When browsing the Software Center, I noticed that certain packages have icons - like Blender, the Gimp, etc.

How can I give the packages in my PPA an icon?

Also, when someone brings up the description of the package, it shows a screenshot. How can I do that too?

3 Answers 3


Software Center gets it's metadata (including icons) from desktop files in /usr/share/app-install/. The packages app-install-data and app-install-data-partner are installed by default and include desktop files for most of the items available in the software center.

The app-install-data package is automatically generated for each release, so packages available in the ubuntu repositories can just add an X-AppInstall-Package item to the .desktop file and wait for the next ubuntu release.

There's not really anything you can do for packages in PPAs. There have been proposals to change this, but I don't think anything has come of them. It's currently listed as an "Unresolved Issue" at https://wiki.ubuntu.com/SoftwareCenter


You need to have your program in the official debian/ubuntu repositories, and then anyone can upload a screenshot to http://screenshots.debian.net. Unfortunately I don't think there is any way to have a screenshot for packages in PPAs.

  • Does that include the icons too? Aug 6, 2010 at 22:49
  • @George, I haven't been able to find anything about icons, it might be a software center thing.
    – Isaiah
    Aug 6, 2010 at 22:53

For the icon, you need to create a great one ;) and install it under /usr/share/icons/*. Then you'll need to give the path to the application icon somewhere[1] into the desktop menu for your app.

[1] I don't know the actual way to do that in a package; you'll have to find the way.

  • I don't see how this answers either of my questions. Aug 7, 2010 at 1:47
  • @George: The icons in the Software Center are the, let's say, "official application icon". So, if your app has it's own icon, it will be displayed when your package is accepted into any of the repositories used by the Software Center. As ~cscarney and Dor have already written, the Software Center doesn't use PPAs.
    – Xuacu
    Aug 8, 2010 at 0:46

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