News about Variety Wallpaper Changer

How to install

Ubuntu and derivatives

Variety can be installed on Ubuntu and its variants and derivatives from its official PPA by running these commands in a terminal:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:peterlevi/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install variety

This has been tested to work out of the box on Ubuntu 12.04, 12.10, 13.04, 13.10, Xubuntu 12.04, Lubuntu 12.04, Kubuntu 12.04 (see note below), Linux Mint 13 MATE, Linux Mint 13 Cinnamon, Linux Mint 14 Cinnamon.

Note for KDE users

KDE provides no easy way to set the wallpaper from inside a program. To use Variety in KDE you have to do the following:
Please run Variety for the first time if you haven’t done this yet. Then set ~/.config/variety/wallpaper-kde.jpg as your desktop wallpaper in KDE’s settings (NOT in Variety’s preferences) and keep it this way. Variety will update this file when changing the wallpaper, and KDE will afterwards automatically refresh the desktop.

KDE 4.11 and above: Users of KDE 4.11 and above report that this method is not working for them. At the moment there is no known method to change the wallpaper from a script under KDE 4.11.

Running Variety after installation

After the installation Variety can be run from the application menus or the dash search. Variety installs in its own folder under the /opt folder, so to launch it from the terminal you should use this command: /opt/, just variety will not work.


Variety is confirmed to run on Debian Wheezy. Install the DEB file using GDebi or some other tool that will automatically resolve and install the missing dependencies.

Other Debian-based systems

You can try installing the DEB file directly using GDebi. It depends on your system whether the dependencies will be satisfiable.

elementary OS

Variety works OK on elementary OS with Pantheon. To install use the instructions for Ubuntu, shown above. If adding the PPA fails for you, please try these commands:

wget -O peterlevi-ppa-precise.list
sudo mv peterlevi-ppa-precise.list /etc/apt/sources.list.d/
sudo apt-key adv --keyserver --recv-keys A546BE4F
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install variety


Someone recently built a package for ArchLinux.

Fedora, RedHat

There are now packages for RPM-based distributions, you can find them on rpmfind.

Other distributions / running from source

Variety runs on Python 2 (2.7.3+).

1. Download the source archive in tar.gz and unpack it to some directory. Or, alternatively, install Bazaar and run bzr branch lp:variety – this means you will be running from the latest trunk development version (which I try to keep stable).

2. Install the dependencies:

gir1.2-notify-0.7, python-configobj, python-pyexiv2, python-pycurl, gir1.2-gtk-3.0, python-dbus, gir1.2-pango-1.0, gir1.2-glib-2.0, python-imaging, python-cairo, gir1.2-gdkpixbuf-.0, python-bs4, gir1.2-webkit-3.0, yelp, imagemagick, python-lxml, gir1.2-appindicator3-0.1.

gir1.2-appindicator3-0.1 is optional – don’t worry if it is not present in your distribution, it is for Variety’s indicator icon, but Variety will fallback to a classic Gnome status icon if it is not present.

3. Now simply run it. No building or installing is necessary:

cd <folder with Variety's sources>
bin/variety -v

Raspbian (Raspberry Pi)

Users are reporting Variety works well under Raspbian. The process is the same as when running from source:

1. Install dependencies:
sudo apt-get install gir1.2-notify-0.7 python-configobj python-pyexiv2 python-pycurl gir1.2-gtk-3.0 python-dbus gir1.2-pango-1.0 gir1.2-glib-2.0 python-imaging python-cairo gir1.2-gdkpixbuf-2.0 python-bs4 gir1.2-webkit-3.0 yelp imagemagick python-lxml gir1.2-appindicator3-0.1

2. Install bzr:
sudo apt-get install bzr

3. Checkout from the repository:
bzr branch lp:variety

4. Run

If you are using the Raspberry Pi as a photo slideshow PC, you may also add and run unclutter to hide the mouse cursor:
sudo apt-get install unclutter

NOTE: If you have managed to install and use Variety on other systems, please contact me so I can put the instructions on this page. Thank you.


