Different Default browser for different workspaces/activities?

I’ve been using KDE on my home office machine for both work and non-work purposes. I use a separate desktop for my work. Work demands that we use Google Chrome as our browser, but I use Brave as my personal choice, for privacy. I also want to keep work and personal stuff completely separate.

I have set Brave as the default browser, but then, when I get sent a link while working, clicking on it opens Brave, thus mixing work and non-work stuff.

Is it possible/sensible/desirable to set a different default browser for different desktops?

I’d love to hear thoughts and reactions.

it would have to be activities since workspaces are simply and extended version of your existing desktop for more room to work.

activities can have different desktops based on your workflow… sort of like being able to quickly login as a different user.

but it’s not clear how much beyond different wallpaper and widgets you can take each activity.

you can always create another user and set different defaults for that profile… if i couldn’t have a separate device for work (preferred) , a separate user is probably 2nd best option so that work and personal are not mixed or giving the same access to files on the computer.

Thanks, @skyfishgoo (Would love to hear the origin of that nickname!)…that’s good feedback.

I was just wondering if it could be implemented as when a link is clicked, the browser open process could look to see which desktop it’s on, and then choose the browser from a list. The list could have a global default, if only one browser is configured, and if another is set up for a given desktop, open that instead.

A separate user is always possible, but swapping back and forth is much slower than just changing desktops.


sounds like you need to write a script.

to check which activity you are on, you could do some thing like this

it seems to work on my kubuntu distro from the CLI at least.

as for the secrets of the skyfishgoo, they will forever be an inscrutable enigma.

You can have a browser to open only on a specific virtual desktop if you want. But as for setting it as the default browser on that desktop? I doubt it. The default browser is more of a systemwide setting. A different user is your best bet.
Although I did find a script once: https://geek.co.il/2018/07/30/script-day-different-default-browser-per-kde-activity


As the 8 browsers in the top of the right panel attest, MY relationship with “web navigators” is extremely unstable and for good reasons and not unlike in the case of many other people that I know. I would tend to agree but HOW it gets done is above my pay-grade. Thinking of a quasi-similar issue where Pan lets you set user handles on per-newsgroup basis but thunderbird does not, maybe you could try an approach similar to mine. I had a TON of paradigm-fits getting used to Activities VS Desktops, the pager in my left panel is desktops the pager in the right one is activities, or vice versa because to make things un-KISS the two use the same freakin’ pager! My solution finally is to think of Actvities as desktops and essentially just cycle THEM while always staying on the #1 desktop for each :slight_smile:

It’s a stupid workaround but hey, what do you do when you live in a shoe? I’m not even smart enough to own a smartphone.


Perhaps not exactly what you are looking for, but I did something similar with binding Firefox Profiles to Plasma Activities:

Thanks to all who replied. Seems I’ll have to live with this pain.


A simple and dirty way is to got to Activity Power Settings and for each activity set a separate script which sets your default browser. So for example, when you switch to Activity A, a script Activity_A_browser.sh is executed and runs the command xdg-settings set default-web-browser firefox.desktop which switches your default browser to Firefox.

One downside is that it makes activity switching a little less instant. There is a brief freeze when the script runs, so if you are quick to switch, your initial click might not register.