After compiling software from source code, I can usually launch the compiled binary by double-clicking on it.

Recently however, most of my compiled binaries are not responding to double-click, even if they can be launched using ./MyBinary. This doesn't seem to be a permission problem because I have already done sudo chmod +x.

It appears that my Linux system identifies compiled binaries as shared library files, and so doesn't execute them.

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Does anyone know why this happens? Is it possible to change the file type to an executable to avoid this problem? Thanks in advance.

System Info

Manjaro Linux x86_64

Kernel release: 5.6.19-2

  • It's an issue with your File Manager/Desktop Environment whatever it is. Maybe try using another one which doesn't have this issue. – Artem S. Tashkinov Aug 16 '20 at 18:38
  • Are these positions-independent ELFs? Check what file <BINARY> says. – Arkadiusz Drabczyk Aug 16 '20 at 18:45
  • For instance Thunar here on my PC refuses to run Bash scripts with proper permissions (0755) - it instead opens them in the default text editor. Looks like a serious bug to me but I don't use Thunar at all, so I don't care much. – Artem S. Tashkinov Aug 16 '20 at 18:48
  • @Artem S.Tashkinov Using KDE dolphin does partially solve the issue (I can double click to launch) but it's still considered a shared library – JS4137 Aug 16 '20 at 18:53
  • The output of the file command is ELF 64-bit LSB pie executable, x86-64 – JS4137 Aug 16 '20 at 18:55

ELF portable executables and libraries may have the same signatures and be identified identically. I wouldn't fret about that. If Dolphin works for you, use it.


$ file `which file` /usr/lib64/libc-2.31.so
/bin/file:               ELF 64-bit LSB shared object, x86-64, version 1 (SYSV), dynamically linked, interpreter /lib64/ld-linux-x86-64.so.2, BuildID[sha1]=e7df66a91efb28e483449a77221cb4242620541c, for GNU/Linux 3.2.0, stripped
/usr/lib64/libc-2.31.so: ELF 64-bit LSB shared object, x86-64, version 1 (GNU/Linux), dynamically linked, interpreter /lib64/ld-linux-x86-64.so.2, BuildID[sha1]=d278249792061c6b74d1693ca59513be1def13f2, for GNU/Linux 3.2.0, not stripped

Both the binary and the glibc library are "ELF 64-bit LSB shared object".

  • ELF portable executables - you mean position independent. As OP said in comments, this ELF is position independent so the e_type header member is set to ET_DYN. You seem to have an old version of file, new releases can correctly identify PIE executable: ./main: ELF 32-bit LSB pie executable, as OP said as well. – Arkadiusz Drabczyk Aug 16 '20 at 19:13
  • I use file from Fedora 32 which is quite recent: file-5.38-2.fc32.x86_64 however you're right: version 5.39 was released in January however Fedora hasn't yet mainlined it. – Artem S. Tashkinov Aug 16 '20 at 19:20

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