Now that the dust has settled and Rhythmbox has become (again) the default music-media player in 12.04 & 12.10, I'm interested in extending its functionality.

For example, the default lyric plugin does not work for me and there doesn't appear to be an sound-equalizer by default.

Having done a search, I came across the Gnome-website that lists a number of third-party plugins, some-of which I wish to install which can resolve the above.

However, there doesn't appear to be .deb packages or a repository containing these plugins.

Instead there are links to source-code websites such as GitHub and others.

So, I'm confused - I don't know which plugins works in 12.04 or 12.10 versions of Rhythmbox (v2.96 & v2.97) and I'm not sure how to install these.

1 Answer 1


Rhythmbox Plugins overview

The version of Rhythmbox that is now installed by default in 12.04 (Precise) has been ported to GTK3 libraries.

This version has been superseded:

  • 12.10 (Quantal) with v2.97.
  • 13.04 (Raring) has v2.98.
  • 13.10 (Saucy) has version v2.99.1
  • 14.04 (Trusty) has version v3.0.2
  • 14.10 (Utopic) has version v3.0.3
  • 15.04 (Vivid) has version v3.1
  • 15.10 (Wily) has version v3.2

What this means in practice, is that many of the previous GTK2 based plugins no longer (or are unlikely to) work with the newer versions of Rhythmbox.

In addition, the folder locations and plugin syntax has slightly changed. If you skip to the bottom of this answer I will give an overview of this.

In terms of whether there is an easier method to install these plugins I have created my own PPA with some of the plugins which I have tried and can confirm do work in the stock rhythmbox versions found in 12.04 though to 14.04 (and later)

to add my PPA

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fossfreedom/rhythmbox-plugins
sudo apt-get update

If you want to install all the plugins:

sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-complete

Alternatively - install the individual packages as described below.

Note 1 - Rhythmbox v2.99.1 & V3 introducing major changes to the menu structure and Python version. Many plugins that expose their functionality through menus together with their python code syntax will need to be recoded & rewritten. Not all plugins have been updated. To see if your favourite plugin is available, visit my launchpad page and look for the package for your distribution version (e.g. Trusty). If it is not available, contact the plugin author (links below) to raise the issue or if possible submit code fixes.

Note 2 - Rhythmbox v2.99.1 removes toolbar menu options. If the plugin in previous versions used the toolbar, look to activate the plugin via a Tool menu option

Note 3 - if you are aware of other GTK3 working plugins not in this PPA, please drop a comment or contact me via my Launchpad ID and I'll will look into whether it is possible to include these in this PPA. For problems with the plugins themselves, contact the maintainer themselves (homepage links below).

Album Art Search (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Searches the web for the album art of the currently playing song using Google image search APIs. From the resulting images, one can then choose an image to set as album art.

This plugin searches Google for album art. It allows to to select the cover-art for the playing sound-track. You have the option to save a picture in

  • the internal database rhythmbox coverart folder (Rhythmbox Location)
  • the actual song filesystem folder (Song Folder)
  • the users home pictures folder (Pictures Folder)

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-albumartsearch

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Album Art Search Panel plugin

tip - disable the Context Pane so that you can display all your album art in the right-hand pane.

Alternative Toolbar (v3.0+)

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Replace the current toolbar with a Gnome compatible client-side decoration or a Unity compact toolbar.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Alternative Toolbar plugin

Android Remote (v2.96 - v3.0+)


Allow to remote control Rhythmbox v2.96 or later with Banshee remote application from Nikitas Stamatopoulos

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-android-remote

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Rhythmbox Android Remote plugin

  • Launch banshee remote in Android phone
  • Connect to the computer IP where RB is working, using port 8484. You may need to allow tcp 8484 through any firewalls.
  • Control it!

Press the Menu button and then Sync to select the artist and songs to play.

Instructions for the app here.

Art Display (v2.96 - v3.0+)

Brings back the large coverart display found in Rhythmbox 2.96 for later Rhythmbox users

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-artdisplay

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Art Display plugin

Close-On-Hide (v3.0+)

Really close rhythmbox when clicking the x button on the window. For those people who dislike Ubuntu's predeliction to hide when closing, this plugin is for you.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-close-on-hide

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Close On Hide plugin

CoverArt Browser (v2.96 - v3.0+)


Browse your albums using the cover-art stored with your album.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-coverart-browser

Start Rhythmbox, enable the CoverArt-browser plugin

CoverArt Search Providers (v2.96 - v3.0+)


Drop in replacement for the default ArtSearch plugin. This plugin allows you to control where you get your coverart from as well as having more internet search providers to search from. It also has many bug-fixes that the default ArtSearch plugin does not contain.

