Goal: A guide how to write Dzen2 in Bash.
Table of Content
Preface: Table of Content
There are a few consideration in building an acceptable panel.
Make the panel show the shape, as you wish.
Make the panel, in a structured script, flexible enough to be themed.
Make the panel, not resource hungry. Not hogging the CPU proccess.
Here we are going to cover the first and second part using BASH.
In order to make the shape we need to know a few tags.
^fn()We are going to use AwesomeFont to show Icons. And PowerlineSymbols to make a Powerline like statusbar.
^i()This tag is used to show Icon from Image Glyph. But we are going to use it to make a better Powerline like statusbar.
1: Hello World in Command Line
In order to keep dzen2 running, we need to echo output in endless loop, and pipe it to dzen2. Otherwise, dzen2 will dissappear, as the script stop.
This command will show you ‘Hello World’ at the top of your desktop.
Let’s do it for a more dynamic input using date that changed every second. Dzen will be shown at bottom right corner.
You can use Transparency with either transset-df or
transset (from xorg-transset), by using -title-name.
& to detach process from the console.
You can stop the process later using pkill command.
Further information about dzen parameters,
you can read in manual page in github.
I mean not in
man dzen2, from the command line.
2: Simple dzen2 in Script
Let’s put this dzen in a script
And examine the output.
3: Coloring dzen2
Again, let’s give some color in generated output,
And let’s also refactor between the panel and output,
And again examine the output, with color and transparency.
4: Font in dzen2
^fn() can be used to show
Unicode Character, e.g. Japanese Number with Takao Font
Eye Candy Icons, e.g. AwesomeIcon Font
Powerline Style Arrow, e.g. PowerlineSymbols
You need to get these font installed properly in your system. Or maybe or just put proper font in your .font directory.
Here is a working example:
5: Graphic Decoration in dzen2
^i() can be used to show
Graphic Decoration, more than Powerline Style Arrow
Eye Candy Glyph Icons
There are many limitation, on using PowerlineSymbol as decoration.
And it is not portable enough, when the font is not always installed.
If you need a more precise decoration,
you might consider icon feature in Dzen2,
Here is a working example:
Dzen2 can read
.xbm image format.
For your convenience, I have made some eight glyph icons.
For each has height of 24px, the same height as dzen panel.
6: Create Decoration for Your own Suite
Everybody has different requirement, taste and style.
Instead of giving
I’d better give the Source Image. And explain the creation process.
The creation process has been explained in previous chapter. I only use use Inkscape and GIMP with very few steps. And yeah, very simple process.
7: Monitoring Panel
You can use Dzen2 as monitoring panel. Let’s make a more complete segment, than just a date.
For convenience you can make your script themable. I just made a quick and dirty after midnight script, that maybe useful for dzen2 theming. I do not claim that my script here is a good script, just because it is just works. But you should get my point, that with a little tweak, theming is possible. In fact, I desire to find a better script, and I wait for you to write it. I’m sure you can do better than me.
Let’s see how the variation goes.
After all, it depends on your imagination.
"Use the source Luke"
9: Combine Dzen with Tiling Window Manager
This is outside of the basic scope of configuring Dzen. But you can see my unfinished code here for my HerbstluftWM.
10: Using Dzen2 with Conky Lua
This is a very interesting topic. Conky is less complicated, and Lua can help you more. But since we need to leave BASH for Lua. This deserve an article of its own.
I think that’s all. Thank you for reading. Sorry for my english. I know how terrible it is.