HowTo: Install and Configure Conky in Linux Mint/Ubuntu/Debian

Conky – is a highly configurable system monitor software.

It is able to monitor many system variables including CPU, memory, swap, disk space, temperature, top, upload, download, system messages.

It has built in IMAP and POP3 support, built in support for many popular music players and much more.

In this article you’ll find how to install and configure Conky in deb-based systems like Linux Mint, Ubuntu or Debian.

I’ll also show how to start, stop, restart Conky and how to setup Conky to start at boot.

Conky Installation

Latest Conky package is included into default Linux Mint, Debian and Ubuntu repositories.

Run the following command to install Conky with all features enabled:

$ sudo apt-get install conky conky-all

I’d also suggest you to install some extra staff that you may need in future:

$ sudo apt-get install curl lm-sensors hddtemp

The following packages will be installed:

Package Description
curl Transfer files through HTTP, HTTPS, FTP and others protocols
lm-sensors Utilities to read temperature/voltage/fan sensors
hddtemp Hard drive temperature monitoring utility

Start | Stop | Restart Conky

Use the following commands to start, stop or restart Conky.

Start Conky

Execute the following command to start Conky in a background:

$ conky -d
Conky: forked to background, pid is 11122

Stop Conky

Execute the following command to stop Conky:

$ pkill conky
Conky: received SIGINT or SIGTERM to terminate. bye!

Restart Conky

Execute the following command to restart Conky:

$ pkill -HUP conky
Conky: received SIGHUP or SIGUSR1. reloading the config file.

It makes Conky reread its configuration file.

Set Conky To Start At Boot

We will set Conky to start at boot by adding it to the “Startup Applications”.

Setup Conky To Run On Startup

Press Alt+F2 to bring up the “Run dialog”.

Type gnome-session-properties if you use GNOME desktop or type mate-session-properties if you use MATE. Press the Run button.

Click the Add button and fill in the fields as follows:

Field Value
Name conky
Command conky -p 15
Comment A system monitor


conky -p 15 command starts Conky with a delay in 15 seconds. We needed it to prevent Conky from starting before the desktop. Change the delay if Conky still appears before the desktop and disappears as soon as wallpaper is loaded.

Conky Configuration

Conky will firstly try to look for a local ~/.conkyrc file and if it doesn’t exist, then it will read the default one – /etc/conky/conky.conf.

Copy the default Conky config to your home directory.

$ cp /etc/conky/conky.conf ~/.conkyrc

Now edit ~/.conkyrc file to make changes to Conky:

$ vi ~/.conkyrc

Additional Information:

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3 Replies to “HowTo: Install and Configure Conky in Linux Mint/Ubuntu/Debian”

  1. Thanks. This helped me a lot. Now let’s how I make this work 😉
    Go ahead with the good job!

  2. Спасибо! Долго не мог настроить автозапуск, Ваш сайт помог!

  3. Way belated, but thank you for the ect directory, instead of the higher priority website mislabeling as /home/.conky

    That took forever to resolve… sigh.

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