How to edit application menus

John Jason Jordan johnxj at
Thu Nov 24 01:39:34 UTC 2011

On Wed, 23 Nov 2011 10:09:04 -0800
John Jason Jordan <johnxj at> dijo:

>>Did you already read ? I
>>doubt you will have to edit, most things can be
>>done by adding proper categories to the *.desktop files. When you add
>>some, make sure to use the registered values from

>I am especially confused about the application desktop entries. First,
>I find them in my home folder, but not all the application desktop
>entries are there; a lot of applications are listed in the menu for
>which there is no application desktop file. 
>And I cannot figure out what decides what folder an application will be
>listed under. Looking at the text of an application desktop file I find
>its location as (e.g.) Settings, but the item actually appears in
>System Tools. I'm trying to figure out the system here, and so far it
>is not making any sense. But there must be a system. I just need to get
>a grip on it.

To clarify further the problem, after several hours editing the menus
with LXMenuEditor, here are the first few items in my applications
menu, hand typed out in Gedit and pasted here. This is as far as I can
get with LXMenuEditor. (Hope the tabs make it in the e-mail.):

Run Program
Terminal emulator	<harmless, but I don't need this>
File Manager		<ditto>
Mail Reader		<ditto>
We Browser		<ditto>
	Settings Manager
	Bluetooth Manager
	Power Manager
	Preferred Applications
	Qt4 Config
	Session and Startup
	Settings Editor
	Window Manager
	Window Manager Tweaks
	Xfce4 Printing System Settings
	Add/Remove Software
	Back in Time-KDE
	Logical Volume Management	
	Network Device Control
	NVIDIA X Server Settings
	Service Management
	Software Update
Accessories		<Note this is the second Accessories menu>
	About Myself
	<40 more entries, many of which  belong in a Settings
		folder, which I do not have>
	<two entries>
	<four entries, all my special programs, of which one
		is duplicated and I can't find the duplicate to delete
	<I want to delete this entire folder. I made every entry I can 
		find "not visible," yet two still appear.>
	<a folder that is actually correct>
	<ok, but has three entries for Chrome and two for Claws-Mail
		and I can't find the duplicates>
	<a folder that is actually correct>
	<contains six items, and I can't find any of them to make
		them not visible>
Sound and Video
	<a folder that is actually correct>
	<contains over 50 apps, a third of which should be in Settings,
		if I had a Settings folder

The wiki refers to moving files here and there, but I don't have any of
the files it refers to. The wiki has no information about what to do if
the files don't exist. 

For example, the wiki says "To create a new sub-menu, add a new “Menu”
element to your ~/.config/menus/ at the same
level as the other xfdesktop sub-menus like “Graphics." Fine, but I
don't have a ~/.config/menus/ file. I don't have
any idea where XFCE is getting the information it is using to display
the application menu above, and the wiki doesn't say.

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