Recollrunner: use the powerful search features of recoll with krunner in Kubuntu 12.10

Hitting Alt+F2 and opening up krunner is something most KDE users like to do. People who use recoll marvel at its speed and acuity. Although krunner has a Nepomuk plugin which produces good results, some people (like me) prefer not to have an indexing and semantic tagging service going on in the background.

One good solution is to create a recoll index and team it up with with krunner to get that deep search capability we sometimes need. Luckily, someone has made a plugin for krunner called recollrunner to do just that.

1. Setting up the recoll database

If you haven’t already got recoll, it’s in the repos so install it with Muon or Synaptic or whatever software manager you use or do

sudo apt-get install recoll

On the first run of recoll you need to do some setting up to build an index and do a first run of the xapian database. It’s wise to restrict searches to your /home folder by making that your top directory.

Recoll turns up all sorts of things

Make sure to use the Preferences dialog to filter out any folders you don’t want to have indexed e.g. you can filter out your Games folder, otherwise it will index and record the contents of every single file in your downloaded games. It’s junk you don’t want to see coming up in your search results.

It will take some time to index everything you want and you may have to stop it and filter out more directories you don’t need to search through e.g the .config folders and files in your /home folder can be filtered out with ~/.* so you don’t find recoll indexing your browser cache and other stuff you’re not looking for.

Remember to set a schedule for recoll so that it updates regularly.

2. Installing recollrunner

There is no deb package for recollrunner so you will need to download and compile it.

Download recollrunner from this link and save it to your Downloads folder.

Make a folder there called recollrunner and copy the downloaded tar.bz2 archive into it.


Open a terminal in this directory or do

cd $HOME/Downloads/recollrunner

I found I was missing a dependency, make sure you have kdelibs5-dev installed.

If you don’t then

sudo apt-get install kdelibs5-dev

You will also need to install cmake if you haven’t got it already.

You can get more hints on missing dependencies from here.

Once all the dependencies are satisfied the build process is easy.

mkdir build
cd build
cmake -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=$(kde4-config --prefix) ..
sudo make install

Then you need to run this command so that krunner can find your plugin:


Now just hit Alt+F2 and check the krunner plugins to see that the recoll plugin is there.

If all went well you will see the recoll plugin in krunner

The plugin creator suggest to restart krunner, you can do that like this:

kquitapp krunner && krunner

From reading other people’s comments it seems you need to disable the Nepomuk krunner plugin for this to work properly. If you want to know how to disable all desktop search and indexing, a guide such as this will tell you how.


One thought on “Recollrunner: use the powerful search features of recoll with krunner in Kubuntu 12.10

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