In Gnome shell calendar menu, when I click on "Open Calendar" it tries to open Evolution - even if it's not installed - Is it possible to change the default calendar?

Gnome Shell Calendar

P.S. Gnome shell Calendar does not follow default calendar application


Type the following in a terminal.

For Thunderbird:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.default-applications.office.calendar exec thunderbird

For Chromium

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.default-applications.office.calendar exec "chromium-browser 'https://www.google.com/calendar'"
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  • 11
    it do open the lightning calendar, but it does not sync the calendar itself and the tasks! – suli8 Oct 22 '11 at 18:41

In Gnome 3.8 use gvfs-mime to manipulate calendar mime association:


gvfs-mime --query text/calendar

set your app:

gvfs-mime --set text/calendar google-calendar.desktop

whereas google-calendar.desktop can be created like this:

gnome-desktop-item-edit --create-new ~/.local/share/applications/google-calendar.desktop

Then fill the dialog with the following as a command to open browser with google calendar:

xdg-open https://www.google.com/calendar

Then restart gnome-shell or logout/login to reload the settings.

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  • I do not seem to have the gnome-desktop-item-edit command available – Pierre Jan 29 '14 at 11:03
  • gvfs-mime is deprecated, use gio mime MIMETYPE [HANDLER] instead: If no handler is given, lists registered and recommended applications for the mimetype. If a handler is given, it is set as the default handler for the mimetype. – Pablo Bianchi Oct 16 '18 at 1:00

open system settings in the upper right and go to system info then default applications and change it there!

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Since this is still (like two years later) a problem I had to google, here is a fiddly workaround for anyone else trying to set up Lightning in place of Evolution and if the Evolution-mirror plugin does not work for you (has not been updated since last year at this point). Unfortunately you still need to have Evolution installed.

Create a network ics calendar in a local file (or wherever you like) using either Evolution or Lightning. Point both Evolution and Lightning to it and any changes made in Lightning will be reflected in the calendar menu (events for today and tomorrow).

Combine that with answer #2 above to change the "open calendar" to point to Thunderbird and you'll (hardly ever) have to look at Evolution again!

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  • Exactly what I wanted to do. Using the described synchronization via the locally saved .ics calendar files I do get now updates about events in my Thunderbird's Lightning calendars in real time in the gnome-shell calendar applet. Though admittedly it is a hassle to keep evolution* apps installed just for this purpose... – LUser Apr 8 at 19:24

I repost this from a user named Wonder

[edited slightly] Thunderbird is not a calendar application unless you tune it up with an extension. therefore it shouldn't be in there, but... if you really want it there,you need to perform the following two steps (as root).

# vi /usr/share/applications/mozilla-thunderbird.desktop  
# update-desktop-database -q

In editing the desktop file, append the Mimetype line with text/calendar;text/x-vcard;


I tried this, the app does show up, but I have not seen the calendar menu widget synch.

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