Change Folder Color & Add Emblem in Ubuntu 23.10, 22.04

Ubuntu has a “Folder Color” package in system repository, allows to change the color and add emblem for individual folder. However, it’s only available for Ubuntu LTS, and uses the old default ‘Humanity’ icon theme, which looks very outdated.

To fix the issue, a free open-source yaru-colors-folder-color project was created to work along with system default ‘Folder Color‘, so to have folder icon in different colors while keep using default Yaru theme.

The project is discontinued, due to switch to the new “Folder Color” project, which works out-of-the-box with Yaru colors integration. And, not only for Ubuntu LTS, but also supports all current short-term releases, such as Ubuntu 23.10, and Ubuntu 23.04.

With it, user can right-click on any folder, to get the menu to change folder color to ‘Blue’, ‘Brown’, ‘Green’, ‘Grey’, ‘Pink’, ‘Purple’, ‘Red’, and ‘Yellow’. As well as adding emblem such as ‘Important’, ‘In Progress’, ‘Favorite’, ‘Finished’, and ‘New’.

After changing color or adding emblem, the folder will also have a ‘Default‘ option in that menu, to restore to default.

Install the New ‘Folder Color’ extension

NOTE: This extension supports only Ubuntu with default GNOME, Ubuntu Cinnamon (not tested) and Ubuntu MATE.

The developer maintains an Ubuntu PPA contains the package for all current Ubuntu releases, including Ubuntu 18.04, Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 22.04, Ubuntu 23.04, and Ubuntu 23.10.

1. First, open terminal by pressing Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard. When it opens, run command to add the PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:costales/folder-color

Type user password (no asterisk feedback) when it asks and hit Enter to continue.

2. If you’re following this tutorial in old Ubuntu 18.04, then you need to manually refresh system package cache after adding PPA:

sudo apt update

3. Finally, install the file manager extension by running command:

sudo apt install folder-color

For Ubuntu MATE, also install the folder-color-caja package, so the command will be:

sudo apt install folder-color folder-color-caja

And, Cinnamon needs to install folder-color-nemo instead.

4. To apply the new extension, you may need to run nautilus -q command in terminal. For MATE, run caja -q and Cinnamon needs to run nemo -q instead.

Finally, re-open “Files” and right-click on any folder to see the new menu option:

Uninstall Folder Color

NOTE: Before removing the extension, it’s better to RESTORE your folders to their original color.

To remove the folder color file manager extension, simply run command:

sudo apt remove --autoremove folder-color folder-color-caja folder-color-nemo

Also remove the Ubuntu PPA, either by running command:

sudo add-apt-repository --remove ppa:costales/folder-color

or launch “Software & Updates” and remove the source line under “Other Software” tab.