  1. It would seem that gir* related deps are Ubuntu-only as they are directly related to Unity (which distro’s such as Fedora will never support in a reasonable way.) Do you know of any alternative packages that can do the same thing w/o Unity-support?

    • Hm, not exactly. Here is how I understand things.

      The gir* packages (coming from “gi.repository”) contain the so-called “GObject bindings” from Python to GTK. This is the current up-to-date interface for using GTK from Python, although it seems that one can still use the older so called “PyGTK” . I don’t think these libraries are Unity-specific or Ubuntu-specific, as Variety installs and runs without problems on other distros as well – e.g. Debian and Arch, as well as on other non-Unity and non-Gnome desktop environments like LXDE, XFCE, KDE, etc.

      Now, I’m definitely not an expert, as I had no GTK experience before Variety and the whole thing with PyGTK, PyGI, GObject introspection, etc. is very confusing for a newcomer, and I still haven’t spent any decent amount of reading on the subject, so I might be very off in the definitions.

      I tried searching for RPMs for these and it seems that the package names are not exactly the same, as I can’t find any RPMs with the same name as the respective DEBs. Still there are things like this:, so I suppose everything is still available for Fedora, Mageia, etc., just the packaging is different. But with my own limited knowledge on the subject, and my lack of experience with Fedora and the other RPM-based distros, I simply cannot help any more than this, sorry. I’d be very glad if someone more experienced in the subject casts some light.

  2. Hello
    i want installed variety on fedora 18 but it have dependencies . i Install the dependencies:

    gir1.2-notify-0.7, python-configobj, python-pyexiv2, python-pycurl, gir1.2-gtk-3.0, python-dbus, gir1.2-pango-1.0, gir1.2-glib-2.0, python-imaging, python-cairo, gir1.2-gdkpixbuf-.0, python-bs4, gir1.2-webkit-3.0, yelp, imagemagick, python-lxml, gir1.2-appindicator3-0.1.

    but fedora can’t find all dependencies look to output

    [behrooz@localhost ~]$ sudo yum install gir1.2-notify-0.7, python-configobj, python-pyexiv2, python-pycurl, gir1.2-gtk-3.0, python-dbus, gir1.2-pango-1.0, gir1.2-glib-2.0, python-imaging, python-cairo, gir1.2-gdkpixbuf-.0, python-bs4, gir1.2-webkit-3.0, yelp, imagemagick, python-lxml, gir1.2-appindicator3-0.1.
    [sudo] password for behrooz:
    Sorry, try again.
    [sudo] password for behrooz:
    Loaded plugins: fastestmirror, langpacks, presto, refresh-packagekit
    Loading mirror speeds from cached hostfile
    * fedora:
    * rpmfusion-free:
    * rpmfusion-free-updates:
    * rpmfusion-nonfree:
    * rpmfusion-nonfree-updates:
    * updates:
    No package gir1.2-notify-0.7, available.
    No package python-configobj, available.
    No package python-pyexiv2, available.
    No package python-pycurl, available.
    No package gir1.2-gtk-3.0, available.
    No package python-dbus, available.
    No package gir1.2-pango-1.0, available.
    No package gir1.2-glib-2.0, available.
    No package python-imaging, available.
    No package python-cairo, available.
    No package gir1.2-gdkpixbuf-.0, available.
    No package python-bs4, available.
    No package gir1.2-webkit-3.0, available.
    No package yelp, available.
    No package imagemagick, available.
    No package python-lxml, available.
    No package gir1.2-appindicator3-0.1. available.
    Error: Nothing to do

    how i can install on fedora ?
    sorry for English

  3. Found a way to install variety on Fedora 17 (64-bits) without many problems. Just follow the next few steps and you will be up and running in 10 minutes or less.

    1. Make sure you meet the following dependancies:
    - python-beautifulsoup4
    - python-configobj
    - pyexiv2
    - python-imagine
    - ImageMagick
    I know there are much more dependancies, but I haven’t found any functions that didn’t work (yet).

