In Xfce, Alt-F2 opens a dialog "Application Finder" (xfce4-appfinder -c). How to customize the $PATH of Xfce's session that is used for auto-completing and running the command?

(It's not the $PATH of .profile or .bashrc)

  • What version of Xfce? Well, you may consider using a different application launcher instead. One possibility is xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin. Another is gmrun; I'm pretty confident that gmrun uses the same path as Bash.
    – landroni
    Jan 30, 2014 at 7:55

2 Answers 2


I'm a bit late to the party, but for some reason Appfinder was finding things in my customized $PATH for a long time, before suddenly it stopped some time ago.

So, if you're using xinit, then put a file into /etc/X11/Xsession.d/ before the 55xfce4-session file. Like this:

/etc/X11/Xsession.d$ cat 49add-user-path 
[ -d "$HOME/bin" ] && PATH="$HOME/bin:$PATH"

And log out, log in, and $PATH is propagated nicely among running components.


Xfce does not check .profile, and .bashrc is only used for interactive bash shells. If you want to add path variables, one way is to add them to ~/.pam_environment. However, the syntax is a little bit different from the usual profile files.

Below is an example to add ~/bin to the path used by Application finder:

  • Note that this might be Ubuntu-specific, not a feature from XFCE itself: I tried it on Debian Jessie (XFCE 4.10) and it didn't work, Alt+F2 still does not see the programs in ~/bin.
    – anol
    Aug 28, 2016 at 15:18

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