xcowsay displays a cute cow and message on your Linux desktop. Inspired by the original cowsay.

xcowsay includes all these amazing features:

  • Fully configurable!
  • Calculates display time from amount of text
  • Dream mode — display images in the bubble
  • Can draw thought and speech bubbles
  • Daemon mode! Send your cow messages over DBus!
  • Three different sized cows provided
  • fortune(6) wrapper program: xcowfortune — cow will deliver pearls of wisdom!
  • Replace the naffness that is xmessage(1)
  • Should work with any window manager
  • Supports UTF-8 characters properly
  • Automatic word wrapping
  • Use alternative non-cow images if you like

It works on Macs and *BSD too!

Latest version: xcowsay-1.5.1.tar.gz

You can also follow xcowsay development from my GitHub page.

xcowsay’s unexpected popularity means it’s now available directly from some Linux distributions and BSDs!

  • Mandriva RPMs for i586 and x86_64.
  • Fedora packages are here.
  • FreeBSD port is here
  • NetBSD users can install it via ports too – package here.
  • OpenBSD port is here.
  • Arch Linux users can get it from AUR.
  • Gentoo users can get it from the main Portage tree.
  • Debian and Ubuntu users should install xcowsay via apt.

Big thank you to everyone who’s packaged it for different platforms, made translations, or just commented!

Here’s a screen shot of the new dream mode:

Check out the xcowsay page on Freshmeat.