All files, no matter their type, and no matter what application I associate with the type, open with my default browser (Firefox), which then asks me to choose an application. This is very annoying.

It doesn't matter if I double-click, right-click and explicitly choose with which application to open the file, or even xdg-open file.name, the file always opens with Firefox.


I believe it happened after I upgraded to Ubuntu 18.04 a few weeks ago. I have now upgraded to 20.04 for this reason, but it did not help.

More information

Consider CSV files for instance... I have this association visible via xdg-mime:

$ xdg-mime query default text/csv

I have this association visible in "Files":

enter image description here

I also have this (just in case):

$ cat /usr/share/applications/mimeinfo.cache | grep csv

Finally, I searched for all mimeapps.list and defaults.list files on my computer, and either they specify nothing, or point to libreoffice-calc.desktop.

Similar questions

I have seen people report similar problems, but nothing discussed there has helped:

Does anyone have any clue?

  • Does it happen if you create/use a new user?
    – WU-TANG
    Dec 10, 2020 at 19:21
  • Interestingly, no. My two new users (one admin and one standard) are free from this problem. Hm...
    – IanS
    Dec 10, 2020 at 20:18
  • I haven't checked into any of this, sorry... but you seem to know the places to check. you can compare all the related files/configs between the two accounts (if you havent done so already)
    – WU-TANG
    Dec 11, 2020 at 2:27
  • It worked. Thanks to you I was able to locate and solve the problem (if not able to understand the exact cause).
    – IanS
    Dec 11, 2020 at 11:08
  • Where was the problem? It can be usefull for others to know. Dec 21, 2020 at 17:21

1 Answer 1


Thanks to @WU-TANG, I was able to determine the file that was causing the problem, namely ~/.config/mimeapps.list. Simply deleting it and restarting fixed the problem.

However, I still don't understand why this was happening. There was nothing obviously wrong with the file's contents, and xdg-mime query default was showing the correct association.

  • Obviously back up the file before deleting it.
    – IanS
    Dec 11, 2020 at 11:07

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