    2. Download and unpack variety (source-code link on the website)

    3. Start bin/variety -v

    4. If you want to have variety automatically started with the startup of Fedora, you have to manually change the path in gnome-session-properties. This points to /usr/bin/variety, but when you install it manually the chances are big that you’ve unpacked it in a different directory.

    That’s all, have fun!

    Peter, thank you very very much for this extensive/complete/marvelous/etc piece of software!

    • Phew, thanks a lot for this comment. Quite a lot of people were asking about Fedora and I’m very glad that someone with Fedora managed to get it running and posted the instructions here. Now let’s see if anyone is up for building an RPM – I simply don’t have the time to get myself educated on this matter.

    • hey, this worked for me too. Only thing is the dependency python-imagine is actually python-imaging. Otherwise works well. Thanks. :)

    • hey, this worked for me too on Fedora 18. Only thing is the dependency python-imagine is actually python-imaging. Otherwise works well. Thanks. :)

  4. Also installed it on Mint 14 Cinnamon without any problems, using the repository mentioned above.

  5. Hi Peter,
    I apologize for asking again, but i had to re-install Kubuntu again. How do i set wallpaper-kde as as the desktop paper again? was it thru the menu? did i have to copy and paste it somewhere? or make some change in script?


    • Answering here so others see the answer too – you set ~/.config/variety/wallpaper-kde.jpg as your desktop wallpaper in KDE’s settings (NOT in Variety’s preferences) and keep it this way. Then Variety will update this file when changing the wallpaper, KDE will afterwards automatically refresh the desktop.

  6. Hi Peter,
    nevermind, i found my old notes. will try again. thanks


  7. Hi Peter. I have Variety installed in Crunchbang Waldorf, i mean GDebi installs the deb without errors, but i can’t find the app anywhere after install. It’s not in usr/bin and terminal doesn’t know the command “Variety”.

    Is it impossible to use it in Openbox or something like that?

    • Variety installs in /opt/ – try looking for it there. (Run bin/variety in that folder).
      Regarding Openbox – it shouldn’t be a problem as long as there is a way to set the desktop wallpaper from the command line. If it does not work out of the box, you’ll have to edit ~/.config/variety/scripts/set_wallpaper.

      • Thanks, Peter. I found it, but the bin won’t open Variety. Can i still get it to work if i edit that config file? Exactly what should i put there?

        • Do I understand correctly – you still can’t run it?
          Please open a terminal and run “/opt/ -v” and check what you get there. Are there any notable errors?

  8. Yes, can’t run it. “/opt/ -v” gives this error: (variety:3898): GLib-GIO-ERROR **: Settings schema ‘org.gnome.desktop.background’ is not installed

    • Yes, this looks like an unnecessary dependency on GSettings at initialization that will need fixing. If you are up for some editing you may want to comment this line at /opt/
      self.gsettings ='org.gnome.desktop.background') by adding a # at front. This should fix it for you till a proper fix is released.

      • Thanks, Peter. I did that and it did change things a bit, but Variety still won’t run. Variety’s “Welcome window” opens, but nothing else.

        I can’t paste the “/opt/ -v” outcome here, but you can read it in

        • Most of the errors there are not fatal, but you still have to check several things:

          1. After the Welcome dialog Variety only shows in the “system tray”. This means a Unity indicator icon, or, as a fallback – a Gtk.StatusIcon. I don’t know what your environment uses for a “status tray”, but if you don’t see Variety there, then your system tray mechanism is not supported. There are also errors about svg format not supported in the log, that might also be a reason for not seeing the tray icon.

          2. You will have to edit set_wallpaper and get_wallpaper in ~/.config/variety/scripts to work in your specific setup. At the moment get_wallpaper does not work, and we don’t know about set_wallpaper. You can test these separately, without running Variety at all. There are comments inside the files for what they expect as input. get_wallpaper is not really that much needed, but without set_wallpaper working Variety cannot change the wallpaper.

