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When copying or moving a large file I have noticed the icon for the copy dialog indicator is a mouse pointer.

Is this suppose to be, or is it a bug?

This is really confusing.

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closed as off-topic by Lucio, Braiam, Warren Hill, Seth, BuZZ-dEE Dec 15 '13 at 21:41

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Bug reports and problems specific to development version of Ubuntu should be reported on Launchpad so that developers can see, track and fix these issues." – Lucio, Braiam, Warren Hill, Seth, BuZZ-dEE
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

screenshot?, i don't really remember seeing that lol... – Uri Herrera May 9 '11 at 0:28
@ uri : When you copy something a mouse pointer icon appears on the panel. clicking on it gives you the option to make the copy dialog visible (if you have closed the window) @seth : it's probably a rather strange design idea. submit it as a bug noting that it is confusing - i have seen design ideas change after such reports. – Chriskin May 9 '11 at 0:42
and that changes if a different theme is used? – Uri Herrera May 9 '11 at 0:45
Anyone have the discussion or design reason from when it was made that way. – Seth Hikari May 10 '11 at 1:19
Bug in ubuntu-mono-dark the bug was fixed. – Braiam Dec 14 '13 at 15:51
up vote 1 down vote accepted

There was a bug reported that ubuntu-mono-dark (the default icon theme that provides the icons for the appindicators) doesn't have any icon for file operations.

A broader bug was filed and the icons were completely redrawn. Unfortunately, there seems to be no public design discussion between Otto Greenslade (Visual Design Lead) and Daniel Fore (Artist). I couldn't find any IRC logs between chaotic and DanRabbit (their handles). Maybe someone else's IRC searching is better than mine?

Changing The Icons

If you don't like the icon, try this command to see what file operations icons the other themes on your system provide.

find /usr/share/icons -name "system-file-manager-panel.*" | sed -e"s/.*/<img src=\"file:\/\/&\" alt=\"&\" \/>&<p\/>/" > ~/icons.html
xdg-open ~/icons.html

I have elementary and faenza installed, but there still aren't any good options.

So what I did was use the fog icon from ubuntu-mono-dark. It looks like three squiggly lines and I think that represents motion (moving files) better than a pointer:

weather-fog.svg from ubuntu-mono-light (since that should show up better on AU's light background)

Then you can create your own lightweight theme (as I described here) that replaces the icon you dislike with your preferred icon. In my example I'm using weather-fog.svg.

# Create a new theme containing the icon we want
mkdir -p ~/.icons/mono-seth/actions/scalable
ln -s /usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-dark/status/16/weather-fog.svg ~/.icons/mono-seth/actions/scalable/.
# Copy the theme config and modify it for our new theme
cp /usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-dark/index.theme        ~/.icons/mono-seth/.
sed -i -e "s/Name=ubuntu-mono-dark/Name=mono-seth/g"    ~/.icons/mono-seth/index.theme
sed -i -e "s/Inherits=/Inherits=ubuntu-mono-dark,/g"    ~/.icons/mono-seth/index.theme

Now open Appearance and change your icon theme to mono-seth. (If your preferred icon theme is not ubuntu-mono-dark, change Inherits=ubuntu-mono-dark to Inherits=your-theme-here. Make sure the name matches one of the themes in /usr/share/icons or ~/.icons.)

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I find it highly amusing that, out of all obscure topics and unlikely times, the two of us were probably perusing IRC discussions between DanRabbit and chaotic at the same time. – ændrük May 13 '11 at 15:37
After completely my answer I felt very creepy and I'm not sure if I'm reassured or more unsettled to know that we were simultaneously e-stalking. However, I am certain that I'll have a smile on my face for the rest of the day. – idbrii May 13 '11 at 18:44

This depends on the icon theme you choose.

Ubuntu Mono Dark
enter image description here

enter image description here

enter image description here

Hight contrast inverse:
enter image description here

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The icon in question is system-file-manager-panel.svg.

In Ubuntu 10.10 and earlier, the ubuntu-mono-dark theme did not include its own version of the icon, so it was automatically inherited from the Humanity-Dark theme instead. The version in the Humanity-Dark theme portrays a mouse pointer dragging a folder:

Bug #553256

On March 23, 2011, a major complete redraw of all the mono icons was committed which added a replacement for the inherited icon that better fit the mono icon theme.

I cannot find any written justification for the decision to use a mouse pointer in the image, but given its history my speculation is that this is simply a case of descent with modification; the new icon is a functionally arbitrary stylization of the previous one.

Whatever the justification is, it is clear that the image was chosen intentionally and is not a software bug.

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Awesome answer, both you and @pydave , I had to give it to him for having the Artist and Design Lead names in. – Seth Hikari May 13 '11 at 19:39
@sladen Have any insight on this? – ændrük May 13 '11 at 23:24

I would guess that's because you often use the mouse cursor for copy and paste as well as move operations of files.

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design wise..that would just be slly,they could just have a progress bar-like icon and would be better – Uri Herrera May 10 '11 at 3:24
I didn't understand what it meant the first time too, that was the only explanation I could come up with for my self, but you're right its silly. – K. Hendrik May 11 '11 at 0:34

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