The main interface

The following image displays GMPC’s main window:


If you collapse the main window, parts of the window might be hidden. Currently there are 2 collapsed views.

Collapsed view 1:


Collapsed view 2:


Below we will explain each part of the window.

The menu bar


The menu bar gives you direct acces to every part of the program. You can control playback (control item), configure gmpc, enable outputs, switch to another profile, etc.

Note There might be more or less menu items available depending on the number of plugins installed.
  • Music

    • Connect - Connect to MPD.

    • Disconnect - Disconnect from MPD.

    • Send password - Send a new password to MPD. This can either increase or drop the permission level.

    • Profiles - A submenu containing a list of possible profiles

      • List of profiles

    • Preferences - Opens the preferences pane. (more here)

    • Quit - Completely quits GMPC.

  • Server

    • Update database - Tells MPD to update the complete database.

    • Information - Opens a window with server information. (more here)

    • List of outputs available on the connected MPD. This allows you to enable and disable them.

  • Control

    • Play/Pause

    • Stop

    • Next

    • Previous

    • Mute - Toggles mute state. (Set volume to 0, and restores it again.)

    • Repeat - Enable/Disable repeat.

    • Random - Enable/Disable random.

    • Single mode - Enable/Disable single mode. Single mode makes MPD not progres to the next song.

    • Consume - Enable/Disable consume mode. Consume mode makes MPD remove played songs from the play-queue.

  • View

    • Expand Interface - Makes GMPC interface include more elements.

    • Collapse Interface - Hides elements from the GMPC interface.

    • Fullscreen - Switch to fullscreen mode.

    • Show artist image - Enable/Disable an artist image to be embedded below the sidebar.

  • Option

    • These show options for the current visible browser.

  • Tool

    • Add Url - Add a remote URI to the play-queue. (see here)

    • List of global options that are inserted by plugins.

  • Go

    • Gives a list of enabled browsers and allows you to switch between them quickly.

  • Help

    • Show messages - Shows you a list of messages, warnings and information that GMPC have shown in the past.

    • Visit website - Opens GMPC’s website.

    • Getting Help - Opens GMPC’s Wiki on the getting help page.

    • Bug information - Opens a dialog with information about your current GMPC. (more here)

    • Easy command help - Opens a list of possible commands for the easy-command dialog. More information can be found here.

    • About - Opens about dialog.

Playback Controls


I will explain the elements from left to right.

Album Cover


This shows cover of the currently playing album. If no cover is available, or the song has not information about it, an empty case or cd is shown.

  • Hovering the cover will show an enlarged version of the cover.

  • Right mouse click on the cover allows you to modify it.

  • You can modify the look of the cover art in the preferences pane. (With or withouth the casing)

With casing Withouth casing

Song information


Next to it is basic information about the song. This shows the Title, artist and album name.

Tip If you click on the title, artist or album name it will jump to that item in the Metadata Browser.



The heart-shaped icon allows you to mark (or unmark) the song as favorite by clicking in on it.

If the song is marked as favorite the icon is highlighted, if it is not a favorite, the icon is dimmed.

  • Song is a favorite Marked as favorite:

  • Sog is not a favorite Not marked as favorite:

Favorite songs are stored in a playlist called Favorite.

Tip Right click on the favorite icon allows you to add the current song to any playlist.
Warning To make favorites work, MPD needs to be able to store and load playlists.

Playback Control


Of course the playback control buttons are also available: Play/Pause, Previous, Next, Stop and volume control.

  • You need sufficient permission to control playback. If you do not have the permission, the buttons will be made insensitive.

  • If there is no output mixer defined in MPD, or it is not currently available, the Volume control is made insensitive.

Tip Hovering your mouse over the next button will show a tooltip with the title of the next song.

Seek bar


Below is the progress/seek bar. This indicates how much of the song is allready played. You can drag the bar to a certain position to seek. Pressing the middle mouse button will instantly jump to that position.

On the right of the seekbar is the progressed time (or remaining, see tip) and the total time of the song (if available).

  • Right mouse click on the seekbar changes the time indication from progressed time to remaining time and back.

  • Hovering the progress bar will show you the time (or remaining) under the cursor. Allowing you to seek exactly to one point.

Note Seeking is not instant, but the seek is done as you drop the handle. This is done so MPD is not spammed with seek requests.

Message bar


The message bar is only visible when GMPC has to tell you something. The messsage bar can show information, warning and errors.

