Bored of Nautilus? Tired of Thunar? Desperate to ditch Dolphin? Maybe it’s time to try a new file browser?

Marlin is a lightweight file browser built from the ground-up to be responsive, simply designed and easy to use.

It will be the default file browser in the next release of the elementary project’s operating system ‘Luna’.

marlin file browser in Ubuntu 11.10

Our own Georgi K. is a massive fan of Marlin – and now you can try out its development using a Marlin-only development PPA.


Amongst its features are:

  • Tabbed browsing
  • Multiple-views
  • Single-click to open (default)
  • Configurable toolbars and interface
  • Plugin framework

Icon view: –

marlin icon viewList view: –

marlin list view

Column view: –

marlin column view


Unity quicklist support: –

Marlin Unity integration

Plugins for Dropbox and UbuntuOne: –

marlin plugins

Enabling the ‘Contractor‘ plug-in requires ‘Contractor‘ to be installed, and must be enabled in order for Marlin to support ‘unrar’-ing of archives.

SSH, FTP, etc connections: –

marlin server support

Modal Dialogs (GNOME-Shell only)

Installing Marlin in Ubuntu

To install the file-browser in Ubuntu 11.10 you must first add the following PPA to your Software Sources: –


After running an update you should then install the package ‘Marlin‘ from the Ubuntu Software Centre.

Alternatively, enter the following two commands in a new Terminal: –

  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:marlin-devs/marlin-daily
  • sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install marlin marlin-plugin-*

Using Marlin

After installing Marlin it can be launched from the Dash by searching for ‘Marlin’.

Remember: Marlin is in active development and should not be considered stable or feature complete.

elementary marlin