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Pony rewrite of cowsay.

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— cowsay reimplemention for ponies.


Today your terminal, tomorrow the world!


Runtime dependencies

in coreutils used to determine size of the terminal.

is written in Python 3.

: for generating documentation during the installation.

Package building dependencies

: Used for compressing manuals (suppressable with
./configure --without-info-compression --without-man-compression

: Used for building the info manual (suppressable with
./configure --without-info

: The installation process is written in Python 3.


if things are not working for you.

Installation on GNU/Linux (or other Unix implementations)

Download or clone the project. In the terminal,

into the ponysay directory and
./ --freedom=partial install
python3 --freedom=partial install
. Superuser permissions might be required in order to run
./ --freedom=partial install
, on most systems this can be achieved by running
sudo ./ --freedom=partial install
. If installing only the completely free ponies is desired,
should be used instead of
. For additional information, an extensive manual in PDF is provided.

In order to use ponysay, run:

ponysay "I am just the cutest pony!"

Or if you have a specific pony in your mind:

ponysay -f pinkie "Partay!~"


info ponysay
man 6 ponysay
ponysay -h
for additional information. Spanish and Turkish manuals are also available:
man -L es 6 ponysay
man -L tr 6 ponysay

Arch Linux

The package is in the official repositories as

. A Git version is also present, named
in AUR thanks to an upstream.


A git version of the package is available as

in CCR, alongside a stable package called
thanks to an upstream.

Debian GNU/Linux

Debian packages thanks to 'vcheng' can be found here.


Running ponysay on Docker thanks to 'mpepping' is a easy as:

docker run -ti --rm mpepping/ponysay --help
docker run -ti --rm mpepping/ponysay -q
docker run -ti --rm mpepping/ponysay "foo"

Gentoo Linux

The package is in the official Gentoo repository as games-misc/ponysay.

Mac OS X (OSX) (macOS)


Homebrew formula is available.

Microsoft™ Windows®


You could either run ponysay on:

Make sure you install the latest Windows updates to enable true colour console support, then follow the install instructions for Ubuntu in a bash console.

OpenSuSe 13.2 or OpenSuSe Factory

The package is available in OpenSuSe 13.2 and Factory since 6th april 2014, if you want the individual rpm look here.


There is a PPA available thanks to 'vincent-c', specifically for ponysay, containing packages for all currently supported Ubuntu releases here.

Print a pony fortune upon terminal startup

This requires the

utility to be installed. It can install be from the distribution's repositories (might be named
). Alternatively, one can just fetch the source code from here.

You can try this script or ponypipe to ponify fortunes.

Edit your

and add this to the end of the file
fortune | ponysay

Afterwards, every time you open a terminal a pony should give you a fortune.

Pony quotes


ponysay -q
will print a random pony saying one of its quotes from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. The pony can be specified:
ponysay -q pinkie
. Just as with
can be used multiple times to specify a set of ponies from which a single one will be selected randomly.

When running

ponysay -l
ponysay -L
the ponies with quotes will be printed in bold or bright (depending on the used terminal).

Ponies in TTY (Unix VT)

If you have a custom colour palette edit your

and add
if [ "$TERM" = "linux" ]; then
    function ponysay
        exec ponysay "[email protected]"

Read the PDF or info manual for more information.


Q: The output looks like a mess in (TTY/PuTTY/other)!

A: Unfortunately we cannot make it perfect, see issue 1. But we have done a lot, read more about how to get the best of the current state of the art has to offer in the manual.

Q: The output looks like a mess in (xfce4-terminal/mate-terminal/xterm/[...]) with (this) font!

A: We use blocks for printing the ponies, if the blocks are misaligned, or if you do not use a truly monospaced font with aligned blocks try another monospaced font, such as 'Fixed [...]' or 'Liberation Mono.'

Q: You are missing (my-favourite-pony)!

A: Ask and we'll add!

Q: Which programs do you use to generate the pony files?

A: The pony files are in fact mostly a bunch of selected browser ponies, converted using util-say, Other are taken from desktop ponies, and the others are created specifically for ponysay.

Q: This project look like abandoned...

A: Well, most dev and contributors has moved to more time consuming tasks so our time has been reduced, but we accept most PR for bugfixs and ponies (correctly built) and we're still looking for bug fixes and ponies, so stay tuned for the next release or pushes on the repository.

The PDF manual should answer most of your questions.

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