Window Decor

A Window Decor defines how a window looks. There are two different meanings of Window Decor that could get used.

When talking about the window decor in general, this is the collection of the following config options:

  1. /Config/Colorsets – Default Colorsets of the windows.
  2. /Config/Bindings – Bindings to the buttons, titlebar and border to interact with the window.
  3. WindowStyles – The Window Styles which includes ButtonStyles, TitleStyles and BorderStyles.
  4. /Config/Style – The window Styles that affect looks.

Below is a description of the basics behind configuring a Decor. See /Decor for examples.


There are four basic default Colorsets for windows. The Titlebar/Buttons and the Borders for both Active and Inactive windows. Using the Style command we can set these Colorsets to the convention:

#   1 - Inactive Windows
#   2 - Active Window
#   3 - Inactive Windows Borders
#   4 - Active Windows Borders
Style * Colorset 1, HilightColorset 2, \
        BorderColorset 3, HilightBorderColorset 4

Active Window is the current window with focus, and all the other windows are Inactive.

You can also set the Colorset via the TitleStyle, ButtonStyle and BorderStyle options (see below). I prefer to use the above Styles to set the Colorset, because it makes it easier to change just the Colorset for a single window via a Style command.

Style MyDifferentWindow Colorset 11, HilightColorset 12


Bindings are used to configure how the window interacts with the mouse. The aspect that is important to the decor is you need to configure what happens when the window buttons are clicked.

For example you could have 4 buttons on your windows:

# Window Button Locations [1 Title 642]
Mouse 1 2 A Close
Mouse 1 4 A Maximize
Mouse 1 6 A Iconify
Mouse 1 1 A Menu MenuWindowOps

You can also use the “Button N” and “!Button N” Styles to show/hide buttons. By default only buttons with Bindings will be shown.

Window Styles

Window Styles are split into three different types: ButtonStyles, TitleStyles, and BorderStyles. Each of these styles controls the look of the associated piece.

These styles have lots of options, so only the most common are given below. Use the manpage to get a complete description of all possibilities.


TitleStyle controls the main titlebar, not including the window buttons.

There are two different ways to use TitleStyle. The first is

TitleStyle justification Height N

This controls the basics of the titlebar, setting the justification to Centered, RightJustified or LeftJustified and the height of the title bar in pixels (note: The justification statement is optional). For example:

TitleStyle RightJustified Height 22

The second way to use TitleStyle is

TitleStyle State Style -- Flag

TitleStyle needs to be defined for each different state. In a basic setup you only need to define the Active and Inactive states. To have a Flat title bar using gradients, use something like

TitleStyle Active HGradient 20 navy red -- Flat
TitleStyle Inactive HGradient 20 navy grey -- Flat

This will set up a horizontal gradient for the titlebar. Active windows will change from the color navy to red, and the inactive windows will change from the color navy to grey. Basic syntax for gradients is

Additionally you can put multiple states in a single (extended) line as follows

TitleStyle \
    ActiveUp (style -- flag) \
    ActiveDown (style -- flag) \
    InActiveUp (style -- flag) \
    InActiveDown (style -- flag)

Finally there is AddTitleStyle which is similar to TitleStyle, with the difference it will Add the style to the previous defined TitleStyle (and any other AddToTitleStyle settings).


The MultiPixmap style can be used to define a TiledPixmap, AdjustedPixmap, or Colorset of different regions of the titlebar. The following shows how the title bar is split up into multiple sections.


The basic syntax for a MultiPixmap is

TitleStyle state MultiPixmap section style, section style, ...

For example if you wanted to put a TiledPixmap under the main part of the title bar but include a transitional image on both the LeftEnd and RightEnd you could use something like

TitleStyle Active MultiPixmap \
    Main TiledPixmap main-active.png, \
    LeftEnd AdjustedPixmap leftend-active.png, \
    RightEnd AdjustedPixmap rightend-active.png
TitleStyle Inactive MultiPixmap \
    Main TiledPixmap main-inactive.png, \
    LeftEnd AdjustedPixmap leftend-inactive.png, \
    RightEnd AdjustedPixmap rightend-inactive.png

You don’t need to set the image for the Buttons as that is done with ButtonStyle. But if you use LeftButtons, RightButtons (or Buttons for both) in a MultiPixmap, you need to specify UseTitleStyle in the ButtonStyle.

One last thing to be aware of is LeftEnd, RightEnd, LeftOfText and RightOfText require space available. If the title text is so long there is no room left, these sections will not be sown and you will only see UnderText and the Buttons.


ButtonStyle controls the different styles of the window buttons. There are two different ways to use ButtonStyle. The first is

ButtonStyle button - flag

This sets basic Toggle flags for the button. The possible flags are MwmDecorMax, MwmDecorMin, MwmDecorMenu, MwmDecorShade, MwmDecorStick and MwmDecorLayer [layer]. Adding a ! will remove the flag and there is also a Clear flag to remove all flags.

These flags affect the Toggle states of a button. If you have configured a Toggle style for a Maximized button, the MwmDecorMax flag needs to be set. If so the button will display a different style when the window is Maximized.

The second way to use ButtonStyle is very similar to TitleStyle

ButtonStyle Button State Style -- Flag

As with TitleStyles you can specify one ButtonStyle per line

ButtonStyle 2 Active Pixmap close-active.png
ButtonStyle 2 Inactive Pixmap close-inactive.png

Or you can include multiple states in a single (extended) line configuration

ButtonStyle 2 \
    ActiveUp (Pixmap close-activeup.png -- Flat) \
    ActiveDown (Pixmap close-activedown.png -- Flat) \
    Inactive (Pixmap close-inactive.png -- Flat)

There is also an AddButtonStyle that works like ButtonStyle, with the difference is it will Add the new style to any existing styles.


BorderStyles are like TitleStyle and ButtonStyle but have far less options. The basic syntax is

BorderStyle state style -- flag


TitleStyles, ButtonStyles and BorderStyles can all be grouped together into a single Decor via the AddToDecor command.

AddToDecor MyDecor
+ TitleStyle ...
+ ButtonStyle ...
+ BorderStyle ...
+ ...

This will group all the styles into a Decor so they can be applied via the UseDecor style.

Style * UseDecor MyDecor

Decors can be useful as a way to group all the Styles together and also give you a way to use different Decors for different windows.

Decor Styles

Here are some additional styles that affect window looks.


You can find a collection of examples in the /Decor page. These examples range from simple Vector and Colorset examples to ones that use Pixmaps. Here are some links to the example decors:

Vector Examples:

Pixmap Examples:

Mixed Example: