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Specifically, I want to swap out the Chrome icon for that of Chromium, as I find the former garish.

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2 Answers 2

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If the icon is newly created or downloaded, and does not already exist in the icons directory, its suite of images at different dimensions will need to be placed in the respective subdirectories, eg:

cp chromium-browser.png ~/.local/share/icons/hicolor/16x16/apps/  

Then to make the application reference the new icon, copy the relevant .desktop configuration file into your user directory structure if it's not already there:

cp /usr/share/applications/google-chrome.desktop ~/.local/share/applications/

Edit the .desktop file Icon property to reference the new name (without any suffixes):

Icon=chromium-browser

All references to the application throughout the desktop should now appear with the new icon.

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  • I'd certainly appreciate anyone improving my terminology here.
    – Alaya
    Aug 13, 2012 at 3:36
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The magic, high priority, local location, if the icon is missing, is, ~/.local/share/icons/hicolor/scalable/apps/. Or theme-specific, ~/.local/share/icons/<THEME_NAME>/scalable/apps/

So, you look up the icons in /usr/share/icons/ with some thumbnail previewer, like Nautilus, or image manager, like Gwenview.

xdg-open /usr/share/icons

Then, copy the file and rename to ~/.local/share/icons/hicolor/scalable/apps/<ICON_NAME>.*. Note that the icon extension doesn't matter. It can be SVG or PNG.

You can look up the icon name in the *.desktop file.

# To find the location of the appropriate desktop file

find /usr/share/applications -iname '*chrome.desktop'
find ~/.local/share/applications -iname '*chrome.desktop'

I wouldn't edit *.desktop file, especially for non-local location, as it will overwritten by apt-get update.

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