A dynamic tiling Wayland compositor
Alternatives To River
Project NameStarsDownloadsRepos Using ThisPackages Using ThisMost Recent CommitTotal ReleasesLatest ReleaseOpen IssuesLicenseLanguage
20 days ago73gpl-3.0Zig
A dynamic tiling Wayland compositor
14 days ago151otherTypeScript
KDE Plasma add-on, that tiles your windows automatically and lets you manage them via keyboard, similarly to i3, Sway or dwm.
2 days ago336mitC++
A modular and extensible wayland compositor
Awesome Wayland1,143
8 months ago5cc0-1.0
A curated list of Wayland code and resources.
3 days ago85gpl-2.0C
A Wayland window-stacking compositor
54 months ago9March 02, 201721mitRust
Modular wayland window manager written in rust
8 days ago16mitC
a library for making a simple Wayland compositor
a day agogpl-2.0C++
Easy to use, but flexible, X Window Manager and Wayland Compositor
Linux Window Session Manager322
1a year ago71March 06, 202115mitTypeScript
A tool to store and reload open windows and window positions for x11 desktops like unity and gnome.
15 days ago37apache-2.0Rust
A customizable TUI display/login manager written in Rust 🐒
Alternatives To River
Select To Compare

Alternative Project Comparisons


River is a dynamic tiling Wayland compositor with flexible runtime configuration.

Install from your package manager — Join us at #river on irc.libera.chat — Read our man pages and wiki

Note: river is currently early in development. Expect breaking changes and missing features. Bugs should however be rare at this point, if you run into one don't hesitate to open an issue

Design goals

  • Simple and predictable behavior, river should be easy to use and have a low cognitive load.
  • Window management based on a stack of views and tags.
  • Dynamic layouts generated by external, user-written executables. A default rivertile layout generator is provided.
  • Scriptable configuration and control through a custom Wayland protocol and separate riverctl binary implementing it.


On cloning the repository, you must init and update the submodules as well with e.g.

git submodule update --init

To compile river first ensure that you have the following dependencies installed. The "development" versions are required if applicable to your distribution.

  • zig 0.10
  • wayland
  • wayland-protocols
  • wlroots 0.16
  • xkbcommon
  • libevdev
  • pixman
  • pkg-config
  • scdoc (optional, but required for man page generation)

Then run, for example:

zig build -Drelease-safe --prefix ~/.local install

To enable experimental Xwayland support pass the -Dxwayland option as well.

If you are packaging river for distribution, see also PACKAGING.md.


River can either be run nested in an X11/Wayland session or directly from a tty using KMS/DRM. Simply run the river command.

On startup river will run an executable file at $XDG_CONFIG_HOME/river/init if such an executable exists. If $XDG_CONFIG_HOME is not set, ~/.config/river/init will be used instead.

Usually this executable is a shell script invoking riverctl(1) to create mappings, start programs such as a layout generator or status bar, and perform other configuration.

An example init script with sane defaults is provided here in the example directory.

For complete documentation see the river(1), riverctl(1), and rivertile(1) man pages.


River is released under the GNU General Public License v3.0 only.

The protocols in the protocol directory are released under various licenses by various parties. You should refer to the copyright block of each protocol for the licensing information. The protocols prefixed with river and developed by this project are released under the ISC license (as stated in their copyright blocks).

Popular Wayland Projects
Popular Window Manager Projects
Popular Graphics Categories
Related Searches

Get A Weekly Email With Trending Projects For These Categories
No Spam. Unsubscribe easily at any time.
Window Manager
Wayland Compositor