I install bibisco, which is portable application based on java and comes wiith its own jre so no need to install anything, extract it and run it type of thing.

Executable is named "bibisco" and does not have an icon because it gets default icon.

When we execute it, it appears in launcher with a nice green n white icon.

I right clicked on it and "make a link"ed the link does not have .desktop extension and if I use "less bibisco" then the link file opens up as crazy symbols. which means I can't use .desktop file related trick.

How do I change icons of such link files? Especially how do I set the icon it shows while running?

I am windows convert I mean some functionality like in windows where one could go in properties and get icon from some exe or .dll file.


1 Answer 1


If it weren't obvious, yes, Windows and Linux are two different beasts. I understand this question was asked a year ago, but I will still answer an unanswered question to the best of my ability.

Linux doesn't use the same type of linking method you're used to with Windows. Linux uses Hard Links and Soft Links; Read here for more information. The most commonly used are Soft Links: a shortcut to a file or directory.

In an effort to provide the most detail in my answer, I tried to look deeper into the file. I came up with this:

The Linux file of Bibisco does not seem to ship with an icon. The executable doesn't seem to have UTF-8 encoding -- in other words, that's why it looks like garbled symbols. This isn't definite, as I didn't play with the settings in my text editors to look, so this is just my observation.

So, the best thing I can come up with is to Make your own .desktop file and Make your own icon.

Making Your Own Icon

It isn't as specialized as Windows, where you need a .ico formatted image (or a pack thereof) to set an image to a folder, or a shortcut. Linux is a little more friendly, instead allowing you to use .png images or .svg vectors. In some cases, you can even use .xpm images to create them. Arch Linux Wiki

In the case of bibisco, you can either make your own, or crop one from an existing logo. The option is yours.


I use Version 1.5.0, and I found the banner of bibisco (the image at the splash screen) in the folder of its root directory > WebContent > img . I’m assuming that is the same location for most of the other bibisco versions as well.

You can crop it to a square “bi” image like the Windows icon is, by loading up GIMP ([Should still be] Standard in Ubuntu) and selecting the Crop Tool. Then Save As... a .png file wherever you want (Best next to the executable itself).


Pull up GIMP like before, and create a new image about 80-100 pixels (px) squared. This is what I ended up making, but it still works. Go ahead and make some kind of graphic you want to be representative of bibisco and save it as a .png as before.

If you want to make one as close to the original style as possible, the bibisco splash title uses Courier font, and the ‘i’ has a yellow square dot.

The .desktop File

The Desktop file is a little tricky, and will require you to do a little writing and some directory searching. Don’t worry, the logic behind it won’t bite.

Open up gedit or your text editor of choice (or right-click on the desktop and select Create New... > Empty File), and fill in the information in the code block. All of it.

[Desktop Entry]

# Can be either Application (An executable), URL (Internet link), or directory.

GenericName=Novel Writing Software
# Short description of the software or file.

# The path to the executable file/program.

# The path to the image of choice (png, svg...)


Replace “ you ” with your username, and “/path/to/file” with the location you unpacked bibisco and/or saved the image.

Once done, Save As... a .desktop file and place it on your desktop. Ta-Da! Done.

That’s the best way I’ve found to solve that problem: Do it yourself.

As far as Soft Links (Basic Shortcuts) are concerned, from my experience on GNOME 3, all it takes is Right-click > Properties, and clicking on the icon image to find another to replace it. I will still recommend using a .desktop file, as it has some perks over linking.

Hope this helps!

Disclaimer: I no longer use Ubuntu, as I've transferred completely to Fedora. Some of the information here may not be correct, though I have attempted to get as much of it to be correct. This guide has been written to be comprehensive in other like situations.

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