Is there a way for me to get Rhythmbox to exit when I press the exit button? If not, is there a way to remove the exit button all together? I keep getting tripped up trying to close the music player.

I feel silly posting on something that has been raged about like this, but I can't find a way to change it. By now, I thought someone would have made a plugin for it.


4 Answers 4


Close-on-Hide External Plugin

Well, I took up the challenge and wrote an external plugin that does just this - clicking the close button (window "x" button) really does mean quit.

In the default way of working, Ubuntu has a specific patch to ensure that when music is playing, clicking the close button minimizes the application.

The reason for this is that some people like music to be playing, but they don't actually want to see the application visibly on the desktop. Control of rhythmbox then passes to the Sound Indicator.

However, for those that do not like this behaviour, you cannot by default quit the application via the close button when something is playing.

how to install for RB3.0 and later

sudo apt-get install git
cd ~/.local/share/rhythmbox/plugins
git clone https://github.com/fossfreedom/close-on-hide

Start rhythmbox and enable the "close-on-hide" plugin in the plugins menu (Tools - Plugins menu)

If you are using RB2.99 and earlier - edit the .plugin file in the close-on-hide folder and change the line Loader=python3 to read Loader=python

  • You are a beautiful person. I'll check this as correct as soon as I get Ubuntu booting again (Windows 8.1 update 1 killed grub).
    – Kenkron
    Apr 28, 2014 at 15:11
  • It works beautifully, and you are a great person. (Sorry for the wait between the question and the "mark as correct"). I love you. This is the best.
    – Kenkron
    Aug 29, 2014 at 14:18
  • +1000 for writing a plugin to be able to answer the question with 'yes'. Sep 25, 2015 at 10:01
  • Beautiful work. Thank you very much. This plugin works perfectly on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS with Rhythmbox 3.3.
    – trinkner
    May 16, 2017 at 18:15
  • Worth noting that you cannot by default kill Rhythmbox with the X even when something is not playing (except with killall). This seems to be a part of the general trend by app developers towards assuming that their app is sovereign and no-one will ever want to quit it. Sadly the instructions don't work for 3.4.4 because ~/.local/share/rhythmbox/plugins didn't exist, and even when created and populated, RB ignores it. But thank you 1000× for pointing the way. Dec 26, 2023 at 10:12

The default, only behavior with Rhythmbox is to 'hide in the background' when you hit the 'x'.

To work around this you need to "Quit" Rhythmbox by going to File -> Quit in the menu, or using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Q.

That will actually kill the application.

You're not the only one; Many have complained about this in the past.


To add to fossfreedom's answer (since I can't comment on it because of lack of reputation) for Ubuntu 20 the directory for plugins seems to be /usr/lib/rhythmbox/plugins now.

sudo apt-get install git
cd /usr/lib/rhythmbox/plugins
git clone https://github.com/fossfreedom/close-on-hide

Worked for me.


In ubuntu 14.04 I have to open a terminal window while the rhythmbox window is still visible and type:


Hit enter and move the mouse cursor which has now turned into an X, over the rhythmbox window and click. This will kill rhythmbox.

It is still a bit of messing around just to kill a program so I have installed Amarok which does what I want it to do when I hit quit.

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