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I'm running an Arch Linux machine with the cinnamon-git desktop from the Arch User Repository.

The default filemanager is Nautilus, is there any way to change the default filemanager to thunar?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

To change the default filemanager you can edit the file ~/.local/share/applications/mimeapps.list

Don't know how to specify thunar but to use nemo over nautilus I do this:

thomas@localhost ~> cat .local/share/applications/mimeapps.list 
[Added Associations]

Also if you are curious why the wrong filemanager is started if you click on a folder icon check the actual command the starter launches.

After resolving the issues (see comments) you also have to look in the file


there you can change the filemanager also:

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I did this in Fedora 18 and it works. – Thomas Dec 10 '12 at 8:35
This does not work on Fedora 17 "Beefy Miracle". Any idea what causes this? – aef Dec 17 '12 at 4:12
@aef Do you have nemo installed, does the file exist? – Thomas Dec 17 '12 at 8:51
Got some last ideas: update-alternatives, /usr/share/applications/mimeinfo.cache – Thomas Dec 17 '12 at 17:13
/usr/share/applications/mimeinfo.cache did the trick. I changed the line inode/directory=nautilus.desktop to inode/directory=nemo.desktop and now Nemo is opened by default. – aef Dec 17 '12 at 17:55

From the Arch Linux Wiki:

You can trick GNOME into using another file browser by editing the Exec line in /usr/share/applications/nautilus.desktop. See the correct parameters in the .desktop file of the file manager of your choice, e.g.:


Exec=thunar %F
Exec=pcmanfm %U

Arch Linux Wiki 1

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Good first post! – slm Dec 22 '12 at 5:42
Thanks, this also worked for me in Fedora 18. But i would like to know what is the meaning of %U or %F (in the case of thunar) – JGutierrezC Sep 22 '13 at 21:39

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