Notify about tracks played by mpd

This runs in background and produces notifications whenever mpd produces an event, that is new track is played or playback is paused or stopped. Notifications look like this:


This now even supports album artwork:

Notification with Artwork

Read below for the details.


To compile and run mpd-notification you need:

To use mpd-notification you probably want mpd, the music player daemon itself. ;)

Some systems may require additional development packages for the libraries. Look for libnotify-devel, libmpdclient-devel or similar.

Build and install

Building and installing is very easy. Just run:


followed by:

make install

This will place an executable at /usr/bin/mpd-notification, documentation can be found in /usr/share/doc/mpd-notification/. Additionally a systemd unit file is installed to /usr/lib/systemd/user/.


Just run mpd-notification to run it once. A systemd user service can be started and/or enabled with systemctl --user start mpd-notification or systemctl --user enable mpd-notification.

mpd-notification accepts some arguments:

  • -h: show help
  • -H HOST: connect to HOST
  • -m MUSIC-DIR: use MUSIC-DIR for artwork lookup
  • --notification-file-workaround: write artwork to file for notification daemons that do required it
  • -o: Notification text is one line (no line breaks)
  • -p PORT: connect to PORT
  • -s PIXELS: scale image to a maximum size PIXELS x PIXELS pixels, keeping ratio
  • -t TIMEOUT: notification timeout, TIMEOUT in seconds
  • -v: verbose output
  • -V: print version information


Configuration options can be read from a configuration file. mpd tries to read ~/.config/mpd-notification.conf, which is expected to look like this:

host = localhost
port = 6600
music-dir = /srv/media/music/
oneline = true
scale = 200
timeout = 20

Unused options can be commented or removed completely.


mpd does not provide any information where it finds its music files. To make mpd-notification display album artwork you need to tell it where to look for artwork. You can do that by exporting XDG_MUSIC_DIR to your environment, by specifying -m or --music-dir on the command line or by setting music-dir in configuration file. mpd-notification reads album artwork from mp3 files, otherwise an image file containing the artwork needs to be placed in the same directory as the media file and named cover.jpg, cover.png, folder.jpg or folder.png.


URL: GitHub.com

Mirror: eworm.de GitLab.com