RT Cunningham


Setting the Default Web Browser in Linux Mint Xfce

Xfce default web browser The operating system on my laptop computer is Linux Mint Xfce. Like many Linux distributions, Mozilla Firefox came bundled as the default web browser.

I was using Linux Mint Cinnamon before my laptop computer crashed. When I started reinstalling everything, I decided to go with Linux Mint Xfce. Instead of reinstalling Google Chrome, I opted to install Chromium. Chrome is based on it. Recently, I decided to switch to Vivaldi, which is also based on Chromium.

Xfce is a desktop environment, just like Cinnamon. The problem I had with Cinnamon was that I had to restart it after a few hours (with control-alt-escape) because it consumed more and more memory as the hours passed. The same thing went for Nemo, the file manager. I just had to close that one to get the memory back.

Setting the Default Web Browser - Odd Behavior

I use Gmail as my e-mail provider. I download the messages into Mozilla Thunderbird, which I back up daily to Dropbox. After I installed Chromium and set it as my default web browser, the links in messages within Thunderbird still brought up Firefox when I clicked on them.

After I switched to Vivaldi, I clicked on the Dropbox icon and then the “Launch Dropbox Website” link. It brought up Firefox.

Fixing the Default Web Browser

Within Thunderbird, I had to go to Preferences > Attachments > Incoming to set the default web browser for attachments, for both http and https, to Vivaldi.

In Linux Mint Xfce, I had to go to the menu item, “Preferred Applications”, to manually set the preferred web browser to Vivaldi (at /usr/bin/vivaldi-stable).

To fix the problem with the Dropbox icon, I had to bring up the Linux Mint Xfce “Mime Type Editor”. I changed every instance of Firefox to Vivaldi in the “Default Application” column.

I could find nothing else bringing up Firefox, which told me it was safe to uninstall it, which is what I did next.

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By RT Cunningham
May 24, 2017

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