Thunderbird, PDFs, evince and kubuntu

Part of the problem (that’s perhaps a little unfair, but hey, bear with me) of an automatically updated Kubuntu desktop is that sometimes the defaults change, and you end up with a change that you aren’t happy with. Recently, and for no reason I could divine, the default viewer for PDFs in Thunderbird (mail client) changed to evince. This should, of course, be fine, but for yet more reasons I can’t divine evince can’t print. Or rather, can only occasionally print, which is frankly worse.

After about a month of muttering to myself I finally broke and tried to find out what the hell was going on… It’s not defined in the Attachments menu (in Thunderbird Edit -> Preferences -> Attachments -> View & edit actions). It’s not defined in the system Default Applications (from the ‘start’ button System Settings -> Default Applications). It’s not even defined using update-alternatives. Instead (and thanks to Tim Fredrick’s site for pointing me in the right direction) it’s defined in /usr/share/applications/defaults.list. In that file look for the line starting application/pdf and change the value to be the .desktop file of your choice, relative to the /usr/share/applications directory. In my case my app of choice is KPDF, and so I have changed my line to read as follows:

application/pdf=kde/kpdf.desktop

Sorted.