Running a Script in a MATE Launcher

At work in our migration efforts I wanted to add a desktop launcher to run a shell script.

Doing this might seem noobish. Just open a terminal window and run the shell script. Same result, right? Yes, same result, but the script is infrequently used. Under such circumstances users are likely to forget the name of the shell script to run. Hence a more convenient desktop shortcut launcher.

Except this was not easy or straightforward with the MATE desktop.

Creating a basic shortcut is easy, but the shortcut always opened an xterm terminal rather than the mate-terminal. Checking the MATE Control Center, I verified the preferred terminal was configured to mate-terminal.

Some digging led me to a forum discussion about the problem.

There is an /etc/alternatives/x-terminal-emulator sym link pointing to a perl script/usr/bin/mate.wrapper. The wrapper script does not work, apparently because of an upstream bug in Glib.

One solution is to use mate-terminal -x but this momentarily opens an xtermwindow. Distracting, ugly, and unprofessional.

Another solution is to create a sym link to gnome-terminal.

ln -s /usr/bin/mate-terminal /usr/local/bin/gnome-terminal

This kind of developer attitude is one reason why The Year of the Linux Desktop never appears.

A silver lining to such problems is Linux based systems are incredibly flexible toward working around developer arrogance.

Posted: Category: Usability Tagged: Migrate, Ubuntu

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