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Programs like eclipse and intellij are launched via scripts, how can I add those programs to the gnome 3 launcher?

Thank you.

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2 Answers

I get it! If I change the ~/ with /home/username in the exec line it works! Probably the command is launched as root.

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There is no difference between "program" and "script" in this case – you can launch anything that can be launched by the kernel.

Most desktop environments, including GNOME, Unity and KDE, keep application data in .desktop files according to XDG Desktop Entry specification. You can create them with any text editor:

[Desktop Entry]
Type=Application
Name=Eclipse
Exec=/usr/bin/eclipse
Icon=eclipse
Terminal=false

Save the file as myapp.desktop and put it in one of these directories:

  • ~/.local/share/applications/ for the current user,
  • or /usr/local/share/applications for the entire system.

(There also is /usr/share/applications, reserved for programs installed through the package manager.)

Once you create the file and put it in the right place, it should automatically appear in GNOME under "Applications".


Icons follow the Icon Naming specification and are kept in:

  • ~/.local/share/icons/hicolor for the current user;
  • /usr/local/share/icons/hicolor for the entire system;
  • /usr/share/icons/hicolor for programs installed through the package manager.

For example, if you had a 64x64 icon for Eclipse, it could go to ~/.local/share/icons/hicolor/64x64/apps/eclipse.png and you would use Icon=eclipse in the .desktop file.

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