Ubuntu – Where is the “Starred” directory in the Nautilus sidebar stored


I am looking for the location of the "Starred" directory that is listed at the top of the sidebar in Nautilus on Ubuntu 19.04. I can find nothing under the name "Starred" on my system.

Best Answer

  • Files in certain locations such as ~/Documents can be starred by right-clicking on them in Nautilus and choosing to star them.

    The ability to star files requires you to have "Search" (which uses Tracker) active. "Search" is enabled via the Settings icon in your launcher (and not from Nautilus):

    Enable Search

    Then you can star or unstar files in Nautilus:

    Starring or unstarring a file

    And by clicking on the star icon, you can list starred files:

    List starred files

    However, it appears that only a limited set of files or folders can be starred by default.

    How to add folders so that they can be tracked and starred:

    In the image below, in Settings > Search clicking on the little ⚙ (gear) icon opens a new window titled "Search Locations" to allow you to add additional folders. Click on the + icon to get a list of folders you can include.

    I found a reboot helpful in getting those new folders to be registered properly.

    How to add folders so that they can be tracked and starred

    And here is an image showing various folders and files I've added and starred.

    • ~/.config folder is starred
    • a folder, SubDesktop1, within ~/Desktop is starred
    • a file, dconf1.txt, within ~/Desktop/SubDesktop1 is starred as can be seen from the Properties window.
    • for me, it appears that a reboot is needed when a "non-standard" folder is to be starred (and tracked).

    Image showing additional folders and files starred

    If I make any changes to the list of starred files, the only file to change on my system is ~/.local/share/tracker/data/tracker-store.journal. While there maybe a way to query that journal, I don't know how.

    (~/.config/dconf/user also changes but I've dumped the contents of dconf/user before and after starring/unstarring files and there were no changes related to starring/unstarring files.)

    You can check out tracker-related files in your home folder using locate ~/*tracker* but, as I pointed out above, the only file related to starring is ~/.local/share/tracker/data/tracker-store.journal.

    dkb: ~ $ locate ~/*tracker*