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zh-CN:Feh feh is a lightweight and powerful image viewer that can also be used to manage the desktop wallpaper for standalone window managers lacking such features.


feh is available in the official repositories.


feh is highly configurable. For a full list of options, run feh --help.

As an image viewer

To quickly browse images in a specific directory, you can launch feh with the following arguments:

$ feh -g 640x480 -d -S filename /path/to/directory
  • The -g flag forces the images to appear no larger than 640x480
  • The -S filename flag sorts the images by file name

This is just one example; there are many more options available should you desire more flexibility.

File Browser Image Launcher

The following script, originally posted on the forum, is useful for file browsers. It will display your selected image in feh, but it will enable you to browse all other images in the directory as well, in their default order, i.e. as if you had run "feh *" and cycled through to the selected image.

The script assumes the first argument is the filename.


shopt -s nullglob

if [[ ! -f $1 ]]; then
	echo "$0: first argument is not a file" >&2
	exit 1

file=$(basename -- "$1")
dir=$(dirname -- "$1")

cd -- "$dir"

for i in *; do
	[[ -f $i ]] || continue
	[[ $i == $file ]] && c=$((${#arr[@]} - 1))

exec feh "$@" -- "${arr[@]:c}" "${arr[@]:0:c}"

Invoke the script with the selected image's path, followed by any additional arguments to feh. Here is an example of a launcher that you can use in a file browser:

 /path/to/script %f -F -Z

-F and -Z are feh arguments. -F opens the image in fullscreen mode, and -Z automatically zooms the image. Adding the -q flag (quiet) suppresses error messages to the terminal when feh tries loading non-image files from the current folder.

As a desktop wallpaper manager

feh can be used to manage the desktop wallpaper for window managers that lack desktop features, such as Openbox, Fluxbox, and xmonad.

When using GNOME, you must disable Nautilus from controlling the desktop. The easiest way is to run this command:

$ gconftool-2 --set /apps/nautilus/preferences/show_desktop --type boolean false

The following command is an example of how to set the initial background:

$ feh --bg-scale /path/to/image.file

Other scaling options include:

--bg-tile FILE
--bg-center FILE
--bg-max FILE
--bg-fill FILE

To restore the background on the next session, add the following to your startup file (e.g. ~/.xinitrc, ~/.config/openbox/autostart, etc.):

sh ~/.fehbg &

To change the background image, edit the file ~/.fehbg which gets created after running the command feh --bg-scale /path/to/image.file mentioned above.

Random background image

To rotate the wallpaper randomly, create a script with the code below (e.g. wallpaper.sh). Make the script executable:

$ chmod +x wallpaper.sh

and call it from ~/.xinitrc. You can also put the source directly in ~/.xinitrc instead of in a separate file.

Change the ~/.wallpaper directory to fit your setup and the 15m delay as you please (see man sleep for options).


while true; do
	find ~/.wallpaper -type f \( -name '*.jpg' -o -name '*.png' \) -print0 |
		shuf -n1 -z | xargs -0 feh --bg-max
	sleep 15m

You may have to change find ~/.wallpaper to find ~/.wallpaper/ to make the above work.

This version does not fork as much, but this version does not recurse through directories:


shopt -s nullglob
cd ~/.wallpaper

while true; do
	for i in *.jpg *.png; do
		[[ -f $i ]] && files+=("$i")

	((range)) && feh --bg-scale "${files[RANDOM % range]}"

	sleep 15m
For dual screen no-xinerama

This script replace the call to "feh" for add a wallpaper on systems with dual screen nvidia twinview (for example).

exec feh  exec feh --bg-max --no-xinerama "$@"
Using a cron job

Using a cron job, you can get a similar result, and it does not require having a script constantly sleeping.

Just do crontab -e and add:

* * * * *  DISPLAY=:0.0 feh --bg-max "$(find ~/.wallpaper/|shuf -n1)"