Terminal-based system information tools are unashamedly geeky — and yet undoubtedly useful, too.
‘…unashamedly geeky — and yet undoubtedly useful’
With the tap of a quick command you can “fetch” all sorts of information about your system, from what kernel you’re running to what icon pack you’re currently using.
That garble is why I was stoked to find a link to Neofetch in my tips inbox recently (our recent call for content has done wonders). Neofetch is now my favourite CLI system information tool.
Written in Bash, Neofetch displays information about your system next to an ASCII operating system logo (or any picture you configure it to display).
You can run Neofetch on Windows, macOS, Linux, Android and more
Designed to handle show and tell, apps like neofetch are a mainstay of desktop screenshots. They can distill information about the operating system, kernel version, and desktop environment, but also what theme or icons are being used, which window manager, and even which version of Bash!
Basically, its the sort of tool made for Linux nerds like us!
What’s super-duper great about Neofetch is that it’s super cross-platform —uup, not just cross-platform but super cross-platform.
You can run Neofetch anywhere you can run Bash. That means it runs on Linux, MacOS, iOS, BSD, Solaris, Android, and (yup) even Windows 10.
One of Neaofetch’s “pluses” over similar CLI system info tools is the extent to which you can customise it. Neofetch is highly customizable through the use of command line flags or the user config file. There are over 50 config options to play around with.
You can even run the app and have it take a screenshot of your entire screen!
Install Neofetch in Ubuntu
You can istall Neofetch Ubuntu in a number of ways, including from source.
If you’re on Ubuntu 16.10 or later you can install Neofetch from Ubuntu Software:
By far the easiest (and the one that ensures you get new versions as and when they’re released) method is to use the official Neofetch PPA. This provides the very latest release in a neatly packed, er, package for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and above..
To add the PPA run the following commands from your Terminal app of choice:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:dawidd0811/neofetch
sudo apt update && sudo apt install neofetch
Alternatively, you can download an installer package directly from the PPA’s packages page:
As Neofetch is a command-line tool you won’t find an app icon in the Dash. Instead, to use it, simply run the following from whichever terminal emulator you prefer:
from the command line.
to see a full list of the various command line arguments.
Feel free to share screenshots of Neofetch from your desktop in the comments below!
Middle Image Credit: @ryan_setiagi