Plasma tricks: smart places

A tool that I really like in Dolphin is the Places panel: there you can pin folders like your home, desktop etc. And you can also pin things like “Applications”, “Tags”, “Activities”.

You simply need to right-click on the panel > add new to create a new entry setting a name, an icon and a link. Useful ones are:


The same links can be used also in the folder view plasmoid, in the image below for example the links are:
activities:/current (available also as option in folder view path)


Here you can see the link “settings:/” in action:


And finally in the image below there is a compilation: I added the link “tags:/Android” to show files I tagged with “Android”:


(for curious: the Downloading and Seeding folders are the places KTorrent automatically put downloading and completed torrents)

Now imagine to combine this tool with Activities: you can see the files linked to each activity in Dolphin, the same for tagged files, add different folder-view plasmoids on each activities using tags, activities-linked, chronological links, in addition to “normal” folders. Folder-view plasmoid also let you filter files by type and name-scheme. If you spend some minutes in setting your workspace and acquiring good practices, you will gain a superior desktop experience.

Since I care about details, let me say I really appreciate the fact I can set different icons and names to resources entries without changing the original folders and I can set custom names to folder-view plasmoids.


Comments (Markdown supported):

  1. Viorel-Cătălin Răpițeanu

    You should definitely make some well documented pages for these tricks in the KDE wiki.
    They are incredible! Every KDE user that has some interest in customization must see these.
    Thanks again for posting this trick!

  2. lhugs

    I directly put two more folder view plasmoids on my desktop for the timeline-thingy 😉 I’ve known the timeline for quite some time, but never thought about using it this way. Thanks a lot! Maybe someone should think about making it more visible, it’s really cool stuff…

    1. We (VDG) are planning to talk about more visibility of this and other tools in CERN sprint together with developers 🙂

  3. Robert

    How can I add my favourites from applications?

    1. Do you mean a folder of favorite applications? My method is: new folder in my home > put there the .desktop files taken from applications:/ > mark them as executable > put the folder in Places panel

      1. Robert

        In my start menu there is a possibility to choose favourite applications. Is there a way to add them to the smart place?

        1. Sorry, AFAIK there isn’t.

  4. “A tool that I really like in Dolphin is the resources panel”
    Psst, it’s actually called “Places” 😉

    1. Thanks, in Italian it’s translated “risorse” (resources in English) so I re-translate it from “risorse” to “resources”, but you’re right, in English version that panel is named “Places” 😉

  5. Arucard

    Just wanted to say that I think these posts about Plasma tricks are great. There’s so much that’s possible with Plasma but sometimes you just don’t know about it. So this is really handy for learning about those kinds of possibilities. I really appreciate it.

    And it even works in KDE4, so this was already possible for a very long time and I just didn’t know about it.

  6. Eike

    I’m really enjoying your posts! Write more 🙂

  7. Valsdav

    Fantastic! You should definitely continue with these guides about little plasma secrets!

  8. C-xC-c

    This plasmatricks posts that you are doing are really good. Not only the content is good but also the way you display it with proper screenshots.
    Another tip that maybe not everyone knows is that you can hide the window border for specific applications in
    System Settings -> Application Style -> Window Decorations -> Pressing the options icon next to the breeze screenshot -> Window Specific Overrides -> Add -> Change border size property.
    In my opinion this makes applications like mpv and konsole look much better. Also, it is worth noting that while there is a “Hide Border” option if you right click a window title bar it also hides the title bar.

    Now the only thing that I am missing is the ability to select a custom Color Scheme for specific applications, I believe Krita is able to do this but it would be amazing if it could be done to any KDE application. It would be cool to have Breeze Dark applied only to the terminal and video players.

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  10. Santosh

    Nice. Could you tell me how did you get a vertical toolbar in Dolphin v5.

    1. With the right-mouse-click on the toolbar you can unlock it > so drag it to the side you prefer.

      1. Santosh


  11. Atertus Coveni

    Ciao Alex. Mi piace molto l’apparenza del tuo Dolphin. Quale theme hai applicato per avere questo risultato (mi riferisco all’uniformità nel colore tra la parte sinistra, con le “risorse”, e la parte di destra che mostra il contenuto delle cartelle)?
    Scusa se sono approssimativo nel mio linguaggio ma non sono abituato a utilizzare l’italiano per evocare cose legate all’informatica).

    1. Semplicemente nelle impostazioni dei colori devi impostare lo sfondo della finestra e lo sfondo della vista (dove vengono mostrate le cartelle) sullo stesso colore 😉

      1. Atertus Coveni

        Sembrava ovvio in effetti!

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  13. José Luis

    Maybe you can help. I’d be very grateful.
    How can I have a Place called “Movies” wich shows all my files in several directories, like /htpc1/movies, /htpc2/movies and /htpc3/movies?
    Is this possible?
    The only way I have found is to link all the files in those directories, but that’s not convenient/optimum/practical.
    Thanks in advance!

  14. José Luis

    What I exactly want is to show the result of this command:
    find /htpc1/MOVIES /htpc2/MOVIES /htpc3/MOVIES
    This command doesn’t work in the Location text box.

    1. My suggestion is writing a script that looks for changes in those directories and when it finds new files it automatically adds them to an Activity. Then use a Folder View to display the files linked to that Activity.

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