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This may seem stupid to a few, but I was wondering if there was some code to find out the operating system of the present user, and then the path to his Desktop using python.

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There are a few answers in [this Stackoverflow question][1]. [1]:… – brousch May 18 '12 at 13:17

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

In Python 2.7 you can use the following commands

#!/usr/bin/env python
#-*- coding: utf-8 -*-

import os
import platform

userhome = os.path.expanduser('~')
desktop = userhome + '/Desktop/'
useros = platform.system() # returns e.g. 'Linux' 'Windows' 
distribution = platform.linux_distribution() 'in case it's a Unix
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This is sweet. Works like a charm on Ubuntu. But will this print the correct path to the desktop even if its a Windows system? – Shyam K May 18 '12 at 15:27
Path to the windows /Desktop/-analogue will be different. Nevertheless will the above command give you the path to the current user's HOME on Windows too. Can't test this further here due to a tremendous lack of Windows - you may need some experimenting ;) – Takkat May 18 '12 at 16:54
/Desktop/ is not always right when exists l18n folder. For example, for spanish is /Escritorio/. This is taken from XDG_DESKTOP_DIR in ~/.config/user-dirs.dirs – shakaran Mar 31 '13 at 22:59
@shakaran: thank you for this useful note. You may try to get os.environ['XDG_DESKTOP_DIR']. Note that if it is not defined (which may likely be the case) this will throw an error on your user. – Takkat Apr 1 '13 at 7:50
@Takkat I know it. Currently I am using subprocess.check_output(['xdg-user-dir', 'DESKTOP']) for detect the values. You can see a live example on my project "pygifme" in github: I hope that helps to others – shakaran Apr 1 '13 at 8:53

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