          3. Even if you don’t see Variety in the tray, it can still be operated with via commands.
          Please after you run it, try issuing “/opt/ –preferences” which should open the preferences. “variety –next” should change the wallpaper – as long as the set_wallpaper script works, that is.

          • Ok, Peter. I don’t know how to edit (what to put in there) get_wallpaper or set_wallpaper, but my system is Crunchbang Waldorf 64bit.

            After trying to run Variety by clicking the bin in opt/… i put this “/opt/ –preferences” in terminal, out comes this

          • Please use “dash dash preferences”, not just one “dash”.
            /opt/ --preferences

            Regarding set_wallpaper – I don’t know your system, but there must be some way to set the desktop wallpaper from the terminal, that’s what you need in set_wallpaper. Openbox, as far as I understand, does not provide a standard way for this, so it varies from system to system and I don’t know your specific setup. Google is your friend here. This seems relevant:

            For now you can leave get_wallpaper alone, or make it simply echo the full path to some image on your disk, so it doesn’t log errors, e.g. echo /path/to/some/image as the only command in it.

            I don’t think the rest of errors and warnings in the log are fatal.

  9. Peter

    No longer working in Cinnamon 1.8. Cinnamon appears to use Dconf – org.cinnamon.background and not Gconf – org.gnome.desktop.background.



  10. Got it after a bit of fiddling:
    gsettings set org.cinnamon.background picture-uri “file://$1″ 2> /dev/null
    in ~/.config/variety/scripts/set_wallpaper

    All working.

    • Ok, thanks for the info. I’ve reported this as a bug:

      Can you please help with the necessary modification to ~/.config/variety/scripts/get_wallpaper – we need a way to identify that the DE is Cinnamon >= 1.8 so that we use “gsettings get org.cinnamon.background picture-uri” and not the default Gnome way.

      What are the outputs of env | grep -i DESKTOP_SESSION and env | grep -i cinnamon?

  11. Trying to get Variety to work on MATE desktop 1.6. Currently have it working on a machine that’s Xubuntu with Gnome Shell installed and MATE desktop on top of those, but I’m having enough problems I need to do something. On a different machine, tried installing Ubuntu 12.04 server with no options, add MATE desktop, add Variety, no luck. Tried Mint 13, add MATE desktop, nope. Tried Ubuntu Unity (all Ubuntu is 12.04x), first just MATE desktop, second adding Gnome Classic then MATE desktop, uh-uh. Tried all of these again (I’m determined), installed Variety via deb (gdebi) to get dependencies. Nope. Really want the MATE 1.6 desktop with Variety, if not possible, will grit my teeth and go to Gnome Classic desktop. I’m sensing that it’s just a package or two that’s needed (have manually doublechecked dependencies and versions, including python, to no avail). Any further suggestions? I’m barely above being an end-user, but I’ve got time to experiment. :)

    • MATE 1.6 changes the way the wallpaper is set. Edit ~/.config/variety/scripts/set_wallpaper and add this line:
      gsettings set org.mate.background picture-filename “$1″ 2> /dev/null

      A fix is already committed, but not yet released:

      • Woo-hoo! Worked beautifully! Thanks very much!

      • BTW, I’m setting up a new box with debian jessie/sid, mate from mate repos, and compiz/emerald from git, and this works out of the box with the same deps mentioned for ubuntu, thanks! Definitely the best wallpaper app, would be 10/10 if made a bit more distro-agnostic and include an option to delete current wallpaper. Keep up the awesomeness!

  12. Output as requested:
    env | grep -i DESKTOP_SESSION
    manjaro@manjaro ~ % env | grep -i cinnamon

    No mention of version, so if DESKTOP_SESSION=Cinnamon, then perhaps cinnamon –version ??
    Apologies for the late reply, I only received an email after Paul’s recent post above.


