How do I remove the "Trash" icon from GNOME 3 desktop? I'm running Ubuntu 17.10 with GNOME shell.


Up to Ubuntu 18.10

You may use (GNOME) Tweaks (aka GNOME Tweak Tool) to do that. First install it (if it is not installed) by running the following command in Terminal

sudo apt install gnome-tweaks


sudo apt install gnome-tweak-tool

Launch Tweaks and go to Desktop section. Then toggle off (or uncheck) the Trash (or Rubbish bin or Wastebasket) option under "Icons on Desktop".

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Alternatively you may run the following command in Terminal:

gsettings set org.gnome.nautilus.desktop trash-icon-visible false
  • 1
    Just tested it in a VM. Works as advertised. Tested the GUI solution with tweak tools and the command line solution.
    – Videonauth
    Oct 17 '17 at 22:20
  • 1
    Can also confirm the terminal command works as advertised Apr 28 '18 at 7:18
  • For the CLI-oriented, the command is gnome-tweaks. Sep 15 '19 at 19:04
  • @tomislav They're the same thing.
    – pomsky
    Sep 16 '19 at 5:22
  • 1
    @scott Yes, because the way desktop icons are handled is changed fundamentally (handler changed from Nautilus to a shell extension), and this is the case since Ubuntu 19.04.
    – pomsky
    Oct 30 '19 at 13:35

After following Exien's answer on Ubuntu 20.04, the GUI became extremely slow and unresponsive. I had to reinstall Ubuntu even after reverting the value to true which did not fix the problem it generates.

In Ubuntu 20.04

It is actually easy:

  1. Search for Extensions (preinstalled) in the Activities overview.

    Search for Extensions (comes installed ready)

  2. Click on the Settings gear icon next to the Desktop Icons toggle

    Click on the settings gear icon next to the Desktop Icons toggle

  3. Toggle icons as required

    Toggle icons as required

  • 1
    It's probably just a red herring; your issues may have appeared coincidentally after running the command, but most likely only the command itself is not the cause. Running the command does (under the hood) exactly what toggling off in the Extensions app does.
    – pomsky
    Jun 8 '20 at 10:22

Ubuntu 19.04 and later

The following terminal command works:

gsettings set org.gnome.shell.extensions.desktop-icons show-trash false
  • Thank you for this. It's annoying that the developers didn't just provide this option in the properties menu of the icon or in a more accessible place in settings
    – Nav
    May 2 '21 at 15:23

The extensions don't work for ubuntu 21.04 just right click on the desktop and select "settings" you will find your options there


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