I've attached Nautilus to Unity launcher in Ubuntu 12.04. In Ubuntu 12.04 the default "Files" icon for Nautilus file manager is not as pretty as a "Nautilus Shell" icon. But when I search in Dash for Nautilus it gives "Files" link to Nautilus, which has grey and quite plain file-cabinet icon. How do I change this grey file cabinet icon to the Nautilus' shell icon, which suits well to my icon theme?


From /usr/share/applications/ copy the files

  1. brasero-nautilus.desktop
  2. nautilus.desktop
  3. nautilus-folder-handler.desktop

to ~/.local/share/applications/. Open them with gedit and change the Icon field.

If what you want is a standard icon, you can give the icon name (like system-file-manager for the file cabinet, vlc for vlc, etc).

I don't think the nautilus shell falls under this category. If so, you can download the required icon onto your computer and provide the full path to it in the Icon field. Make sure there are no spaces in the file path.

EDIT: How to find which files to copy

  1. Open /usr/share/applications/ in nautilus.
  2. Wait for it load completely.
  3. Copy the files with file cabinet icon to ~/.local/share/applications/.
  • Thank you,, S Prasanth. I tried to find these three files and succeed with only one: brasero-nautilus.desktop. Two others dont exist. Should I create them? I like the brasero burners icon, do I still have to modify the brasero-nautilus.desktop file in order to change Nautilus icon? Can I just find this "file cabinet" icon, rename it to the .old and put the one I like in its place instead? – Ivan Ivanov Oct 30 '13 at 21:39
  • Run ls /usr/share/applications | grep nautilus to find the nautilus launchers. Don't create the ones you could not find, you may have problems then. If you want to modify the icon files, they should be in are in /usr/share/icons I think - but there are ALOT - for different sizes, themes etc - Also, any changes made are not always registered, probably because the orignal icon is stored in the cache or something. Basically, do S Prasanth's method, that should work. – Wilf Oct 30 '13 at 23:37
  • I got the list of files by doing what wilf suggested, and then checking which of the listed launchers had the file cabinet icon (its called system-file-manager). So, yeah if a file doesn't exist don't create it, but I'm sure they exist. If brasero-nautilus.desktop also has system-file-manager as its icon, then changing it will not change burner icons. Finally, it is not recommended to change the image files in the default icon directories for reasons given above and because an update will revert things back to original. I've put up an easier way to find which files to copy in my answer. – S Prasanth Oct 31 '13 at 9:20

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