I use taskcoach to create a list of my tasks.

The data I entered was saved, say, in tasks.tsk on my Desktop. Internally, this is an XML file of specific structure.

Now whenever I open it, it opens in my text editor, like any other XML.

I've tried changing extension to .task and .my_tasks, but associated program is the still the editor.

After googling and reading forums, I've right-clicked the file, and in Properties -> Open With chose TaskCoach.

The file opens in TaskCoach, but any other .XML file gets opened with TaskCoach too!

Q: How do I make ubuntu open .task files in TaskCoach while preserving association .xml -> editor?

  • Just a suggestion, could you re-associate .xml with gedit and see if it helps.
    – Amey Jah
    Commented Aug 3, 2011 at 16:48
  • @Amey tried that. Before I introduced the new mime-type the association was the same, regardless of .xml or .task or .tsk extension. Commented Aug 4, 2011 at 13:08

3 Answers 3


Rename the file you have as _anything_.task (where _anything_ is something suitably descriptive.)

First you need to create an XML file with the extension information in it. (If you wish, copy the text below into a new text file and save it as task.xml.)

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<mime-info xmlns='http://www.freedesktop.org/standards/shared-mime-info'>
<mime-type type="application/taskcouch">
<comment>TaskCoach File</comment>
<comment xml:lang="bg">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="cs">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="de">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="es">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="eu">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="hu">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="it">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="ko">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="nb">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="nl">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="nn">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="sv">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="uk">Taskcoach</comment>
    <comment xml:lang="vi">Taskcoach</comment>
<glob pattern="*.task"/>
<alias type="application/taskcoach"/>

You now need to save or copy this new file into the directory

  • ~/.local/share/mime/packages for a per-user file association or
  • /usr/share/mime/packages for a system-wide file association.

Once that is done, run

update-mime-database [MIME-DIRECTORY]

where [MIME-DIRECTORY] is the previously chosen directory minus the /packages suffix. (Use sudo for the system-wide association.)

Now, open your file manager and right-click on anything.task and select taskcoach as the default program with the open with option in the context menu.

Job done. All .task files will now open with taskcoach!

  • NB You will need to be admin or root to cp file to /packages Commented Aug 3, 2011 at 17:45
  • 1
    I tried doing this for an application installed in my home folder and it doesn't work. I changed the task.xml file above accordingly, copied it to /usr/share/mime/packages and ran sudo update-mime-database /usr/share/mime. Tried logging out and in again to no avail.
    – To Do
    Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 10:00

The file opens in TaskCoach, but any other .XML file gets opened with TaskCoach too!

That happens because they’re all the same MIME type (application/xml).

If you want TaskCoach files to be treated differently from other XML files, you need to configure a new MIME type for them.

I’ve never done that before, but it looks like Gnome has pretty good documentation on how to do it: Add a custom MIME type for all users / individual users.


If you don't want to mess around too much manually, assoGiate is the GUI tool of your choice. See here for further information.


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