Debian menu with Ubuntu 12.04 and MATE desktop

I recently put together a new computer system with a fresh Xubuntu 12.04 install. Xfce is a good desktop environment but it not my preferred one; I like gnome2. Since the Gnome people have jumped the shark the only option left was the Gnome2 fork, MATE. One of the first things I tried to do was to enable the Debian menu. Unfortunately that was not a straightforward task and the only search results on the topic were for Crunchbang with Openbox. Hopefully this page being indexed will save others time.

The first bit was disabling a lot of Xfce services, but that is another story. Then I installed menus and xdg-menu as per normal and ran sudo update-menus. I was surprised when this did not enable the Debian menu. Nor was I able to enabled it via "mozo" the MATE desktop fork of "alacarte" I was familiar with from gnome2.

Instead I had to learn the Freedesktop menu format system and edit the xml files manually to enable the Debian menu. The below is a copy of my, /home/superkuh/.config/menus/mate-applications.menu showing an example of how to add in a Debian menu entry.

<!DOCTYPE Menu
  PUBLIC '-//freedesktop//DTD Menu 1.0//EN'
  'http://standards.freedesktop.org/menu-spec/menu-1.0.dtd'>
<Menu>
	<Name>Applications</Name>
	<MergeFile type="parent">/etc/xdg/menus/mate-applications.menu</MergeFile>
	<Menu>
		<Name>Development</Name>
		<DirectoryDir>/home/superkuh/.local/share/desktop-directories</DirectoryDir>
		<Include>
			<Filename>python2.7.desktop</Filename>
		</Include>
		<AppDir>/home/superkuh/.local/share/applications</AppDir>
	</Menu>
	<Menu>
		<Name>Debian</Name>
		<MergeFile type="child">/home/superkuh/.config/menus/debian-menu.menu</MergeFile>
	</Menu>
</Menu>

Wine menu as well...

To get the Wine menu to show up as well edit /etc/xdg/menus/mate-applications.menu, and add <MergeDir> after <DefaultMergeDirs/>:

<DefaultMergeDirs/>
<MergeDir>applications-merged</MergeDir>

Then do,

ln -s ~/.config/menus/applications-merged ~/.config/menus/mate-applications-merged

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