Using modules

py3status comes with a large range of Modules. Modules in py3status are configured using your usual i3status.conf.

py3status tries to find the config in the following locations:

  • ~/.i3/i3status.conf
  • ~/.i3status.conf
  • /etc/i3status.conf
  • XDG_CONFIG_HOME/.config/i3status/config
  • ~/.config/i3status/config
  • XDG_CONFIG_DIRS/i3status/config
  • /etc/xdg/i3status/config

You can also specify the config location using py3status -c <path to config file> in your i3 configuration file.

Loading a py3status module and ordering modules output

To load a py3status module you just have to list it like any other i3status module using the order += parameter.

Ordering your py3status modules in your i3bar is just the same as i3status modules, just list the order parameter where you want your module to be displayed.

For example you could insert and load the imap module like this:

Example
order += "disk /home"
order += "disk /"
order += "imap"
order += "time"

Configuring a py3status module

Your py3status modules are configured the exact same way as i3status modules, directly from your i3status.conf, like this :

Example
# configure the py3status imap module
# and run thunderbird when I left click on it
imap {
    cache_timeout = 60
    imap_server = 'imap.myprovider.com'
    mailbox = 'INBOX'
    password = 'coconut'
    port = '993'
    user = 'mylogin'
    on_click 1 = "exec thunderbird"
}

py3status configuration section

This special section holds py3status specific configuration. Settings here will affect all py3status modules. Many settings e.g. colors can still be overridden by also defining in the individual module.

Global options:

nagbar_font. Specify a font for i3-nagbar -f <font>.

Example
py3status {
    nagbar_font = 'pango:Ubuntu Mono 12'
}

storage: Set storage name or path.

Note

New in version 3.13

Store cache in $XDG_CACHE_HOME or ~/.cache

Example
# default behavior
py3status {
    storage = 'py3status_cache.data'
}

Store per config cache in $XDG_CACHE_HOME or ~/.cache

# first config
py3status {
    storage = 'py3status_top.data'
}
# second config
py3status {
    storage = 'py3status_bottom.data'
}

Store per config cache in different directories.

# first config
py3status {
    storage = '~/.config/py3status/cache_top.data'
}
# second config
py3status {
    storage = '~/.config/py3status/cache_bottom.data'
}

Note

New in version 3.14

You can specify the following options in module configuration.

min_length: Specify a minimum length (of characters) for modules. position: Specify how modules should be positioned when the min_length is not reached. Either left (default), center, or right.

Configuration obfuscation

Py3status allows you to hide individual configuration parameters so that they do not leak into log files, user notifications or to the i3bar. Additionally they allow you to obfuscate configuration parameters using base64 encoding.

Note

hide() and base64() are new in version 3.13

To “hide” a value you can use the hide() configuration function. This prevents the module displaying the value as a format placeholder and from appearing in the logs.

Example
# Example of 'hidden' configuration
imap {
    imap_server = 'imap.myprovider.com'
    password = hide('hunter22')
    user = 'mylogin'
}

To base64 encode a value you can use the base64() configuration function. This also prevents the module displaying the value as a format placeholder and from appearing in the logs.

Example
# Example of obfuscated configuration
imap {
    imap_server = 'imap.myprovider.com'
    password = base64('Y29jb251dA==')
    user = 'mylogin'
}

Since version 3.1 obfuscation options can also be added by the legacy method. Add :hide or :base64 to the name of the parameters. You are advised to use the new hide() and base64() configuration functions.

Note

Legacy obfuscation is only available for string parameters with :hide or :base64. If you want other types then be sure to use hide() and base64() configuration functions.

Example
# normal_parameter will be shown in log files etc as 'some value'
# obfuscated_parameter will be shown in log files etc as '***'
module {
    normal_parameter = 'some value'
    obfuscated_parameter:hide = 'some value'
}

In the previous example configuration the users password is in plain text. Users may want to make it less easy to read. Py3status allows strings to be base64 encoded.

To use an encoded string add :base64 to the name of the parameter.

Example
# Example of obfuscated configuration
imap {
    imap_server = 'imap.myprovider.com'
    password:base64 = 'Y29jb251dA=='
    user = 'mylogin'
}

Note

Base64 encoding is very simple and should not be considered secure in any way.