A list of previous shown (or hidden) messages can be seen in the Show messages window under Help→show messages.

Tip You can set what message should be shown in the message bar in the preferences.


The sidebar allows you to switch between different browsers. You can reorder the browsers by drag and dropping them to there new place in the list. What browsers are visible depend on the plugins installed and settings.

If you collapse the view the sidebar is turned into a horizontal selector:


Or if configured differently in the preferences, a list of buttons:


Tip The top browser is always selected when you connect to an MPD server.
Note When collapsing the view, the sidebar is turned into a horizontal view, below the playback controls and when collapsed further the sidebar is hidden.

Browser window

The browser window contains the actual browser, how this looks depends on the selected view. Browsers should (normally) follow the same generic layout. Either one large pane (like now playing, search, play-queue, etc). Or 2 panes (like database, metadata browser, etc), where the size of the panes is synced between the browsers.

One pane view:


Two pane view:


Note When the view is completely collapsed the Browser window is hidden.



At the bottom of the screen is the status bar. The statusbar is hidden when gmpc is fully collapsed.

The status bar consists of 2 parts:

On the left there is a message block. This shows feedback about changes, like repeat enabled, 10 songs added to play-queue. It indicates if some action was succesful.

On the right there are status icons.

Status icons


Status icons are small icons indicating the state of a setting, a plugin or shows that something is in progress.

Currently GMPC always shows the following status icons:

  • Repeat

  • Random

  • Single mode

  • Consume

Some icons only show when f.e. MPD is updating it database. All status icons should have a tooltip.

Note Clicking a status icon may change its state.
Note Some status icons, like from the gmpc-shout plugin, can have a context menu.




In the connection pane you can configure the connection to MPD. You can define multiple connection profiles. GMPC allows you to quickly switch between the different profiles.

  • The Name field holds the name GMPC shows for this connection.

  • The Host field holds the hostname off the MPD machine. It may also holds the path to a socket.

  • The Port field holds the port where MPD listens on.

  • Use authentication tells GMPC to send the Password field on connection. You need this, if you want an authentication with your MPD Server.

  • The Music Directory field allows you to tell GMPC where it can find the music.

Server Settings


When connected to MPD, you can configure several parameters in MPD:

  • Enable Crossfade: Tells MPD to fade the song out and the fade in the new song in fade time(s) seconds.

  • Replaygain: Select the replaingain mode.

  • Output devices: Enable/disable output devices.



Configure GMPC interface.

  • Hide on close: If the GMPC is closed, hide to the notification tray. (If no notification tray is present, GMPC is minimized.)

  • Stylize album covers: Make covers look like it is placed inside a casing. With casing Withouth casing

  • Stop playing on exit: If you quit GMPC, stop playback.

  • Show song tooltip: Enabled tooltips on the song list. Showing an information about the song under the mouse pointer.

  • Enable search as you type: Make GMPC search directly as you type. (Might be slow).

  • Show buttons instead of dropdown in collapsed view: Changes the dropdown to a button list. See Sidebar.

  • Center playing song: Make GMPC center the playing song in the play queue.

  • Save position and size between sessions: Make GMPC store and retstore it size between sessions.

Tag Based Browser


Multimedia Keys




  • Show on song change: This will pop a notification as soon as the song changes with information about the new song.

  • Timeout: This is the time in seconds for which the notification lasts on the screen.

  • Position: There are five options.

    • At the notification area icon: Notification is at the gmpc icon in the notification area.

    • Upper Left Corner: Notification is in the upper left corner of the screen.

    • Upper Right Corner: Notification is in the upper right corner of the screen.

    • Lower Left Corner: Notification is in the lower left corner of the screen.

    • Lower Right Corner: Notification is in the lower right corner of the screen.

  • Enable: Tick box which enables the gmpc icon in the notification area when ticked.

  • Show severity: The amount of messages which will be displayed in the gmpc window. This dropdown has four options.

    • information and up: Information messages, warnings and errors will be displayed.

    • warnings and up: Warnings and errors will be displayed.

    • errors: Only errors will be displayed.

    • none: Nothing will be displayed.

Metadata Handler


The metadata handler is a function in GMPC to give priority to different plugins. You can give every plugin a number between 1 and 100 where 1 is the lowest and 100 the highest priority. GMPC will use these numbers to share the amount of resources between every plugin, this means the higher priority a plugin has, the more resources it gets allocated.