This works standalone or is combination with v0.8 & later of Coverart Browser

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-coverart-search

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Coverart Search Providers plugin

Countdown Playlist (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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This applet allows you to create random playlist using keywords from your music collection for whatever duration you wish to define.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-countdown-playlist

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Countdown Playlist plugin

Desktop Art (v2.96 - v3.0+)


... and on mouse-over...


This applet allows you to display the coverart for tracks & albums and control rhythmbox from your desktop

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-desktopart

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Desktop Art plugin

Digital-Room-Correction (v3.0+)

For the audio aficionados - this plugin optimises the sound from your external speakers. Mostly used where rhythmbox is played through your media-center/hi-fi, this plugin corrects the sound that is affected by your room-setup.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-drc

Start Rhythmbox, enable the DRC plugin and choose DRC from the tools menu.

See the project README (link above) for a how-to-use.

Equalizer (v2.96 - v3.0+)


10 band equalizer for Rhythmbox.

It does what the name suggests - it modifies the sound according to a number of presets

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-equalizer

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Equalizer plugin. Start the Equalizer from the Control main-menu

Fileorganizer (v2.96 - v3.0+)

When the plugin is enabled, you will notice an option in the right-click menu of music items (like songs) that will read 'Organize selection'. Clicking this will organize the selected files following a defined structure for both folders and filenames. Thats all there is to it. See the README file for more details.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-fileorganizer

Start Rhythmbox, enable the File Organizer plugin.

Guitar Tablature plugin (v2.96 - v2.98)

enter image description here

picture from authors website

Find and display the guitar tablature (also for drum and bass when available) of the current playing song from tab websites. The tablatures will be showed in a small panel integrated in the Rhythmbox GUI.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-tabguitar

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Tab Search Plugin plugins

tip - disable the Context Pane so that you can display all your guitar tablature in the right-hand pane.

Hide (v2.96 - v3.0+)

Allows rhythmbox to either hide or minimize on launch. This is very useful to allow rhythmbox to start from Startup Applications without the main rhythmbox window from appearing

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-Hide

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Rhythmbox Hide plugin

Jump-to-Playing (v2.96 - v2.98)

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Adds a context menu entry and a tool-bar button to jump to the playing song.

Very simple plugin - if you have a large list, clicking the toolbar button or right-clicking any song highlights in that list the currently playing song.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-jumptoplaying

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Jump to Playing plugin

Jump-To-Window (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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This applet allows you to play, search, enqueue using the keyboard

It's very similar to the 'Jump to File' feature in Winamp, including the ability to enqueue a song.

It doesnt matter if Rhythmbox has focus or not - the global hotkey you define launches a window allowing you to add songs to the play queue.

To see this in action - fire-up rhythmbox, enable the plugin and press Shift+Ctrl+J to see this in action.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-jumptowindow

Start Rhythmbox, enable the JumpToWindow plugin

to define the global hotkey


For gnome go to System -> Preferences -> Keyboard Shortcuts -> Add and add the above command.

Use whatever keyboard combination you want e.g. CTRL+G, play a song in Rhythmbox and use CTRL+G to launch the JumpToWindow

Fullscreen (v2.96 - v3.0+)


This python plugin gives you a stylish full screen window usable for parties etc.:

  • Pulsating hover effect
  • Album art
  • Smoothly animated progress bar
  • Control: Play/pause/skip
  • Scrolling by cursor position
  • Queued tracks merged
  • Full screen - or maximized window via the plugin preferences

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-fullscreen

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Fullscreen plugin

lastfm-extension (v2.96 - v2.98)

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Add some LastFM related functionality to Rhythmbox: love/ban buttons, playcount sync and loved tracks sync.

Also available is the ability to finger-print a song i.e. find the track-details for a song based upon the audio in the track.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-lastfm-extension

Start Rhythmbox, enable the lastfm extension plugin

Connect to your LastFM account through the preferences button. Note - you need to authorise via this button because it does not use the default LastFM plugin authorisation method.

LastFM-Queue (v2.96 - v2.99)

This plugin automatically queues tracks from your music library based upon the currently playing track.

It uses LastFM (no login required) to match similar songs - if the list of similar songs match your music library then those tracks are queued.

to install (64bit users only): sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-lastfm-queue

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Last.FM Dynamic Tracks plugin

Then play a song - watch as other songs from your library are automatically queued.

lLyrics (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Displays lyrics for the current playing song in the right sidebar.

This plugin searches and displays the lyrics for the currently playing song. You can also manually find lyrics for any song in your database.

