Before Dawn has a Preferences window where you can see the list of screensavers, and tweak your settings.

Picking a Screensaver

The main tab of the preferences window lists all of the screensavers available to you. As you click on them, you’ll see a preview in the right side of the window.

Screensaver Options

Some screensavers have configurable options to control how they run – for example, the Emoji Starfield screensaver has a control to set how many emoji are on your screen at once. You can fiddle with these settings and get an idea of how it looks in the preview area.


The Options tab of the Preferences window has a number of settings to control how Before Dawn runs:

  • Activate after – you can set how long your computer is idle before your screensaver starts
  • Disable displays after - you can set a time that Before Dawn will stop running and blank the screens. It’s possible that your OS will do a better job of this, but since Before Dawn is a bit of an experiment, having this setting might save your CPU from running when your computer is idle for a long time.
  • Lock screen after running? – If you want your computer to lock once the screensaver starts running, you can use this option.
  • Disable when on battery? – You can toggle this so that Before Dawn won’t run if your computer is running on battery power.
  • Auto start on login? – should Before Dawn start automatically when your computer starts?

Advanced Options

  • Github Repo URL – Before Dawn queries a Github repository to see if there are any new screensavers to download. By default, it checks but if you want to run your own custom set of screensavers, you can put a different Github repo here.
  • Local Source – If you want to develop your own screensavers, or run a set of screensavers that aren’t on Github, you can put a path to a directory here. Before Dawn will check this directory for any local screensavers and add them to the list.

Create Screensaver

Check out the creating section to learn about adding your own screensaver.