I'm using standard Ubuntu 20.04

I have a folder of backgrounds (all public domain) that I use on my (necessary and unavoidable) Windows 10 partition, as a slideshow, for my desktop background.

I want to use the same backgrounds on my Ubuntu 20.04 partition, but I cannot find a way to keep the folder inside e.g. my Pictures folder, and then set them to rotate as a slideshow for my ubuntu background.

I got fed up and attempted to put them inside my /usr/share/backgrounds/ folder, and deleted the entire contents, replacing everything with just the images.

This was obviously a mistake, as now I cannot select anything in Backgrounds in the Settings app.

Could someone perhaps help me, either with a way to use the folder as a slideshow, or send me the contents of your /usr/share/backgrounds/ folder so that I can at least have the standard backgrounds back, or perhaps you have a third option?

Thanks kindly in advance


2 Answers 2


You have to simply use the power of APT to restore folder contents:

sudo apt-get install --reinstall \
$(dpkg -S /usr/share/backgrounds/ | sed "s/,//g" | sed "s|: /usr/share/backgrounds||")
  • 1
    Good one but wont work if he did what he said: " /usr/share/backgrounds/ folder, and deleted the entire contents" :)
    – Rinzwind
    Jul 4, 2020 at 12:25
  • The files are still listed/saved in dpkg database. Just tested the method - it works.
    – N0rbert
    Jul 4, 2020 at 12:26
  • Thank you, N0rbert. That worked! Thank you for your kind help!
    – etsnyman
    Jul 4, 2020 at 12:40
  • Looks more like the power of dpkg+sed than APT... Anyway, the two sed calls can be golfed into a single one: sed -e "s@,\|: /usr/share/backgrounds@@g"
    – Ruslan
    Jul 4, 2020 at 21:11
sudo apt-get install --reinstall ubuntu-wallpapers-focal

reinstalls the wallpapers from focal. Change focal to another name for that release. Like so for 19:10:

sudo apt-get install --reinstall ubuntu-wallpapers-eoan

Could someone perhaps help me, either with a way to use the folder as a slideshow

Easiest method: use a tool for it Wallch or Slidewall or Drapes (kde tool), or Wallpaper-tray.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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