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I would like to have an application appear in the messaging menu that is not installed there by default, is there a way to do that on a per-user basis?

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up vote 15 down vote accepted

Applications that are in the messaging menu each have a file in the system directory of:


That directory contains files that have the paths to the desktop files for those applications. You can also have one of these in your home directory with this path:


So let's say that I want to add Thunderbird to my messaging menu. I'd do something like this:

  $ mkdir -p ~/.config/indicators/messages/applications/
  $ echo /usr/share/applications/thunderbird.desktop > ~/.config/indicators/messages/applications/thunderbird

You'll need to restart your session (log out and back in) the first time you create the applications directory.

Here's an example of usage from a python application.

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Simply restarting the panel killall gnome-panel will work, you don't need to log out. – Alvin Row Dec 1 '10 at 2:43
Are there any python examples to add functionality to any application added to the Messaging Menu? – Andres Rodriguez Feb 8 '11 at 19:40
Yes, there are. Here's a link to them in the libindicate source tree. You can download it with "bzr branch lp:libindicate" or browse it here:… – Ted Gould Feb 9 '11 at 2:48

Documentation and example code for doing this can be found on the Developer Portal

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This page no longer exists. – Robie Basak Apr 13 '15 at 21:47

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