TLDR: I want to run Midnight Commander as default File manager, I need to know how to change default terminal for Terminal=true from xterm to anything else. pantheon-terminal seems to be not suitable.

So now I've set midnight commander as my default File manager but it keeps opening in xterm. I cannot find a way to change it to elementary terminal emulator anywhere.

I've loosely rgrep'd /usr/share directory but could not find anything relevant, same for /etc.

update-alternatives lists default terminal emulator as io.elementary.terminal so the problem shouldn't be there.

Also when I run io.elementary.terminal --new-window --execute=mc it opens new window AND new tab (two tabs total: one with shell, other with mc). Besides that I cannot be sure how it handles spaces in path names to add the command directly to the Exec= line. Should I write elementary terminal off completely?

When the elementary terminal starts like that it reports its height as 1 row, because of that mc quits and reports that it does not support that height. It seems that whatever I do it always starts a shell.


mc/bionic,now 3:4.8.19-1 amd64 [installed]
pantheon-terminal/bionic,now 5.5.1+r1640+pkg72~ubuntu5.1.2.1 amd64 [installed,automatic]
  • The edit in the answer here looks right/promising. I've never tried it, so can't say it is certainly correct.
    – KGIII
    Dec 31, 2020 at 14:48
  • @KGIII As I said, it opens new window with two tabs and mc fails to start because terminal height is reported as 1. I want to open one tab in new window that will close after I quit mc
    – t0suj4
    Dec 31, 2020 at 17:18

1 Answer 1


Install deepin-terminal

sudo apt install -y deepin-terminal

Change default deepin-terminal theme to tango

Create the file ~/.local/share/applications/mc.desktop with contents

[Desktop Entry] Name=Midnight Commander MimeType=inode/directory Exec=deepin-terminal -e mc %F Terminal=true Type=Application Categories=FileManager

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