How to Create Desktop App Launchers in Linux

If you wish to create desktop app on Linux this is the place where you learn to do how to go about it. Most of the popular Linux desktops allow you to create application launchers on the desktop. This will encourage you to open your favorite apps faster. The popular Linux desktops are GNOME, KDA Plasma, and Cinnamon. You can create your app launchers on any one of these desktops.

Create a Desktop shortcut:-

You create a desktop shortcut when you regularly use a program on the Linux desktop. This will enable you to launch the shortcut just by clicking on it. What is a desktop shortcut? A desktop shortcut is represented by a corresponding .desktop file which contains Meta information of a given app (e.g., name of the app, launch command, location of icon file, etc.). These files are placed in /usr/share/applications which contains desktop shortcuts available for every user or ~/.local/share/applications which is available for a particular user only. 

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    You can create your desktop shortcut on GNOME which is one of the complicated desktops in Linux.  Follow the instructions below to create a launcher on the GNOME desktop.

  • Ensure that GNOME extension desktop icons are installed.
  • Go to Desktop Icons extension page.
  • Enable to ON position.
  • If you do not come across the ON/OFF slider, go install the GNOME Shell integration extension along with the native host connector.
  • When prompted, click on Install.
  • Close your browser.

    Next, you need to install the GNOME Tweak Tool and enable the Desktop Icons extension. For that follow these steps:

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  • Open the Ubuntu Software Center.
  • Search for Tweaks.
  • Click on Install.
  • Type in the password when prompted.
  • Wait for the installation to be completed.
  • Once completed, open the GNOME Tweaks tool. 
  • Click on Extensions and make sure that the Desktop icons are enabled.
  • Now close the Tweaks tool.

On KDE Plasma:-

    This is not as much as complicated like GNOME desktop. KDE Plasma is comparatively easier than others. Follow these steps to add the launcher on your desktop.

  • Open the KDE Plasma menu right at the bottom left corner on your desktop.
  • Right-click on the Firefox icon and select Add to Desktop.
  • Once this step is completed, you can now launch the application from that launche

On Cinnamon:-

    This desktop also is similar to the previous one. Just with a few clicks you can add this app launcher to your Linux desktop. Follow the steps below to know how to do so.

  • On the bottom left corner of your desktop locate Cinnamon and click on it.
  • On the middle pane, click on the internet category.
  • Right-click on Firefox Web Browser.
  • Click on Add to desktop.
  • You are now ready to launch this application from the launcher.

    These are the few ways to add your desktop apps on your Linux desktop. You can create a desktop shortcut so that will be more convenient for you to open always by just tapping on it. Hope these instructions help you in creating the desktop apps of your preference.