Take the 2-minute tour ×
Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Is there an easy way to create a desktop shortcut for an application in Unity? The ability to right click or drag and drop icons to the desktop in Unity does not seem to be there.

share|improve this question
    
Which version was this? –  chrisjlee Jan 24 '12 at 3:10
    
Please identify which Ubuntu version. –  david6 Jan 28 '12 at 22:41
    
Note: Unity does not use desktop icons, in favor of the launcher (icon bar). You are able to drag icons to the launcher, from within Dash. –  david6 Jan 28 '12 at 22:53
add comment

4 Answers

For Unity

You can search for the application you like to create a desktop shortcut for in the dash and drag it to the desktop. It is best done when your dash is not fully maximized and there are no maximized windows in the background as well.

For Unity-2D

Currently, you can't drag and drop from the dash to create a desktop shortcut. A bug report has been filed regarding this behaviour.

However, you can use gnome-desktop-item-edit to create a new desktop shortcut.

Enter the following command in a terminal:

gnome-desktop-item-edit Desktop --create-new

enter image description here

You will then get the above pop up. Enter the command and other particulars of the application that you are trying to create a desktop shortcut for.

share|improve this answer
    
I love your desktop background! –  Anonymous May 29 '12 at 9:32
3  
@Anonymous Thanks, it is part of the Oneiric wallpaper set. You can download it too. –  jokerdino May 29 '12 at 11:40
1  
I just wanted to add to the Unity 2D solution. It is a great solution, and works even if you're using regular Unity. What I like to do, is that once I've created the Launcher using the gnome-desktop-item-edit command, I move the created command to a sub-folder under my home directory. Once I've done that, then I drag the moved launcher to the Unity dock. That way, the launcher will not constantly stay on my desktop. –  Neil Huang Dec 5 '13 at 6:34
    
I'm not sure why, but I needed to provide a .desktop extension in Ubuntu 12 LTS. –  Paul Lammertsma Feb 4 at 13:44
add comment
  1. Bring up the terminal;

  2. type: gksudo nautilus (in the terminal this brings up a file explorer with root privileges)

  3. Navigate to: /usr/share/applications

  4. Right-click on an existing Icon and and go to 'Properties'

  5. You are looking for a Type: desktop configuration file (application/x-desktop)

  6. when you find one you like; Right-click that file and copy it.

  7. rename and edit it accordingly.
    (common errors occur when; not using lowercase letters, not putting the proper parameters in the command line)

share|improve this answer
    
It is completely unnecessary to be root to do this. –  RolandiXor Sep 4 '13 at 1:24
add comment

Navigate to your application in Nautilus.

Right-click, select "Make Link".

Then drag shortcut to your desktop. Works in current 12.04.

share|improve this answer
add comment

IMO the simplest is to logout, login in the classic mode, create/copy shortcuts and then return to unity (or maybe not:-).

At the same time you can fill up some other launcher, for example Docky, with your "favourite shortcuts" as you do not have the favourites option in the unity launcher.

share|improve this answer
add comment

protected by Community Jan 28 '12 at 22:58

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality answers, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site.

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

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