gKrellM – manually installing plugins

gKrellM appears on so many screenshots of Linux desktops it’s untrue. Why? Because it covers so many areas. On mine, it lets me view time, weather, CPU + RAM usage, system temperatures, mount devices, launch apps, adjust audio volumes, check new mails, ping my router periodically and countdown to special events.

Depending on your distro, you will find various plugins available as pre-compiled packages. Debian is very good at this, however there are some wicked plugins available from the gKrellM plugins page that aren’t packaged. Installing these manually doesn’t work. A couple of quick changes to the makefile file gets it all going though:

  • Untar your plugin and change into the newly created directory
  • Open makefile with your favourite editor
  • Look for a line detailing PLUGIN_DIR or similar. It varies depending on the author. Here’s an example:

    PLUGIN_DIR ?= /usr/local/lib/gkrellm2/plugins

  • Change the location to match your actual plugin directory, depending on your system:

    PLUGIN_DIR ?= /usr/lib/gkrellm/plugins

  • Save your changes and run make

That should be it, your plugin now knows exactly where the plugin directory is and will compile correctly. Within gKrellM, right-click, select Configuration then Plugins and enable + configure your newly compiled plugin


Senior Content Development for Microsoft writing about Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS). Model train nerd. Occasionally I play video games.

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