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I am trying to find a way to create a launcher for the desktop and to place it on the Unity launcher panel on the left so as programs are maximized I can hit the launcher and the actual desktop will appear(not a desktop folder), similar to a desktop shortcut in windows. All the answers I found were about general launchers. Is there a way to do this?

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There is no “Show desktop” icon in launcher in ubuntu 12.04,so below steps will show you how to add this icon to launcher by installing myunity

1. Open a terminal by pressing CTL+ALT+T

2. Run below command to install my unity

sudo apt-get install myunity

3. Open my unity from Dash and go to tab desktop and turn on Active “show desktop” icon

4. You are done ,now you can see “Show desktop” icon on launcher now

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Hi & Welcome to AskUbuntu

I'm sure there are other ways too achieve this, but I tried a method which made it very simple & worked like a charm.

Show desktop using myunity

  • Make sure your system is up-to-date or simply run
sudo apt-get update
  • Install MyUnity using below command
sudo apt-get install myunity
  • Once done, open MyUnity and do below;

enter image description here

  • Once you've enabled, an icon launcher will appear as below;

enter image description here

Show desktop using shortcut keys

  • Super+D - (for 11.10 and earlier) This will minimize all the windows & hitting on it again will restore
  • CRTL+Super+D - (for 12.04 and later) This will shows the desktop and hitting on it again will restore back

Hope this helps! :)

Source: What are Unity's keyboard and mouse shortcuts?

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