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Overriding & Enrich Your .desktop Files With Jumplists!

Previously I demonstrated an example how to use the Jumplists from the developer side of view. But Jumplists are also cool for users.

Imagine if from Firefox Icon in dash, we could

  • Start Firefox in safe mode
  • Start Firefox in GTK3
  • Even Launch A Chromium Game!

That would be like that:


Angry, not Agry.. Another typo :/

We can do that we 2 easy steps.

1. Override Desktop File

First we will override Firefox .desktop file, so we won’t mess up with our system, or lose our changes in case of an update.

$ cp /usr/share/applications/firefox.desktop ~/.local/share/applications/

That will force Shell to use the user defined .desktop file instead of the system-wide one.

2. Add Our New Actions

We will edit the .desktop to add our new actions

$ gedit ~/.local/share/applications/firefox.desktop

In the very end of this file we add the actions we want to invoke.


[Desktop Action AngryBirds]
Exec=/usr/bin/google-chrome --app=
Name=Chrome Angry Birds

[Desktop Action safeMode]
Exec=firefox  -safe-mode
Name=Safe Mode

[Desktop Action GTK3]
Name=Firefox GTK3

I guess you understand you need to have firefox-gtk3 and google-chrome to do that, right? ;)


Jumplists also work in Overview!

You can do that for any .desktop file, for any application. Basically you can have multi-purpose generic icons, that can launch various applications. Another way of grouping, opposite to custom application folders that are also available in GNOME 3.12!

Oh, this tip is for GNOME 3.12 only ;)

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