weather-aware desktop background images
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Weather aware desktop background images

izulu example

Izulu is a script that fetches the current weather from Yahoo and changes the desktop background accordingly.

It can also show the weather forecast and the current temperature. As much as possible is detected automatically, like the command to change the background or the current position.



On launchpad, there is a PPA with daily builds. Add it with

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:onli/izulu

and install izulu

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install izulu

Arch Linux

Install izulu-git from the AUR

yaourt -S izulu-git


Use the overlay with layman

layman -o -f -a onli

and install with emerge

emerge izulu


Download this repository and install with:

sudo make install # (or use checkinstall)

Install the dependencies (on Ubuntu):

sudo apt-get install imagemagick xmlstarlet jq bc

On older Ubuntu systems, install also notify-send. It is not strictly necessary, only if --osd is specified to show notifications on weather change.


To use all common features, start izulu like this:

izulu --daemon --night --preview --temperature --osd &

Optionally, use -c city or -l LAT:LON to set your current location manually.


For a list of all parameters see the manpage.


izulu can configured partly in ~/.izulu/config, especially the CITY or LATITUDE and LONGITUDE parameter are important if the automatic location detection fails. First, try to set CITY to the current location. If that fails, set LATITUDE and LONGITUDE.

Custom images

To set custom images, check their name in /usr/share/izulu and add a image with the same name to ~/.izulu/. The categories are sun, cloud, rain, snow , wind and misc (=fog), and there is a thunder category (according to its documentation not yet supported by the weather api, but planned). The image files are called gen_CATEGORY, for example gen_sun. Substates are partly_cloudy and cloudy for gen_cloud, rain and hail for gen_rain, sleet and snow for gen_snow. The category gen_wind also knows the substates windy and tornado, I hope you never see the latter. You can set custom images for the substates by saving an image with its name in ~/.izulu/.

Random images

With -r|--random izulu picks a random image from the corresponding directory set in ~/.izulu/config. If no directory is set, izulu will try to get a random image from a fitting flickr group. This is currently a bit flaky, but izulu tries to fall back to its provided images if the flickr way fails.