st

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st the suckless terminal or the simple terminal

most things here apply for dwm and other suckless software too

The examples below only assume you are running Linux (at the time of this writing, darwin/OS X does not support st).

Installing

NixOS

Add st to the list of available packages in your configuration.nix.

System-wide:

environment.systemPackages = with pkgs; [
  st
];

Only available to certain users:

users.users.alice.packages = with pkgs; [
  st
];

Other Linux distributions

You will need to write a roughly equivalent nix expression and install it the imperative way.

E.g.

my-custom-st

# pinned nixpkgs from nix.dev > "toward reproducibility"
{ pkgs ? import (fetchTarball "https://github.com/NixOS/nixpkgs/archive/3590f02e7d5760e52072c1a729ee2250b5560746.tar.gz") {}
}:
# specifics elided for brevity
pkgs.st.overrideAttrs { ... }

Followed by:

$ nix-env -i -f my-custom-st

Patching

Most customization of st that alters its base feature set comes in the form of applying patches to the source code.

Patches

Can be applied by including them in an attribute override in your systemPackages declaration:

environment.systemPackages = with pkgs; [
  (st.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: rec {
    patches = [
      # You can specify local patches
      ./path/to/local.diff
      # Fetch them directly from `st.suckless.org`
      (fetchpatch {
        url = "https://st.suckless.org/patches/rightclickpaste/st-rightclickpaste-0.8.2.diff";
        sha256 = "1y4fkwn911avwk3nq2cqmgb2rynbqibgcpx7yriir0lf2x2ww1b6";
      })
      # Or from any other source
      (fetchpatch {
        url = "https://raw.githubusercontent.com/fooUser/barRepo/1111111111111111111111111111111111111111/somepatch.diff";
        sha256 = "222222222222222222222222222222222222222222";
      })
    ];
  }))
];

Patch Dependencies

Can be included with the buildInputs line like in the following ligature patch example:

environment.systemPackages = with pkgs; [
  (st.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: rec {
    buildInputs = oldAttrs.buildInputs ++ [ harfbuzz ];
    patches = [
      (fetchpatch {
        url = "https://st.suckless.org/patches/ligatures/0.8.3/st-ligatures-20200430-0.8.3.diff";
        sha256 = "67b668c77677bfcaff42031e2656ce9cf173275e1dfd6f72587e8e8726298f09";
      })
    ];
  }))
];

Config

Configuration is accomplished through a config.h file.

Header file

environment.systemPackages = with pkgs; [
  (st.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: rec {
    # Using a local file
    configFile = writeText "config.def.h" (builtins.readFile ./path/to/local/config.h);
    # Or one pulled from GitHub
    # configFile = writeText "config.def.h" (builtins.readFile "${fetchFromGitHub { owner = "LukeSmithxyz"; repo = "st"; rev = "8ab3d03681479263a11b05f7f1b53157f61e8c3b"; sha256 = "1brwnyi1hr56840cdx0qw2y19hpr0haw4la9n0rqdn0r2chl8vag"; }}/config.h");
    postPatch = "${oldAttrs.postPatch}\n cp ${configFile} config.def.h";
  }))
];

All together now

environment.systemPackages = with pkgs; [
  (st.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: rec {
    # ligatures dependency
    buildInputs = oldAttrs.buildInputs ++ [ harfbuzz ];
    patches = [
      # ligatures patch
      (fetchpatch {
        url = "https://st.suckless.org/patches/ligatures/0.8.3/st-ligatures-20200430-0.8.3.diff";
        sha256 = "67b668c77677bfcaff42031e2656ce9cf173275e1dfd6f72587e8e8726298f09";
      })
    ];
    # version controlled config file
    configFile = writeText "config.def.h" (builtins.readFile "${fetchFromGitHub { owner = "me"; repo = "my-custom-st-stuff"; rev = "1111222233334444"; sha256 = "11111111111111111111111111111111111"; }}/config.h");
    postPatch = oldAttrs.postPatch ++ ''cp ${configFile} config.def.h'';
  }))
];

However, this will not work for dwm. (Probably services.xserver.windowManager.dwm can only see the dwm in pkgs, not the one in environment.systemPackages.) But you can use an overlay, like this:

nixpkgs.overlays = [
  (self: super: {
    dwm = super.dwm.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: rec {
      patches = [
        ./path/to/my-dwm-patch.patch
        ];
      configFile = super.writeText "config.h" (builtins.readFile ./dwm-config.h);
      postPatch = oldAttrs.postPatch or "" + "\necho 'Using own config file...'\n cp ${configFile} config.def.h";
      });
    })
  ];

Remote config

If instead, you would prefer to build a pre-configured repository or realize more intense configuration, fork the mainline repository (or find one you like) and replace the value of the src attribute in the override.

Forks

Luke smiths st fork is used as the example

environment.systemPackages = with pkgs; [
  (st.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: rec {
    src = fetchFromGitHub {
      owner = "LukeSmithxyz";
      repo = "st";
      rev = "8ab3d03681479263a11b05f7f1b53157f61e8c3b";
      sha256 = "1brwnyi1hr56840cdx0qw2y19hpr0haw4la9n0rqdn0r2chl8vag";
    };
    # Make sure you include whatever dependencies the fork needs to build properly!
    buildInputs = oldAttrs.buildInputs ++ [ harfbuzz ];
  # If you want it to be always up to date use fetchTarball instead of fetchFromGitHub
  # src = pkgs.fetchTarball {
  #   url = "https://github.com/lukesmithxyz/st/archive/master.tar.gz";
  # };
  }))
];

Troubleshooting

See files after patching

Breeze-text-x-plain.png
st-test.nix
with import <nixpkgs> {};

(st.overrideAttrs (oldAttrs: rec {
  buildInputs = oldAttrs.buildInputs ++ [ harfbuzz ];
  patches = [
    (fetchpatch {
      url = "https://st.suckless.org/patches/ligatures/0.8.3/st-ligatures-20200430-0.8.3.diff";
      sha256 = "18fllssg5d5gik1x0ppz232vdphr0y2j5z8lhs5j9zjs8m9ria5w";
    })
  ];
}))


nix-shell st-test.nix
unpackPhase
ls
cd theunpackeddir
patchPhase

Additional phases