Introducing the redshift: a help against weary eyes

When you work long hours with a computer at some point you will also start to feel the effects of it in your eyes. We of course have Gnome with its dynamically changing backgrounds and KDE4 with its similar kind of solutions. The bad part of it is that you will of course see the desktop backgrounds changing when the day goes by but the colors of overall workstation will stay the same which might in turn make long work hours challenging. So if you want to save your eyes and take the advantages that the  redshift might offer then this post is definitely for you.

With the redshift you can achieve a state where your system can literally set the color temperatures of your screen according to the the time of the day/night of your locale timezone. The redshift is a nice little program also because you can run it as a background process without consuming too much system resources. If you want a specific and more detailed description of  all the things that the redshift can do you should check out the manual pages of it. In terminal type the following once the program is installed: man redshift

Personally I have found the next minimal configuration to be most usable to my needs:

redshift -l LAT:LON  -g 0.6 -m vidmode

The above command only does some changes to your display but in turn does not tweak it so heavily that you would see the results in a too strong fashion. The above command tells the redshift to do some moderate gamma corrections to the colors. In other words you will see the colors changing their values moderately depending on the time of the day but nothing too extreme should appear.

If you  desire to have some stronger results with the redshift then you might consider the following configuration. The next command sets the color temperature output method  along with the  actual color values so you will have stronger results with it:

redshift -l LAT:LON -t 6236:2946 -g 0.8 -m randr

Note: replace the LAT:LON with the latitudinal  and longitudinal values of your current location. To find out your location’s LAT and LON values you can use search engines or a service found here: which should give you the values you need easily.

If you want to start the redshift with your system just add the command below to your autostart file or .xinitrc like this:

redshift -l LAT:LON  -g 0.6 -m vidmode &

If you use Gnome3/KDE4 and want to use the redshift and see what it does then you can drop out the & mark and just add the command to the respected startup applications list.

Note: When you are using the redshift do remember that the color profile set on your display might significantly alternate the results you see with the program.