swayipc is a Go library for interacting with the Sway compositor

Gerdriaan Mulder via GoSway

4 months ago

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8 months ago


swayipc is a Go library that enables interaction with the Sway compositor using its IPC protocol.

I created this library because I couldn't find anything that met my preferences (which is hard to explain). However, please note that this work is still in progress. Currently, I have only implemented the messages and events that I need for my projects. Adding new functionality should be simple, and I would be grateful to receive contributions.

#Installation and Usage

To install the library, please use the following command:

$ go get gobytes.dev/swayipc

Below is an example program that subscribes to sway events. You can also find it in the cmds/subscribe directory in the source tree.

package main

import (


func handler(ev swayipc.Event) {
	switch ev := ev.(type) {
	case *swayipc.TickEvent:
		fmt.Println(ev.First, ev.Payload)
	case *swayipc.WindowEvent:
		if ev.Change == "focus" || ev.Change == "title" {
			appId := ev.Container.AppId
			name := ev.Container.Name
			if appId == "" {
				appId = ev.Container.WindowProperties.Class
			appId = " - " + appId
			if len(name) > 80 {
				name = name[:77] + "..."
			if !strings.Contains(strings.ToLower(name), strings.ToLower(appId)) {
				name = name + appId

func main() {
	conn, err := swayipc.Connect(context.Background())
	resp, err := conn.Subscribe(swayipc.WindowEventType, swayipc.TickEventType)
	if resp.Success {
		fmt.Println("Successfully subscribed")
	time.Sleep(3 * time.Minute)

func abortOnErr(err error) {
	if err != nil {
		fmt.Fprintf(os.Stderr, "%s: %v\n", os.Args[0], err)


Adding new messages and events is fairly easy. You can check this commit to see what is involved. If you have any patches, feel free to send them. I will gladly accept them.