How To: Modify my .conkyrc

I have described elsewhere how to make your own .conkyrc, but it can get confusing. If you find one that is almost what you want, then, how do you know which bits to change, without having to go through and understand the whole thing? Hopefully, this post will show you that.

We’ll be using my own .conkyrc as the basis for the guide. You can find the code here. Just copy the whole post, paste it into your favourite editor, and save the file in your home directory as .conkyrc. It creates a Conky that looks like this:

A screenshot of my Conky

A screenshot of my Conky

Configuration Options

Most of these should be left as they are, especially if you’re using gnome. Options you should change are xftfont comicsansms:size=8 which you should change to the font you would prefer to use as the default. alignment bottome_left should be changed to reflect where you wish Conky to be positioned – top_left, top_right, bottom_right or bottom_left. The colours should be changed to any choice of hex colour codes or html colour names. For example, default_color 577587 would change the basic colour to hex code #577587, a kind of dirty blue. Set all the colours to ones you prefer.

The default_outline_color option defines the colour for any borders, including those around your graphs. You can choose to remove borders around your graphs using the draw_graph_borders Set it to false to remove borders. Border colours can be defined by changing the default_outline_color option.

TEXT Options

If you’re really interested in changing the Conky layout a lot, you should read my more detailed guide here. Otherwise, the only bits you will really be interested in are the $font variables. I have set the $color variables so that they can all be controlled by the colour settings in the configuration part, described above. Unfortunately, it is not so easy to set up the fonts in this way, (or if it is, I have not yet discovered how to do it). This means that you need to go through this section and alter the fonts for the headings: where I have put ${font augie:style=Bold:size=8} you should change this to the font of your choice. Alternatively, if you like the augie font, you can get it here: .

The process and memory usage lists only display well in their columns if a monotype font is used. I have used bitstream vera sans mono, but if you have another monotype you prefer, use that instead.

The final part you may want to modify may be quite complex. I have a wireless network. To use the variables that allow me to display my wireless information, I have had to compile Conky in a special way, described here. If you don’t have a wireless network, you will need to use a completely different set of variables.

${font augie:style=Bold:size=8}$color1 Network > ${addr eth0}${font augie:style=Bold:size=8} $font $color
Down / Up Speed: ${downspeed eth0} k/s / ${upspeed eth0} k/s
${downspeedgraph eth0 20,120 F660AB F52887} $alignr ${upspeedgraph eth0 20,120 F660AB F52887}
Down / Up Bytes: ${totaldown eth0} / ${totalup eth0}
Inbound / Outbound / Total: ${tcp_portmon 1 32767 count} / ${tcp_portmon 32768 61000 count} / ${tcp_portmon 1 65535 count}

Copy this section of text, and use it instead of all the code between

${font augie:style=Bold:size=8}$color1 Network > ${wireless_essid wlan0} > ${addr wlan0}${font augie:style=Bold:size=8} $font $color


Inbound / Outbound / Total: ${tcp_portmon 1 32767 count} / ${tcp_portmon 32768 61000 count} / ${tcp_portmon 1 65535 count}

You will need to change the hex codes for $downspeedgraph to ones more suitable for your scheme. The first code (here F660AB) is the one that will show as the actual graph.

This should ensure that all your Font and Colour configuration options have now been changed to fit in with your preferred scheme. As an example, here is a Conky I have made by doing just that:

A modified version of my Conky

A modified version of my Conky


1 Comment

Filed under How To, Linux

One response to “How To: Modify my .conkyrc

  1. I have never successfully gotten Conky to take a theme, and I’ve tried the instructions everywhere, including here. There’s Screenlets, but they’re unstable. The state of widgets on Linux is plain awful, and it really shouldn’t be.

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