SketchyBar VS polybar

Compare SketchyBar vs polybar and see what are their differences.

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SketchyBar polybar
32 278
3,419 13,120
- 0.5%
7.6 0.0
18 days ago 1 day ago
C C++
GNU General Public License v3.0 only MIT License
The number of mentions indicates the total number of mentions that we've tracked plus the number of user suggested alternatives.
Stars - the number of stars that a project has on GitHub. Growth - month over month growth in stars.
Activity is a relative number indicating how actively a project is being developed. Recent commits have higher weight than older ones.
For example, an activity of 9.0 indicates that a project is amongst the top 10% of the most actively developed projects that we are tracking.


Posts with mentions or reviews of SketchyBar. We have used some of these posts to build our list of alternatives and similar projects. The last one was on 2022-12-29.
  • [Rice] My Neovim setup on mac ๐Ÿ˜บ
    4 projects | /r/neovim | 29 Dec 2022
    the menubar at the top could be sketchybar
  • A curated directory of 700 Mac menu bar apps
    10 projects | | 28 Nov 2022
    Not sure why the downvotes, same here. I disabled mine in favour of sketchy bar [0]. I hide most things except for bandwidth and clock. Super handy.


  • I made my version of Dynamic Island for macOS
    3 projects | /r/mac | 1 Oct 2022
    It is done with SketchyBar and this is his config:
  • Maximizing Productivity on a 14" MacBook Pro
    7 projects | /r/MacOS | 15 May 2022
    Over the last few years I have tried to increase my productivity on a 14" screen as much as possible. The most important thing for me was to rely on keyboard shortcuts as much as possible (skhd), use a tiling window manager (yabai) and a custom status bar (SketchyBar). My full setup is explained in detail in my dotfiles. Let's discuss about further maximizing productivity and about further applications, like Alfred.
    7 projects | /r/MacOS | 15 May 2022
    Per display y_offset is currently not possible, I think this is a reasonable request for notched screens, and if you like you can add this to the appropriate issue on github: where we can discuss about the specific implementation.
    7 projects | /r/MacOS | 15 May 2022
    The separation will only be enabled on builtin displays and the separation can be adjusted freely like described here:
  • Looking for most lightweight M1 menu bar app to monitor CPU thermals.
    2 projects | /r/macapps | 27 Feb 2022
    not sure if you will be interested, since it is not a menu bar app but rather a status bar replacement . It is Sketchybar I am currently trying to configure my own config, but the default configs are more than enough to get you going. It is a more hands on approach than the other solutions though.
  • I created an open source native vim implementation for macOS input fields. This is no emulation, it is a real vim buffer synced to the OS input fields, hence all commands will work out of the box.
    2 projects | /r/vim | 12 Feb 2022
    My own bar: you will find the configuration I use in der Discussions -> Share your Setups at the bottom
  • I developed a highly customizable open source status bar replacement in C
    3 projects | /r/MacOS | 23 Dec 2021
    The default config is much more bare bones but you can find this setup (with slightly changed colors) in the "Share your Setups" section of the project:
    3 projects | /r/MacOS | 23 Dec 2021
    This project has been my hobby for the past couple of months and it is completely open source and free to use: . With this tool you can create highly customizable and functional top (or bottom) menu bars to make your macOS more unique while retaining and improving functionality. It is targeted towards advanced users with a solid knowledge about using the commandline and has many features of which the most notable are:


