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How to go about configuring i3

I have recently installed Manjaro on my old work notebook and I’m using i3 alongside with it. I have used i3 in the past and I’m a fan of tiling window managers.

However, after installing Manjaro I thought about adjusting the configuration a bit and change the overall theme and such. Thus I had a look at various config files but I also stumbled over this project here:

Now, this does look neat although I probably do not intend to switch between themes that often. On the other hand, you never know. XD

Anyway, what is your modus operandi? Do you have your own configs you just use or do you use things like that? I think I might learn more when doing everything myself, on the other hand with this themer I could get close to what I want and just tweak it a bit and the next time I would probably more proficient in doing something like that.

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I see things like this as a good starting off point, but then you should just be able to copy your config from machine to machine whenever you find what you’re looking for.

Personally, my needs are pretty basic so I just use i3-gaps and tweak the spacings and call it a day

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I configured the i3 config file to my liking and in the process installed polybar and rofi. I removed the i3 status bar. I then went on the internet looking for some themes, mainly for polybar and found some good ones. I picked a theme and manually applied it and then removed everything from the configuration files that I did not need. Last step was to apply some tweaks of my own to configs that did not look right, yet.

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For now, I’m using the GitHub project but now my fonts are unusually large - larger than I’m used to and I tend to use larger fonts. I think its more GUI related, as seen in the screenshots attached.

Any help would be appreciated…

image

I think this might have been done on my end, since the default i3 had a font that was too small but I’m not sure.

xresources

https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/X_resources

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I had a look at them already and couldn’t see anything out of the ordinary:

.Xressources
*background: #1e1e20
*foreground: #c5c8c6
*cursorColor: #c5c8c6

*color0: #1e1e20
*color8: #f4d8c6
*color1: #e6a57a
*color9: #e6a57a
*color2: #e39866
*color10: #e39866
*color3: #df8b54
*color11: #df8b54
*color4: #dc7f41
*color12: #dc7f41
*color5: #85678f
*color13: #c6723a
*color6: #b06534
*color14: #b06534
*color7: #f1cbb3
*color15: #f1cbb3

URxvt.font: xft:Source Code Pro:size=9.5
URxvt.depth:                      32
URxvt*scrollBar:                  false
URxvt*mouseWheelScrollPage:       false
URxvt*cursorBlink:                true
URxvt*saveLines:                  5000
URxvt*internalBorder: 5
!URxvt*geometry: 70x19

rofi.color-enabled: true
rofi.color-window: #1e1e20, #dc7f41, #dc7f41
rofi.color-normal: #1e1e20, #c5c8c6, #1e1e20, #1e1e20, #dc7f41
rofi.color-active: #1e1e20, #c5c8c6, #1e1e20, #1e1e20, #dc7f41
rofi.color-urgent: #1e1e20, #c5c8c6, #1e1e20, #1e1e20, #dc7f41

rofi.separator-style: solid
rofi.sidebar-mode: false
rofi.lines: 5
rofi.font: Source Code Pro Semibold 9.5
rofi.bw: 1
rofi.columns: 2
rofi.padding: 5
rofi.fixed-num-lines: true
rofi.hide-scrollbar: true

! Normal copy-paste keybindings without perls
URxvt.iso14755:                   false
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-V:     eval:paste_clipboard
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-C:     eval:selection_to_clipboard
!Xterm escape codes, word by word movement
URxvt.keysym.Control-Left:        \033[1;5D
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Left:  \033[1;6D
URxvt.keysym.Control-Right:       \033[1;5C
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Right: \033[1;6C
URxvt.keysym.Control-Up:          \033[1;5A
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Up:    \033[1;6A
URxvt.keysym.Control-Down:        \033[1;5B
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Down:  \033[1;6B

Also nothing in the i3 config:

i3
# Set mod key (Mod1=<Alt>, Mod4=<Super>)
set $mod Mod4

new_window pixel 1
new_float normal

# Configure border style <normal|1pixel|pixel xx|none|pixel>
default_border pixel 1
default_floating_border normal

hide_edge_borders none

bindsym $mod+u border none
bindsym $mod+y border pixel 1
bindsym $mod+n border normal

font xft:URWGothic-Book 11

floating_modifier $mod

bindsym $mod+Return exec i3-sensible-terminal

# Window kill command
bindsym $mod+Shift+q kill

# start program launcher
bindsym $mod+d exec --no-startup-id rofi -show run

# change focus
bindsym $mod+j focus left
bindsym $mod+k focus down
bindsym $mod+l focus up
bindsym $mod+semicolon focus right

bindsym $mod+Left focus left
bindsym $mod+Down focus down
bindsym $mod+Up focus up
bindsym $mod+Right focus right

