Whenever I happen to add / remove an icon from my (Cinnamon) desktop, the others either get

  • shuffled seemingly at random, from being sorted by name or

  • resized, or at least the new icons will be larger than the other icons (the default size)

This is quite annoying, when I expect the icons to be in an arrangement one minute but the next, they've gone awry.

Certainly, rearranging my desktop icons is something I can do when I'm bored out of my mind, but since I don't spend much time looking at my desktop, I wish I could automate this.

Is there some way to script or automate programmatically the alteration of attributes of desktop icons? (in Cinnamon, preferably.)

  • Don't know Cinnamon, but does it have any option to lock the icons on your desktop (like KDE does)? That would probably fix it, if it exists. I get really annoyed when something scrambles my icons which I have carefully placed just where I want them! Is there a way to put new device icons in a folder (or somewhere else) instead of directly on the desktop? That would fix it too.
    – Joe
    Oct 23 '15 at 23:55
  • Unfortunately, Cinnamon is far from KDE and doesn't have the ability to do that. I like KDE but it's almost too configurable to use regularly.
    – cat
    Oct 23 '15 at 23:58
  • 1
    See if this is helpful. askubuntu.com/a/573359/334636
    – cdosborn
    Mar 9 '16 at 14:18
  • @cdosborn Post that as an answer (with more than a link) and I'll accept it -- that's pretty much exactly what I'm after
    – cat
    Mar 9 '16 at 14:34

Try the following:

gvfs-set-attribute ~/Desktop/fileOrFolder metadata::nemo-icon-position 300,300

If you use nautilus, substitute nautilus for nemo in the above command.

Press <F5> to refresh your desktop.

Here is a nautilus script that may be helpful in saving/restoring your icon positions.

  • 1
    Now I'm looking for a way to programatically refresh my desktop. Feb 14 '18 at 22:22
  • @TrevorHickey This works for me, to refresh the desktop programmatically: xfdesktop --reload
    – hoijui
    Dec 13 '18 at 8:29
  • Your script link is broken :( I was hoping it could help me with this script I need to develop: askubuntu.com/questions/1146175/… May 26 '19 at 1:20
  • @WinEunuuchs2Unix Check now. If you havn't used it before, lookup the wayback machine.
    – cdosborn
    May 26 '19 at 2:33
  • @cdosborn Oh your link should have said "Happy Desktop" and then I wouldn't have clicked on it (it takes like 5 to 10 seconds to load?). Anyway I downloaded a version from git a few hours ago and it didn't work very well for me. I'm coding my own version to shift icons between three monitors. Upvoted for your help though :) May 26 '19 at 3:00

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