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Tutorial: How To modify the Floating Feet Screensaver to make your own.

May 11, 2013

I was asked recently how can someone modify the Floating Feet screensaver that is used in Gnome2 and MATE. Gnome had the Feet symbol, MATE has the target and Debian has the swirl. Read on to find out how to make it work using your icon.

  1. As root open up /usr/share/pixmaps so you can copy an icon of your choice into the folder. I copied a png image of the Australian flag into the folder. To open something as root you need to use the root teminal (just enter the root password), mate terminal (type su next to the prompt then click enter then type in your root password) or have caja-gksu installed and select “Open as Administrator” from the right click menu.
  2. Now, as root, open up /usr/share/applications/screensavers/ folder. MATE calls the file you need to copy Floating Feet. Right click copy and then right click paste, then rename the new file to whatever you want to call it (this works on my machines). I called mine FloatingFlags. Why? Well I couldn't open it with Pluma if it was Floating Flags but I could as FloatingFlags.
  3. Again as root in your terminal type pluma /usr/share/applications/screensavers/FloatingFlags.desktop and the file will open in Pluma MATE's text editor. If you use another text editor just replace pluma in the command with the one you use.
  4. When you have this file open you will see

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Floating Feet
Name[en_AU]=Floating Feet
Comment=Bubbles the MATE foot logo around the screen
Comment[en_AU]=Bubbles the MATE foot logo around the screen
Exec=/usr/lib/mate-screensaver/floaters /usr/share/pixmaps/mate-logo-white.svg
TryExec=/usr/lib/mate-screensaver/floaters
StartupNotify=false
Terminal=false
Type=Application
Categories=Screensaver;
OnlyShowIn=MATE;

To get your picture to show you need to either modify a line or add a line. I chose to modify and add a new line like this as shown in the bold text.

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Floating Flags
Name[en_AU]=FloatingFlags
Comment=Bubbles the Australian Flag around the screen
Comment[en_AU]=Bubbles the Australian Flag around the screen
#Exec=/usr/lib/mate-screensaver/floaters /usr/share/pixmaps/mate-logo-white.svg
Exec=/usr/lib/mate-screensaver/floaters /usr/share/pixmaps/Flag_of_Australia.png
TryExec=/usr/lib/mate-screensaver/floaters
StartupNotify=false
Terminal=false
Type=Application
Categories=Screensaver;
OnlyShowIn=MATE;

Now save your file and check to see it works.

Australian flag screensaver

Australian flag screen saver

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