Desktop Widgets: Conky

There’s a great little piece of software in the repositories that you may enjoy, it’s called Conky.

Conky, will allow you to, using a script, display all kinds of cool things on your desktop. CPU load, CPU temperature, memory use, disk use, network connections, etc. can all be shown on your desktop.

While Conky does require some scripting, there are tons of available scripts of many designs available all over the web. Just do a search for Conky scripts!

Start by installing Conky, using your Software Manager:

Software Manager

Software Manager

After it finishes loading, it’s time to play with it! There will not be a menu item for Conky. You launch it from a terminal window,

First, download a script to play with. In my case I started with Conky Grey

Installing the script is as simple as downloading it, and then putting it in the Conky configuration folder.  The configuration folder, should be located in your home folder, and is called .conky

Just create the folder, drop the configuration files into it and then get started.

Open a terminal window now, and type the following (assuming the above script)  conky -c ~/.conky/conkyrc_grey

This will start Conky, and it will display right on your desktop:

Conky Desktop

Conky Desktop

In the example above, I have moved the display to the left side of my screen, by simply editing the conky_rc file that you downloaded. In this case, just changing the alignment parameter!  The cool thing is, you can open the conky_rc file, edit it, save it and the changes will show up instantly on your desktop!

Play with the settings, delete features, like the network connections list, by simply removing it from the configuration file.

The terminal window you opened to launch Conky can be closed safely, or you can leave it open to see errors that might pop up. If you wish to turn off Conky, just open a terminal window and type: killall conky

If you’d like to play with Conky without editing the configuration file directly, you can install the Conky Configureation Tool

Conky Configuration Tool

Conky Configuration Tool


So, if you want to see what’s happening in your computer, right on your desktop, get Conky and start playing!