Posts with mentions or reviews of polybar. We have used some of these posts to build our list of alternatives and similar projects. The last one was on 2023-07-03.
  • Are there any tools to analyse/modify colours directly from a bash script?
    2 projects | /r/bash | 3 Jul 2023
    I am on Arch Linux and I am using pywal to generate a colour palette from my wallpaper, which I then use throughout my system. In particular, i have a bash script which grabs these colours and uses them for polybar. The problem is that sometimes these colours do not have enough contrast, and the bar is hard to read. Is there any tool that would allow me to check the readability of my colours, and modify them accordingly, directly from my script? If not, how should I be approaching this issue?
  • How do I use polybar with Hyprland?
    2 projects | /r/hyprland | 13 Apr 2023
    The short answer is you can't.
  • [bspwm] yine yeลŸillik ama biraz farklฤฑsฤฑndan
    6 projects | /r/Linuxtr | 12 Mar 2023
    ร‡ubuk: polybar
  • Looking for a waybar for i3
    2 projects | /r/i3wm | 25 Feb 2023
    It is treaky to show it on all monitors allowing hotpluggin them:
  • Tiny gaps between glyphs and modules
    2 projects | /r/Polybar | 28 Jan 2023
    ================= ; ; ; โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•—โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— ; โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•—โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•—โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ•šโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•—โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•—โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— ; โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ•šโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ• โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ• ; โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ•โ• โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ•šโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ• โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•—โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•— ; โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ•šโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•—โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ–ˆโ•”โ•โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ โ–ˆโ–ˆโ•‘ ; โ•šโ•โ• โ•šโ•โ•โ•โ•โ•โ• โ•šโ•โ•โ•โ•โ•โ•โ•โ•šโ•โ• โ•šโ•โ•โ•โ•โ•โ• โ•šโ•โ• โ•šโ•โ•โ•šโ•โ• โ•šโ•โ• ; ; ; To learn more about how to configure Polybar ; go to ; ; The README contains a lot of information ; ;========================================================== ; INCLUDING FILES include-file = ~/.config/polybar/glyphs.ini ; COLORS [colors] background = "#282c34" foreground = "#dcdfe4" shade1 = "#0d5189" shade2 = "#0e5a99" shade3 = "#1063a8" shade4 = "#116cb8" shade5 = "#1375c7" shade6 = "#147ed7" shade7 = "#1687e6" [widths] small = 3px med = 5px large = 6px huge = 10px [util] radius = 0 [bar/left] width = 100% height = 38px #offset-x = 12 #offset-y = 8 radius = ${util.radius} # colors background = ${colors.background} foreground = ${colors.foreground} # text font font-0 = "CaskaydiaCove Nerd Font Mono:size=11;3" # icon font font-1 = "CaskaydiaCove Nerd Font Mono:size=16;3" # microphone icon font-2 = "CaskaydiaCove Nerd Font Mono:size=12;3" # glyph font font-3 = "CaskaydiaCove Nerd Font Mono:style=Medium:size=26;5" modules-left = power left1 bspwm left2 modules-right = right7 ping right6 mic right5 pulseaudio right4 memory right3 cpu right2 date right1 noti cursor-click = pointer cursor-scroll = ns-resize enable-ipc = true wm-restack = bspwm # system tray tray-position = right tray-background = ${colors.shade1} [module/ping] type = custom/script interval=1 exec = echo `ping -c 1 -w 1 | tail -1 | awk '{print $4}' | cut -d '/' -f 2 | cut -d '.' -f 1`"ms" format = format-font = 1 format-padding = ${widths.large} format-background=${colors.shade7} [module/noti] type = custom/script interval = 1 exec = $HOME/.config/polybar/scripts/ label-padding = ${widths.large} format = format-font = 2 format-background = ${colors.shade1} click-left = $HOME/.config/polybar/scripts/ --toggle & [module/playing] type = custom/script interval = 2 exec = playerctl metadata --format '๏€ {{trunc(title, 20)}}' | awk 'NR==1 {print; exit}' click-left = playerctl play-pause [module/power] type = custom/text content = "๏€‘" content-font = 2 content-padding = ${widths.huge} click-left = $HOME/.config/polybar/scripts/ content-background=${colors.shade1} [module/mic] type = custom/script tail=true exec = $HOME/.config/polybar/scripts/ label-padding = ${widths.large} format = format-font = 3 format-background = ${colors.shade6} click-left = pamixer --source 1 -t scroll-up = pamixer --source 1 -i 5 scroll-down = pamixer --source 1 -d 5 [module/pulseaudio] type = internal/pulseaudio label-volume = %percentage%% label-volume-padding = ${widths.large} label-volume-foreground = ${colors.foreground} label-volume-background= ${colors.shade5} label-muted = %percentage%% label-muted-padding = ${widths.large} label-muted-foreground = ${colors.foreground} label-muted-background= ${colors.shade5} format-muted-prefix = "๏ช€" format-muted-prefix-font = 2 format-muted-prefix-padding= ${widths.large} format-muted-prefix-foreground= ${colors.foreground} format-muted-prefix-background= ${colors.shade5} format-volume-prefix = "๏ฉฝ" format-volume-prefix-font = 2 format-volume-prefix-padding= ${widths.large} format-volume-prefix-foreground = ${colors.foreground} format-volume-prefix-background= ${colors.shade5} click-right = pavucontrol & click-left= pamixer -t scroll-up = pamixer -i 5 scroll-down = pamixer -d 5 [module/wlan] type = internal/network interface = wlp21s0f0u5 interval = 3 format-connected = format-disconnected = label-connected = "YES" label-disconnected = "NO" [module/bspwm] type = internal/bspwm pin-workspaces = true enable-click = true enable-scroll = true reverse-scroll = false label-urgent="%name%" label-urgent-background = ${colors.shade2} label-empty-padding = 1 label-empty="%name%" label-empty-background = ${colors.shade2} label-occupied="๎ชผ" label-occupied-padding = 1 label-occupied-background = ${colors.shade2} label-focused-background = ${colors.shade2} label-focused-padding = 1 label-focused="๎ฎด" radius = 15.0 [module/memory] type = internal/memory interval = 2 label = %used:2% label-padding = ${widths.large} label-background = ${colors.shade4} format-prefix = "๏ฌ™" format-prefix-font = 2 format-prefix-padding= ${widths.large} format-prefix-background = ${colors.shade4} [module/cpu] type = internal/cpu interval = 2 label = %percentage%% label-padding = ${widths.large} label-background = ${colors.shade3} format-prefix = "๏กš" format-prefix-font = 2 format-prefix-padding= ${widths.large} format-prefix-background = ${colors.shade3} [module/date] type = internal/date interval = 1 date = %I:%M %p date-alt = %d %B โ€ข %A label = %date% label-padding = ${widths.large} label-background = ${colors.shade2} format-prefix = "๏„ณ" format-prefix-font = 2 format-prefix-padding= ${widths.large} format-prefix-background = ${colors.shade2} [global/wm] margin-top = 10 [settings] screenchange-reload = true pseudo-transparency = false
  • Top Bar
    4 projects | /r/neovim | 26 Jan 2023
    A common one is polybar, but there are quite a few so they can't be hard to tell just from how it looks
    4 projects | /r/neovim | 26 Jan 2023
    That is a status bar, often used with tiling window managers. A popular one would be
  • nordic.nvim: A warmer and darker implementation of Nord
    5 projects | /r/neovim | 22 Jan 2023
    The bar outside of neovim is polybar and my configs can be found here.
  • Can anyone tell me what I am doing wrong to compile polybar?
    3 projects | /r/linuxquestions | 16 Dec 2022
    So, Im following the instructions here:
  • [BSPWM] My first rice!
    15 projects | /r/linuxmasterrace | 31 Oct 2022
    OS: Arch Linux WM: Bspwm Compositor: Picom Launcher/Powermenu: Rofi Status Bar: Polybar Terminal: Alacritty Shell: Zsh Editor: Neovim Notification: Dunst File Manager: Lf PDF Viewer: Zathura Text fonts: JetBrains Mono Nerd Font DOTFILES: here

What are some alternatives?

When comparing SketchyBar and polybar you can also consider the following projects:

simple-bar - A yabai status bar widget for รœbersicht

polybar-themes - A huge collection of polybar themes with different styles, colors and variants.


i3blocks-contrib - Official repository for community contributed blocklets

nerd-fonts - Iconic font aggregator, collection, & patcher. 3,600+ icons, 50+ patched fonts: Hack, Source Code Pro, more. Glyph collections: Font Awesome, Material Design Icons, Octicons, & more

conky - Light-weight system monitor for X, Wayland, and other things, too

rofi - Rofi: A window switcher, application launcher and dmenu replacement

wayfire - A modular and extensible wayland compositor

pywal - ๐ŸŽจ Generate and change color-schemes on the fly.

xmonad-contrib - Contributed modules for xmonad

i3 - A tiling window manager for X11 - :partly_sunny: The right way to check the weather