# move focused window
bindsym $mod+Shift+j move left
bindsym $mod+Shift+k move down
bindsym $mod+Shift+l move up
bindsym $mod+Shift+semicolon move right

bindsym $mod+Shift+Left move left
bindsym $mod+Shift+Down move down
bindsym $mod+Shift+Up move up
bindsym $mod+Shift+Right move right

# workspace back and forth (with/without active container)
workspace_auto_back_and_forth yes
bindsym $mod+b workspace back_and_forth
bindsym $mod+Shift+b move container to workspace back_and_forth; workspace back_and_forth

# split orientation
bindsym $mod+h split h;exec notify-send 'tile horizontally'
bindsym $mod+v split v;exec notify-send 'tile vertically'
bindsym $mod+q split toggle

# toggle fullscreen mode for the focused container
bindsym $mod+f fullscreen toggle

# change container layout (stacked, tabbed, toggle split)
bindsym $mod+s layout stacking
bindsym $mod+w layout tabbed
bindsym $mod+e layout toggle split

# toggle tiling / floating
bindsym $mod+Shift+space floating toggle

# change focus between tiling / floating windows
bindsym $mod+space focus mode_toggle

# toggle sticky
bindsym $mod+Shift+s sticky toggle

# focus the parent container
bindsym $mod+a focus parent

# move the currently focused window to the scratchpad
bindsym $mod+Shift+minus move scratchpad

# Show the next scratchpad window or hide the focused scratchpad window.
# If there are multiple scratchpad windows, this command cycles through them.
bindsym $mod+minus scratchpad show

# navigate workspaces next / previous
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+Right workspace next
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+Left workspace prev

# workspaces
set $ws1 1
set $ws2 2
set $ws3 3
set $ws4 4
set $ws5 5
set $ws6 6
set $ws7 7
set $ws8 8

# switch to workspace
bindsym $mod+1 workspace $ws1
bindsym $mod+2 workspace $ws2
bindsym $mod+3 workspace $ws3
bindsym $mod+4 workspace $ws4
bindsym $mod+5 workspace $ws5
bindsym $mod+6 workspace $ws6
bindsym $mod+7 workspace $ws7
bindsym $mod+8 workspace $ws8

# Move focused container to workspace
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+1 move container to workspace $ws1
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+2 move container to workspace $ws2
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+3 move container to workspace $ws3
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+4 move container to workspace $ws4
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+5 move container to workspace $ws5
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+6 move container to workspace $ws6
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+7 move container to workspace $ws7
bindsym $mod+Ctrl+8 move container to workspace $ws8

# Move to workspace with focused container
bindsym $mod+Shift+1 move container to workspace $ws1; workspace $ws1
bindsym $mod+Shift+2 move container to workspace $ws2; workspace $ws2
bindsym $mod+Shift+3 move container to workspace $ws3; workspace $ws3
bindsym $mod+Shift+4 move container to workspace $ws4; workspace $ws4
bindsym $mod+Shift+5 move container to workspace $ws5; workspace $ws5
bindsym $mod+Shift+6 move container to workspace $ws6; workspace $ws6
bindsym $mod+Shift+7 move container to workspace $ws7; workspace $ws7
bindsym $mod+Shift+8 move container to workspace $ws8; workspace $ws8

# Open specific applications in floating mode
for_window [title="alsamixer"] floating enable border pixel 1
for_window [class="Calamares"] floating enable border normal
for_window [class="Clipgrab"] floating enable
for_window [title="File Transfer*"] floating enable
for_window [class="Galculator"] floating enable border pixel 1
for_window [class="GParted"] floating enable border normal
for_window [title="i3_help"] floating enable sticky enable border normal
for_window [class="Lightdm-gtk-greeter-settings"] floating enable
for_window [class="Lxappearance"] floating enable sticky enable border normal
for_window [class="Manjaro-hello"] floating enable
for_window [class="Manjaro Settings Manager"] floating enable border normal
for_window [title="MuseScore: Play Panel"] floating enable
for_window [class="Nitrogen"] floating enable sticky enable border normal
for_window [class="Oblogout"] fullscreen enable
for_window [class="octopi"] floating enable
for_window [title="About Pale Moon"] floating enable
for_window [class="Pamac-manager"] floating enable
for_window [class="Pavucontrol"] floating enable
for_window [class="qt5ct"] floating enable sticky enable border normal
for_window [class="Qtconfig-qt4"] floating enable sticky enable border normal
for_window [class="Simple-scan"] floating enable border normal
for_window [class="(?i)System-config-printer.py"] floating enable border normal
for_window [class="Skype"] floating enable border normal
for_window [class="Thus"] floating enable border normal
for_window [class="Timeset-gui"] floating enable border normal
for_window [class="(?i)virtualbox"] floating enable border normal
for_window [class="Xfburn"] floating enable

