xdg-open - Man Page

opens a file or URL in the user's preferred application

Examples (TL;DR)


xdg-open {file | URL}

xdg-open {--help | --manual | --version}


xdg-open opens a file or URL in the user's preferred application. If a URL is provided the URL will be opened in the user's preferred web browser. If a file is provided the file will be opened in the preferred application for files of that type. xdg-open supports file, ftp, http and https URLs.

xdg-open is for use inside a desktop session only. It is not recommended to use xdg-open as root.

As xdg-open can not handle arguments that begin with a “-” it is recommended to pass filepaths in one of the following ways:



Show command synopsis.


Show this manual page.


Show the xdg-utils version information.

Exit Codes

An exit code of 0 indicates success while a non-zero exit code indicates failure. The following failure codes can be returned:

  1. Error in command line syntax.
  2. One of the files passed on the command line did not exist.
  3. A required tool could not be found.
  4. The action failed.

See Also

xdg-mime(1), xdg-settings(1), MIME applications associations specification[1]


xdg-open 'http://www.freedesktop.org/'

Opens the freedesktop.org website in the user's default browser.

xdg-open /tmp/foobar.png

Opens the PNG image file /tmp/foobar.png in the user's default image viewing application.


Kevin Krammer


Jeremy White




MIME applications associations specification

Referenced By

fldigi(1), gapplication(1), hman(1), mpris-scrobbler-signon(1), xdg-email(1), xdg-settings(1).

11/18/2023 xdg-utils 1.0 xdg-open Manual