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How do I enable auto-arrange (not just "auto-align") for desktop icons, like in Windows?

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In 11.04 when you right-click on the desktop there is an option "Organize Desktop By Name". Is that what you were looking for? – Nitin Venkatesh Jun 6 '11 at 16:43
@nitstorm: That's likely what I was looking for, except that I have Ubuntu 10.04. :\ I guess I should've mentioned that in the question. – Mehrdad Jun 7 '11 at 0:46
This option has been there for long, but been renamed a couple of times. Maybe it's something like "Cleanup by name" or similar (it should be the one above the auto-align checkbox). However, this is a one-time action and is not triggered automatically. – htorque Jun 7 '11 at 13:26
up vote 7 down vote accepted

There's no such feature to enable in Ubuntu. See this wishlist bug report about the feature request (it's from 2005...).

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Right-click on Desktop and click on Clean up by name

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Now, where is the 'auto' part? This changes the icon order exactly once when you trigger it. – htorque Jun 7 '11 at 13:27

Solution for Lubuntu(PCManFM):

  1. go to /home/USER/.config/pcmanfm/default/ or /home/USER/.config/pcmanfm/lubuntu/ -change USER with your user name
  2. sudo nano pcmanfm.conf
  3. go to section "[desktop]"
  4. change sort_by to sort_by=2 (if you want to sort by name)
  5. log out -> log in -> Tadaaa :)

I'm not an expert, probably there is some nicer way to do that with bash script or something..but this works and it is needed to be done only once. About sorting numbers I'm not sure which one is for what and didn't find any useful info, so you'll need to discover it by yourself by playing or finding some info.

I'm not sure would something similar work for Ubuntu and nautilus.

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