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Whisker Menu is an alternative to the Xfce application menu that features a search function so you can easily find the application you want to launch. The menu also supports browsing apps by category, you can add applications to favorites and more. The menu is used by default in Linux Mint 15 Xfce.

The application was updated recently, getting a much requested feature: you can now open the menu using a keyboard shortcut (though you must add the keyboard shortcut manually - see below), along with other enhancements and fixes.

whisker menu

Changes in Whisker Menu 1.1.0:
  • Added external command to popup menu;
  • Added option to show label with or instead of icon;
  • Add option to switch categories by hovering;
  • Added choosing icon sizes of launchers and categories;
  • Added scrolling to sidebar;
  • Added menu action to clear recently used;
  • Added menu actions to sort favorites alphabetically;
  • Added icons to context menu;
  • New search algorithm;
  • Refactored category code;
  • Show launcher name in context menu;
  • Many fixes and other changes.

whisker menu keyboard shortcut

To open Whisker Menu using a keyboard shortcut, do the following: from the Xfce Settings > Keyboard, on the "Application Shortcuts" tab, click "Add" and use "xfce4-popup-whiskermenu" (without the quotes) for the command. Then assign it a keyboard shortcut (make sure it's not already in use) and that's it.

Install Whisker Menu in Xubuntu

To add the official PPA and install Whisker Menu in (X)Ubuntu 13.10, 13.04, 12.10 or 12.04 (with Xfce 4.8), use the commands below:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gottcode/gcppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin

Important: if you're using (X)Ubuntu 12.04 and you've upgraded to Xfce 4.10, use the following PPA:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:landronimirc/xfce
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin

Once installed, right click the panel and select Panel > Add New Items, then select "Whisker Menu" and click "Add".

Debian, Fedora and openSUSE users can get Whisker Menu from HERE.

Arch Linux: install Whisker Menu via AUR.

The source code is available @ GitHub.