Rainmeter displays customizable skins, like memory and battery charge, RSS feeds and weather forecasts, right on your desktop. Many skins are even functional: they can record your notes and to-do lists, launch your favorite applications, and control your media player - all in a clean, unobtrusive interface that you can rearrange and customize to your liking. Rainmeter is at once an application and a toolkit. You are limited only by your imagination and creativity.

Getting started with Rainmeter

After downloading and installing Rainmeter, the very next stop should be Getting Started.

Getting Started is a new user introduction to Rainmeter, covering both how to use the application, and starting guides and tutorials for creating and editing skins.

The rest of this documentation, and the experience of using and learning Rainmeter, will be much easier and more enjoyable with the overview Getting Started provides.

Using the Rainmeter application

The User Interface section of the manual describes how to use the application to manage Rainmeter on the desktop. Control things with the Manage interface and context menus, and monitor important information using About.

It won't be long before you want to extend your library of skins beyond the default illustro suite included with Rainmeter, with others downloaded from the internet. The Installing Skins section explains how to install and load the thousands of skins available for Rainmeter.

Creating and editing skins

Rainmeter can be used as a straightforward skin manager, loading and using skins created by others. However, the real power and fun of Rainmeter can only be unlocked when the transition is made from "user" to "author". The Reference section of the manual contains everything needed to craft that perfect skin that does exactly what you require, and looks just right on your desktop.

Settings contains detailed information about the Rainmeter.ini file, which controls many important aspects of Rainmeter on the desktop.

The Skins section describes what a skin's .ini file contains and does. It also is a reference for several powerful overall skin features.

The next sections, Meters, Measures and Plugins, are the core information for creating skins. Measures and plugins gather information from the system or the internet, and meters display things, with many different meter types and practically unlimited control over style.

The following sections provide a reference for other powerful skin options and features. Bring skins to life with Bangs and Mouse Actions, and extend Rainmeter's functionality using the Lua Scripting language.

One of the most exciting things about Rainmeter is the free and open sharing of skins in the community. See Publishing Skins for everything needed to package and distribute suites and skins.

More information

Be sure to check the Tips & Tricks section for a wealth of guides and suggestions from the Rainmeter community.

The Snippets section contains a collection of useful "snippets" of Lua script code, from the Rainmeter Team and users.

Remember, there is an entire community of people willing and able to help when things get stuck. Be sure to use the Rainmeter Forum, unoffical Discord Channel, or jump on the web-based IRC channel when help is needed.

Note: Most option entries and header text in the manual can be selected with CTRL-Click to add an #anchor to the URL. This makes it easy to link to a specific part of a page. Try it below.