File and default application association

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File and default application association

Postby CaluVerde » Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:28 pm

I come from Kubuntu 12.04. And until now I have been very pleased with Linux Mint 13 Cinnamon. However I am deeply disappointed in the capabilities of Linux Mint when it comes down to file and application association. In Kubuntu there is a File Association tab in the system settings. Here you can select any type of file and associate it with any kind of extension you like and set which default and recommended applications are to be used in conjunction with the file extensions.

Linux Mint does not have such an easy way to control all file and application associations. Even if I right-click on a file in Nemo I can only open a file with:

- the default application
- an application from a very selective list
- online application

Let me quantify this with an example. I have been trying to open a PDF with Evince in Nemo for several hours (and sure I can open it from the terminal no problem there). Right-clicking the PDF file only gives me the following options:



As you can see, Evince is nowhere to be found. In Kubuntu this could also have been the case, however Kubuntu would let me specify the exact location of the executable I would like to use unlike Mint which limits me only to a very short list.

I read something about mimetypes and editing ~/.local/share/applications/mimapps.list. So this is what I did next. Here is the content of my file after I made the changes:

Code: Select all

[Default Applications]

[Added Associations]

As you can see I have associated Evince as the default app and Ipe as a second option for PDF files. But this has not worked. Hence I have a question and a request:

Question: How can I make Nemo to understand that I want to open PDF files with Evince (and optionally Ipe)

Request: To the Linux Mint developers...develop some sensible controls for file and application association. Have a look at Kubuntu...observe, learn, implement and distribute.

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Re: File and default application association

Postby xenopeek » Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:14 am

Hey, easy with the bashing :) There is a Linux Mint KDE edition you know, which will work similar to Kubuntu for this. This is not distro specific, this is desktop environment specific. KDE has an easy way to edit these associations, while Cinnamon--from its Gnome legacy--doesn't yet. The Gnome developers enjoy removing functionality too much, so the Cinnamon developers are working hard for each release to reintroduce functionality that has been previously removed or is obviously lacking. Nemo reintroduces a lot of functionality that was removed from Nautilus, but we're not there yet.

However, in this case I don't understand what is wrong as Document Viewer (aka Evince) is the default association for PDF files. So Document Viewer should be in your list. That it isn't might stem from whatever editing you have done on your system. Not sure how to easily recover that.

Easiest is probably to purge evince and install it anew.

Code: Select all

apt purge evince evince-common
apt install evince evince-common

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Re: File and default application association

Postby CaluVerde » Thu Apr 04, 2013 4:26 am

I apologise for my harsh language, it was not my attention. I was however getting frustrated after spending several hours on this. I eventually created evince.desktop in ~/.local/share/applications by copying another .desktop and changing the relevant bits. Document Viewer might have been deleted while I was editing the panel menu. Nonetheless it is still quite difficult to associate a non-standard application to a file. I would like to suggest an option in the right-click menu in Nemo, to add an application's executable path alongside selecting an application from a "default" list. This way all applications become reachable without fiddling around too much.

I ran Linux Mint KDE from a live DVD, however because it was too much Kubuntu'ish for my taste I went with Cinnamon. I do enjoy myself some eye-candy :lol:

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Re: File and default application association

Postby altair4 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:16 am

Nemo is a fork of Nautilus. With each release, Nautilus ( as is true of most of Gnome itself ) removes features which is why there is a Cinnamon and a Nemo. Nemo hasn't been able to fix everything yet so give it time.

If you want a GUI way of associating file extensions to non-standard applications install a file manager that is Gnome compliant but still has this capability:

Code: Select all

sudo apt-get install thunar

It shows up in the Menu > System Tools > Thunar File Manager
Note: You need to logout and login again for some reason for it to show up in the menu but you can always just run thunar from the terminal.

Then right click a pdf file > Select "Open with other application" and you should get something like this:

Click on "Use a custom command" , enter the name of the application, and fix the association.

The association is system wide not just in thunar.
Please add a [SOLVED] at the end of your original subject header if your question has been answered and solved.

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Re: File and default application association

Postby CaluVerde » Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:50 pm

Thank you altair4 for your recommendation of Thunar. However I do not like having to install many non-native libraries (the reason I shall for ever miss Kate and Krusader, while under a Gnomish environment).

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