I downloaded Aptana Studio which is not "installed" but can be launched directly from the downloaded executable.

I'd like to add a shortcut to the applications menu or in the dock. Drag & Drop to the dock does not work.

  • 1
    I thought you could just drag the application's thumbnail from Files and drop it on Plank?
    – Duong Pham
    Commented Jul 26, 2015 at 8:51

5 Answers 5


You can create an application shortcut for Slingshot (the applications menu) manually.

It should be placed in /usr/share/applications/<APPNAME>.desktop. Below is the way Skype's .desktop file looks. Copy the contents, replace with the data that will suit your application, and it should appear in the menu:

$ cat /usr/share/applications/skype.desktop
[Desktop Entry]
Comment=Skype Internet Telephony
Exec=env PULSE_LATENCY_MSEC=60 skype %U

Once it is in the menu, you'll be able to pin it to the dock

  • 1
    Plus you should also mind having the icon directory correct or you won't recognize app, and mind typing the Exec correctly or the app won't launch. You need administrative privileges to do the editing or creating a new file in the users directory. Commented Jul 18, 2015 at 10:58
  • 1
    Thank you to all your answers. Comming from Windows world, i wondered if there was a graphical way to do it. Obviously not. Your answers gave me hints on how to "think" Ubuntu / Elementary. Thank to that, I found an even more specific answer to my question on [askubuntu][1]. I will search there next time before bothering you. Topic closed. Thanks again. [1]: askubuntu.com/questions/324129/how-to-install-aptana Commented Jul 18, 2015 at 11:22
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    Actually, it should be placed in /usr/share/applications only if you want to make the shortcut available to all users. You can also place it in ~/.local/share/applications if you want the shortcut to be enabled only for the current user. The difference is that you don't need sudo privilege for it.
    – r3bl
    Commented Jul 21, 2015 at 12:29
  • @r3bl probably you should've suggested an edit to the answer instead of commenting it
    – V_Pavel
    Commented Jul 21, 2015 at 13:16

Create an application desktop-entry at /usr/share/applications/ with the name app-name.desktop with the following basic details:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=App Name

You can add entries like MimeType (complete-list) and Encoding (eg: UTF-8) optionally. For the app category (eg: Categories:Network;WebBrowser;IDE) check the short list below:

AudioVideo, Audio, Video, Development, Education, Game, Graphics, Network, Office, Science, Settings, System, Utility

edit: If you need to get administrator privileges explicitly (with sudo), install gksu and then use gksudo at exec.

  • 1
    It's the same answer as I wrote above. It's better written than mine, but still it's the same. I suppose you should've edited my answer instead of adding duplicate answer
    – V_Pavel
    Commented Jul 18, 2015 at 13:32
  • @V_Pavel, agreed. that would've been better :)
    – Nir Lanka
    Commented Jul 21, 2015 at 10:25

As the previous posts mentioned you can very well create own shortcut for Slingshot manually but it is worth to mention that there is good, working software to do it with gui, as well as manage your application shortcuts.

The software is called Main Menu (alacarte) and can be downloaded from ubuntu repositories.

sudo apt-get install alacarte

Main Menu (alacarte)

You can add new shortcuts by clicking New Item and entering path to the software in the Command field.

The other that I can suggest trying out is called MenuLibre Project site: https://smdavis.us/projects/menulibre/

It can be installed from MenuLibre Developer's stable repository:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:menulibre-dev/devel
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install menulibre


  • It should be noted that the dock has rules in place that may mean some changes made with these programs will not be reflected.
    – Lewis Goddard
    Commented Jul 22, 2015 at 11:03

Or as it says here:

Run the app, then rt-click on app in dock, and select 'Keep in dock'.


This daemon will watch certain dirs for you and integrate them into your menu. It is all automatic, just drop your appimage file into a watched directory. I have also tested this by dragging from the Applications menu to the Dock and it works fine.


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