glmatrix - Man Page

simulates the title sequence effect of the movie


glmatrix [--display host:display.screen] [--window] [--root] [--window-id number][--install] [--visual visual]  [--delay usecs]  [--speed ratio] [--density pct] [--no-fog] [--no-waves] [--no-rotate] [--binary] [--hexadecimal] [--dna] [--clock] [--timefmt fmt] [--wireframe] [--fps]


The glmatrix program draws the 3D "digital rain" effect, as seen in the title sequence of the Wachowski brothers' film, "The Matrix".

Also see xmatrix(6x) for a 2D rendering of the similar effect that appeared on the computer monitors actually in the movie.


glmatrix accepts the following options:


Draw on a newly-created window.  This is the default.


Draw on the root window.

--window-id number

Draw on the specified window.


Install a private colormap for the window.

--visual visual

Specify which visual to use.  Legal values are the name of a visual class, or the id number (decimal or hex) of a specific visual.

--delay usecs

The delay between frames of the animation, in microseconds: default 30000.

--speed ratio

How fast the glyphs should move; default 1.0.  2.0 means twice as fast, 0.5 means half as fast.

--density percentage

The approximate percentage of the screen that should be filled with  characters at any given time.  Default 20%.


By default, glyphs are dimmer the farther away they are.  This  argument disables that.


By default, waves of color roll down the columns of glyphs.  This argument disables that.


By default, the scene slowly tilts and rotates.  This argument disables that.


Instead of displaying Matrix glyphs, only display ones and zeros.


Instead of displaying Matrix glyphs, display hexadecimal digits.


Instead of displaying Matrix glyphs, display genetic code (guanine, adenine, thymine, and cytosine.)


Hide a clock displaying the current time somewhere in the glyphs.

--timefmt strftime-string

How to format the clock when --clock is specified. Default " %l%M%p ".

--speed ratio

Less than 1 for slower, greater than 1 for faster.  Default 1.


Just draw boxes instead of textured characters.


Display the current frame rate, CPU load, and polygon count.



to get the default host and display number.


to get the name of a resource file that overrides the global resources stored in the RESOURCE_MANAGER property.


The window ID to use with --root.

See Also

xmatrix(6x), X(1), xscreensaver(1)


Jamie Zawinski <>, 8-Jun-2003.


6.08-2.fc40 (27-Jan-2024) X Version 11 XScreenSaver manual