This plugin is useful for those people where the inbuilt plugin does not work.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-llyrics

Start Rhythmbox, enable the lLyrics plugin

Then restart Rhythmbox for the toolbar button to become visible.

tip 1 - disable the Context Pane so that you can display all your lyrics in the right-hand pane.

tip 2 - look for the lyrics menu option (global menu in Unity) for many more Lyrics options and functionality

Looper (v3.0+)

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This plugin allows you to loop whole or parts of songs over and over again.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-looper

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Looper plugin

Microblogger (v2.96 - v2.98)

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send notice about current music to a microblogging service from Rhythmbox (currently supports twitter and identica)

This plugin allows you to tweet etc the current song.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-microblogger

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Microblogging plugin

Click the preferences button next to the plugin to connect Rhythmbox to twitter etc.

Press CTRL+M to tweet your currently playing song.


Winamp style Now Playing sidebar plugin for Rhythmbox.

enter image description here

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-now-playing

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Now Playing Playlist plugin

Open Containing Folder (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Adds an option to open the folder containing the selected track(s) to the right click context menu

This plugin allows you to find the folder for the selected music track.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-opencontainingfolder

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Open Containing Folder plugin

ParametricEQ (v3.0+)

A parametric equalizer plug-in for rhythmbox with up to 64 freely configurable bands.

use this parametric EQ to improve your room response (especially for small rooms) and frequencies below 100 Hz.

This is described in detail here

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-parametriceq

Start Rhythmbox, enable the ParametricEQ plugin

Playlist Import/Export (v3.0+)

A Rhythmbox plugin to export all of your playlists with one click or to import them back again in one click. This allows for synchronizing across computers (with any sync program), and backing up.

Define your backup folder through the plugin preferences. Then use the Tools - Export option to save your playlists. Copy the playlists to your new computer and then use the Tools - Import option to reimport the playlists.

Do not use the import option without having exported first otherwise your playlists will be removed!

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-playlist-import-export

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Playlist Import/Export plugin

Podcast Position (v3.0+)

Save and restore podcast playing position

By default, rhythmbox does not remember the position of a podcast when switching to another track or closing rhythmbox. This plugin adds this capability

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-podcast-pos

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Podcast Position plugin

Radio-Browser (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Find internet radio stations and rip tracks

This plugin allows you to search the internet for radio-stations. Once found you have the ability to rip the tracks being played as MP3 files.

enter image description here

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-radio-browser

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Internet Radio Station Browser plugin

Random Album Player (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Do you prefer listening to whole albums but aren't sure which one you're in the mood for? This plugin for Rhythmbox queues a random album and plays it immediately.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-randomalbumplayer

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Random Album Player plugin

Press Alt+R or select from the menu Control - Random Album

Rating Filters (v2.96 - v3.0+)


This plugin allows you to filter your default Library source by Ratings.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-rating-filters

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Rating Filters plugin

Remember-the-Rhythm (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Plugin to remember the last playing song, source (radio station, playlist), browser values (genre, album, artist)

This is a very useful plugin - when you next start Rhythmbox, it will continue playing the last song that was last playing before Rhythmbox was closed.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-remembertherhythm

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Remember The Rhythm plugin

Note - when you enable the plugin, Rhythmbox will close unexpectedly. Don't worry. Next time subsequently restart, the plugin will be enabled and will continue to work.

Repeat One Song (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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"Repeat one song" feature for Rhythmbox

Adds a toolbar option to repeat the selected track when the toolbar option is clicked. Note - it does not repeat a song from the Play Queue.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-repeat-one-song

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Repeat One Song plugin

Rhythmweb (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Control Rhythmbox from virtually any internet-browser enabled device - from IPod, Android, MS Windows etc

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-rhythmweb

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Rhythmweb plugin, then start your internet-browser enabled device and browse to the PC IP address that rhythmbox is running on - suffix the URL with :8000

Rhythmremote (v2.96 - v2.99)

enter image description here

Control Rhythmbox from virtually an internet-browser such as Firefox

to install (64bit users only): sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-rhythmremote

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Rhythmremote plugin, then start your internet-browser enabled device and browse to the PC IP address that rhythmbox is running on - suffix the URL with :8001

Screensaver (v2.96 - v3.0+)

By default, rhythmbox continues to play whenever the screensaver is activated. This plugin pauses Rhythmbox when the GNOME screensaver is activated and continues to play when the screensaver is unlocked.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-screensaver

Start Rhythmbox, enable the screensaver plugin

Seek (v2.96 - v2.98)

A simple plugin for Rhythmbox that allows you to seek forwards/backwards in the current track. Fast-forward or rewind, in other words.

