I want to create a home build lens for the 12.04 dash and liked to use one of the default lenses as example. I'm thus for looking where I can find the files of these lenses.

  • just the folders with lens locations won't be all you need. you also need .service files and a couple other things. you should either use the quickly lens template or follow along with some python lens tutorials you can find on google saravananthirumuruganathan.wordpress.com/2011/08/05/… expresses some other files to be concerned with Commented Jul 22, 2012 at 18:32

1 Answer 1


There are three essential files that compose a lens.

  • A .lens file stored in /usr/share/unity/lenses. This details the name, icon, and D-Bus address of a lens for Unity.

  • A .service file stored in /usr/share/dbus-1/services. This points to the location of a lens' query executable; D-Bus will see this executable and act as IPC between it and Unity.

  • Finally, the executable of your lens may be placed anywhere in the filesystem (you specify where in the .service file), but canonically these are located in /usr/lib.

Look at /usr/share/unity/lenses/video/video.lens, /usr/share/dbus-1/services/unity-lens-video.service, and /usr/lib/unity-lens-video/unity-lens-video for a concrete example of how these files work together.

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