Home » Electronics » Conky for the Raspberry Pi

Conky for the Raspberry Pi

Conky  is a Linux system monitor tool using X Windows.  Conky is highly configurable 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 in-boxes  Linux updates, runs many popular music players, and much more. Unlike system monitors that use high-level widget tool-kits to render their information, Conky is drawn directly in an X window, allowing it to consume relatively fewer system resources.

To install the standard Conky package, use the following:

sudo apt-get install conky-std

Two sites you will want to read, beyond the Conky manual page are the lists of Config Settings and Variables. You use the Config Settings to describe general features of how you want your Conky to appear, and the variables to define what actually gets displayed.

The color names that are used within Conky are the X11 colors located in /usr/share/X11/rgb.txt.  There isn’t a standard set of colors to be found on any X Window system, so you’ll need to inspect this file to get some idea of what color names you can use.  This X color name list, which appears to be larger than what is in the RPi’s rgb.txt file, could help you visualized the colors.

Conky uses a configuration file location in $HOME/.conkyrc.  Conky can be configured in an amazing number of way but I’m using the following configuration on the RPi:


# --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- #
#
# .conkyrc - derived from various examples across the 'net
#
# Some of the sites that proved most usful include:
#   http://mylinuxramblings.wordpress.com/2010/03/23/how-to-configure-the-conky-system-monitor/`
#   http://crunchbanglinux.org/wiki/conky
#   http://lusule.wordpress.com/2008/08/07/how-to-4/
#
# --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- #

# -------------------- Conky's Run Time Parameters -------------------- #

update_interval 2.0                     # Conky update interval in seconds
total_run_times 0                       # Number of updates before quitting.  Set to zero to run forever.
no_buffers yes                          # Subtract file system buffers from used memory?
cpu_avg_samples 2                       # Number of cpu samples to average. Set to 1 to disable averaging
net_avg_samples 2                       # Number of net samples to average. Set to 1 to disable averaging

# -------------------- Conky's General Look & Feel -------------------- #

# --- defualt values --- #
default_color grey                      # Default color and border color
default_bar_size 0 6            # Specify a default width and height for bars.
default_gauge_size 25 25        # Specify a default width and height for gauges.
default_graph_size 0 25         # Specify a default width and height for graphs.
default_outline_color green     # Default border and text outline color
default_shade_color yellow      # Default border and text shading color

# --- predefined colors - http://www.kgym.jp/freesoft/xrgb.html --- #
color0 FFFFFF                           # white
color1 FFA500                           # orange
color2 B22222                           # firebrick
color3 696969                           # dim gray
color4 D3D3D3                           # light gray
color5 2F4F4F                           # dark slate gray
color6 FFEC8B                           # light golden rod
color7 54FF9F                           # sea green
color8 FF8C69                           # salmon
color9 FFE7BA                           # wheat

# --- window layout & options --- #
own_window yes                          # Conky creates its own window instead of using desktop
own_window_type normal          # If own_window is yes, use type normal, desktop, or override
own_window_transparent yes      # Use pseudo transparency with own_window?
own_window_colour blue          # If own_window_transparent is no, set the background colour
double_buffer yes                       # Use double buffering (reduces flicker)
use_spacer right                        # Adds spaces to stop object from moving
maximum_width 600                       # Maximum width of window in pixels
own_window_hints undecorated,below,sticky,skip_taskbar,skip_pager

# --- window placment --- #
alignment top_right

# --- borders, margins, and outlines --- #
draw_graph_borders yes          # Do you want to draw borders around graphs
border_inner_margin 9           # Window's inner border margin (in pixels)
border_outer_margin 5           # Window's outer border margin (in pixels)
gap_x 10                                        # Gap between borders of screen and text (on x-axis)
gap_y 40                                        # Gap between borders of screen and text (on y-axis)
border_width 10                         # Window's border width (in pixels)

# --- Text --- #
draw_outline no                         # Do you want ot draw outlines
draw_shades no                          # Do you want to draw shades
draw_borders no                         # Do you want to draw borders around text
uppercase no                            # set to yes if you want all text to be in uppercase
use_xft yes                                     # use the X FreeType interface library (anti-aliased font)
xftfont Monospace:size=8:weight=bold    # Xft font to be used

# -------------------- Conky's Displayed System Monitoring Parameters -------------------- #
TEXT
# Title / Banner message
${color5}
${alignc 40}${font Arial Black:size=22}${time %H:%M:%S}${font}
${alignc}${time %A} ${time %B} ${time %d}, ${time %Y}
$color