Metadata Browser


Metadata Selector

You can open the metadata selector by right clicking on the metadata item, f.e. a lyrics and selecting metadata selector. Images/meta-data-selector-artist.png Images/meta-data-selector-lyrics.png

If gmpc fails to find the right metadata, you can view all the results in the metadata selector. You can edit the exact value of the query fields and retry the query. As you can see in the above screenshots you can see the results, where they came from and the size (if it is an image)

The following items can be selected:

  • Artist art

  • Album cover

  • Song lyric

  • Album Information

  • Artist Biography

  • Guitar tab.


Now Playing


The now playing browser shows you all sorts of information about the song playing right now. Information found on the now playing page changes as soon as a new track starts.

  • Album picture: The image in the upper left corner is the album picture.

  • Song title: The big headlining text is the song title.

  • Artist name: The performers of the current song.

  • Album name: The album name in which the current song is featured.

  • Genre: This displays the genre of the current playing song.

  • Format: Format is giving information about sound specific information, the amount of channels, the frequency of the song and the amount of kbps.

  • Codec: Codec used for decoding the song.

  • Length: Length of the song in minutes, rounded downwords (2:10 = 2 minutes, 1:59 = 1 minute)

  • Track number: Track number of the album it’s featuring in.

  • Artist picture: Image in the upper right corner is a picture from the artist.

Under the general information you can see a tabbed view of more information which we will explain now.

  • Lyrics: Fetches and displays them when possible. (Lyrics can only be fetched when lyrics plugins are installed)

  • Guitar Tabs: Fetches guitar tabs for the current playing song. (This only works with the Guitar Tabs plugin installed)

  • Similar Songs: Will find similar songs in your own database based on the genre of the song.

  • Similar Artists: checks for similar artists and these results are displayed.

  • Web Links: Shows several links to different pages.

  • Artist Information: Shows information about the artist fetched from

To the right of the tabbed view there is a list of other albums from the currently playing artist. When you click on one of the albums, it will give you information about the album in the metadata browser.

Note The album list will only be shown when there are actually other albums from the artist in your mpd database.



The database browser is a directory listing of all your music. With the browser you can browse through all your music currently in the mpd database. The folder tree looks like a real folder tree, but it actually is a copy of the music folder tree. In case you delete, add or change files, you must first update the database to update the folder/file tree. As you can see on the screenshot there are two parts of the window. To the left you can see the folder tree, this shows all folders in your music folder. Next to the folder tree are colums which show the files and folders from the currently selected folder (the one selected in the folder tree).

When you right click on a folder in the folder tree, you get three options.

  • Add: Adds all music files in the selected folder to the playlist.

  • Replace: Empties the current playlist and adds all music files in the selected folder to the playlist.

  • Update: Updates the database (and the folder tree).

You can also right click on a folder or file in the right window. The following options are available.

  • Add: Adds the specific file(s) and/or folder(s) to the playlist.

  • Replace: Empties the current playlist and adds the specific file(s) and/or folder(s) to the playlist.

  • Update: Updates the database and the left folder tree. (Only available when right clicking a folder)

  • Information: Shows information about the selected song. (Only available when right clicking one song)

  • Add to playlist: Gives a number of options to add the selected file or folder to a playlist. (Only works for one file or folder at a time)

    • New: Gives you the possibility to create a new playlist.

    • List of playlists: all available playlists are shown here.

  • Add more: Gives a number of options to add more files to the playlist. (Only showing up when right clicking one song)

    • All from album: Adds all songs from the same album to the playlist.

    • All from artist: Adds all songs from the same artist to the playlist.

    • All from genre: Adds all songs from the same genre to the playlist.

    • All from same directory: Adds all songs from the same directory to the playlist.

  • Tools: Gives a number of options for the selected folder(s) and/or file(s).

    • Metadata selector: Gives you the possibility to find information about the selected song. (Album cover, artist art, lyrics etc.)

    • Queue songs for tag edit: Tag Edit gives you the possibility to modify ID3 tags. (Only works with the Tag Edit plugin enabled)

  • Copy: Copies the selected folder(s) and/or file(s), you can paste them in the playlist.

  • Edit columns: With this function you can enable/disable columns from showing in the right window. (Check the image for available options)


Play Queue


This is basically your master-playlist. Every title you want to listen to will appear here. You can add songs to the play-queue by opening the context menu (right mouse click) in either the file in the database or the playlist-editor and selecting "Add".


