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Conky (software)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Original author(s)Brenden Matthews
Stable release
1.21.3[1] Edit this on Wikidata / 10 June 2024; 13 days ago (10 June 2024)
Written inC, C++
Operating systemLinux, FreeBSD, and OpenBSD
TypeSystem monitor
LicenseGPL and BSD licenses[2]

Conky is a free software desktop system monitor for the X Window System. It is available for Linux, FreeBSD, and OpenBSD.[3] Conky is highly configurable[4][5][6] and is able to monitor many system variables including the status of the CPU, memory, swap space, disk storage, temperatures, processes, network interfaces, battery power, system messages, e-mail inboxes, Arch Linux updates, many popular music players (MPD, XMMS2, BMPx, Audacious, etc.), weather updates, breaking news, and much more.[7] Unlike system monitors that use high-level widget toolkits to render their information, Conky is drawn directly in an X window. This allows it to be configured such that it consumes relatively few system resources.[8]

Conky was hailed as "one of the best maintained, and definitely one of the most useful, programs in the world of open source" in Linux Magazine.[9]

It comes pre-configured in the default installation of Pinguy OS and CrunchBang Linux.[10][11]


Conky is a fork of torsmo, a system monitor that is no longer maintained.[12] Torsmo, however, continues to be used in systems where applications that use minimal resources are preferred. Damn Small Linux, for example, runs torsmo in its desktop root window on the default installation of its Live CD.[13] Conky derives its name from a character in the Canadian television programme Trailer Park Boys.[14]

Common uses[edit]

While Conky is suited for use as a system monitor, it can also be used to gather and display many other sources of information and can be extended with the Lua programming language.

Conky has also been ported to devices such as the Nokia N900[15] and can be ported to practically any system with GCC and an X11 implementation.

Users have created and distributed many customized scripts, demonstrating Conky's modularity and versatility in function and appearance. A thread on the Ubuntu forums has grown to over 2,000 pages of users sharing their configurations.[16][17][18][19]

Usage example[edit]

A simple configuration for Conky which displays the time on a user's desktop is as follows:

Note: As of version 1.10 Conky has changed the syntax used.

conky.config = {
    alignment = 'middle_middle',
    background = false,
    border_width = 1,
    cpu_avg_samples = 2,
	default_color = 'white',
    default_outline_color = 'white',
    default_shade_color = 'white',
    draw_borders = false,
    draw_graph_borders = true,
    draw_outline = false,
    draw_shades = false,
    use_xft = true,
    font = 'Free Mono:size=30',
    gap_x = 5,
    gap_y = 60,
    minimum_height = 5,
	minimum_width = 400,
    net_avg_samples = 2,
    no_buffers = true,
    out_to_console = false,
    out_to_stderr = false,
    extra_newline = false,
    own_window = true,
    own_window_class = 'Conky',
    own_window_type = 'desktop',
    stippled_borders = 0,
    update_interval = 1.0,
    uppercase = false,
    use_spacer = 'none',
    show_graph_scale = false,
    show_graph_range = false

conky.text = [[
${time %H:%M}

A simpler example of the old syntax:

update_interval 30

own_window yes
own_window_type desktop

use_xft yes
xftfont DejaVu Sans:size=14

alignment bottom_right

${time %H:%M}

Default configuration file location is $HOME/.conkyrc or ${sysconfdir}/conky/conky.conf. On most systems, "sysconfdir" is /etc, and you can find the sample configuration file there (/etc/conky/conky.conf).[7]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Release 1.21.3". 10 June 2024. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  2. ^ Conky's license info
  3. ^ Conky homepage
  4. ^ Expert's guide to configuring Conky Archived 2009-02-03 at the Wayback Machine by Dmitri Popov on Linux.com
  5. ^ Conky: highly configurable system monitor for X by Casey Stamper on Debian.net
  6. ^ GKrellM vs. Conky Archived 2008-12-02 at the Wayback Machine by Sebastian Wieseler
  7. ^ a b Conky documentation
  8. ^ CLI Magic: Lightweight Conky is a system monitor powerhouse Archived 2008-11-07 at the Wayback Machine by Shashank Sharma on Linux.com
  9. ^ Rähm, Jan (March 2009). "Vital Signs: Monitoring your system with Conky" (PDF). Linux Magazine: 86–87. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-12-22. Retrieved 2010-04-13.
  10. ^ PinguyOS Homepage[usurped]
  11. ^ "About CrunchBang Linux [CrunchBang Linux Wiki]". Archived from the original on 2012-01-28. Retrieved 2012-02-28.
  12. ^ Conky FAQ
  13. ^ Changelog of Damn Small Linux
  14. ^ What is Conky?
  15. ^ Nokia N900 Conky package
  16. ^ Post your .conkyrc files w/ screenshots
  17. ^ Conky scripts
  18. ^ Conky Gmail Revisited
  19. ^ Howto: Get a beautiful Conky 1.4.2 setup

External links[edit]