xwininfo - window information utility for X
xwininfo [-help] [-id id] [-root] [-name name] [-int] [-children]
[-tree] [-stats] [-bits] [-events] [-size] [-wm] [-shape] [-frame]
[-all] [-english] [-metric] [-display display]
Xwininfo is a utility for displaying information about windows. Vari-
ous information is displayed depending on which options are selected.
If no options are chosen, -stats is assumed.
The user has the option of selecting the target window with the mouse
(by clicking any mouse button in the desired window) or by specifying
its window id on the command line with the -id option. Or instead of
specifying the window by its id number, the -name option may be used to
specify which window is desired by name. There is also a special -root
option to quickly obtain information on the screen’s root window.
-help Print out the ‘Usage:’ command syntax summary.
-id id This option allows the user to specify a target window id on
the command line rather than using the mouse to select the tar-
get window. This is very useful in debugging X applications
where the target window is not mapped to the screen or where
the use of the mouse might be impossible or interfere with the
This option allows the user to specify that the window named
name is the target window on the command line rather than using
the mouse to select the target window.
-root This option specifies that X’s root window is the target win-
dow. This is useful in situations where the root window is
-int This option specifies that all X window ids should be displayed
as integer values. The default is to display them as hexadeci-
This option causes the root, parent, and children windows’ ids
and names of the selected window to be displayed.
-tree This option is like -children but displays all children recur-
-stats This option causes the display of various attributes pertaining
to the location and appearance of the selected window. Infor-
mation displayed includes the location of the window, its width
and height, its depth, border width, class, colormap id if any,
map state, backing-store hint, and location of the corners.
-bits This option causes the display of various attributes pertaining
to the selected window’s raw bits and how the selected window
is to be stored. Displayed information includes the selected
window’s bit gravity, window gravity, backing-store hint, back-
ing-planes value, backing pixel, and whether or not the window
has save-under set.
-events This option causes the selected window’s event masks to be dis-
played. Both the event mask of events wanted by some client
and the event mask of events not to propagate are displayed.
-size This option causes the selected window’s sizing hints to be
displayed. Displayed information includes: for both the normal
size hints and the zoom size hints, the user supplied location
if any; the program supplied location if any; the user supplied
size if any; the program supplied size if any; the minimum size
if any; the maximum size if any; the resize increments if any;
and the minimum and maximum aspect ratios if any.
-wm This option causes the selected window’s window manager hints
to be displayed. Information displayed may include whether or
not the application accepts input, what the window’s icon win-
dow # and name is, where the window’s icon should go, and what
the window’s initial state should be.
-shape This option causes the selected window’s window and border
shape extents to be displayed.
-frame This option causes window manager frames to be considered when
manually selecting windows.
-metric This option causes all individual height, width, and x and y
positions to be displayed in millimeters as well as number of
pixels, based on what the server thinks the resolution is.
Geometry specifications that are in +x+y form are not changed.
This option causes all individual height, width, and x and y
positions to be displayed in inches (and feet, yards, and miles
if necessary) as well as number of pixels. -metric and -english
may both be enabled at the same time.
-all This option is a quick way to ask for all information possible.
This option allows you to specify the server to connect to; see
The following is a sample summary taken with no options specified:
xwininfo: Window id: 0x60000f "xterm"
Absolute upper-left X: 2
Absolute upper-left Y: 85
Relative upper-left X: 0
Relative upper-left Y: 25
Visual Class: PseudoColor
Border width: 0
Colormap: 0x27 (installed)
Bit Gravity State: NorthWestGravity
Window Gravity State: NorthWestGravity
Backing Store State: NotUseful
Save Under State: no
Map State: IsViewable
Override Redirect State: no
Corners: +2+85 -699+85 -699-623 +2-623
DISPLAY To get the default host and display number.
Using -stats -bits shows some redundant information.
The -geometry string displayed must make assumptions about the window’s
border width and the behavior of the application and the window man-
ager. As a result, the location given is not always correct.
Mark Lillibridge, MIT Project Athena
Man(1) output converted with