Xfce 4.8 with Conky

I have been following a short discussion on the IRC channel #xfce regarding an issue with the use of Conky and transparency. I didn't use Conky for a very long time, but since I knew it was possible to have Conky perfectly running, I gave it a shot again and since I did a fresh reinitialization of Xfce on my workstation, I tweaked the configuration file to my need. Now I have it running in the background and I'll most probably keep it.

The configuration I was able to get for a good working Conky window with transparency is bellow. Of course I could tell you which combination doesn't work, with the why, but since there are so many of them I simply put a working one.
own_window yes # create a separate XWindow over the one from Xfdesktop
own_window_type desktop # the window cannot be moved or resized
own_window_hints undecorated,below,sticky,skip_taskbar,skip_pager # make it behave like it belongs to the desktop
own_window_argb_visual yes # true transparency, a compositor has to be active
own_window_argb_value 100 # make the background semi-transparent
double_buffer yes # avoid flickering

Here is a screenshot of the desktop with Conky in the bottom right corner, I made sure there is some I/O activity going on :-)

Xfce with Conky
Now if you want you can steal my .conkyrc file.


  1. But this approach isn't perfect. Please try call desktop menu (right click) or windows menu (middle click) in place where is Conky. Also Conky with option own_window set to yes is draggable - just try dragg with alt modyfier key.

  2. Yes, I've got the very same problem here, but I did a different approach -- background 100% transparent.

    own_window yes
    own_window_class Conky
    own_window_type desktop
    own_window_transparent yes
    own_window_argb_visual yes
    own_window_hints undecorated,below,sticky,skip_taskbar,skip_pager
    double_buffer yes

    Anyway, as same as Anonymous stated above, it's impossible to open the menu with a right-click over Conky's area.

  3. @Anonymous: sure you will need to click around the window, in my case, as you can see on the screenshot, I have a lot of place where I can click :) I have tried multiple combinations with own_window no but it's unusable unless you deactivate the desktop icons.

    @Bremm: fully transparent background is a question of taste-n-colours :)

  4. And global-menu ? How to install (and run) on xfce 4.8 ?

  5. @Anonymous: I have conky with right and middle clisk working:

    background no
    use_xft yes
    total_run_times 0
    own_window no
    double_buffer yes
    no_buffers yes

  6. comment on my situation
    upgraded to oneiric (ubuntu 11.10)
    and conky started showing wrong background picture in its window, presumably gdm's or x's or something which was presumably under xfce's. block of it showing through as conky bg. anyway, used brem's comments up there directly and works fine, transparent totally to correct bg. thanks!

  7. Well done!
    mmm can I also ask your background color?

  8. There is a link to a complete .conkyrc file at the end of the post: http://bubbie.mmassonnet.info/~mike/public/.conkyrc.

  9. Oh, I'm sorry for not be clear...I'm asking about the color of the whole desktop background...I see that this is a transparent wallpaper of XFCE, but I really like your shade of color...


  10. Color is #152233 and background name is xfce-stripes.png.