# switch to workspace with urgent window automatically
for_window [urgent=latest] focus

# reload the configuration file
bindsym $mod+Shift+c reload

# restart i3 inplace (preserves your layout/session, can be used to upgrade i3)
bindsym $mod+Shift+r restart

# exit i3 (logs you out of your X session)
bindsym $mod+Shift+e exec "i3-nagbar -t warning -m 'You pressed the exit shortcut. Do you really want to exit i3? This will end your X session.' -b 'Yes, exit i3' 'i3-msg exit'"

# Set shut down, restart and locking features
bindsym $mod+0 mode "$mode_system"
set $mode_system (l)ock, (e)xit, switch_(u)ser, (s)uspend, (h)ibernate, (r)eboot, (Shift+s)hutdown
mode "$mode_system" {
    bindsym l exec --no-startup-id i3exit lock, mode "default"
    bindsym s exec --no-startup-id i3exit suspend, mode "default"
    bindsym u exec --no-startup-id i3exit switch_user, mode "default"
    bindsym e exec --no-startup-id i3exit logout, mode "default"
    bindsym h exec --no-startup-id i3exit hibernate, mode "default"
    bindsym r exec --no-startup-id i3exit reboot, mode "default"
    bindsym Shift+s exec --no-startup-id i3exit shutdown, mode "default"

    # exit system mode: "Enter" or "Escape"
    bindsym Return mode "default"
    bindsym Escape mode "default"
}

# Resize window (you can also use the mouse for that)
bindsym $mod+r mode "resize"
mode "resize" {
        # These bindings trigger as soon as you enter the resize mode
        # Pressing left will shrink the window’s width.
        # Pressing right will grow the window’s width.
        # Pressing up will shrink the window’s height.
        # Pressing down will grow the window’s height.
        bindsym j resize shrink width 5 px or 5 ppt
        bindsym k resize grow height 5 px or 5 ppt
        bindsym l resize shrink height 5 px or 5 ppt
        bindsym semicolon resize grow width 5 px or 5 ppt

        # same bindings, but for the arrow keys
        bindsym Left resize shrink width 10 px or 10 ppt
        bindsym Down resize grow height 10 px or 10 ppt
        bindsym Up resize shrink height 10 px or 10 ppt
        bindsym Right resize grow width 10 px or 10 ppt

        # exit resize mode: Enter or Escape
        bindsym Return mode "default"
        bindsym Escape mode "default"
}

# Autostart applications
exec --no-startup-id nitrogen --restore; sleep 1; compton -b
exec --no-startup-id nm-applet
# exec --no-startup-id xfce4-power-manager
# exec --no-startup-id pamac-tray
exec --no-startup-id clipit
exec_always --no-startup-id ff-theme-util
exec_always --no-startup-id fix_xcursor
exec_always --no-startup-id $HOME/.config/polybar/i3wmthemer_bar_launch.sh

# Theme colors
client.focused #e39866 #1e1e20 #e39866 #e39866 #e39866
client.focused_inactive #e39866 #1e1e20 #e39866 #dc7f41 #dc7f41
client.unfocused #e39866 #1e1e20 #e39866 #dc7f41 #dc7f41
client.urgent #e39866 #1e1e20 #e39866 #dc7f41 #dc7f41
client.placeholder #e39866 #1e1e20 #e39866 #dc7f41 #dc7f41

client.background #1e1e20

# Gaps
gaps inner 10
gaps outer -4

smart_gaps on

# Press $mod+Shift+g to enter the gap mode. Choose o or i for modifying outer/inner gaps. Press one of + / - (in-/decrement for current workspace) or 0 (remove gaps for current workspace). If you also press Shift with these keys, the change will be global for all workspaces.
set $mode_gaps Gaps: (o) outer, (i) inner
set $mode_gaps_outer Outer Gaps: +|-|0 (local), Shift + +|-|0 (global)
set $mode_gaps_inner Inner Gaps: +|-|0 (local), Shift + +|-|0 (global)
bindsym $mod+Shift+g mode "$mode_gaps"

mode "$mode_gaps" {
        bindsym o      mode "$mode_gaps_outer"
        bindsym i      mode "$mode_gaps_inner"
        bindsym Return mode "default"
        bindsym Escape mode "default"
}
mode "$mode_gaps_inner" {
        bindsym plus  gaps inner current plus 5
        bindsym minus gaps inner current minus 5
        bindsym 0     gaps inner current set 0

        bindsym Shift+plus  gaps inner all plus 5
        bindsym Shift+minus gaps inner all minus 5
        bindsym Shift+0     gaps inner all set 0

