Matrix Pi – Running CMatrix on the Raspberry Pi


Ignoring the fact that they made the mistake of turning a two film story into three films, The Matrix is cool. Regardless of what my wife says.

So I decided it was vital that I get the Matrix text “rain” on my little 12V LCD screen. A quick Google and I found ‘CMatrix’ written by Chris Allegretta. This can be easily installed on the Pi using apt-get. I’m using the standard Raspbian image but I guess it will work for other distributions.

Here is CMatrix running on my 3.5inch LCD screen :

Matrix Pi #1

So are you ready?

I’m trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it.


To install CMatrix simply type the following command line :

sudo apt-get install cmatrix

Once installed you can run it using :


Dynamic OptionsMatrix Pi #2

While CMatrix is running you can press various keys to adjust the display.

a: Toggle asynch mode
b: Enable partial bold text
B: Enable all bold text
n: Disable bold text
0-9: Change update delay

You can change the text colour using the following symbols :

! – red
@ – green
# – yellow
$ – blue
% – magenta
^ – cyan
& – white
) – black

and finally for anyone who prefers a video to a page of text here is something I uploaded to YouTube showing my screen in action :



  1. Great idea! your article sounds interesting. it shows that Raspberry pi is more helpful in any other ways. thank you for posting this article. Many individuals will become interested about Raspberry Pi when they read this.

  2. Nice idea! I like the Matrix myself. And thanks for posting this in my app!! People are rating the app bad because they don’t realize that I made it for users to post stuff themselves, not for me to do it all. Your the first!

    • I thought those ratings were unfair. I was looking at it thinking “well shouldn’t people just submit something?” I’m not sure whether my basic experiments count as “projects” but I thought this one was cute enough to be interesting.

  3. Thx.
    Nice ideea.
    Add the fact that is good to disable screen blanking (in /etc/kbd/config change BLANK_TIME to 0 & run /etc/init.d/kbd restart).

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