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'm running Ubuntu 12.04. I want to change the user picture in the 'fast user switching menu'.

I've followed this thread and managed to change the picture on the log-on screen by changing ~/.face.

However, when I click the cogwheel in the top right of the screen, a menu drops down which includes my username and old picture. Is there a way to change this smaller menu picture?

share|improve this question
up vote 0 down vote accepted

The user picture in the quick switch menu is the same as the picture linked with the user account. So if you go to your account settings and change the picture for your account there, it will update in the quick switch menu aswell. (might require a logout or restart to actually update the picture shown)

share|improve this answer
Changing the picture via User Accounts is identical to overwriting the ~/.face file, which is what I'd done. It seems I needed to restart the machine, rather than just log out and back in again, which is what I'd tried. – Richard Horrocks Feb 17 '14 at 11:37

There is another way where you don't need to change ~/.face

  1. Click on your username in the top menu bar (probably right next to your clock and other indicators)
  2. Click on User Accounts
  3. Select the appropriate account
  4. Click on the picture
  5. Click on browse for more pictures
  6. List item
  7. Click on browse for more pictures
  8. Select the correct picture
  9. Logout & log back in

Et voila!

share|improve this answer

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.