Set Apps to Auto Startup at Logon on Ubuntu 17.10 / 18.04

Want to automatically start some applications after you logon to Ubuntu desktop? Most programs are not set up to automatically open when the computer is first started. This brief tutorial is going to show you how to do that on Ubuntu 17.10 and 18.04 LTS.

With Windows systems, one can configure applications to start up automatically by creating shortcuts in the Startup folder for the apps. Application with shortcuts to in the Startup folder will automatically start up everytime you logon to Windows.

Ubuntu doesn’t have a Startup folder like Windows. If you want to configure applications to automatically start up on Ubuntu, users will have to use a desktop tool to make that work. and this tutorial is going to show you how.

The steps below will help you configure applications to be started at login, in addition to the default startup applications configured on the system. To do that, go to the Activities Overview to find and open Startup Applications.

Alternatively you can press Alt+F2 keys on your keyboard to open the run commands box, and run the commands below


ubuntu start up

When Startup Applications opens, Click Add and enter the command to be executed at login. you may want at type a name and description. For example, to make Firefox start automatically, it’s sufficient to type firefox in the Command field and confirm with Add.

If you don’t know the application commands, you can either type the command, or click the Browse. button and select a command. Applications to autostart are typically located in the /usr/bin folder.

ubuntu startup applications 1

When you’re done, click Add to complete the process.

After setting up the application, everytime you logon to Ubuntu, the application will automatically startup. You can do this to as many applications you want. again, if you don’t know the command for the app, simple browse and select the application command.

Save your changes and you’re done.

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  1. Where’s the Save button to save the added command?
    They are not saved so I have to do it manually

  2. While your solution does work it doesn’t address hi res screens. On my dell 5520 with 4k screen Conky auto-starts; yes, but un-scaled.

  3. If you wish to delay the application startup time then add the following:
    sh -c “sleep [time] && [app] –[arg1] –[arg2] ‘[arg2stuff]'”
    sh -c “sleep 5s && /usr/bin/transmission-gtk”

  4. Great, it worked well but is it possible to set the account to log out once the application is closed so that there is an account that only runs that application and closes the account when the application is closed with all other accounts behaving normally?

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