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10 Ways to Use VisiData

By Saul Pwanson

1. Explore datasets effortlessly, no matter the format

$ vd albums.json dropbox/.xls agents.sqlite

Use the arrow keys to move around and q to quit.

VisiData loads data from many different sources and formats, including anything pandas can load!

New loaders are included in every release, and you can create one yourself easily.


2. Convert from any input format into any output format

$ vd -b input.csv -o output.json

3. Interactively select replacement for cli tools

$ mv $(ls | vd) /trash

Select files using any of the selection commands.

Press " to pull them into their own sheet.

Press Ctrl+Q to exit VisiData and write the current sheet to stdout.


4. Scrape HTML table data from a webpage

$ vd

5. Parse and explore text-based log files

$ vd output.log

Use : to split each line by some string.

Use ; with a regex with capture groups like (\d+).


6. Explore a Python object from the REPL

>>> visidata.pyobj.view(obj)

7. Explore any pandas DataFrame

>>> visidata.vd.view_pandas(df)

8. Create an adhoc data pipeline

$ vd -b -p foo.vd

VisiData can also be used in batch mode with scripts without requiring any interaction.

Save the cmdlog to a .vd file with Ctrl+D foo.vd, then replay the saved .vd file:


9. rename a bunch of files

$ vd

Edit the filenames (documentation on editing commands).
Press z Ctrl+S to commit the changes (before v2.0, use Ctrl+S).

Watch this video showing how to use the directory browser.


10. see all the available options and commands

There are many other ways to use VisiData! To learn more, press Ctrl+H to see the manpage, or z Ctrl+H to see the full list of commands available on the current sheet.


  • [written by Saul Pwanson 2019-03-24]
  • [updated on 2020-10-15]
  • [updated on 2021-07-24]
  • [updated on 2022-03-21]

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