Configuring colors

Since version 3.1 py3status allows greater color configuration. Colors can be set in the general section of your i3status.conf or in an individual modules configuration. If a color is not in a modules configuration then the values from the general section will be used.

If a module does not specify colors but it is in a container, then the colors of the container will be used if they are set, before using ones defined in the general section.

Generally colors can specified using hex values eg #FF00FF or #F0F. It is also possible to use css3 color names eg red hotpink. For a list of available color names see https://drafts.csswg.org/css-color/#named-colors.

Example
general {
    # These will be used if not supplied by a module
    color = '#FFFFFF'
    color_good = '#00FF00'
    color_bad = '#FF0000'
    color_degraded = '#FFFF00'
}

time {
    color = 'FF00FF'
    format = "%H:%M"
}

battery_level {
    color_good = '#00AA00'
    color_bad = '#AA0000'
    color_degraded = '#AAAA00'
    color_charging = '#FFFF00'
}

Configuring thresholds

Some modules allow you to define thresholds in a module. These are used to determine which color to use when displaying the module. Thresholds are defined in the config as a list of tuples. With each tuple containing a value and a color. The color can either be a named color eg good referring to color_good or a hex value.

Example
volume_status {
    thresholds = [
        (0, "#FF0000"),
        (20, "degraded"),
        (50, "bad"),
    ]
}

If the value checked against the threshold is equal to or more than a threshold then that color supplied will be used.

In the above example the logic would be

if 0 >= value < 20 use #FF0000
else if 20 >= value < 50 use color_degraded
else if 50 >= value use color_good

Some modules may allow more than one threshold to be defined. If all the thresholds are the same they can be defined as above but if you wish to specify them separately you can by giving a dict of lists.

Example
my_module {
    thresholds = {
        'threshold_1': [
            (0, "#FF0000"),
            (20, "degraded"),
            (50, "bad"),
        ],
        'threshold_2': [
            (0, "good"),
            (30, "bad"),
        ],
    }
}

Formatter

All modules allow you to define the format of their output. This is done with the format option. You can:

  • display static text:

    Example
    mpd_status {
       format = "MPD:"
    }
    
  • use a backslash \ to escape a character (\[ will show [).

  • display data provided by the module. This is done with “placeholders”, which follow the format {placeholder_name}. The following example shows the state of the MPD (play/pause/stop) and the artist and title of the currently playing song.

    Example
    mpd_status {
       format = "MPD: {state} {artist} {title}"
    }
    
    • Unknown placeholders act as if they were static text and placeholders that are empty or None will be removed.
    • Formatting can also be applied to the placeholder Eg {number:03.2f}.
  • hide invalid (no valid data or undefined) placeholders by enclosing them in []. The following example will show artist - title if artist is present and title if title but no artist is present.

    Example
    mpd_status {
       format = "MPD: {state} [[{artist} - ]{title}]"
    }
    
  • show the first block with valid output by dividing them with a pipe |. The following example will show the filename if neither artist nor title are present.

    Example
    mpd_status {
       format = "MPD: {state} [[{artist} - ]{title}]|{file}"
    }
    
  • \? can be used to provide extra commands to the format string. Multiple commands can be given using an ampersand & as a separator.

    Example
    my_module {
       format = "\?color=#FF00FF&show blue"
    }
    
  • change the output with conditions. This is done by following the \? with a an if statement. Multiple conditions or commands can be combined by using an ampersand & as a separator. Here are some examples:

    • \?if=online green | red checks if the placeholder exists and would display green in that case. A condition that evaluates to false invalidates a section and the section can be hidden with [] or skipped with |
    • \?if=!online red | green this dose the same as the above condition, the only difference is that the exclamation mark ! negates the condition.
    • \?if=state=play PLAYING! | not playing checks if the placeholder contains play and displays PLAYING! if not it will display not playing.

A format string using nearly all of the above options could look like this:

Example
mpd_status {
  format = "MPD: {state} [\?if=![stop] [[{artist} - ]{title}]|[{file}]]"
}

This will show MPD: [state] if the state of the MPD is [stop] or MPD: [state] artist - title if it is [play] or [pause] and artist and title are present, MPD: [state] title if artist is missing and MPD: [state] file if artist and title are missing.

