1. Q: What is Conky?

    A: Conky is a program which can display arbitrary information (such as the date, CPU temperature from i2c, MPD info, and anything else you desire) to the root window in X11. Conky normally does this by drawing to the root window, however Conky can also be run in windowed mode (though this is not how conky was meant to be used).

    To learn more, you can read about Conky.

  2. Q: Whats wrong with torsmo?

    A: First, Conky is a fork of torsmo, so there is nothing stopping anyone from continuing to use torsmo. Second, torsmo is unmaintained. It has bugs and lacks features. Although Conky isn't perfect, it's still maintained. Full credit is also given in the code to the original torsmo authors (who deserve plenty of credit for originally creating such a cool little application).

  3. Q: Conky won't stop flickering

    A: Conky is designed to draw to the root desktop window. However, there are several other applications which like drawing to the root desktop window. Because of this, Conky has two options available to get around this problem:

    • You can try enabling double-buffer. Conky's double-buffer option uses the X double-buffer extension to provide a flicker-free Conky. This can be done by running Conky with the '-b' parameter, or adding this to your conkyrc:

      double_buffer yes
    • Conky can run in windowed mode, meaning that instead of drawing the the root window it draws to it's own window. You can move this window around and resize it by right-clicking or left-clicking on the window while holding down the Alt key. This can be accomplished by running Conky with the '-o' parameter, or by adding the following to your conkyrc:

      own_window yes
  4. Q: Why doesn't Conky work with Gnome/KDE/nautilus/enlightenment/<insert any other WM/DE/application that draws to the root window here>

    A: Please see "Conky won't stop flickering"

  5. Q: Why does Conky make my icons disappear?

    A: Conky is probably fighting with your desktop manager over drawing to the root window. A quick and easy fix (in your conkyrc):

    own_window yes
    own_window_type desktop # Try also 'normal' or 'override'

    See also "Conky won't stop flickering"

  6. Q: Transparency doesn't work! Why is this and how can I fix it?

    A: Conky uses "pseudo"-transparency. What this means is that is not a truly "transparent" window. What it does is read the background of the root window, and changes it's own background to the section of the image it finds. Some Window or Desktop Managers do not set a background to the "real" root background, and instead place it on a layer above the root window. To fix this, you can use an application such as qiv (http://www.klografx.net/qiv/), "Esetroot" which is included with Eterm (http://www.eterm.org), "fbsetbg" which is included with fluxbox (http://www.fluxbox.org), or (my favourite) "feh" (http://linuxbrit.co.uk/feh/).

    To set the background using "feh" from your ~/.xinitrc, try the following:

    sleep 1 && feh --bg-center ~/background.png &
  7. Q: Where did the default .conkyrc go? I ran conky and looked in my home directory, and I couldn't find it!

    A: No .conkyrc is created by default. In the conky tarball there is a file called conkyrc.sample.gz (Which will be installed on some distributions in /usr/share/doc/conky-*/). Also, check the screenshots page for more examples. (See also "Where can I find a copy of the conkyrc that Conky uses when ~/.conkyrc doesn't exist?")

  8. Q: Double buffer isn't working!

    A: More than likely you aren't loading the double buffer extension when Xorg starts. Luckily, its easy to fix. Open up the Xorg configuration file (usually /etc/X11/xorg.conf) with your favourite text editor, and find the line that says:

    Section "Module"

    Then, after that line, add:

    Load  "dbe"

    Restart Xorg (my preferred method is the good-ole control+alt+backspace) and enjoy.

  9. Q: How can I get involved?

    A: There is always plenty to be done (find/fix bugs, write docs, write new code) so you shouldn't have much problem there. If you want to get involved in Conky's development, the best thing to do would be to come to the Conky IRC channel #conky on irc.freenode.net. There is usually at least one developer there at any given time. If you don't like IRC, you can start submitting patches uses the SourceForge trackers or the mailing lists.

  10. Q: Conky's built in IMAP and POP3 doesn't support SSL or TLS

    A: You can use Stunnel to accomplish the same thing. Here is what you need in your /etc/stunnel/stunnel.conf:

    # Service-level configuration for TLS server
    client = yes
    accept  = 143
    connect = mail.remote.com:143
    protocol = imap
    sslVersion = TLSv1
    # Service-level configuration for SSL server
    client = yes
    accept  = 993
    connect = mail.remote.com:993

    Then in your conkyrc use localhost for the mail host, like so (use port 143 for TLS and 993 for SSL):

    imap localhost username * -i 30 -p 143 # port argument is optional, defaults to 143
    Inbox: ${imap_unseen}/${imap_messages}
  11. Q: Can Conky use 2 different configurations at once?

    A: Sure, just start Conky using the -c flag, like so:

    $ conky -c config1
    $ conky -c config2
  12. Q: Where can I find a copy of the conkyrc that Conky uses when ~/.conkyrc doesn't exist?

    A: Here: http://conky.sourceforge.net/conkyrc-default

  13. Q: How can I make Conky print the degree symbol (°) correctly?

    A: This is a Problem of character encoding and possibly a bug. Until it has been fixed, there exists a workaround when Conky was built with iconv support. Having a system defaulting to UTF-8, the following could do the trick:

    ${iconv_start UTF-8 ISO_8859-1}° ${iconv_stop}
  14. Q: Show me more!

    A: Here are some other websites with Conky examples:

  15. Q: My question wasn't answered here; where can I get help?

    A: The best place to get assistance is the Conky IRC channel #conky on irc.freenode.net. If thats no good, you can try the many services available from SourceForge on the Conky project page at http://sourceforge.net/projects/conky/

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