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DESKTOP Setting Up a Screensaver to Act as a Wallpaper

To set a screensaver as a wallpaper, first run “xscreensaver-demo”, from there you will get a dialog similar to this:

Setting up The Screensaver

From the list on the left select your desired screensaver, you can preview it or change it's settings, by clicking the appropriate button on the right side below small preview window.

After you are done changing the settings to your liking, from the settings window click on the “Advanced »” button, afterwards you will be presented with a text-box and a combo-box, along with the screensaver's info, the text-box contains the command you need to run the screensaver as a wallpaper, while the combo-box contains your visual engine/library choice to be used for rendering the screensaver 1).

Depending on the changes you've made in the settings the “Command Line” text-box's content may vary, for example in for this “How-to”, the screensaver “Stoner View” is used as an example, and the screenshot below is the default command line result, without changing any settings:

and with one option changed (“Translucent”):

Testing the configuration

OK, so now that the setting up is done, you need to copy the text you got in the text-box, and to test it out, press “ALT+F2” and type in:

/usr/lib/xscreensaver/stonerview -root

replace “stonerview -root” with the text you got from the previous configuration.

Or in the terminal, issue the following commands:

cd /usr/lib/xscreensaver/
stonerview -root #replace this line with your copied command from before

If your wallpaper is now your selected screensaver, proceed to the next section, if not go back from the beginning and check if you have done everything as instructed.

Autostarting the Screensaver as wallpaper

If you are here, everything previously stated probably went good without any problems. Now, to auto-start the screensaver, assuming you have the OpenBox version, do this:

Right click anywhere on the desktop, go to “Settings » OpenBox Config » Edit” this will open the file with your default text-editor, next go to the bottom of the file and add the line you used for testing:

(sleep 5s && /usr/lib/xscreensaver/stonerview -root) & #Replace stonerview -root with the command you got with the previous configuration


Wrapping Up

So, that pretty much covers everything up, if you have any questions, feel free to post in this thread.

1) Note: Some screensavers (usually the ones that have “GL” in front of them), require OpenGL to be selected as the Visual engine.
2) The ”&” sign at the end is important, don't forget to copy it.
howto/screensaver_as_wallpaper.txt · Last modified: 2012/05/25 18:47 by machinebacon
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