In Ubuntu I used

sudo update-alternatives --config x-www-browser

to set the default internet browser manually.

enter image description here

In Manjaro I get:

sudo: update-alternatives: command not found

I have set Firefox as the default in its settings and want it to stay so.

After installing Chromium, the default browser is now Chromium, although I reconfirmed Firefox as such and in Chromnum settings it says: "Chromium cannot determine or set the default browser".

How to make Firefox default browser?

  • Does manjaro have the x-www-browser symlink? And to what it links? Also, is update-alternatives available in Manjaro?
    – Braiam
    Oct 8, 2015 at 12:21
  • @Braiam - No. And no, not even in AUR.
    – user32012
    Oct 8, 2015 at 15:20
  • If your system doesn't have x-www-browser, what is “changing the linked binary” supposed to mean? Are you trying to change the default browser? That depends on the application that launches it — I don't think Manjaro has a system-wide default (and it's more of a user preference anyway). What application are you interested in? Oct 8, 2015 at 22:58
  • @Gilles - that phrasing of the title is due to the edit made by Braiam, while I was just asking out of curiosity thinking that the ubuntu option would be available in Manjaro. If not, that's my answer. (Installing Chromium, it took over as default browser. I think I fixed it simply from the FF GUI.)
    – user32012
    Oct 9, 2015 at 7:09
  • 1
    @cipricus Oh, I see, sorry. Your original title was misleading too. Once again, I don't think Manjaro has a system-wide or per-user default, so you'll get better help if you mention which applications you use that launch a browser. Oct 9, 2015 at 9:47

7 Answers 7


For users of i3wm, in addition to editing ~/.config/mimeapps.list and ~/.i3/config, you also need to change $BROWSER from ~/.profile, set it to /usr/bin/chromium, to prevent browser sessions emerging from the terminal from opening the wrong browser.

  • 6
    Actually, I find that this is the only solution that solved my problem. This is a separate answer. For applications that open the default browser (such as Jupyter) changing just the key bindings won't work.
    – Ébe Isaac
    May 11, 2018 at 7:01
  • for me removing the palemoon package was also required pacman -R palemoon-bin
    – akiva
    Feb 24, 2019 at 21:42
xdg-settings set default-web-browser chromium.desktop
  • 2
    Where chromium is whatever you'd type at the command prompt to start your preferred browser. Eg, it could be google-chrome-stable.
    – Tom Hale
    May 27, 2017 at 7:16
  • Works for voidlinux with i3.
    – xoryves
    Jun 7, 2018 at 8:30
  • 4
    Does not work on Manjrao I3: xdg-settings: $BROWSER is set and can't be changed with xdg-settings, but Anas answer worked: unix.stackexchange.com/a/434465/28262 Nov 20, 2018 at 15:43
  • For Google Chrome, I had to use xdg-settings set default-web-browser google-chrome.desktop. xdg-settings set default-web-browser google-chrome-stable gave a xdg-settings: invalid application name error; using the full path for google-chrome-stable gave the same error.
    – apaderno
    Aug 9, 2020 at 7:25

This question is a bit old, but I would like to register my solution. After struggling with xdg-settings, what worked for me was xdg-mime.

So, check your default browser with:

xdg-mime query default x-scheme-handler/https

And change whatever browser you want to use. Make sure you use the .desktop after the browser name.

xdg-mime default google-chrome.desktop x-scheme-handler/https
xdg-mime default google-chrome.desktop x-scheme-handler/http

Then, check again:

xdg-mime query default x-scheme-handler/https
  • 1
    Of course, nothing else worked for me. Do you know in which files this configuration is kept ? For me .config/mimeapps.list contained chrome even before xdg-mime... Jul 20, 2020 at 13:18
  • 1
    I think mimeapps.list is the default config file for this. Look for this file in other locations. See examples here Jul 21, 2020 at 12:02
  • Confirmed working on latest install of manjaro when opening webpage links directly from terminal and in intellij.
    – li x
    Sep 11, 2020 at 9:04
  • This is the best-working answer. I installed brave after having fiddled with mimeapps.list , where I already had set chromium as my default. Brave took over being the default, despite all the entries in mimeapps.list, but this set it back to chromium Nov 25, 2020 at 17:41

Edit your ~/.config/mimeapps.list and replace references to firefox.desktop with google-chrome.desktop.

If you use google-chrome-stable to launch chrome, use that instead, followed by .desktop.


In case someone else has the same issue…

Edit your config file:

nano ~/.i3/config 

and change

bindsym $mod+F2 exec …

to your browser of choice (e.g. bindsym $mod+F2 exec google-chrome-stable) Save and reload your config file (mod+Shift+R)

Should be all set…

  • 3
    This seems overly i3-centric. Mar 31, 2018 at 9:22
  • Yes... it was. Now on xfce, which Tom addresses below.
    – chris.r
    Dec 4, 2018 at 2:15

I tried most of the answers in here. This is what I ended up doing

sudo pacman -R firefox

Just removed firefox. If I install firefox again with sudo pacman -S firefox it sets as default again so annoying.


If you are using i3 with Palemoon pre-installed and want to replace it with a cooler browser, like brave:

Please edit ~/.config/mimeapps.list and replace references to Moon.desktop with brave.desktop.

To easily replace all the Moon cases to brave in the mimeapps.list file with vim, use :%s/Moon/brave/gc and answer yes to each case.

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