Urgent

Some modules use i3bar’s urgent feature to indicate that something important has occurred. The allow_urgent configuration parameter can be used to allow/prevent a module from setting itself as urgent.

Example
# prevent modules showing as urgent, except github
py3status {
    allow_urgent = false
}

github {
    allow_urgent = true
}

Grouping Modules

The group module allows you to group several modules together. Only one of the modules are displayed at a time. The displayed module can either be cycled through automatically or by user action (the default, on mouse scroll).

This module is very powerful and allows you to save a lot of space on your bar.

Example
order += "group tz"

# cycle through different timezone hours every 10s
group tz {
    cycle = 10
    format = "{output}"

    tztime la {
        format = "LA %H:%M"
        timezone = "America/Los_Angeles"
    }

    tztime ny {
        format = "NY %H:%M"
        timezone = "America/New_York"
    }

    tztime du {
        format = "DU %H:%M"
        timezone = "Asia/Dubai"
    }
}

The frame module also allows you to group several modules together, however in a frame all the modules are shown. This allows you to have more than one module shown in a group.

Example
order += "group frames"

# group showing disk space or times using button to change what is shown.
group frames {
    click_mode = "button"

    frame time {
        tztime la {
            format = "LA %H:%M"
            timezone = "America/Los_Angeles"
        }

        tztime ny {
            format = "NY %H:%M"
            timezone = "America/New_York"
        }

        tztime du {
            format = "DU %H:%M"
            timezone = "Asia/Dubai"
        }
    }

    frame disks {
        disk "/" {
            format = "/ %avail"
        }

        disk "/home" {
            format = "/home %avail"
        }
    }
}

Frames can also have a toggle button to hide/show the content

Example
# A frame showing times in different cities.
# We also have a button to hide/show the content

frame time {
    format = '{output}{button}'
    format_separator = ' '  # have space instead of usual i3bar separator

    tztime la {
        format = "LA %H:%M"
        timezone = "America/Los_Angeles"
    }

    tztime ny {
        format = "NY %H:%M"
        timezone = "America/New_York"
    }

    tztime du {
        format = "DU %H:%M"
        timezone = "Asia/Dubai"
    }
}

Custom click events

py3status allows you to easily add click events to modules in your i3bar. These modules can be both i3status or py3status modules. This is done in your i3status.config using the on_click parameter.

Just add a new configuration parameter named on_click [button number] to your module config and py3status will then execute the given i3 command (using i3-msg).

This means you can run simple tasks like executing a program or execute any other i3 specific command.

As an added feature and in order to get your i3bar more responsive, every on_click command will also trigger a module refresh. This works for both py3status modules and i3status modules as described in the refresh command below.

# button numbers
1 = left click
2 = middle click
3 = right click
4 = scroll up
5 = scroll down
Example
# reload the i3 config when I left click on the i3status time module
# and restart i3 when I middle click on it
time {
    on_click 1 = "reload"
    on_click 2 = "restart"
}

# control the volume with your mouse (need >i3-4.8)
# launch alsamixer when I left click
# kill it when I right click
# toggle mute/unmute when I middle click
# increase the volume when I scroll the mouse wheel up
# decrease the volume when I scroll the mouse wheel down
volume master {
    format = "♪: %volume"
    device = "default"
    mixer = "Master"
    mixer_idx = 0
    on_click 1 = "exec i3-sensible-terminal -e alsamixer"
    on_click 2 = "exec amixer set Master toggle"
    on_click 3 = "exec killall alsamixer"
    on_click 4 = "exec amixer set Master 1+"
    on_click 5 = "exec amixer set Master 1-"
}

# run wicd-gtk GUI when I left click on the i3status ethernet module
# and kill it when I right click on it
ethernet eth0 {
    # if you use %speed, i3status requires root privileges
    format_up = "E: %ip"
    format_down = ""
    on_click 1 = "exec wicd-gtk"
    on_click 3 = "exec killall wicd-gtk"
}

# run thunar when I left click on the / disk info module
disk "/" {
    format = "/ %free"
    on_click 1 = "exec thunar /"
}

