On Ubuntu 19.10, I disable tracker because I do not like how my computer is overheating for several minutes after startup, and because I prefer full text search not be enabled in the file manager by default. The "Star" feature relies on Tracker and therefore does not work when tracker is disabled.

No option to disable the "Starred" folder is exposed in the Nautilus preferences, nor is a dconf setting available. The file user-dirs-dir determines the "special user folders" displayed in the left pane, but not the "Recent" or "Starred" items.

The question is: can the "Starred" item in the left pane (bookmark pane) of Files (nautilus) be removed?

  • @starkus, vanadium, do either of you have experience with GTK Inspector? Perhaps, you could use "CSS" to hide what you don't want to see?
    – DK Bose
    Dec 8, 2019 at 13:12
  • @JusticeforMonica I have no clue about GTK Inspector :-)
    – vanadium
    Dec 8, 2019 at 13:52

1 Answer 1


There are a couple of not that trivial ways to remove the "Starred" item in the left bar of nautilus. The second option involves editing source code and recompiling. I will only cover the first way here.

1 - Create a folder to store the override

mkdir ~/.config/nautilus/ui

2 - Extract the resource description of the main window:

gresource extract /bin/nautilus \
/org/gnome/nautilus/ui/nautilus-window.ui \
> ~/.config/nautilus/ui/nautilus-window.ui

3 - Edit the properties of the GtkPlacesSidebar object: open the file you created in the previous step:

gedit ~/.config/nautilus/ui/nautilus-window.ui

and change the property show-starred-location to false as in following code snippet:

<object class="GtkPlacesSidebar" id="places_sidebar">
<property name="show-recent">False</property>
<property name="show-starred-location">False</property>

4 - Set the environment variable to make GLib use this override:

export G_RESOURCE_OVERLAYS="/org/gnome/nautilus/ui=$HOME/.config/nautilus/ui"

5 - You also need to set this via ~/.pam_environment, because Nautilus is started via D-Bus:

gedit ~/.pam_environment

and add following line

G_RESOURCE_OVERLAYS DEFAULT="/org/gnome/nautilus/ui=/home/confetti/.config/nautilus/ui"

where you change "confetti" by your own login name.

(with thanks to JusticeforMonica and DK Bose for the hints)

You need to log out and back in before this will take effect.

  • 1
    <property name="show-recent">False</property> does not exist for me (ubuntu 20.04)
    – Ufos
    Nov 14, 2020 at 14:07
  • 1
    I added <property name="show-recent">False</property>, but, unfortunately, it did nothing. However, with your recipe I removed starred.
    – Ufos
    Nov 14, 2020 at 14:11
  • Had to log out and then back in for this to take effect.
    – electrovir
    Mar 13, 2021 at 1:15
  • @electrovir thank you, I added this, and in the mean time I corrected gresource: I apparently missed the comment of @Ufos who hinted to this error, for which also thanks.
    – vanadium
    Mar 13, 2021 at 9:56
  • @Ufos, show-recent is another topic about the Recent folder, which is controlled by gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.privacy remember-recent-files false, value false means hides it..
    – Xiang
    Feb 10 at 9:33

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