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Tailoring Icons

Posted 04-06-2020 at 09:17 AM by crajor

My hope is that these entries can be used by others to learn SOME of the ins and outs of tailoring linux to one's own 'flavor'. I decided this morning to install stellarium to my bodhi linux system (5.0 64bit). I had to learn how to work with an appimage file (had seen them before but never thought about using them until discovering that stellarium is an appimage file).
A net search revealed that Appimage files are the closest equivalent to a windows executable file (.exe) due to the ability to work with any linux distribution and only having to download the appimage file. The difference is, for linux, we have to make that file executable (as with a script).
Right click on appimage file and click 'properties'
Once in properties, go to 'permissions'
Check 'allow file to be run as a program'
Close out of these windows and double check success by double clicking the appimage file. If program opens, SUCCESS!
However, when I created the .desktop file for stellarium, I could not set an icon for the application (not knowing where icons could be found).
So, a file manager search was my next step. I managed to find the .icons folder in my home directory. I have oomox installed, and I believe this folder was created by oomox once I had created/colored in it. There may be many places where one can find icons on one's system. This location just worked for me and was easy in this case (sometimes it is possible to lose one's goal in searching for details). Did spend some time finding a workable icon that somewhat matched the general purpose of the program. I found a simple star that would work for this, but how to get it 'attached' to the .desktop file. First off, I found the actual file in ~/.local/share (this location may be distro specific and therefore different for each distro). Right clicked that .desktop file, selected 'properties', and found no possibility to change an icon. Took a chance and clicked on the icon next to the file title, and was given a place to choose an icon for that .desktop file.
My next issue was that the icon was dark and therefore hard to see. I had a thought - could I 'colorize' this icon and save as another icon. Turns out this is possible. I right clicked on the icon and chose 'open with', choosing Gimp. Now, these icons are saved as an .svg file. Gimp only saves in it's own format, and then must be exported as another format (at least this has been the case for me. Others may have other tricks in Gimp to save directly).
So I did save my new colorized icon as an .xcf file (Gimp default) and exported. But there was no way to export as a .svg file. I took a chance and exported as a .png file. I had a thought to send my .png file to inkscape where one can save to .svg format, but then I thought, "Let's try using the .png file and see if it will work."
Back to .desktop file - properties - permissions - click icon, and choose my colorized .png file. Result: worked like a charm.

I am asking for some patience from my readers as at this point I don't know how to attach images yet. I will figure that out and attach images of the before and after images.

Hope this helps any who would read it.
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