structure of desktop file directories

Alexander Larsson alexl at
Mon Dec 2 01:31:44 PST 2013

On mån, 2013-12-02 at 00:01 +0100, David Faure wrote:
> On Friday 04 October 2013 11:20:27 Ryan Lortie wrote:

> As a developer I also often have two layers in XDG_DATA_DIRS, but ok, not with 
> a mimeapps.list in the intermediate layer, typically. 
> Anyhow, this doesn't prevent moving mimeapps.list to config dirs, actually. 
> The weird corner case with 3 data dirs and 2 config dirs still works, since 
> the mimeapps.list files simply contain .desktop file names, which resolve to 
> "most local" anyway, for the current user.
> We defined mimeapps.list with Alex Larsson, so we need his OK for moving it 
> (plus a way to handle the migration, like your symlink idea, provided that 
> apps don't replace the symlink with a real file, which would be disastrous).

I think the backwards compat handling here is problematic. Much existing
code would probably *not* handle the case where
~/.local/applications/mimeapps.list was a symlink by overwriting the
target of the symlink, so the configurations would diverge.

Also, in the multi-layer setup its not obvious how to map from a
specific data-dir to the corresponding config dir.

Are the mimeapps.list files really problematic though? If they exist at
all in the global layers they are typically static so will not trigger
cache invalidations. And in the ~/.local case, do we really expect to 
put a cache there? Thats gonna be a pretty small directory anyway, and
nothing will reliably run u-d-d when it is changed.

More information about the xdg mailing list