How To Disable/Hide Spotify's Tray Menu and Use the Sound Menu or HUD main blog post image
January 20th, 2013 by Michael Tunnell

How To Disable/Hide Spotify's Tray Menu and Use the Sound Menu or HUD

Spotify's Tray Menu Disabled while using Ubuntu Ambiance Theme

on Spotify on Ubuntu 12.04


Some people have expressed wanting to use my Spotify Ambiance theme but to also disable the Tray Menu entirely in order to just use the Sound Menu since having both is rather redundant. I agree with sentiment and this blog post is a tutorial on how to do just that. This tutorial also contains downloads to use the Disable the Tray Menu with the Ambiance theme and with the default Spotify theme.


How To Disable the Tray Menu:

This part is actually fairly easy but like before, basically everything requires using root. Even though this is easy I have also provided two downloads that will do this for you, just follow the install instructions on the Ambiance Theme post but instead use one of the downloads below. Or to do it yourself...


1. Extract the "" file.

2. Go into the extracted resources and then into the "_linux".

3. Delete the two .ICO files in this folder.

4. Repack the resources into "".

5. Move the new file to the Data folder.


Technically this will NOT disable the tray menu but instead it hides the menu. This is actually a good thing because this will ensure that Spotify continues to work with the HUD!


How To Use Spotify with a Disabled Tray Menu:

Disabling the tray menu does cause some issues if you decide to close the Spotify main window but these issues are rather is how to deal with the clunkiness of Spotify without the Tray Menu or the Main Window active.



Using the Sound Menu:

Sound Menu can display what song is playing and allow you to control some aspects of the song navigation, you can Play, Pause, go to Next song or go to Previous song. Unfortunately, it can not open the Main Window tries to but fails.



Using the HUD:

The HUD can actually do everything that the Spotify Tray Menu can do because like I said before, the tray menu is not disabled but is actually just hidden. The only thing it can't do is display the currently playing song.


WIth the HUD you can Play, Pause, Next Song, Previous Song, Turn on Repeat, Exit Spotify or Reopen the Main Window.



Re-Opening the Main Window of Spotify:

I just mentioned that the HUD can reopen the main window of Spotify but there are other ways to do it as well. You can relaunch the app from the Dash or the Launcher (if you have it locked) and you can run the "spotify" command with Alt+F2 prompt. The HUD is the optimal way of doing everything with the hidden tray menu and a closed main window but you can use any of those options.


Regardless of how you choose to reopen the Main Window none of these options will relaunch the app, instead it will just open the main window of the existing instance. (tested via System Monitor)



Errors you MAY Encounter:

If you use the Dash, Lanucher, Alt+F2 or a terminal to reopen the main window you may experience an error labeled as "Link not found" but it doesn't cause any issues that I can detect so you can just ignore it and close it out. However, if you do experience this will ALWAYS experience it every time you reopen the closed window with these methods. - It is because of the %U used in launching the app initially. I tried to remove that from the Dash entry but it still does it so I don't think it is possible to stop that error if it can close the error message.


These errors do NOT seem to occur ever when you use the HUD to control Spotify.


Now for the Downloads:

Disable/Hide Spotify Tray Menu using the Ubuntu Ambiance Theme

Disable/Hide Spotify Tray Menu using Spotify default theme



You can also Create a Custom Icon for Spotify's Tray Menu, here's how:

*still need root.

1. Extract the file from the download (tray icon download) or from the original zip file located in "/opt/spotify/spotify-client/Data"

2. Once extracted, go into the resources folder and then into the "_linux" folder.

3. There are two ico files. Replace both files with your new icon.

4. Repackage the files into a new file (do not include the main resources folder, spotify requires all the files in that folder to be root files)

5. Go back to the Data folder and paste/move the new file there to overwrite the original.

6. Reopen Spotify to see the changes.

If you don't have software to create .ico files then you can create transparent background PNG files and convert them at or search Google for more PNG to ICO conversion sites.


Did you find this blog post helpful? How do you choose to use Spotify?

Please let me know in the comments section below...