcher for uTorrent.

In the Type field, choose Application for applications having graphical user interfaces and Application in terminal for apps with no gui (like vim, for example).

In the name field, type the Application’s name.

In the command field, type in the full path to the file you want to launch.

The commend field is optional, so you can leave it blank.

To set an icon for the launcher, click on the small box in the left of the name field and browse for the icon you prefer.

To add the launcher in the Unity Panel, just type the launcher’s name in the Unity Dash, and drag and drop it in the Unity Panel.

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3 comments on “How to Create Application Launchers on Ubuntu 13.04, 12.10, 12.04
  1. Chris says:

    I tried this, and it worked fine at first. Now, the launcher I created won’t show up on the dash. I can see the .desktop file in /usr/share/applications/ and it looks fine to me, but it doesn’t show up when I search for it in the dash.

  2. Seth says:

    I received this error after hitting finishing my create new launcher:

    seth@LockBox:~$ sudo gnome-desktop-item-edit /usr/share/applications/ –create-new

    (gnome-desktop-item-edit:7256): IBUS-WARNING **: The owner of /home/seth/.config/ibus/bus is not root!

    And another question I have. Are you sure we’re only supposed to put in the path and not the executing command as well? For example, if I’m opening shouldn’t I need to put python in the very beginning?

  3. Seth says:

    Okay, I put the python command in there the second time and it worked. So, that’s nice.

    Now, how do I remove launchers? Because I accidentally created a launcher with a lame-ass image, instead of the real one. Now I want to get rid of it.

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