  13. I am running zsh so:
    DTV=`cinnamon –version`; echo $DTV
    Cinnamon 1.8.2
    Might work.

  14. Hello. sorry for my English.
    I’m testing Ubuntu 13.10 Variety was working fine a few month, but now it crashes when i chose preference with – Error segmentation (made ??memory dump)

    • Try renaming ~/.config/variety so that you start clean. If it still crashes, try reinstalling variety (sudo apt-get install –reinstall variety). If this does not help, this is probably caused by either some file corruption or some other bad state of your python installation.

    • Actually just noticed you talk about 13.10, not 13.04. Well, 13.10 is still very alpha, breakage can happen anywhere, I have not even tried running Variety on it… It could be some new bug in some of the Python modules or in GTK.

  15. Thanks. Renaming ~/.config/variety helped once. preference is shown at first start but when i choose it in menu it is still crashes.
    it’s very alpha i know sorry.
    Other my programs working fine.
    Thanks for helping.

  16. Hello, I have a problem with the Time, in my country when the time is 3:52, variety show me in desktop 20:52…

    How can I fix it ?


  17. Hi

    How to make it work in Full Monty PCLinuxOS?

    • I don’t know. Does it use deb or rpm or something else? If deb – does the deb install? If not – try the instructions for running from source. Also make sure to read the KDE notes above.

  18. Hi, i want to know how can i make a back up my list of image downloads and options, just to keep them safe. Thanks a lot.

  19. Today I updated to the KDE 4.11 Beta 2 in Kubuntu 13.04, and now Variety is not working….the widget in the taskbar doesnt respond to going to next or previous image, and the image doesn’t change automatically anymore…..please help

    • Please confirm you have set ~/.config/variety/wallpaper-kde.jpg as a wallpaper in KDE’s settings. If this is already so, please open a bug report, run with “/opt/ -v”, try to change a couple of times and attach the log file (~/.config/variety/variety.log) to the bug report.

      • I opened the bug report. Reading the logs, all settings are right in Variety, and it does what is supposed, it changes the picture in ~/.config/variety/wallpaper-kde.jpg but for some reason the wallpaper doesn’t change on my screen until I manually go into desktop settings and choose again the wallpaper-kde

  20. Hi
    Has anyone gotten this to work in Fedora 19 with cinnamon 1.9?
    I have used the source, and I think I’ve installed all of the above mentioned dependencies.
    Still it starts, but doesn’t want to change background, or show any of the configured ones.

    • This might be connected to a typo in 0.4.15′s set_wallpaper script which makes it work under Cinnamon 1.8 but not 1.9. Please edit ~/.config/variety/scripts/set_wallpaper and replace the original version of this line in Cinnamon’s section with the following:

      gsettings set org.cinnamon.background picture-uri "file://$WP" 2> /dev/null

      The only difference is in the quotes, so these may look identical to you in your editor, but just paste the above line there. Please report back if this fixes it for you.

      • Thank you that fixes it. It now runs. Thank you.

        There are still some warnings showing up in the terminal:
        ERROR:root:Could not find any typelib for AppIndicator3
        No such schema ‘com.canonical.unity-greeter’
        though I can’t see that they affect the program in any way.



    • Please turn off caps lock and describe in English what OS you are using and how exactly are you trying to install Variety there.




  23. Instalar no Mint 15-Olivia-Cinnamon

    a resposta no terminal ?:

    carlos@carlos-System-Product-Name ~ $ sudo add-apt-repository ppa: peterlevi / ppa
    [sudo] password for carlos:
    Cannot add PPA: ‘No JSON object could be decoded’.

    • Don’t add spaces, don’t change the commands. Just copy and paste the three lines above exactly as you see them in their original format – TURN OFF Google translation before you copy them!

  24. Installed via deb on wheezy. No status indicator icon though? It is running, changes wallpaper, time updates on clock, etc, but cannot manually change the wallpaper without the indicator? I am new to Debian, so I may be missing something simple.

  25. Hi.
    Installed Variety with no problems, adding the ppa method in Mint 15 Olivia (Cinnamon).
    Thank you for this wonderful program.

