Using py3status, you can take control of your i3bar easily by:

  • using one of the available Available Modules shipped with py3status
  • grouping multiple modules and automatically or manually cycle their display
  • writing your own modules and have their output displayed on your bar
  • handling click events on your i3bar and play with them in no time
  • seeing your clock tick every second whatever your i3status interval

No extra configuration file needed, just install & enjoy!


You will love py3status if you’re using i3wm (or sway) and are frustrated by the i3status limitations on your i3bar such as:

  • you cannot hack into it easily
  • you want more than the built-in modules and their limited configuration
  • you cannot pipe the result of one of more scripts or commands in your bar easily


  • no added configuration file, use the standard i3status.conf
  • rely on i3status’ strengths and its existing configuration as much as possible
  • be extensible, it must be easy for users to add their own stuff/output by writing a simple python class which will be loaded and executed dynamically
  • easily allow interactivity with the i3bar
  • add some built-in enhancement/transformation of basic i3status modules output
  • support Python 3

We apply the Zen of py3status to improve this project and encourage everyone to read it!


Distro Helpful Command Useful Note
Arch Linux $ pacman -S py3status Stable updates. Official releases.
$ yay -S py3status-git Real-time updates from master branch.
Debian & Ubuntu

$ apt-get install py3status

$ pip3 install py3status

Stable updates. In testing and unstable, and soon in stable backports.

Buster users might want to check out issue #1916 and use pip3 instead or the alternative method proposed until is handled and stable.

Fedora $ dnf install py3status  
Gentoo Linux $ emerge -a py3status Check available USE flags!
Pypi $ pip install py3status

There are optional requirements that you could find useful:

py3status[gevent] for gevent support. py3status[udev] for udev support.

Or if you want everything: py3status[all] to install all core extra requirements and features.

Void Linux $ xbps-install -S py3status  
NixOS $ nix-env -i python3.6-py3status Not a global install. See below.

Note on Debian/Ubuntu


If you want to use pip, you should consider using pypi-install from the python-stdeb package (which will create a .deb out from a python package) instead of directly calling pip.

Note on NixOS

To have it globally persistent add to your NixOS configuration file py3status as a Python 3 package with

(python3Packages.py3status.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: {
  propagatedBuildInputs = [ python3Packages.pytz python3Packages.tzlocal ];

If you are, and you probably are, using i3 you might want a section in your /etc/nixos/configuration.nix that looks like this:

services.xserver.windowManager.i3 = {
  enable = true;
  extraPackages = with pkgs; [
    (python3Packages.py3status.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: {
      propagatedBuildInputs = [ python3Packages.pytz python3Packages.tzlocal ];

In this example I included the python packages pytz and tzlocal which are necessary for the py3status module clock. The default packages that come with i3 (dmenu, i3status, i3lock) have to be mentioned if they should still be there.


Get help, share ideas or feedback, join community, report bugs, or others, see:

Live IRC Chat

Visit #py3status at


In your i3 config file, simply switch from i3status to py3status in your status_command:

status_command py3status

Usually you have your own i3status configuration, just point to it:

status_command py3status -c ~/.config/i3status/config

Available modules

You can get a list with short descriptions of all available modules by using the CLI:

$ py3-cmd list --all

To get more details about all available modules and their configuration, use:

$ py3-cmd list --all --full

All modules shipped with py3status are present as the Python source files in the py3status/modules directory.


You can see the help of py3status by issuing py3status --help:

usage: py3status [-h] [-b] [-c FILE] [-d] [-g] [-i PATH] [-l FILE] [-s]
                 [-t INT] [-m] [-u PATH] [-v] [--wm WINDOW_MANAGER]

The agile, python-powered, i3status wrapper

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -b, --dbus-notify     send notifications via dbus instead of i3-nagbar
                        (default: False)
  -c, --config FILE     load config (default: /home/alexys/.i3/i3status.conf)
  -d, --debug           enable debug logging in syslog and --log-file
                        (default: False)
  -g, --gevent          enable gevent monkey patching (default: False)
  -i, --include PATH    append additional user-defined module paths (default:
  -l, --log-file FILE   enable logging to FILE (default: None)
  -s, --standalone      run py3status without i3status (default: False)
  -t, --timeout INT     default module cache timeout in seconds (default: 60)
  -m, --disable-click-events
                        disable all click events (default: False)
  -u, --i3status PATH   specify i3status path (default: /usr/bin/i3status)
  -v, --version         show py3status version and exit (default: False)
  --wm WINDOW_MANAGER   specify window manager i3 or sway (default: i3)


Just like i3status, you can force an update of your i3bar by sending a SIGUSR1 signal to py3status. Note that this will also send a SIGUSR1 signal to i3status.

killall -USR1 py3status


Since version 3.6 py3status can be controlled via the The py3-cmd CLI which is recommended.