MenuLibre in Ubuntu 13.10

Update:  If you want the 2.0 version, check out this post.

I had some trouble getting the “Main Menu” program (alacarte) to work in Ubuntu 13.10, so I went exploring for an alternative.  That’s when I ran across MenuLibre.


In older versions of Ubuntu, installing MenuLibre was as easy as this:

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

Unfortunately, the repository doesn’t contain support for Ubuntu 13.10.  So, I downloaded the Tar file (menulibre_13.04.17.tar.gz) from the Launchpad site.

When I decompressed and ran it, I got this output:

skp@chestnut:~/Downloads/trunk/bin$ ./menulibre
ERROR:root:Could not find any typelib for GtkSource
Traceback (most recent call last):
 File "./menulibre", line 48, in <module>
 import menulibre
 File "/home/skp/Downloads/trunk/menulibre/", line 25, in <module>
 from menulibre import MenulibreWindow
 File "/home/skp/Downloads/trunk/menulibre/", line 23, in <module>
 from gi.repository import Gtk, Gdk, GdkPixbuf, GObject, GtkSource # pylint: disable=E0611
ImportError: cannot import name GtkSource

So, I installed 3 packages:

  • gir1.2-gtksource-3.0
  • libgtksourceview-3.0-1
  • libgtksourceview-3.0-common
sudo apt-get install gir1.2-gtksource-3.0 libgtksourceview-3.0-1 libgtksourceview-3.0-common

After that, it worked great.

To install, I just copied the extracted “trunk” directory to the /usr/share directory.

sudo cp -r trunk /usr/share/menulibre

Next, I created a symbolic link to the bin directory so it would be on the path and easy to launch:

sudo ln -s /usr/share/menulibre/bin/menulibre /usr/bin/menulibre

Finally, I used the program itself to add a launcher.

Here’s the basics of how it works…

To add a new launcher, browse to the category that you want, and click “Add Launcher”.

Creating a New Launcher in MenuLibre

Click the “New Menu Item” title to change the display title of the launcher.  This will let you edit it.

Editing the title of the launcher

Click the checkmark to confirm the edit.

Confirming Launcher Title Change

Do the same for the comment/description underneath the title.

Launcher Description

Most importantly, set the command to run.  In this case, I didn’t have to specify a full path because menulibre is now on my path.

Adding the command to run

Finally, save the new menu item:

Saving a new launcher

To delete the icons that alacarte messed up, you must first open the launcher by clicking on it.  I found them in the “Other” category.  Then, there is a delete button in the lower right hand corner.

Deleting a launcher in menulibre


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