  26. Hi Peter -

    this is a nice app that seems to run well on Mint 15. Here’s a question: I use my photos and it works well, except for those pictures that were taken in Portrait (versus Landscape). In that case Variety repositions them as Landscape, thus making it an odd display. Is there anything I can do about that?


  27. Hi Peter,

    Thank you so much for making this program. It is absolutely awesome and a must have.

    Is there any way that I can exclude folders? Right now I have added my wallpaper folder into variety which works great. But I have a picture folder inside the wallpaper folder with Christmas wallpapers that I don’t really want to move to a different folder but would like to exclude variety from seeing it in the wallpaper folder until…well Christmas.

    Thanks again for your time that you spend putting into the program

    • Not at the moment, and most probably not in the future. You can either add the individual subfolders, without the Christmas one, or you can physically move the Christmas folder outside of the main folder. None of these is perfect, but adding options for excluding is not worth the UI and code complexity.

      Update: even better, but only if you are not afraid of some light script editing – at the start of ~/.config/variety/scripts/set_wallpaper, you may check the image path and if it does not suit you (e.g. it contains “Christmas”) you simply skip the rest of the script, so that the wallpaper is not updated (and you may want to also call “/opt/ –next”).

  28. Hi Peter,

    Thanks for the help. I am relatively new to linux so I know how to open the script and view it in gedit but as to actually add the code to it, not so much.

    I guess I will just have to move the folder.

    Thanks for the reply

  29. Hi Peter,

    First of all thanks for this awsome app.
    I’ve followed the different steps to get it working on Fedora 19 through bzr (I had a Dbus issue like explained above which I corrected through the command line “dbus-uuidgen > /var/lib/dbus/machine-id”), but now I actually have a weird message when launching the app… It says “variety: error: no such option: -r”.
    I’m a bit lost here. Do you have any idea of what I should do to correct it and launch the app.

    Thanks a lot and as I say above your app is awesome.

    • How do you try to launch it? For some reason your launcher puts a ‘-r’ parameter which should not be there. Try launching it from the terminal without any parameters.

      • Oups sorry, I mean that it says “variety: error: no such option: -c”.
        And when I launch without parameters, I still have again the message
        “NoReply: Did not receive a reply. Possible causes include: the remote application did not send a reply, the message bus security policy blocked the reply, the reply timeout expired, or the network connection was broken” that I had before and which is involving the Dbus.

        • Please create a bug in launchpad about this, we’ll deal with it there. After that run Variety in a terminal with “-vvv” parameter and attach the log file (~/.config/variety/variety.log), as well as the output in the terminal to the bug report.

  30. Hi Peter

    Running Manjaro, just updated to cinnamon 1.9.2 and variety is running, but not changing the wallpaper. A cursory investigation (got to go to bed) is that the $1 variable is not getting set:

    Manually changing wallpaper – dandelion – file:///usr/share/backgrounds/gnome/Chmiri.jpg (dconf-editor)

    Run set_wallpaper – file://

    echo “**************”
    echo $1
    echo “**************”
    to top of set_wallpaper script result


    Cannot see $1 by running set command, but have:
    ex ()
    if [ -f $1 ]; then
    case $1 in
    tar xjf $1
    tar xzf $1
    bunzip2 $1
    unrar x $1
    gunzip $1
    tar xf $1
    tar xjf $1
    tar xzf $1
    unzip $1
    uncompress $1
    7z x $1
    echo “‘$1′ cannot be extracted via ex()”
    echo “‘$1′ is not a valid file”;
    at the bottom – is something new interfering?



    • Those lines at the bottom – did you add them or they were there? This is not code from Variety. Anyway, as a start please rename the ~/.config/variety folder and try again – this should start Variety in a clean state. If it still does not work, please run it with “-v” parameter, try to change the wallpaper a couple of times and send me the log file (~/.config/variety/variety.log).


    I have never noticed the lines at the bottom before, don’t know where they come from, they appear to be in my .bashrc, will delete and report back.

