Pantheon is playing games with me.

For a while, it has been starting at the Downloads Directory, which is what I want. I have opened a new directory, and I think closed it while in it. So now it keeps opening on that pointless directory.

Is there a way to specify the default initial directory?!

2 Answers 2


Pantheon-files saves by default the places that were opened (tabs and directories). You can however change these settings with dconf-editor under the schema org.pantheon.files.preferences:

  • restore-tabs if you set this to false it does not remember the last places opened
  • tab-info-list contains the saved list of tabs and directories

So you can either turn off the behaviour with the first setting or change the directory/directories with the second one.


At the moment, the default directory (the one that is loaded when you restore tabs is off or if you close the last tab) is hard-coded to be the user home directory. So if you want to return to the Downloads directory on re-opening then you have to make sure that that folder is open when you close Files.

You could try requesting a feature to be able set the default directory to something else at https://bugs.launchpad.net/pantheon-files.

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