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How can I add new programs to the launcher in Ubuntu?

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up vote 59 down vote accepted

The other portion if I understand you correctly should be pretty simple. Just launch the application you want to attach to the "start menu" or rather dock panel, side bar, but officially it is called the "Launcher" and right click the icon and lock to launcher.

enter image description here

Method 2:

You can also drag applications directly from the Dash into the launcher.

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+1 Nice one........... – Pankaj Kumar Apr 16 '13 at 7:20
There's a wrinkle here for applications that run in a terminal (e.g. iPython), since they appear in the launcher as a terminal rather than with their own icon. However, you can simply drag the icon from the dash into the launcher. – Ned Sep 12 '13 at 11:04
I tried this trick but when I closed the application, the launch button disappeared from launcher and I have to start my application from the terminal again. Please help. – Marta Cz-C Jul 29 '14 at 11:18
This didn't work for me. The icons didn't persist when I rebooted. The other answer fixed the problem – k_g Feb 3 at 5:55

To add applications to the Dash (then you press the windows key), Go to ~/.local/share/applications and create your .desktop files there.

For example:

  • Open Nautilus
  • Browse to ~/.local/share/applications (ctrl + h to show hidden folders/files)
  • Right click and choose create empty document
  • Name the file testing.desktop
  • Enter in a valid desktop contents (sample below)
  • Save it and now that entry will show when you press the windows key under applications.

A much easier way...

sudo apt-get install alacarte

Then run alacarte and create menu entries as you like. They will show in the unity launcher.

Sample desktop file (from sublime text 2)

#!/usr/bin/env xdg-open  

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Sublime Text 2
# Only KDE 4 seems to use GenericName, so we reuse the KDE strings.
# From Ubuntu's language-pack-kde-XX-base packages, version 9.04-20090413.
GenericName=Text Editor
Icon="/opt/Sublime Text 2/Icon/48x48/sublime_text.png"
Icon[en_US]=/opt/Sublime Text 2/Icon/128x128/sublime_text.png

[NewWindow Shortcut Group]
Name=New Window
Exec=subl -n
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By "Launcher Thingy (then you press the windows key)", do you mean the dash? – iBelieve Nov 30 '12 at 21:15
Yes...... That's what i said dash (hunts for the edit link) – coteyr Nov 30 '12 at 21:20
Here is a link to more details about creating desktop files: – iBelieve Nov 30 '12 at 21:28
After this, reload the files using – Camil Staps May 31 '15 at 10:45
If it doesn't show up, drag the desktop file on unity. (Ubuntu 15.10) – iamcreasy Nov 19 '15 at 7:39

protected by Community Oct 3 '14 at 6:33

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