How-To Geek

How to Show/Hide All Hidden Startup Applications in Ubuntu 14.10


We’ve recently showed you how to manage startup applications in Ubuntu 14.04, just like you can in Windows. However, when you access the Startup Applications Preferences tool not all startup applications are listed. Some are hidden. We’ll show you how to reveal these hidden applications.

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For example, these are the startup applications we see when we open the Startup Applications Preferences tool.


To show the hidden startup applications, press Ctrl + Alt + T to open the Terminal window. Type the following command at the prompt and press Enter.

sudo sed –i ‘s/NoDisplay=true/NoDisplay=false/g’ /etc/xdg/autostart/*.desktop

NOTE: Copying and pasting the above command would be easier and ensure accuracy.

Type the password when prompted and press Enter.


To open the Startup Applications Preferences tool, click the Search button at the top of the Unity bar.


Start typing “startup applications” in the Search box. Items that match what you type start displaying below the Search box. When the Startup Applications tool displays, click the icon to open it.


You will now see all the startup applications that were previously hidden. Make any changes you want and click Close to close this tool.


To not display the hidden startup applications again, type (or copy and paste) the following command at the prompt and press Enter.

sudo sed –i ‘s/NoDisplay=false/NoDisplay=true/g’ /etc/xdg/autostart/*.desktop


To close the Terminal window, click the X in the upper-left corner of the window, or type “exit” (without the quotes) and press Enter.

Lori Kaufman is a freelance technical writer who likes to write geeky how-to articles to help make people's lives easier through the use of technology. She loves watching and reading mysteries and is an avid Doctor Who fan.

  • Published 06/30/14

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