Animated Wallpaper in fluxbox (video in root window)

Note that I have moved my task-bar see screenshot:

This is not a requirement. You may also make the task-bar ‘auto hide’ by right clicking on it and selecting that option. In any event, the idea is to be able to see the bottom conky clearly.

The current options I have enabled are for mplayer are:

multimedia -fs -rootwin -quiet -shuffle

This places a video running in your root window with a black screen and only the bottom Conky and taskbar remaining.

This uses surprisingly little resources, and is just neat as hell. I have let video loop on my desktop before while working on other things with no discomfort whatsoever. You may open menus, internet, etc . . .without disrupting the video.

Use of this feature is dependent upon having ~/pictures/wallpapers as your wallpaper folder, or changing the paths in ~/.scripts/, and ~/.scripts/ to reflect where you keep your wallpapers.

You will need to add the line:

session.screen0.rootCommand: fbsetbg -c -r ~/pictures/wallpapers

to your ~/.fluxbox/init file in order to tell Fluxbox to use that folder for your wallpaper. Random mode is enabled. Random wallpapers are fun.

The ‘-r ‘ option does just that, placing your wallpaper at random from a folder. If random isn’t wanted, just complete the path like this:

session.screen0.rootCommand: fbsetbg -c ~/pictures/wallpapers/fancypictureofmystrangedog.jpg

This will only place the picture of your choosing (-c = centered).

2. Toggle Extras

This takes all Conkys off the root window, and also takes off the wallpaper and shuts down audacious. Don’t worry if you don’t have audacious. The script calls ‘killall audacious’ and doesn’t care if it’s not there, only if it is.

More items can easily be added or removed as necessary by editing ~/.scripts/ This feature is great when working with many open windows without distraction.

3.Toggle Conky

This toggle just removes all of the Conkys. Helpful at times.

All of the Conkys and the’s are in one tar.gz folder named ‘scripts.tar.gz’. located here: Scripts.tar.gz file download


The scripts.tar.gz file contains the conky’s, and the scripts to run them;)

Upon unpacking you will find a folder named .scripts to be placed in your /home folder.

To call these scripts from your fluxbox menu, you may add this to your ~/.fluxbox menu:

[exec] (Toggle Video) {~/.scripts/}
[exec] (Toggle Extras) {~/.scripts/}
[exec] (Toggle Conky) {~/.scripts/}

menu1 from the second guide includes these toggles, and a few more.

For all of this to work you will need a few packages. In a root terminal:

apt-get install conky curl xsltproc ffmpeg mplayer 

This will pull in a few more packages as well that you will need.

To play videos

I have the path for the videos set to ~/Videos.

Just make a folder named ‘Videos’ with a capital ‘V’ in your /home directory. Place any .wmv or other video files you wish to use into that directory.

Open up ~/.scripts/, change the name of any of the existing video(s), save and close. Then ‘Toggle Video’ from the fluxbox menu. This assumes that you have edited the paths correctly, or are using menu1 from the menu ‘how to’.

Please note that in order for the Conkys to work properly for the weather you will have to change the weather/zip code in ~/.scripts/ and ~/.scripts/bottomconky and ~/.scripts/weather_dictionary/conkyweather.

All of this can of course be broken down further. Don’t want any Conkys? No problem. Want only one of them? No problem. Want to just be able to toggle your wallpaper? No problem. It’s all easy to change and edit in Fluxbox.

The .scripts file is available for download here: scripts.tar.gz file download


Please comment if you are using this  ‘how -to’.  All suggestions and comments welcome.