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linux desktop rotatorRotate your Linux wallpaper whatever way you like it. Whether you want to set up a precise, well-timed “playlist” of wallpapers or show off a random assortment of your favorite pictures, Wallch is the perfect program for adding some variety to your Linux computing. It even offers a real-time earth at night wallpaper.

We’ve taught you a bit about wallpaper here at MakeUseOf. We’ve even shown you some Linux wallpaper advice where you can completely customize your KDE wallpaper How To Completely Customize Your KDE Wallpaper [Linux] How To Completely Customize Your KDE Wallpaper [Linux] KDE for Linux comes with plenty of customization options that exist on all distributions, adding to the uniform beauty of KDE.Today we'll be looking at very small portion of the possible options: the desktop. Read More . Not all Linux users use KDE however, and even outside of KDE, not all Linux wallpaper managers work with Ubuntu’s Unity desktop Ubuntu 11.04 Unity - A Big Leap Forward For Linux Ubuntu 11.04 Unity - A Big Leap Forward For Linux It's here. The newest version of Ubuntu sports an entirely new user interface: Unity. It also includes a much-improved Software Center, alongside the usual updates for the thousands of free programs Ubuntu offers. Canonical decided... Read More . Wallch does, but that’s not the only reason this software is worth checking out. Adding wallpaper and setting it up to show it just the way you want it is not only simple but fun. Simply put, it’s wallpaper management done right. I’d like to see this, or something similar, built into a future release of Ubuntu and other distros.

What It Does

Load Wallch for the first time and you’ll need to add some pictures. You can add individual pictures or entire folders; just click the buttons to the right of your “playlist”:

linux desktop rotator

Once you’ve added some pictures you can organize your collection. Remove shots that won’t work as wallpaper, or put the pictures in the order you desire. Or, if you don’t desire order, select the random option. You can set an amount of time for wallpapers to stick around, or you can randomize the timing as well.

Head over to settings (click “Edit“, then “Preferences“) to get a bit more control over the application:

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desktop rotation software

You’ll almost certainly want to turn off wallpaper notifications. I’ve no idea why someone would want a bubble popping up telling them their wallpaper has changed. Isn’t seeing the different wallpaper enough? Whatever.

Earth At Night!

Want something a little different? Wallch offers, as an alternative to folders full of wallpaper, a wallpaper that reflects reality. It’s a satellite image of earth showing where it is day and where it is night.

desktop rotation software

The really cool part? This updates to reflect the real world. Every half hour you’ll have a slightly different picture reflecting the earth’s rotation and its effect.

Do you want to set this up? Click Edit, then click Extras. You’ll then see a simple configuration menu.

linux desktop rotator

You’ll need to press “Stop” in the main windows before you can do this, if you had a slideshow running already. Once you do that you’ll have access to one of the cooler wallpapers in existence.

Install Wallch

Ready to install? Download Wallch at SourceForge. Debian and Ubuntu users will find a handy .deb file; other Linux users will need to compile source code. Hopefully packages for other Linux distros are coming soon. Heck, this program is ready to be added to repositories.

Conclusion

Wallpaper switchers aren’t exactly useful, but they can be fun. Computers can become mere workplaces, but every office needs some decoration. This software lets you customize your virtual workplace easily. I’m glad I found this one, even if I plan on mostly using the world at night wallpaper.

Do you find this program useful, cool or neither? Let me know in the comments below, along with any alternative programs for the job. Also feel free to post links to your favorite desktop wallpapers.

I found this program thanks to OMG! Ubuntu, an Ubuntu blog I love to read. Thanks guys!

  1. Michael
    October 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    I've had a very similar program do this on windows. It's been out for a while now. I believe it was called Living Earth. It's nice, it helps you gauge how much daylight you have left and lets you do other minuscule things. The live weather was also a nice feature.

    • jhpot
      October 16, 2011 at 6:54 pm

      I'm going to look into that program. Thanks!

  2. Barty
    September 16, 2011 at 9:16 pm

    Installled on Mint 11 but nothing happens and the desktop display a picture saying "Domain Not Registered. To View Register At : bit.lyimageshack-domain".

    Anybody any ideas?

    • jhpot
      September 19, 2011 at 1:49 pm

      I sadly don't know much about Mint, so you should maybe ask at the Linux Mint forums. Alternatively, try MUO Answers. makeuseof.com/answers

  3. Robins80
    September 16, 2011 at 6:47 pm

    I got it installed, pointed it to where my wallpapers were and all was fine...until I rebooted.  Wallch then said I had no files loaded and when I went to the setup, it was as if I had never set it up at all.  I don't know what happened.  Has anyone else had this problem?

    • Goldfish
      September 17, 2011 at 8:12 am

      Try going to 'Edit' then 'Preferences' then check 'Startup options' & click any Radio Button you prefer. This should hopefully solve the issue.

      • Anonymous
        September 18, 2011 at 7:13 pm

        That did not help.

        • jhpot
          September 19, 2011 at 1:46 pm

          That's very strange. Is this problem for wallpaper on your computer, or the real time earth background? The former is dowloaded from the web, so there might be problems using it at startup if your Internet takes a while to connect. 

  4. Robins80
    September 7, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    It told me I had the wrong architecture.  Is there a 64-bit version available?

    • jhpot
      September 14, 2011 at 8:20 pm

      I wouldn't know, I tested on a 32 bit machine. You may need to compile yourself for 64 bit. 

    • JaySF
      September 16, 2011 at 6:57 pm

      Tried compiling Gome3 tarball for Fedora 15 x86_64.  Wallch says background is updating, but getting no pictures changing on the screen. 

  5. chubonga
    September 7, 2011 at 5:39 pm

    Does this work on Linux Mint 11 Katya?

    • jhpot
      September 14, 2011 at 8:19 pm

      There's no reason it shouldn't...just use the Ubuntu package. 

  6. Dennis Primm
    September 5, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    I don't think it will work with a 64-bit machine. If someone has any suggestions, then I'm all ears.

  7. Erbland
    September 5, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    I think I wrote a shell script that did this about 10 years ago. Displayed weather and screen shots/graphs from monitoring scripts.

    • jhpot
      September 14, 2011 at 8:30 pm

      Does it still work?

      • Tina
        September 18, 2011 at 2:51 pm

        Looks like we'll never find out. Too bad!

  8. kim
    September 4, 2011 at 1:41 am

    Is it possible to set the Live Earth wallpaper to be part of your slideshow? I like it but I like my other pictures too. ;)

    • jhpot
      September 14, 2011 at 8:18 pm

      Sadly no, but maybe this will come later. 

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