Use CTRL+Left/Right Arrow to seek forward/backwards.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-seek

Start Rhythmbox, enable the seek plugin

Send-First (v2.96 - v2.99)

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Small but useful plugin that allows you to send a track or groups of tracks to the beginning of the play-queue rather than the default which is queuing at the end of the play queue.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-send-first

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Send-first plugin

Small-Window (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Adds a menu option (View - Small Window Mode) to shrink rhythmbox controls to a tiny window with just the essential controls visible.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-smallwindow

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Small Window plugin

Spectrum (v3.0+)

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Adds a visual music spectrum to rhythmbox

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-spectrum

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Spectrum plugin and use CTRL+S to start or hide the spectrum

Stop After Current Track (v2.96 - v2.98)

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This is a plugin for Rhythmbox, which adds an option to stop playback after current track.

Useful where you do not want the music to stop abruptly but you do not want to wait until the current playlist finishes

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-stopafter

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Stop After Current Track plugin

Suspend PC (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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Suspend computer at the end of queue or playlist

Use the plugin preferences to set the timeout and also whether to shutdown (default) or to suspend your computer

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-suspend

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Suspend plugin

tray-icon (v2.96 - v3.0+)

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This notification icon is useful for desktops that do not have a media-plugin/indicator support.

You can control rhythmbox via the icon and you can directly control the rhythmbox volume by scrolling over the icon.

To use in Unity you need to whitelist this.

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-tray-icon

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Tray Icon plugin

tip - make sure you have the MPRIS plugin enabled otherwise the tray-icon will not work.

Web Menu (v2.96 - v2.98)

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With one click you can:

Search current playing/selected song on Youtube. Search its album on Wikipedia, AllMusic, RateYourMusic, AllAboutJazz, DiscoGS, Last.fm, Grooveshark, Facebook, Amazon. Search its artist on Wikipedia, AllMusic, RateYourMusic, DiscoGS, Last.fm, Facebook, Myspace, Torrentz. Open the artist official website [beta].

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You can personalize your Web Menu by choosing which websites are shown in each sub-menu.

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to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-webmenu

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Web Menu plugin

Wikipedia (v2.96 - v3.0+)


Search for selected artist, album, track or genre at the click of a button.

By right-clicking a track, you can search Wikipedia for details about the track. This will open your default browser with the associated Wikipedia page (if available).

to install: sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-wikipedia

Start Rhythmbox, enable the Wikipedia Search plugin

Installing plugins manually

You can install a GTK3 plugin for a specific user in their home folder:


For a system-wide plugin there are two folders:

/usr/lib/rhythmbox/plugins and /usr/share/rhythmbox/plugins. The former contains the plugin code. The latter contains the data specific to a plugin.

A GTK3 plugin consists of two files - .plugin and the plugin module. For a plugin written in Python, this module are often files that have the suffix-filename of .py

A .plugin file has the following example entries:

Name=Album Art Search Panel
Description=Search album art using google image search. Adapted from context pan
e plugin by John Iacona
Authors=Rupesh Kumar <kumar_rupesh at hotmail.com>,Luqman Aden <laden@uwaterloo.
Copyright=Copyright © 2010 Rupesh Kumar, 2011 Luqman Aden

The syntax of these .plugin files is important and differ from the GTK2 base plugins.

For some general tips when looking to install manually.

  • sometimes the plugins are zipped up. Download and extract to a known folder. Create a sub-folder under ~/.local/share/rhythmbox/plugins and move the files extracted into that sub-folder.
  • if no zip file is available, you may have to use git to pull the code down.
sudo apt-get install git
git clone git://[full git path]

for example:

git clone git://github.com/fossfreedom/rhythmbox-plugins.git
  • 7
    longest answer ever seen ..:)
    – xkeshav
    Feb 20, 2015 at 5:40
  • Thank you for putting in the effort to explain it completely
    – TungstenX
    Oct 14, 2015 at 8:46
  • Hello,I have version 16.04 of Ubuntu and the plugins do not work,could you help me? @fossfreedom Related:askubuntu.com/questions/871225/…
    – user641576
    Jan 25, 2017 at 10:09
  • I notice a few of the plugins don't seem to be available any longer, like Jump to Playing and Stop After Current Track. Were there inherent issues with those ones, or might they return in the future?
    – Wilson F
    Jun 21, 2017 at 22:03
  • 1
    the version info after the plugin description describes if they are available or not. Where not available this is because the original author no longer works on the project or no equivalent fork is available. Basically they are waiting for people to take up the opportunity to make them work with newer versions of rhythmbox
    – fossfreedom
    Jun 22, 2017 at 8:15

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