  32. Nope made no difference – must have always been there (now rem’d out):
    # ex – archive extractor
    # usage: ex
    #ex ()
    # if [ -f $1 ] ; then
    # case $1 in
    # *.tar.bz2) tar xjf $1 ;;
    # *.tar.gz) tar xzf $1 ;;
    # *.bz2) bunzip2 $1 ;;
    # *.rar) unrar x $1 ;;
    # *.gz) gunzip $1 ;;
    # *.tar) tar xf $1 ;;
    # *.tbz2) tar xjf $1 ;;
    # *.tgz) tar xzf $1 ;;
    # *.zip) unzip $1 ;;
    # *.Z) uncompress $1;;
    # *.7z) 7z x $1 ;;
    # *) echo “‘$1′ cannot be extracted via ex()” ;;
    # esac
    # else
    # echo “‘$1′ is not a valid file”
    # fi

  33. Sorry, I followed your instructions and renamed the folder, didn’t mention it, before running the -v command.

  34. Right, think I am getting some where – new cinnamon version’s key is org.cinnamon.desktop.background (not org.cinnamon.background). Proved by:

    If I set the wallpaper manually to the dandelion picture supplied, the key is set to:

    If I run the set_wallpaper script from bazaar (copied & pasted), I get:

    I tried to echo $WP it is blank, so I think WP variable is not getting set somehow. Which python script sets this variable? (I am not a python programmer, but I can muddle through!).

    • WP is set by the line “WP=$1″ in the beginning of the script. Is the contents of your set_wallpaper script equivalent to the one I linked? After you run the script manually with “set_wallpaper absolute_path_to_some_valid_image” does your wallpaper change? Even if not, what is the output of “gsettings get org.cinnamon.background” afterwards?

  35. Working now, they have changed the key:

    gsettings set org.cinnamon.desktop.background picture-uri “file://$WP” 2> /dev/null

    Added desktop – what confused me is the old key still exists, thank you for all your help and prompt responses.


  36. Hey Peter, are you planning to make Variety full compatible with Openbox? I’m using Crunchbang at the momment.

    • I haven’t used Openbox, but as far as I understand it has no standard way of displaying a wallpaper. If your setup supports setting one from the terminal, just put the relevant commands in ~/.config/variety/scripts/set_wallpaper. The rest of Variety should be working regardless of the DE.

    • I occasionally run Openbox – it is my backup up DE. I run xfdesktop from my autostart file to provide desktop icons, it also manages the background and variety just works.

      You could also install and use feh – uncomment lines in the set_wallpaper script, not tried this though.


  37. I am running Mint 15 and I have two problems.

    1. I cannot control the wallpapers with my scroll wheel.

    2. When I type “variety” into the terminal, it gives me the command not found error. I cannot figure out how to access variety in the terminal.

  38. I run ubuntu 12.04 in my home, and it run very well . thanks for your great work.
    meanwhile in office, no ubuntu/linux only windows exist, can it run in windows?

  39. I got this working under Raspbian (raspberry Pi). Here was my process:

    Install dependencies:

    sudo apt-get install gir1.2-notify-0.7 python-configobj python-pyexiv2 python-pycurl gir1.2-gtk-3.0 python-dbus gir1.2-pango-1.0 gir1.2-glib-2.0 python-imaging python-cairo gir1.2-gdkpixbuf-2.0 python-bs4 gir1.2-webkit-3.0 yelp imagemagick python-lxml gir1.2-appindicator3-0.1

    Install bzr:
    sudo apt-get install bzr

    Checkout from your repository:
    bzr branch lp:variety

    As this is a photo slideshow PC, I also added unclutter to hide my mouse cursor:
    sudo apt-get install unclutter

    Add variety and unclutter to my autostart file: (~/.config/lxsession/LXDE/autostart)


    Thanks for the excellent program. I’ve been meaning to write something similar, and now I don’t have to!

