Friday, 28 October 2011

How-to: Add Places as Quicklists in Unity

Unity Quicklists Quicklists in various desktop environments can be controversial features. Are they a cheat or a compromise of standards and usability, or a useful ergonomic aid?

Disappointingly, quick-lists are not included as a feature in Ubuntu 11.10. However, you can add your profile's Places as quicklists.


First, copy the current 'Home Folder' launcher file to your home directory. The quickest and easiest way is through the command line - in a Terminal, (Unity Shortcut Ctrl+Alt+T) you can copy-paste the following:

cp /usr/share/applications/nautilus-home.desktop ~/.local/share/applications

The file needs amending using a text editor, for example Gedit:

gedit ~/.local/share/applications/nautilus-home.desktop

You can safely replace the contents of the file with the text below:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Home Folder
Comment=Open your personal folder
TryExec=nautilus
Exec=nautilus --no-desktop
Icon=user-home
Terminal=false
StartupNotify=true
Type=Application
Categories=GNOME;GTK;Core;
OnlyShowIn=GNOME;Unity;
X-GNOME-Bugzilla-Bugzilla=GNOME
X-GNOME-Bugzilla-Product=nautilus
X-GNOME-Bugzilla-Component=general
X-Ubuntu-Gettext-Domain=nautilus
X-Ayatana-Desktop-Shortcuts=Videos;Documents;Music;Pictures;Downloads

[Videos Shortcut Group]
Name=Videos
Exec=nautilus Videos
TargetEnvironment=Unity

[Documents Shortcut Group]
Name=Documents
Exec=nautilus Documents
TargetEnvironment=Unity

[Music Shortcut Group]
Name=Music
Exec=nautilus Music
TargetEnvironment=Unity

[Pictures Shortcut Group]
Name=Pictures
Exec=nautilus Pictures
TargetEnvironment=Unity

[Downloads Shortcut Group]
Name=Downloads
Exec=nautilus Downloads
TargetEnvironment=Unity


Save the file.

Restart Unity. Opening a terminal to run:

unity --replace

is unsafe in my 11.10 ubstances as Unity tends to hang so badly you can't even restart the machine properly, so I log out and log back in to restart Unity.

This loads Places as a quick-list to the Unity Dash. RC