QLE Unity Quicklist Editor

QLE Unity Quicklist Editor is a solution to easily and quickly edit (Ubuntu) Unity Quicklists (static section).

Although the editor is mainly developped and tested on 12.04, it should work on earlier versions of Unity as well.

by means of ppa:
run in a terminal:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:vlijm/qle
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install qle

Debian installer download:

Editing options include:
- adding commands
- adding dividers
- adding LibreOffice applications (from a list, to any quicklist)
- adding shortcuts to applications (creating grouped quicklists from an application list that is presented)
- adding directories
- adding virtual boxes (from a list that is presented)
- adding url's
- renaming existing entries
- changing the command of an existing entry
- moving entries up or down in the quicklist
- importing entries from textfiles or other quicklists* (experimental)
- removing entries
- resetting the quicklist to as it was before QLE editor was installed
- creating new quicklists
- removing standalone quicklists

Additionally, the editor recognizes and corrects some properties of quicklists that might cause problems (like no ";" at the end of the entry line). The editor recognizes and edits both "old" (<12.04) and "new" style desktop files.
"standalone" desktop files (made by the user, not representing an application) are recognized and listed, and can be edited like any quicklist.


When an icon (quicklist) is edited for the first time, a re- login might be necessary to see the effect. Afterwards the changes will effect immediately.

The editor's main window
The Unity Quicklist Editor comes with a database of commonly used applications. This database can easily be supplemented by the user with installed applications. The list of applications shows only applications from this database that are actually installed on the system (no matter if the application's icon is locked in the launcher or not). Additionally, also standalone quicklists (if any) in the directory: ~/.local/share/applications are listed in the list and can be editeded likewise.
When an application is selected from the list, its current entries will show in the listbox at the right. These entries can be edited (name or command) with the "pencil" -button, or moved up or down with the arrow keys. New entries can be created by pushin the "+" -button, that will show a number of options.

The editor's main window
The searchbox
type one or two of the first characters of the application to make a selection

Search an application by typing a few characters

Add your own applications to the list

To edit an application's quicklist that is not in the database, add the application to the list with the Manager - menu (Manager > Add your application).

Add applications to the database

Remove standalone (possibly "orphans") from the applications- list

Adding new entries
  • add new > command
    The most basic option of the quicklist editor for more advanced users. Enter a name and a command, use the "[test]" button to check if the command is doing what you expected it to do.
  • add new > divider
    Does what it sais. use the up or down arrows to change the position of the divider once you created it.
  • add new > directory
    Works basically like the "add command" option, but automatically adds the "nautilus-home" -prefix so that the user only needs to enter the directory.
  • add new > url
    Works basically like the "add command" option, but automatically adds the "firefox -new-tab" prefix so that the user only needs to enter the url.
  • add new > libreoffice application
    Presents a list of all LibreOffice applications. No need for any knowledge of the right prefix, just click on the LibreOffice application (shortcut) you want to add to the quicklist (any) and press the "ok" button.
  • add new > virtualbox
    presents a list of virtualboxes, no need to know the directory or the right prefix, just click on the virtualbox you want to add to the quicklist (any) and press the "ok" button.
  • add new > application shortcut
    This option is usefull to make quicklists with a combination of shortcuts to different applications. usefull on smaller screens an Netbooks. The quicklist editor automatically adds the right command for the application shortcut.
  • add new > Insert from file*
    Probably the most experimental option. This option makes it possible to import a complete set of entries from a text file. Be careful with this option; do not import from other application's .desktop files. It is meant to use as an easy way to import quicklists that are available on the internet (like player controls, combined application shortcuts etc). Just copy the quicklist's text from the source and save it to a text file. The quicklist editor searches for the entries and the shortcuts that ar in the textfile. Examples can be found in the quicklist editor's folder "textfiles"
    . When you choose add new > insert from file, and then push the [browse] button at the right, the editor will take you to the directory where the example files are stored.

Add a libreOffice module to the quicklist

Editing existing entries

Edit a command of an existing entry
  • edit > name
    As it says, use this option to change an entry's mention in the quicklist.
  • edit > command
    Use this option to change the command (Exec=) of an entry.

    Use the arrows to move an entry up or down in the quicklist.
Creating new standalone quicklists
From the "Manager" menu, choose "create new", fill in at least the necessary fields (*). After you press "ok", the new quicklist will appear in the launcher, ready to be edited. Use the browser (click on the folder icon) to choose (browse to-) the icon you want to use.

Create a standalone quicklist
The browser window
For various tasks, like creating directory shortcuts or choosing files, the file / directory browser window is available, through the folder icon in the dialoque windows. The browser has various options:

Resetting a quicklist
When you use the editor for the first time, it creates a backup of the current quicklist. If you manually edited the quicklist before, the edited quicklist will be backed up. Use the reset option to restore the quicklist as it was before you used the quicklist editor for the first time.