Introduction to Desktop File Utils

The Desktop File Utils package contains command line utilities for working with Desktop entries. These utilities are used by Desktop Environments and other applications to manipulate the MIME-types application databases and help adhere to the Desktop Entry Specification.

This package is known to build and work properly using an LFS-7.4 platform.

Package Information

Desktop File Utils Dependencies





User Notes:

Installation of Desktop File Utils

Install Desktop File Utils by running the following commands:

./configure --prefix=/usr &&

This package does not come with a test suite.

Now, as the root user:

make install

Configuring Desktop File Utils

Configuration Information

The XDG Base Directory specification defines the standard locations for applications to place data and configuration files. These files can be used, for instance, to define the menu structure and menu items in a desktop environment.

The default location for configuration files to be installed is /etc/xdg, and the default locations for data files are /usr/local/share and /usr/share. These locations can be extended with the environment variables XDG_CONFIG_DIRS and XDG_DATA_DIRS, respectively. The GNOME, KDE and XFCE environments respect these settings.

When a package installs a .desktop file to a location in one of the base data directories, the database that maps MIME-types to available applications can be updated. For instance, the cache file at /usr/share/applications/mimeinfo.cache can be rebuilt by executing the following command as the root user:

update-desktop-database /usr/share/applications


Installed Programs: desktop-file-edit, desktop-file-install, desktop-file-validate and update-desktop-database
Installed Libraries: None
Installed Directories: None

Short Descriptions


is used to modify an existing desktop file entry.


is used to install a new desktop file entry. It is also used to rebuild or modify the MIME-types application database.


is used to verify the integrity of a desktop file.


is used to update the MIME-types application database.

Last updated on 2013-09-01 04:57:03 -0700