First of all, I saw this question and all the others with similar answer and it does not seem to work for me. I use Ubuntu 19.04 and GNOME 3.32.1

I downloaded Postman (a code testing tool) and I want to be able to launch it from the dock. When I launch it from the shortcut, it appears in the dock:

enter image description here

But when I right-click it, I cannot add it to my favorites, which usually allows me to pin an application to the dock: enter image description here

I also tried to add a desktop file to /usr/share/applications and ~/.local/share/applications and make it executable, and then restarting gnome, but it did nothing. Desktop file :

[Desktop Entry]
Icon=/home/[my user name]/Utilities/Postman/app/resources/assets/icon.png
Exec=/home/[my user name]/Utilities/Postman/app/Postman
  • You won't make a .Desktop file executable. Did you try little tool called alacarte to create a launcher ?
    – pLumo
    Aug 20, 2019 at 14:47
  • I forgot to mention that but yes I did, did not work either. Also I was able to give executable rights to a .desktop file.
    – Tom
    Aug 20, 2019 at 14:48
  • example in GNOME documentation - developer.gnome.org/integration-guide/stable/… Jan 27, 2021 at 1:10

2 Answers 2


Ok so I was able to add it to the dock following these steps. Add this desktop file to ~/.local/share/applications as postman.desktop:

[Desktop Entry]
Icon=/home/[my user name]/Utilities/Postman/app/resources/app/assets/icon.png
Exec=/home/[my user name]/Utilities/Postman/app/Postman

then searching for "postman" via "Activities" (it only shows up there if you already created the .desktop file) and right click it > add to favorites.

  • This does not work for me on Ubunutu 20.04 (Gnome 3.36) -- I cannot find "postman" in "Activities". Jul 30, 2020 at 6:16
  • Or rather: it only works some of the time. I've tried to pinpoint the problem, but it's escaping me. Sometimes creating an exact copy of the desktop file (i.e. using file system copy operation) solves the issue, sometimes not. Jul 30, 2020 at 11:33
  • relevant documentation: developer.gnome.org/desktop-entry-spec
    – math2001
    Jun 5, 2021 at 4:44
  • 1
    I am using Ubuntu version 21.04. It DID worked for me without any issues. That was sooo simple man!!! Thanks a lot for sharing. I created my icon/launcher for Android Studio to avoid run it manually from command line (nothing against command line - I love it actually, but...).
    – ivo
    Oct 6, 2021 at 6:46
  • 2
    thanks, it works. but i find it baffling that a modern desktop environment does not provide a GUI for a basic thing like that out of the box.
    – foerno
    Nov 21, 2021 at 13:46

There are two places, where you can place your *.desktop file:

  • /usr/share/applications/
  • ~/.local/share/applications/.

But if there is a *.desktop file of the same name in both locations and one of them has Exec=... pointing to a non-existent target, then you will not be able see any of the launchers in Applications.

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