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Conky is a system monitor software for the X Window System. It is available for Linux and FreeBSD. It is free software released under the terms of the BSD license. Conky is able to monitor many systems variables including CPU, memory, swap, disk space, temperature, top, upload, download, system messages, and much more. It is extremely configurable, however, the configuration can be a little hard to understand. Conky is a fork of torsmo.

Installation & Configuration

  • Conky is available in the Extra repository
# pacman -S conky
$ nano ~/.conkyrc
  • Alternatively, you can use the default config at /etc/xdg/conky/conky.conf
$ cp /etc/xdg/conky/conky.conf ~/.conkyrc

How to prevent flickering

Conky needs Double Buffer Extension (DBE) support from X server to prevent flickering, because it can't update window fast enough without it. It can be enabled in /etc/X11/xorg.conf with Load "dbe" line in Section "Module". To enable double-buffer check to have in ~/.conkyrc

double_buffer yes

Integration with Kdesktop

Conky with screenshot configuration generate problems with icons visualization. So there are some steps to follow.

  • Add these lines to ~/.conkyrc
own_window yes
own_window_type normal
own_window_transparent yes
own_window_hints undecorated,below,sticky,skip_taskbar,skip_page
  • if this setting is on, comment it out or delete the line
  • To autostart conky create this link
$ ln -s /usr/bin/conky ~/.kde/share/autostart/conkylink
  • Install feh
# pacman -S feh
  • Make a script to allow transparency with the desktop

For KDE3 users

$ nano -w ~/.kde/share/autostart/fehconky 
feh --bg-scale `dcop kdesktop KBackgroundIface currentWallpaper 1`

For KDE4 users

$ nano -w ~/.kde4/share/autostart/fehconky
feh --bg-scale "`grep 'wallpaper=' ~/.kde4/share/config/plasma-appletsrc | tail --lines=1 | sed 's/wallpaper=//'`"

use --bg-center if you use a centered wallpaper

  • Make it executable
$ chmod +x ~/.kde/share/autostart/fehconky
  • Optionally instead using a script you can add the corresponding line to the bottom of .conkyrc
$ nano ~/.conkyrc

For KDE3

${exec feh --bg-scale `dcop kdesktop KBackgroundIface currentWallpaper 1`}

For KDE4

${exec feh --bg-scale "`grep 'wallpaper=' ~/.kde4/share/config/plasma-appletsrc | tail --lines=1 | sed 's/wallpaper=//'`"}

How To Display Information About Available Package Updates in Conky

Take a look at the following threads for scripts to display information about available updates in conky.

Script to display the number of packages waiting for update.

Update notifier in python

Scrolling package update notifier

How to display a weather forecast in Conky

See this thread.

How To display RSS feeds in Conky

Conky has the ability to display RSS feeds natively without the need for an outside script to run and output into conky. For example, to display the titles of the ten most recent Planet Arch updates and refresh the feed every minute you would put this into your .conkyrc:

${rss 1 item_titles 10 }

External links