You can move a single song to a new location using drag and drop. You can move a single row by selecting it, and dragging it to the new location. To quickly move around multiple songs you can cut, copy and then paste songs within the play-queue. It is even possible to copy songs from other lists and insert them at a certain position in the play-queue.

Note GTK does not yet provide a method of moving multiple rows using drag and drop. Instead of adding this using dirty hacks, a more robust cut/copy/paste system was added.


You can filter the play-queue by pressing ctrl-f or start typing when it is selecting. The playlist filter supports the Query syntax.

Tip If the filter is slow in updating the playlist, because you are on a slow connection or MPD runs on a slow machine. You can disable search-as-you-type in the preferences pane.

Editing columns

You can edit what columns GMPC displays in the play-queue (or any song list), by opening the context-menu (right click) and selecting edit columns

Context menu

If you do a right click on an entry of the play queue, you will get this context-menu:


Note This context-menu will depend on the plugins you have installed and activated. Some plugins cause an entry here, others don’t.

Useful key-bindings

  • Center playing song: Hit the space bar.

  • Delete selected song: Hit del.

  • Opening filter: Ctrl-f.

  • Empty filter: Escape.

  • Close filter: Escape or backspace when empty.

Tip If you enable Enable songlist tooltip in preferences pane. Gmpc will show a tooltip with the album cover and some information about the song you are hovering.

Tag Browser

Metadata Browser

Server Information


Query Syntax

The query syntax is used in the search browser, the playlist quick search and in easy command.

The syntax consists of the following:


This will search for value in the field field.

The following fields are supported:

Name (applies to streams)
Any (searches all the above fields)

If your MPD does not support any of these fields, they will be ignored and seen as part of the command.

The search is tokenized and case insensitive, so for example:

artist=eric clapton

Will match both "eric clapton", "Clapton, Eric". To stop this tokenization wrap the values in (). For example:

artist=(Eric Clapton)

Will not match "Clapton, Eric".

To refine your search multiple queries can be concatenated:

For example:

artist=Eric Clapton album=Slowhand

There is also an option to run multiple queries at once by using the or operator ||:

artist=Eric Clapton || artist=Norah Jones

This will return all songs by Eric Clapton and Norah Jones.

Note If <field= > is ommited, all fields are searched.

Easy Command


GMPC has an feature called "Easy Command". Easy command gives you a small command box, allowing you to quickly execute commands without having to use the mouse.

For example, send the command to gmpc to search in the play queue for the song Holy Mother from the artist Eric Clapton and play that song immediately the following could easily be typed.

First, start the "easy command" mode:


Next, type the following command:

play title=Holy mother artist=Eric Clapton

You can also concatenate commands:

clear; add artist=Strehli; play title=SRV

You can also bind a global one in preferences → Multimedia Keys.

Some commands use the Query syntax.

Implemented Easy Commands

To get a more uptodate list of possible commands, see Help → Easy command help in gmpc.


  • switch play queue: Switch to play queue

  • switch metadata browser: Switch to the metadata browser

  • switch search: Switch to the search browser


  • quit: Quit gmpc

  • hide: Hide gmpc

  • show: Show gmpc

  • show notification: Show the tray-icon notification. (if enabled)


  • play: start playback

  • pause: pause playback

  • next: next song

  • prev: previous song

  • stop: stop playback

  • random (on|off): Random (on|off)

  • repeat (on|off): Repeat (on|off)

  • volume [-]?[0-9]: Volume <level>

  • mute: Mute

  • play .*: Play <query>

  • seek hh:mm:ss: Seek to position

  • seek +hh:mm:ss: Seek relative to current position

  • seek -hh:mm:ss: Seek backwards relative to current position

  • repeat current song: Repeats the currently playing song forever

  • stop after current song: Stops playback after current song.

  • consume (on|off)

  • single (on|off)

Play-Queue Manipulation

  • add .*: Add <query>

  • replace .*: Replace <query>

  • Clear play queue: Clear play queue

  • Crop current song: Clears the whole play queue without removing the current playing song.


  • search database .*: Search database <query>

  • search playlist .*: Search playlist <query>

Metadata Browser

  • show current song: Show the page of the current playing song.

  • show current artist: Show the page of the current playing artist

  • show current album: Show the page of the current playing album