I'd like to set up a multimedia center within the dolphin file explorer. For this I would need to simply configure view-settings specific to the movies folder.

In specific I would need to change the icon/folder size of the folder just like when zooming in, to make all folders display the only cover image of the folders as folder-icons and to make the font-size larger.

A manual way to achieve this would be to disable Preview at the top left of dolphin, zooming in with ctrl+mousewheel and to configure each folder to use the contained image by right clicking the folder and changing the folder-icon by selecting the cover image under Browse... (it doesn't work with .jpg files). This way the text still remains as small as before though: the font-size can only be changed for all folders under Control->Dolphin->View Modes->Label font. Another problem is that the maximum zoom is too small.

Is this possible with dolphin yet? (How?) And if not: would the .directory file be used for that?

  • Kodi might also be used for a media center. I'm not using it because right now it doesn't work properly.
    – mYnDstrEAm
    Apr 29, 2020 at 11:08

1 Answer 1


The improvised solution to this is to:

  1. Enter a folder which contains a folder that contains an image
  2. Select the folder's image to be the folder's icon
  3. Disable preview in the upper left
  4. Select the icons view mode in the upper left
  5. Zoom in to the maximum by ctrl+mousewheel
  6. Change the font size for the icons view mode under Control->Configure Dolphin...->View Modes->Icons->Label font->Custom->Size

The maximum zoom-level might be a bit too small. I created an issue on this here:

  1. To increase the zoom level (the size of the icons) and to make the media-center more conveniently / quickly accessible:
    right click on KDE icon in bottom left->Edit applications...->click on Multimedia->click on New Item...->give it a name like Moviecenter, set the icon on the right, set the Command to: QT_SCALE_FACTOR=2 dolphin ~/Movies (if your movies folder is located at ~/Movies)->click on save->type Moviecenter/the name into the search->right click it->click on Add to Panel (Widget) so that it always shows in the bottom left panel

I asked about starting dolphin in fullscreen mode from the command line here: https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=420851 and eventually came up with this command:

  1. QT_SCALE_FACTOR=2 dolphin ~/Movies & sleep 0.8 && wmctrl -r "Movies — Dolphin" -b add,fullscreen paste this into the Command field of the new shortcut to start the window in fullscreen mode. If you want to start it only maximized just replace "fullscreen" with "maximized_horz,maximized_vert". To make the fullscreen work make sure you have wmctrl installed with sudo apt-get install wmctrl.

  2. You can also toggle (hide) the panel on the right for more screen space: in Dolphin simply uncheck Control->Panels->Information.

Possible media center features

Furthermore it would be useful to have movie-related tags like "Genres" and "Imdb rating" on all folders within the movies folder. However I couldn't find a way to add these tags which is why I asked about it here:
How to add custom tags (metadata) to all folders within a folder?

Export of Media Center

If you want to export (copy) your Media Center (to another computer) you need to change the folder-icon filepaths in all (hidden) .directory files. You can do this like so (thanks to the answerers of /q/598768/233262):

set -o noglob

for file in $(grep -rl --include='*.directory' "/file/path/to/replace" ~/MediaCenterFolder); do
    printf '%s\n' "$file"
    sed -i 's/\/file\/path\/to\/replace\/\/new\/path/g' $file

You need to replace the 3 directory paths in the code above and copy this into exportMediaCenter.sh then run chmod +x ./exportMediaCenter.sh and exportMediaCenter.sh after you have cded into the directory the .sh file is located in. If you only need to replace a word without needing to escape / it would be: sed -i 's/texttoreplace/newtext/g' $file

Better solution

  • The best way for this would be to have directory-specific view settings and have a preconfigured folder view settings profile called "Movies" which automatically configures all those things dependent on some user variables such as display size. But it's currently not possible to do this with dolphin. I might create two issues for this and link them here if and once the issue linked above has been implemented.

  • Two alternative better solutions would be using Kodi or online streaming services. The latter has some disadvantages to the approach above and doesn't work for me with my technical setup and there were some issues with the former that needed to be solved first.

  • 1
    One problem of this is that the changed-font-size also applies to other directories, making the font too large there. It would need a per-directory view-setting/view-mode for it. An alternative is using Kodi but that didn't work for me.
    – mYnDstrEAm
    Jun 28, 2020 at 8:48

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