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Xubuntu/XFCE – Adding Custom (Quick-Launch) Tool Bar Launchers

The quick launch bar so familiar to pretty much every operating system and window manager these days, is a valuable asset, simplifying the need to navigate through several menus to start up any application you use regularly. XFCE is no different. XFCE has a quick way to add applications to your launch bar but when you look through the list of applications it provides it is far from complete and in many cases may not contain the application you want to add. No worries  This article will show you step by step how to add a “custom” program launcher to your bar.

Add launch bar menu
Add launch bar menu

First we’re going to right-click a space on the launch bar at the top or bottom of the screen as this can be done to the popup launcher as well, and were going to select “Panel” -> “Add New Items…:  This will bring up an item list of objects you can add. From this list select “Launcher” and click the “Add” button and then click “Close”. You should now see a screen icon in the right side of your launcher bar. Now, right-click this icon and select “Properties.”  When the dialog open there are going to be some icons to the right that allow you to manage your launcher items as each launcher can have several sub application items. Select the “+” which will bring up another Dialog with a list of applications for you to add. If you can’t find the application you want to add close this window and click the icon below the “+” and you can create a custom launcher item,

 

 

Adding the launcher item
Adding the launcher item

This part is pretty straight forward. You will give it a name for the launcher to have, in my case I’m adding “Gui2Py”, add comment if any “This is a GUI editor for Python”,add the full path to the command you would like to run in my case it’s “python -m gui.tools.designer”,the working directory is going to be the directory it loads by default using your home directory by either using “~” or “$home” should work as a default. Otherwise provide the full path, you can then set a custom icon either from their list or one you provide, when startup notification is set, the panel and cursor notifies the user that the application has started. When the application appears onscreen, the panel and cursor return to normal. This enables the desktop to use whatever startup notification is built in to either your applicationMost modern toolkits work transparently with the startup notification system.  And finally “Run In Termial” will launch a terminal window and then execute the program, This is particularly useful if the program has verbose output in addition to a GUI. With all of that done all you gotta do is click create and your done. Remember this can also be one for the lower popup launcher as well.

To move the launcher icon elsewhere in the “Quick Launch Bar” simply right-click and select “Move” then move your cursor where you would like it and left-click and it will be placed where your cursor is.

 

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