I have a lot of network drives and a few bookmarks and I don't like having my file manager maximized, so I prefer an interface that's as clean as possible.

enter image description here

This Starred tab however blocks this for me. I've never used it before. Under gnome 3.28 it wouldn't even work (nothing would show up even when I "Star" it), haven't tried it now with 3.30 but I simply don't need or want this feature at all.

How would I go on about removing this entry from the menu?
And while we're at it: Can I remove the "Recent" one too?

I've went through every settings of nautilus itself and also went through its dconf-editor folder, couldn't find anything that might help me though.

I just found this - That explains why it doesn't work for me, as I have indexing disabled, but doesn't suggest any solution or way to get rid of it entirely.

2 Answers 2


Unfortunately the auto-detection of whether to show the 'Starred' panel based on whether you have any starred items was decided against. I don't know why it is shown even without Tracker being available, though.

Note that the sidebar is actually a single unit provided by Gtk, not an editable collection of random items – but still sufficiently customizable for this purpose.

Option 1: Override the built-in UI description.

  1. Create a location for the overrides:

    mkdir ~/.config/nautilus/ui
  2. Extract the resource description of the main window:

    gresource extract /bin/nautilus \
              /org/gnome/nautilus/ui/nautilus-window.ui \
              > ~/.config/nautilus/ui/nautilus-window.ui
  3. Edit the properties of the GtkPlacesSidebar object:

    <object class="GtkPlacesSidebar" id="places_sidebar">
      <property name="show-recent">False</property>
      <property name="show-starred-location">False</property>
  4. Set the environment variable to make GLib use this override:

    export G_RESOURCE_OVERLAYS="/org/gnome/nautilus/ui=$HOME/.config/nautilus/ui"

    Due to Nautilus being started via D-Bus, you will likely need to set this via ~/.pam_environment

    G_RESOURCE_OVERLAYS DEFAULT="/org/gnome/nautilus/ui=/home/confetti/.config/nautilus/ui"

    …or via ~/.config/systemd/user/dbus.service.d/environment.conf:


Option 2: Recompile Nautilus with this patch applied:

diff --git a/src/nautilus-window.c b/src/nautilus-window.c
index 0d1234f15..7a6d567f6 100644
--- a/src/nautilus-window.c
+++ b/src/nautilus-window.c
@@ -1347,6 +1347,12 @@ nautilus_window_set_up_sidebar (NautilusWindow *window)
                                         | GTK_PLACES_OPEN_NEW_TAB
                                         | GTK_PLACES_OPEN_NEW_WINDOW));

+    gtk_places_sidebar_set_show_recent (GTK_PLACES_SIDEBAR (window->places_sidebar),
+                                        FALSE);
+    gtk_places_sidebar_set_show_starred_location (GTK_PLACES_SIDEBAR (window->places_sidebar),
+                                                  FALSE);
     g_signal_connect_swapped (window->places_sidebar, "open-location",
                               G_CALLBACK (open_location_cb), window);
     g_signal_connect (window->places_sidebar, "show-error-message",
  • I've tried option 1 and did step 4 with the [Service] one (please note that I had no ~/.config/systemd directory, I've created it) but it didn't do anything. Do I have to restart my system?
    – confetti
    Sep 19, 2018 at 19:02
  • Yes, in order for dbus-daemon to pick up the new environment variables.
    – user1686
    Sep 19, 2018 at 20:09
  • Just restarted my system, there are however no changes. Should I try the ~/.pam_environment method or troubleshoot somewhere else?
    – confetti
    Sep 21, 2018 at 10:03
  • Perhaps the method is no longer effective with GNOME 3.30. (I use a code patch.)
    – user1686
    Sep 21, 2018 at 10:38
  • My apologies, I've just now noticed that you've hardcoded confetti as username in it, that's probably why it doesn't work lol. I'll change that and try again.
    – confetti
    Sep 21, 2018 at 18:37

To the second part of your question. To remove the "Recent" tab, run this command under your user:

$ gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.privacy remember-recent-files false

Alas, I can't find the similar command for the "Starred" tab.

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