  40. variety installs fine in debian testing with mate desktop, but will not start. it works fine, though under gnome-fallback. what is the problem?

    • Please run it with -v and send me the log (you can also report a bug and attach it there).
      Also, after you run it, please check if it is running with top or “ps fax | grep variety”. There might be a problem creating the indicator / status icon.

  41. when I try to start variety in the terminal under mate in wheezy I get this

    Traceback (most recent call last):
    File “/opt/”, line 46, in
    File “/opt/”, line 111, in main
    File “/opt/”, line 101, in start
    if Gio.SettingsSchemaSource.get_default().lookup(“org.gnome.desktop.background”, True):
    AttributeError: ‘NoneType’ object has no attribute ‘lookup’

    • Ok, just committed a fix for this. You may want to run from development version, instructions on “How to install” page.

      • ran from development version works great.

        thanks a million.

      • Hi,

        With Mate 1.6, on a debian testing (from Mint).
        Same thing with variety:
        lolotte@mirabelle:~$ /opt/ --preferences
        Traceback (most recent call last):
        File "/opt/", line 46, in
        File "/opt/", line 111, in main
        File "/opt/", line 101, in start
        if Gio.SettingsSchemaSource.get_default().lookup("org.gnome.desktop.background", True):
        AttributeError: 'NoneType' object has no attribute 'lookup'

        And with variety_0.4.17_all.deb (reinstall)

        The last trunk is 0.4.17. Did the fix is only on tar.gz ?

        Any other advice ?

        Thanks a lot, great tool here !
        (Work like a charm on a Fedora 20/Mate)

  42. Awesome work. I love this.

  43. Great program, but I have one issue.
    I have it installed on Linux Mint 16, but some images are pixelated (if that is a real word)
    These are my own files that I have used on other wallpaper changers with no issue.
    Any idea why this would happen & how to fix it?

    • Please make sure all effects are turned off in the Effects tab. Also, you may have some thumbnails in the folders that Variety is using instead of the full pictures – you may want to turn on size filtering in Color and size tab.

      • Thanks for the quick reply. None of the images are thumbnails, but setting the Are big to 50% in Colour & size seems to have done it.
        Keep up the good work :-)

  44. How do I install Variety on OpenSuse 13.1 on the Gnome Desktop?I tried using the downloaded RPM, but this doesn’t work.

  45. Hi and THANKS . . . lovely app. It works incredible over ubuntu and elementary, but in fedora, this app start taken more and more ram. I have 8Gb, so I usually don’t care too much, but, with Variery, I used to restart Gnome-Shell around 4 times a day. I recently start a new With Fedora 20, but I don’t want to try yet.
    Is this a know issue in fedora???

    • A known bug of Xorg/compiz is that on some systems they leak RAM on every wallpaper change, with or without Variety. Variety simply makes the bug obvoius because it puts load on the wallpaper subsystem. Have you checked if on your mavhine it is Variety’s process which consumes RAM or some other process?

  46. I found away to use Variety engine in KDE 4.12 Its simple Create a folder named Wall in your home directory .Show Variety to download wallpapers there. Adjust your download 5min. and downloading space to10Mb.Wait for 15min.Than create a KDE slideshow with the folder Wall and let KDE wallpaper changer to change the wallpapers with the database of Variety.Unfortunately efects and other exstras do not work.

  47. Hi, after a SSD failure I went from Mint 15 MATE to Mint 16 MATE. One of my first actions was to install Variety, but although it appears in the menu, nothing happens. A command in terminal is not recognised. Any idea what to try next?

    • Try “/opt/ -v” and see if you get any informative errors in the log.

      • Many thanks for that Peter! And so quick!
        Yes, I found permission errors. Since my system died from a SSD failure, I had restored my home folder from a backup. Working fine now – thanks again!

  48. thanks Peter! your wallpaper changer works very well on Linux Mint Debian Edition. Actually this is the only one that worked for me.

    *To set Variety on startup, open Control center –> Startup applications –> add –> (find the bin path in: /opt/

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