Image by Florian Klauer


Setting a webcampak capture as a dynamic wallpaper on Linux

You can use a webcampak picture as a wallpaper on Linux, this is not a very common situation as webcam pictures quality tends to be low. But with Webcampak you can enjoy high resolution pictures right on your wallpaper.

The script available below has been created for Gnome desktop environement, this is the environment available by default with Ubuntu.

All necessary actions will be performed using a console, you could also do the same with any graphical interface.

First open a console, with Gnome go to “Applications” > “Accessories” > “Console”, then type in the following commands :

#> mkdir Pictures
#> cd Pictures
#> mkdir wallpaper
#> cd wallpaper

Then check the full path of the directory you are currently into pwd :

#> pwd

Write down the result of the above command, you will need it for the script :

#> gedit

Copy/paste the following code into the text editor :

wget http://mon_url/live/webcam-1280x1024.jpg -O /home/maison/Images/wallpaper/Wallpaper_$(date +%Y%m%d%s).jpg
gconftool-2 -t str --set /desktop/gnome/background/picture_filename /home/maison/Images/wallpaper/Wallpaper_$(date +%Y%m%d%s).jpg
gconftool-2 -t str --set /desktop/gnome/background/picture_options scaled

Replace the url with your own picture url (mon_url/live/webcam-1280x1024.jpg), the change the path by replacing /home/maison/Images/wallpaper with the result of “pwd” command.

Save your file and quit gedit.

You can test your script with the following command :


Your wallpaper should be replaced with a picture from your webcampak.

We then need to add a task within GNU/Linux crontab. Cron will take care of executing the script regularly (i.e. every 10 minutes).

crontab -e

Add the following line at the end of the script (replace directory to match your environement)

*/10 * * * * bash /home/Utilisateur/Images/wallpaper/ > /home/Utilisateur/Images/wallpaper/wallpaper.log

Save and quit, your system will now automatically refresh your wallpaper.

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