[Tip] Change the icon for Kate (or any other program)

Simply put, the “new” Kate icon is rubbish. I always forget that this blue ball with a tattoo-like symbol is supposed to represent a woodpecker, which is the mascot of this otherwise excellent text editor.
It is the worst icon ever.* Once you manage to actually recognise the woodpecker, you cannot unsee that she looks like like she is about to slap someone with her wing. That’s one really Angry Bird!

Couldn’t have they used something like :memo: like normal people, so that it is immediately obvious what the program does? But noooo, that would not be edgy and hipster enough…

The solution

Fortunately, the solution is simple (this assumes you’re using KDE Plasma, where Kate is the default text editor, but it will probably work on most other DEs):

Copy the following .desktop file:

cp /usr/share/applications/org.kde.kate.desktop ~/.local/share/applications

You might have to mkdir ~/.local/share/applications if cp fails if that directory does not exist.

Open it (with Kate, for example):

kate ~/.local/share/applications/org.kde.kate.desktop

Find the line that says:


And change it to:


Save the file, and just like that, the monstrosity is no more. :slight_smile:

Of course, you can experiment with other icons, and with other applications. Any .desktop file that is in ~/.local/share/applications/ will take precedence over the one in /usr/share/applications/. This should also be update-proof, as updates should not touch your home directory.

* There might be some slight exaggeration in this post. :pinching_hand:


Just a little :laughing:


:rofl: I have always said the same. “How dare you use Kwrite, you two-timer… :raised_back_of_hand:



Woody don’t care


* nice option, to insert hidden parts of the contract :wink:

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I like woodpeckers. :laughing:


Deep fried?

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Chocolate covered. :wink:

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I can fully relate, I had to get rid of this completely meaningless icon as well.


I see always the letter


in some old font :wink:

This alacritty icon is rubbish :slight_smile:
Ingenious the Konsole icon on the right.

The Kate logo itself is genius too, and I use not often KDE so I can’t remember the old one.
But now that I’m used to it, you’re finally coming around the corner on how to change it. Way too late for me. :smiley: :wink:

As for the logo, it’s a hell of a part, except for the fake shadowing, I think.

Here’s a couple of modifications I did.

There is no arguing about taste but the structure of the logo is very well done.

But now that I know how to get my own icons/logos there :wink: ,

I want to say thank you for your contribution :slight_smile:


Of course, we can discuss aesthetics of it and you can probably make some great points about how clever the “new” Kate logo is, and I can certainly whine for days about how ugly it is. That would not get us far.

However, I’m sure we both agree that the icon fails at the most obvious thing: it is not clear at all that this is a text editor. So when I have a bunch of tiny icons on my Task Manager, and a few of them are blue balls, launching for example SMPlayer instead of Kate is bound to happen. Repeatedly. To great frustration.

Now, you can may make an excellent and elaborate point that something like this:
is nowhere near as fancy and artistic as the warped woodpecker, but at least it is obvious what it is: a text editor.



Inspired (maybe by myself :wink: )


Work :slight_smile:


You can also change that Alacritty icon :wink:




Not perfect but better :wink:

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I understand that people want to develop a brand for their thing, including a logo, and sometimes this works. But sometimes it’s just irritating. Something very personal I guess because when looking at my current icons I never felt that irritation when looking at the equally meaningless icons for Mattermost or Signal on the left.
Maybe the original Kate icon is just too busy for me :grinning:



You have to resize that Konsole icon, now. So cursed :scream:

The fact it is just a couple of pixels smaller is driving me nuts :crazy_face:

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And pamac make me crazy :wink:

/usr/share/applications 
$ find -iname '*pamac*'                                                                           


Which one is in the dock ?

Alacritty’s icon is pants. I use:

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[OT (?)]

I wonder how the word “tree/'árbol/arbre/Baum/(etc.)” should sound if it were to truely represent its content.

:evergreen_tree: :deciduous_tree: :palm_tree:

Thanks, totally agree about your description of the icon. On Ubuntu 20.04 I had two “versions” of kate after I changed the icon in …kate.desktop as you said. Starting kate from launcher while selecting the my improoved version opened kate once as a window but twice in the ubuntu-doc (one original and one iprooved icon) → I could fix this by adding the following to the .desktop: