How and where can one edit/remove links to applications in Gnome shell?

To clarify: i mean the list that can be accessed through super -> mouse-click on "All applications" symbol in Favourites panel; alternatively - in the list displayed when something is put into filter textbox.

What i am interested in particular: how can i remove from there programs installed with wine, that had their wineprefix folder deleted.

P.S. I do not have unity and its system->applications menu - for sake of clarity.

  • I think it should be the same. You still want to be able to run the application? and if so, how would you like to run them? – Jacob Vlijm Sep 21 '14 at 17:51
  • Well, i cannot run the application, for one thing, as it is not on hard drive anymore. Only a launcher persists, somewhere. Also, i believe it could be educational for me if i could view/modify launcher contents. – Srv19 Sep 21 '14 at 17:58
  • My answer deals with the main part of your question: "What i am interested in particular: how can i remove from there programs installed with wine, that had their wineprefix folder deleted." The part about editing .desktop files ("links" as you mention it) is really too broad to deal with in one answer; it needs to be more specified, and should be asked in a separate question. – Jacob Vlijm Sep 21 '14 at 20:09

If an application is (still) in the application list, it means that there is still a representing .desktop file of the application in either:




The "orphan" .desktop file should be removed, to remove the application from the application list (or from Dash if you use Unity)

I suspect it is the last mentioned, since you mention wine, and wine sometimes installs (a lot of) .desktop files locally. Normally, when you uninstall an application (not wine applications), the corresponding .desktop files in /usr/share/applications is removed automatically.

Finding the right .desktop file

It can sometimes be a bit difficult to identify the right desktop file, since the file's name does not necessarily match the application's name. By making the (local) desktop file executable, it should be easier to identify, since the displayed name is then the same as the application's name, and the file also shows the application's icon once it is made executable.


If there is an icon remaining in the GNOME Application Menu, that means that there is a '.desktop' file linking that to the Applications Menu. The location of this file is different depending on where you got it from (apt, wine, pacman, snap, etc) and probably your distro (this is for Ubuntu).

If it's from the apt the files will be located in either




For wine applications:




For snap applications:


Sometimes the name of the .desktop file will not match the name of the program - watch out for that.


On the path



sudo rm <your-file-icon>

Worked on Ubuntu 16.04

  • 2
    I did not see any command related to file removal, which in my case could not be done through the GUI. – Leonardo Lima Sep 23 '18 at 7:03

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