I just installed lxde to boot into when laptop is using battery, but I really miss at least a simple search feature, I am used to Unity so I find myself losing too much time navigating on the menus, given that the LXDE menu is just a list with a basic categorization. I would prefer to avoid creating shortcuts everywhere if possible.


Forget about that, there's nothing like that for the LXDE menu, use Synapse.

Install it from the terminal: sudo apt-get install synapse

Synapse review with screenshots http://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2010/11/synapse-gnome-do-launcher-app-review-ubuntu

The correct, fancy name for it is semantic launcher BTW :)

Other related stuff:
Zeitgeist - indexing tool used by Synapse
Gnome Do - another launcher similar to Synapse, older

  • I can't find it in the repositories now. Is it discontinued or what? – Mina Michael Jul 28 '14 at 19:26
  • it sounds kinda heavyweight. will it run ok on old hardware (the reason i'm running lubuntu/lxde)? – hwjp Nov 26 '14 at 13:26
  • You have to add a PPA to run synapse on Ubuntu 15.04: askubuntu.com/a/624696/34298 – rubo77 May 17 '15 at 0:20

Kupfer provides a simple menu searcher activated from a global keyboard shortcut.

sudo apt-get install kupfer

By default you show Kupfer using the global keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Space.


A quick video review can be found here.

  • Although your answer is 100% correct, it might also become 100% useless if that link is moved, changed, merged into another one or the main site just disappears... :-( Therefore, please edit your answer, and copy the relevant steps from the link into your answer, thereby guaranteeing your answer for 100% of the lifetime of this site! ;-) You can always leave the link in at the bottom of your answer as a source for your material... – Fabby Feb 5 '16 at 0:34
  • Can somebody update the answer with correct link? – Woeitg Feb 18 '16 at 9:50
  • Is there a way to make it show several results? For example typing 'chrom' and seeing Chromium and Chrome – golimar Nov 12 '18 at 15:34

XFCE provides an excellent app finder. You can install it with

sudo apt-get install xfce4-appfinder
  • doesn't it need the xfce4 panel in order to function? – user47206 Jul 3 '18 at 10:26
  • @cipricus It seems to need only the xfce4-appfinder and xfconf packages and some libs, total 1 MB download and 5 MB installed – golimar Nov 12 '18 at 15:42
  • @golimar - Thanks. No need for such tools in 18.10. – user47206 Nov 12 '18 at 16:02

Lubuntu 18.10 with LXQt desktop has two search tools by default:

  • The Applications Menu

enter image description here

  • The Runner (lxqt-runner)

enter image description here

Their shortcuts are configurable, including the "Super" key; under Preferences>LXQt Settings>LXQt Configurations settings>Shortcut keys.

  • never heard of LXQt, is it replacing LXDE or is it an alternative? – golimar Nov 12 '18 at 16:55
  • @golimar - Not only it is the new default desktop of Lubuntu in 18.10 and probably after that, but it represents a change also in that it is a Qt desktop. If you are interested I have posted a number of questions and answers on LXQt on both askubuntu and Unix&Linux, you can search with "cipricus" and "lxqt". If you are using Lubuntu 18.04 and want to use 18.10 I would recommend a clean re-install because of the gtk-qt discrepancies. – user47206 Nov 12 '18 at 17:15
  • @golimar - I guess it is at least as light as LXDE by default with openbox as window manager. (I prefer a more heavy customization myself, with kwin as window manager and dolphin as file manager, entailing the installation of the Plasma desktop - which I do not use, but which is installed). - The two search tools mentioned above come by default. – user47206 Nov 12 '18 at 17:24

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