        bindsym Return mode "default"
        bindsym Escape mode "default"
}
mode "$mode_gaps_outer" {
        bindsym plus  gaps outer current plus 5
        bindsym minus gaps outer current minus 5
        bindsym 0     gaps outer current set 0

        bindsym Shift+plus  gaps outer all plus 5
        bindsym Shift+minus gaps outer all minus 5
        bindsym Shift+0     gaps outer all set 0

        bindsym Return mode "default"
        bindsym Escape mode "default"
}

# set power-manager and volume control
exec --no-startup-id mate-power-manager

bindsym XF86AudioRaiseVolume exec --no-startup-id amixer -c 0 -q set Master 2dB+ unmute
bindsym XF86AudioLowerVolume exec --no-startup-id amixer -c 0 -q set Master 2db- unmute
bindsym XF86AudioMute exec --no-startup-id amixer -q set Master toggle

# touchpad on and off controller on laptop with Fn+<touchpad control functional key>
bindsym XF86TouchpadOn exec --no-startup-id synclient Touchpadoff=0
bindsym XF86TouchpadOff exec --no-startup-id synclient Touchpadoff=1

Edit:

When I query it I get the same result

[[email protected] ~]$ xrdb -query -all
*background:	#1e1e20
*color0:	#1e1e20
*color1:	#e6a57a
*color10:	#e39866
*color11:	#df8b54
*color12:	#dc7f41
*color13:	#c6723a
*color14:	#b06534
*color15:	#f1cbb3
*color2:	#e39866
*color3:	#df8b54
*color4:	#dc7f41
*color5:	#85678f
*color6:	#b06534
*color7:	#f1cbb3
*color8:	#f4d8c6
*color9:	#e6a57a
*cursorColor:	#c5c8c6
*foreground:	#c5c8c6
URxvt*cursorBlink:	true
URxvt*internalBorder:	5
URxvt*mouseWheelScrollPage:	false
URxvt*saveLines:	5000
URxvt*scrollBar:	false
URxvt.depth:	32
URxvt.font:	xft:Source Code Pro:size=9.5
URxvt.iso14755:	false
URxvt.keysym.Control-Down:	\033[1;5B
URxvt.keysym.Control-Left:	\033[1;5D
URxvt.keysym.Control-Right:	\033[1;5C
URxvt.keysym.Control-Up:	\033[1;5A
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-C:	eval:selection_to_clipboard
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Down:	\033[1;6B
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Left:	\033[1;6D
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Right:	\033[1;6C
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-Up:	\033[1;6A
URxvt.keysym.Shift-Control-V:	eval:paste_clipboard
rofi.bw:	1
rofi.color-active:	#1e1e20, #c5c8c6, #1e1e20, #1e1e20, #dc7f41
rofi.color-enabled:	true
rofi.color-normal:	#1e1e20, #c5c8c6, #1e1e20, #1e1e20, #dc7f41
rofi.color-urgent:	#1e1e20, #c5c8c6, #1e1e20, #1e1e20, #dc7f41
rofi.color-window:	#1e1e20, #dc7f41, #dc7f41
rofi.columns:	2
rofi.fixed-num-lines:	true
rofi.font:	Source Code Pro Semibold 9.5
rofi.hide-scrollbar:	true
rofi.lines:	5
rofi.padding:	5
rofi.separator-style:	solid
rofi.sidebar-mode:	false

Hmmm, must be some qt strangeness.

Any idea how to solve/address this? I really have a hard time figuring out what’s wrong and I actually wouldn’t want to re-install everything again…

Off the top of my head, no. I’ll help a bit when I’m through with work.

1 Like

So, I reinstalled the system didn’t change anything and used the script and still the same result. I assume that something is changed by this script but I cannot deduce what exactly.

I’ve solved my issue, I just had to add the following:

Xft.dpi 96

Normally on FullHD screens, things should be fine and on HiDPI screens everything is too small by default. Have you made any settings to e.g./etc/profile like these (those I needed to apply to scale some applications to normal size on a 4K screen):

# fixes for hidpi
export QT_AUTO_SCREEN_SCALE_FACTOR=0
export QT_SCREEN_SCALE_FACTORS=2
export GDK_SCALE=2
export GDK_DPI_SCALE=0.5
1 Like

No, I couldn’t find anything of that sort.

Weird! Currently DE’s default to 96DPI which is roughly what you want to set on a regular sized 1080p or larger 1440p screen. When you have a monitor that has a higher resolution the size of window elements should shrink. Maybe you can ask on the Manjaro Forum if they maybe using some presets. The Manjaro i3 has other kinds of styling applied to it that is not part of what you get when you install i3 manually.

1 Like

That’s a good idea, maybe I will be able to doscover something to satisfy my curiosity

1 Like