Download directory "Desktop" preference non-intuitive




13 years ago
4 years ago


(Reporter: Thom May, Unassigned)


Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)




13 years ago
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux x86_64; rv:1.7.3) Gecko/20041015 Firefox/0.10.1 (Ubuntu)
Build Identifier: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux x86_64; rv:1.7.3) Gecko/20041015 Firefox/0.10.1 (Ubuntu)

When using gnome, the desktop directory is ~/Directory, unless the gconf key
/apps/nautilus/preferences/desktop_is_home_dir is set, in which case the desktop
directory is the home directory.
Having the Desktop directory unconditionally point to the user's home directory
in the Firefox download preference is totally non-intuitive in this case.

Reproducible: Always
Steps to Reproduce:
1. Go to Downloads in preferences
2. Select "Desktop" for Save all files to this folder
3. Click "Show Folder"

Actual Results:  
My home directory is opened in a firefox window

Expected Results:  
Opened ~/Desktop/ in a firefox window.

Comment 1

13 years ago
I think a reasonable solution would be to check for the gconf key I mention, if
it's set use the home directory, if it's unset try to use ~/Desktop and fall
back to the home directory if that's not available.

Comment 2

13 years ago
We have similar problem under BeOS. Home is /boot/home, but desktop is

And since the filepicker for choosing another dir don't let you select the dir
you're in we can't select the Desktop either. See bug 255189. The desktop is the
root of the filepicker (disks are in the desktop) and if you go to /boot/home
Desktop is hidden.


13 years ago
Blocks: 266252
Ever confirmed: true
See also somewhat related bug 241245.


13 years ago
No longer blocks: 266252

Comment 4

12 years ago
Same problem with KDE. Mozilla says all files downloaded to Desktop--so I open
Konqueror and go to Desktop, and there are no files there. Turns out they were
downloaded to my home directory instead.

Comment 5

12 years ago
We fixed this for BeOS in bug 276378. I guess you need to handle the Desktop dir
in xpcom/io/SpecialSystemDirectory.cpp for (Gnome/KDE) as well as in

With those references I think that should be quite easy to fix.

Comment 6

12 years ago
(In reply to comment #4)
> Same problem with KDE. Mozilla says all files downloaded to Desktop....

You *can* select the Desktop by going into the "browse" dialog (a GTKFileChooser), and selecting the folder "Desktop" within your $HOME.

After you do that, your donwload directory will appear as "/home/rick/Downloads" (instead of just "Downloads").

The correct interpretation of the KDE problem is: Mozilla/FF doesn't SHOW the download directory correctly:

Even though your prefs.js acutaully contains:

user_pref("", "/home/rick");
user_pref("", "/home/rick");

Firefox shows "Desktop" and confuses everyone.
BTW, I just wasted a couple hours over at GTK+ bugzilla because FF users are also complaining there. (Reporter probably wasted just as many.) Please tgh, can you fix the problem? I see from #276378 that it's definitely better for an experienced person to do.

If you want to special-case each Window Manager's "Desktop" directory, that's fine... but a lot of work for you. Maybe the right way to go is:

stop guessing what may or may not be our "Desktop", just show us what we REALLY have. You've got the correct value right there in the user's prefs, and you use it every time you donwload a file, you should obviously be capable of showing the raw value.

user_pref("", "/home/rick");
user_pref("", "/home/rick");

We can go to our Window Manager Documentation to find out which directory is mapped to "Desktop", if I choose "/home/rick/Desktop" (on KDE, for example), I think that it's perfectly fine for you to show "/home/rick/Desktop" as my DL Directory.

What ISN'T fine is lying (showing "Desktop" when I've chosen $HOME and $HOME is what I want.)

Thanks in advance for your attention to this matter. It's not merely "non-intuitive"-- in many cases (such as *ALL* KDE Desktops, and Std. GNOME configs, and evilwm, and ?!?!?) it's a lie. Users are being confused, it claims to be "Desktop" when it ain't. 
Assignee: bugs → nobody
Component: Shell Integration → Preferences
QA Contact: shell.integration → preferences

Comment 7

4 years ago
I would like to work on this bug. It would be nice if you can assign this bug to me, so that I can start working on it. I would also like to know some more details about this bug.
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