Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I've added three custom wallpapers to the /usr/share/backgrounds/ folder using the following Terminal method -

sudo cp /home/master/Downloades/company-wallpaper-1.jpg /usr/share/backgrounds/

However, when I right click on the desktop, select Change Desktop Background, click the + button and select any of the three I added, the desktop does not change and the new image is not displayed with a preview, as the defaults are.

Further more, if I browse to /usr/share/backgrounds/ and try to open them I see the following error

Could not load image 'company-wallpaper-1.jpg'.
Failed to open input stream for file

Yet if I open the image through the /home/master/Downloads/ folder it works just fine.

Can anybody please help me solve this issue? Thanks.

share|improve this question
This is just a guess, but you may need to change permissions and/or ownership. Run and post ls -l from /usr/share/backgrounds (make sure to include at least 1 wallpaper that was already there to compare permissions and ownership to your company wallpaper) – David Oneill Sep 26 '13 at 14:18
Thanks, I did have to change permissions. – David Gard Sep 26 '13 at 15:28
up vote 2 down vote accepted

You have to change the file permissions by using the following code -

chmod -R 777 /usr/share/backgrounds
share|improve this answer
Thanks. I had to in the end use sudo chmod 644 /usr/share/backgrounds/ – David Gard Sep 26 '13 at 15:27

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.