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Friday·26·November·2010

Useful but Unknown Unix Tools: awsetbg //at 19:03 //by abe

from the an-awesome-background-image-tool dept.

Have you ever wondered which tool you should use to set the background of your X11 desktop? There are tons of it and every single one does need different command line options. And if you picked one, you could be sure, you’ll once come to a machine or operating system, where that one isn’t available.

When I started to play around with the tiling window manager awesome, I also noticed that the awesome Debian package contains awesome’s own desktop background image setting tool named “awsetbg”.

“Yet another one!” I thought.

But I was wrong: Today I noticed the word “wrapper” in awsetbg’s man page. I became curious and had a peek into its source code. And indeed, it’s an awesome desktop background image setting POSIX bourne shell compatible shell-script: It knows about not less than 15 other desktop background image setting tools and can be used as frontend wrapper for those who don’t want to remember each tool’s command line syntax:

Needless to say that most of them are also available in Debian. :-)

You may wonder what’s useful with it. Well, it does something you no more need to do yourself or in one of your own scripts: Checking which desktop background image setting tools are available on the machine you’re currently working and using the appropriate command line options for tiling, fullscreen, whatever.

Only drawback I found so far: In Debian, you need the awesome window manager package to be installed, if you want to get the script via APT. But on the other hand, it’s just a shell script. You can easily put it into your $HOME/bin or so. :-)

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Hackergotchi of Axel Beckert

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Debian GNU/Linux is my favourite Linux distribution, being stable, flexible, consistent and having a great community. Although I'm not the biggest bug report writer, I try to contribute by staffing the Debian booth at events, carrying the necessary hardware there or even organising the whole booth.


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