TUTORIAL: Xfce-Add AppImage to Panel as Launcher

Before I begin, this might be common knowledge for a lot of Xfce users, but coming from KDE and Gnome, this wasn’t readily apparent to me. Since we might be getting a lot of new EOS/Linux users here, and since EOS ships with Xfce as default, I thought I’d go ahead and put up this little tutorial. (Besides, I might need it again myself one day!)

To begin with, it’s pretty easy to add an application to the Panel in Xfce. One way is to open the Whisker Menu and find or type up the program you’re looking for. Once you see the program’s icon, you can right click on it and “Add to panel”. This brings the application launcher to the far right (or, bottom in my case as I have the panel vertical and to the left) of the primary screen). This is all fine and good for applications that were either installed during the EOS installation, or by those you installed yourself. But, what about AppImage programs?

Sometimes, the AppImage you download has a little script built into it for first run integrations. In other words, a little window pops up asking you if you would like to integrate the AppImage program into your system. This creates a “nameofprogram.desktop” file that goes into your /usr/share/applications folder, and you can then find the app using something like Whisker Menu. Sometimes, the AppImage program doesn’t have that script embedded into it. You set the AppImage to launch when clicked, but you can’t set a launcher for it in the panel. What do you do? In reality, Xfce makes this pretty simple, but not necessarily readily apparent.

The easiest way I have found to get an AppImage (or other executable) onto the panel is:

  1. Right Click on the Panel
  2. In the drop down menu, select “Panel ->”
  3. Select “+ Add New Items…”
  4. In the new window that pops up, select: Launcher
  5. A new icon shows on your panel at the end
  6. Right Click on the new Launcher icon on the panel and select “Properties”; and a new window pops up
  7. Along the right hand side of this new window there are options…Click on “Add a New Empty Item”
  8. Yet another new window pops up, and this is where the magic happens
  9. In this new window, “Create Launcher”, give your application a name. For example, Kdenlive
  10. You can leave the comment blank if you wish, I added, “Video Editor”
  11. On the “Command:” line, click the icon to the right of the empty box and navigate to the AppImage. (I usually save the AppImage in the Home Directory for easy access)
  12. Once you select the AppImage go to the “Directory:” line and click the folder to the right of the empty box and select the folder the AppImage is located in. Do not reselect the AppImage.
  13. It would be good to assign an icon to this launcher to help you remember what this launcher is for. Click on the “No Icon” button and wait until the Icon selection window pops up. I typically click the dropdown menu and select “All”, and then try to select the app icon that either is a direct match or close enough.
  14. The second to last thing you should do is click the “Create” button on the Create Launcher window you’ve been working on.
  15. Test the launcher, and right click to “Move” it to wherever suits you best on your panel.

I know, I said this was pretty simple, and after you’ve done it a couple of times it is.

I hope this is of benefit to someone.