# this is a py3status module configuration
# open an URL on opera when I left click on the weather_yahoo module
weather_yahoo paris {
    cache_timeout = 1800
    woeid = 615702
    forecast_days = 2
    on_click 1 = "exec opera http://www.meteo.fr"
    request_timeout = 10
}

Special on_click commands

There are two commands you can pass to the on_click parameter that have a special meaning to py3status :

  • refresh : This will refresh (expire the cache) of the clicked module. This also works for i3status modules (it will send a SIGUSR1 to i3status for you).
  • refresh_all : This will refresh all the modules from your i3bar (i3status included). This has the same effect has sending a SIGUSR1 to py3status.

Module data and on_click commands

Since version 3.3 it is possible to use the output text of a module in the on_click command. To do this $OUTPUT can be used in command and it will be substituted by the modules text output when the command is run.

Example
# copy module output to the clipboard using xclip
my_module {
    on_click 1 = 'exec echo $OUTPUT | xclip -i'
}

If the output of a module is a composite then the output of the part clicked on can be accessed using $OUTPUT_PART.

Environment Variables

Note

New in version 3.8

You may use the value of an environment variable in your configuration with the env(...) directive. These values are captured at startup and may be converted to the needed datatype (only str, int, float, bool and auto are currently supported).

Note, the auto conversion will try to guess the type of the contents and automatically convert to that type. Without an explicit conversion function, it defaults to auto.

This is primarily designed to obfuscate sensitive information when sharing your configuration file, such as usernames, passwords, API keys, etc.

The env(...) expression can be used anywhere a normal constant would be used. Note, you cannot use the directive in place of a dictionary key, i.e {..., env(KEY): 'val', ...}.

See the examples below!

Example
order += "my_module"
order += env(ORDER_MODULE)

module {
    normal_parameter = 'some value'
    env_parameter = env(SOME_ENVIRONMENT_PARAM)
    sensitive_api_key = env(API_KEY)

    complex_parameter = {
      'key': env(VAL)
    }

    equivalent1 = env(MY_VAL)
    equivalent2 = env(MY_VAL, auto)

    list_of_tuples = [
      (env(APPLE_NUM, int), 'apple'),
      (2, env(ORANGE))
    ]

    float_param = env(MY_NUM, float)
}

Inline Shell Code

Note

New in version 3.9

You can use the standard output of a shell script in your configuration with the shell(...) directive. These values are captured at startup and may be converted to the needed datatype (only str, int, float, bool and auto (the default) are currently supported).

The shell script executed must return a single line of text on stdout and then terminate. If the type is explicitly declared bool, the exit status of the script is respected (a non-zero exit status being interpreted falsey). In any other case if the script exits with a non-zero exit status an error will be thrown.

The shell(...) expression can be used anywhere a constant or an env(...) directive can be used (see the section “Environment Variables”).

Usage example:

Example
my_module {
    password = shell(pass show myPasswd | head -n1)
    some_string = shell(/opt/mydaemon/get_api_key.sh, str)
    pid = shell(cat /var/run/mydaemon/pidfile, int)
    my_bool = shell(pgrep thttpd, bool)
}

Due to the way the config is parsed you need to to escape any closing parenthesis ) using a backslash \).

Example
static_string {
    # note we need to explicitly cast the result to str
    # because we are using it as the format which must be a
    # string
    format = shell(echo $((6 + 2\)\), str)
}

Note

Prior to version 3.13 you may not include any closing parenthesis ) in the expression. Wrap your commands in a script file and call it instead.

Refreshing modules on udev events with on_udev dynamic options

Note

New in version 3.14

Refreshing of modules can be triggered when an udev event is detected on a specific subsystem using the on_udev_<subsystem> configuration parameter and an associated action.

Possible actions: - refresh: immediately refresh the module and keep on updating it as usual - refresh_and_freeze: module is ONLY refreshed when said udev subsystem emits an event

Example
# refresh xrandr only when udev 'drm' events are triggered
xrandr {
    on_udev_drm = "refresh_and_freeze"
}

Note

This feature will only activate when pyudev is installed on the system. This is an optional dependency of py3status and is therefore not enforced by all package managers.