# General system information
${color1}SYSTEM INFORMATION ${hr 2}$color
${color0}System: $color$nodename ${alignr}${color0}Uptime: $color$uptime
${color0}Kernel: $color$kernel${alignr}${color0}Arch: $color$machine
${color0}Frequency: $color$freq MHz
${color0}Serial No.: $color${execi 99999 grep Serial /proc/cpuinfo | awk '{ print $3 }'}
${color0}MAC Address: $color${execi 99999 cat /sys/class/net/eth0/address }

# CPU information
${color1}CPU ${hr 2}$color
${color0}Avg. Load: $color $loadavg
${color0}CPU Temperature: $color${acpitemp}°C
${color0}CPU Usage:$color $cpu% ${color7}${cpubar}
${cpugraph 0000ff 00ff00}$color

# Top running processes
${color1}TOP 5 PROCESSES ${hr 2}$color
${color0}Processes:$color $processes  ${color0}Running:$color $running_processes
${stippled_hr 2}
${color0}CPU Usage$color
${color3} NAME              PID    CPU %   MEM$color
${color2} ${top name 1} ${top pid 1} ${top cpu 1} ${top mem 1}$color
 ${top name 2} ${top pid 2} ${top cpu 2} ${top mem 2}
 ${top name 3} ${top pid 3} ${top cpu 3} ${top mem 3}
 ${top name 4} ${top pid 4} ${top cpu 4} ${top mem 4}
 ${top name 5} ${top pid 5} ${top cpu 5} ${top mem 5}
${stippled_hr 2}
${color0}Mem Usage$color
${color3} NAME              PID    CPU %   MEM$color
${color2} ${top_mem name 1} ${top_mem pid 1} ${top_mem cpu 1} ${top_mem mem 1}$color
 ${top_mem name 2} ${top_mem pid 2} ${top_mem cpu 2} ${top_mem mem 2}
 ${top_mem name 3} ${top_mem pid 3} ${top_mem cpu 3} ${top_mem mem 3}
 ${top_mem name 4} ${top_mem pid 4} ${top_mem cpu 4} ${top_mem mem 4}
 ${top_mem name 5} ${top_mem pid 5} ${top_mem cpu 5} ${top_mem mem 5}

# Memory and swap space untilization
${color1}MEMORY & SWAP ${hr 2}$color
${color0}RAM Usage: ${color}$mem / $memmax
$memperc% ${color6}${membar}$color
${stippled_hr 2}
${color0}Swap Usage: ${color}$swap / $swapmax
$swapperc% ${color6}${swapbar}$color

# File System utilization
${color1}FILE SYSTEM ${hr 2}$color
${color0}SD Card:$color ${fs_used /} / ${fs_size /}
${fs_used_perc /}% ${color8}${fs_bar /}$color
${stippled_hr 2}
${color0}Reads: $color$diskio_read/s${alignr}${color0}Writes: $color$diskio_write/s
${color8}${diskiograph_read 20,100 33FF00 FF3333 scale -t}$color${alignr}${color8}${diskiograph_write 20,100 33FF00 FF3333 scale -t}$color

# Ethernet utilization
${color1}NETWORKING ${hr 2}$color
${color0}Wired (${addr eth0})
${color0}Down:$color ${downspeed eth0}/s ${alignr}${color0}Up:$color ${upspeed eth0}/s
${color0}Total:$color ${totaldown eth0} ${alignr}${color0}Total: $color${totalup eth0}
${color0}${downspeedgraph eth0 25,120 000000 00ff00} ${alignr}${upspeedgraph eth0 25,120 000000 ff0000}$color
${stippled_hr 2}
${color0}Wireless (${addr wlan0})
${color0}Down:$color ${downspeed wlan0}/s ${alignr}${color0}Up:$color ${upspeed wlan0}/s
${color0}Total:$color ${totaldown wlan0} ${alignr}${color0}Total: $color${totalup wlan0}
${color0}${downspeedgraph wlan0 25,120 000000 00ff00} ${alignr}${upspeedgraph wlan0 25,120 000000 ff0000}$color

# Print the tail of the Linux message log
${color1}LOG FILES ${hr 2}$color
${color0}Linux Message Log$color
${color4}${font Arial:size=6}${execi 30 tail -n3 /var/log/messages | fold -w50}$color$font

Debugging Conky

An easy way to force Conky to reload your ~/.conkyrc configuration file is to us the command killall -SIGUSR1 conky. This saves you the trouble of having to kill and then restart.  I also discovered that  while conky is running and your concurrently editing the .conkyrc file in vi, saving the file appears to cause conky to restart and read the new .conkyrc … nice.

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3 Comments

  1. […] can install conky following this guide from the Arch wiki, check out this blog for a nice conkyrc to use with your Pi. For a list of other applications check out this link […]

  2. […] can install conky following this guide from the Arch wiki, check out this blog for a nice conkyrc to use with your Pi. For a list of other applications check out this link […]

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