What is emelFM2?

It is a file manager for UNIX-like operating systems. It uses a simple and efficient interface pioneered by Norton Commander, in the 1980s. The main window is divided into three parts, described as “panes” or “panels”. Two of those (side-by-side or top-to-bottom) show the contents of selected filesystem directories. The third pane, at the bottom of the window, shows the output of commands executed within the program. Those panes can be resized, and any one or two of them can be hidden and unhidden, on request. A built-in command-line, toolbar buttons or assigned keys can be used to initiate commands.

You might be interested in some ScreenShots.

Which platforms are supported?

Some optional dependencies aside, emelFM2 should run on any UNIX-like operating system that supports Gtk+2 or Gtk+3. emelFM2 is known to run on:

  • FreeBSD (i386, alpha)FreeBSD Homepage
  • NetBSD NetBSD Homepage
  • Debian GNU/Linux (i386, sparc64, amd64)Debian Homepage
  • Ubuntu 5.10 and later Ubuntu Homepage
    • An up-to-date Ubuntu PPA (release)
    • A PPA with daily trunk builds Ubuntu PPA (daily)
  • Fedora Linux Fedora Project Page
  • openSUSE openSUSE Homepage
  • Mandrake/iva 10 and later Mandriva Homepage
  • Gentoo Linux Gentoo Linux Homepage
  • Slackware Linux 8.1 Slackware Homepage
  • Zenwalk Linux Linux Homepage
  • Vector Linux Vector Linux Homepage
  • Arch Linux Arch Linux Homepage
  • dyne:bolic dyne:bolic Homepage
  • Slitaz GNU/Linux SliTaz Homepage
  • Nokia OS2008/Maemo
  • Centos 5.2 Centos Homepage
  • Thinstation Homepage


emelFM2 needs the following:

  • Gtk+ >= 2.6
  • shell commands – grep, sed
  • (for compiling) libmagic development package (libmagic-devel or whatever)
  • (for compiling) GCC >= 3.2

Optionally, emelFM2 can be built with with some relevant capabilities of later Gtk+ versions, and/or with improved file alteration monitoring, using FAM or gamin >= 0.1.0, or kernel-based monitoring mechanisms (so far, only inotify or dnotify on Linux).

An optional-build plugin needs libacl with more-or-less the full capability of the POSIX standard for ACL’s.

Where can I download it?

The latest source-code release is: emelfm2-0.9.1.tar.bz2 (1189 kb) – 2014-02-18

There is a page at freecode, and another at gnomefiles. You can subscribe to new releases on freecode if you have an account there.

A ChangeLog is available.

Between releases, the latest source-code can be browsed at, and downloaded from github, or (less-frequently updated) the subversion repository or via the ‘browse-source’ button at the top of this page. Almost always, such code can be compiled and run, but occasionally (and temporarily), that may not be the case.

Pre-releases and older official releases of emelFM2 are available from the DownLoads page.

References for various packaged versions are provided on the OtherDownLoads page.

How can I help?

It is always useful to get bug reports. Please create a ‘ticket’ via the button at the top of this page. It’s usually productive to also post a report to the mailing list, which includes various people who may have suggestions about, or an interest in, the problem and its solution. (See information below about using the list.)

You can add a note to UserComments or FeatureRequests, but for feature requests at least, it’s better to create a ticket.

If you run a BSD, you could build and test the kqueue-based change-monitoring code for those OS’s. Post a message to the mailing list about this.

You can update the UserGuide information to help users get the most from emelFM2.

You can update the list of supported platforms.

You can vote for emelFM2 at freecode or at gnomefiles.

If you have any programming skills, you might also want to take a look at the TODO list, and then advertise your interest on the mailing list.


To combat the extensive spamming of recent times, we’ve had to resort to some annoying constraints.

You will need to log in to add/change any content here.

Normally, registration of new users is disabled. To register as a new user, send an email to the mailing list, with ‘register’ in the subject. Upon receipt we will temporarily enable registration at this site, and let you know about that, via return email.

We encourage you to create a login account with a working email address, so that we can contact you for follow-up when appropriate. For now at least, and subject to the level of spamming, there is an anonymous account in the name of ‘guest’, with p/w ’email’ (both of these without the quotes).

We may be able to revert to something less onerous, later on.

Mailing list

You can subscribe to the emelFM2 mailing list by sending an email to [email protected] with ‘subscribe’ in the subject and you can un-subscribe from the list by sending an email to the same address with ‘unsubscribe’ in the subject. There is also a web interface and a list archive. The volume of traffic on the list is quite low.

You can send message(s) to the mailing list members without being a subscriber, but it’s better to subscribe, even if only temporarily. If you do wish to send a message without subscribing, please ensure there is a valid return address or some other means of contacting you in case any follow-up is needed.


For anything other than described above, contact tooar.