I would like to pin a file's shortcut to the dock in the Ubuntu 18.04 GNOME desktop so that the file opens directly when I click it, for example a spreadsheet file that opens with LibreOffice Calc. Is this possible?


2 Answers 2


Follow the steps below.

  1. Create a .desktop file (say spreadsheet1.desktop) in ~/.local/share/applications/ directory. You can do that by running the following command in Terminal:

    touch ~/.local/share/applications/spreadsheet1.desktop
  2. Open the file with a text editor, for example by running

    gedit ~/.local/share/applications/spreadsheet1.desktop

    Then add the following lines:

    [Desktop Entry]
    Name=XYZ spreadsheet
    Exec=xdg-open /full/path/to/XYZ-spreadsheet.ods
    Comment=Launch XYZ spreadsheet
  3. Save the file.
  4. Click on "Activities" or "Show Applications" and search for "XYZ spreadsheet". It should appear.

  5. Right click on it and mark as favourite.

Note: The xdg-open command opens the file with the default application associated with the file-type. You can alternatively set

Exec=libreoffice /full/path/to/XYZ-spreadsheet.ods

in the .desktop file to always open the file with LibreOffice Calc.


To add to the answer from @pomsky, if you want to change the icon, refer to this page.

For example, if you click the icon and the referred url is


then replace the Icon value with emblem-favorite.

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