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Creating a custom section

This guide aims to help you create your first custom section.

Rules for sections

Here are recommendations to follow when creating a section to maintain Spaceship slick and clean.

Section should not clutter the prompt

Having too much in prompt looks ugly. It's better to keep it to a minimum of necessary information.

  • Good: 🚀 v1.2.3
  • Bad: 🚀 spasheship#c3BhY2VzaGlw

Section should be worth to be aware of

Is value changes quite often, so it needs to be shown in prompt? Would it be useful for other users? Maybe there's a reason to execute a command instead of cluttering prompt.

  • Good: git status/branch, runtime version via version manager, etc
  • Bad: version of language-specific framework, settled projects versions, etc

Section should be fast

If your section performs any heavy checking, find a way to make it faster. Use async rendering for performing heavy tasks. Section should be:

  • Async: if it executes external commands, perform complex calculations, reading large files
  • Sync: if it checks command availability, checks the value of environment variable

Follow naming convention for options

All options of prompt follow a specific pattern so that it is easy to remember: SPACESHIP_SECTION_<OPTION>[_PROPERTY]. The rule is simple: when naming new properties, keep unique parts of the name to the end.

  • Good:
  • Bad:

Here, GIT_STATUS is section, COLOR is option and BEHIND or DIVERGED is property.

Create a section

The simplest way to create a section is to use a template repo for Spaceship section.

Use a section template

This boilerplate repo contains a template for a section and its documentation, has configured release and testing workflow. Explore the repo to learn more.

Open a spaceship-section.plugin.zsh file for a custom section example.

Typical section breakdown

Below is an example of a typical section for Spaceship. Pay attention to a few crucial moments:

  • Define options for customization. Their names should start with SPACESHIP_.
  • Every Spaceship section name should start with spaceship_ (for example spaceship_node). This is a convention that is used to identify the section.
  • Show section only where it's needed (in directories which contains specific files, when a specific command is available, etc).

Sections are defined by spaceship::section API. You can use general purpose utilities for performing common tasks in a section.

Typical section might look like this:

# Foobar
# Foobar is a supa-dupa cool tool for making you development easier.
# Link:

# ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# Configuration
# ------------------------------------------------------------------------------


# ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# Section
# ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# Show foobar status
# spaceship_ prefix before section's name is required!
# Otherwise this section won't be loaded.
spaceship_foobar() {
  # If SPACESHIP_FOOBAR_SHOW is false, don't show foobar section
  [[ $SPACESHIP_FOOBAR_SHOW == false ]] && return

  # Check if foobar command is available for execution
  spaceship::exists foobar || return

  # Show foobar section only when there are foobar-specific files in current
  # working directory.

  # spaceship::upsearch utility helps finding files up in the directory tree.
  local is_foobar_context="$(spaceship::upsearch foobar.conf)"
  # Here glob qualifiers are used to check if files with specific extension are
  # present in directory. Read more about them here:
  [[ -n "$is_foobar_context" || -n *.foo(#qN^/) || -n *.bar(#qN^/) ]] || return

  local foobar_version="$(foobar --version)"

  # Check if tool version is correct
  [[ $tool_version == "system" ]] && return

  # Display foobar section
  # spaceship::section utility composes sections. Flags are optional
  spaceship::section::v4 \

Take a look at Contribution guidelines for further information.

Share your section with others

The next step is to share your section with the community.

Open a discussion topic on our Discussion forum:

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