Loading data

How to specify a source

In VisiData, a loader is a module which directs how VisiData structures and engages with a particular data source. These sources are currently supported.

On default, the file extension determines which loader is used. Unknown filetypes are loaded as Text sheets.

vd sample.tsv
ps aux | vd

To force a particular loader, pass -f with the filetype or format name.

vd -f sqlite bar.db
ls -l | vd -f fixed

How to load any source supported by pandas

VisiData has an adapter for pandas. To load a file format which is supported by pandas, execute vd -f pandas data.foo. This will call pandas.read_foo().

For example:

vd -f pandas data.parquet

loads a parquet file. When using the pandas loader, the .fileformat file extension is mandatory.

Note that if you are using Python v3.7, then you will need to manually install pandas >=0.23.2 (our requirements.txt file installs v0.19.2 as the last version compatible with 3.4).

How to open an R data frame with VisiData

@paulklemm has wonderfully developed a small R package which bridges the gap between R and VisiData.

To install rvisidata using devtools run:


from within the R interpreter.

Any data frame can then be opened by VisiData:


Please note, that this tool opens the data frame in readonly mode. Any changes made will be discarded.

For more more details, questions, and feedback, check out the rvisidata repository.

How to load multiple datasets simultaneously

Multiple files can be passed as inputs through the commandline.

vd birdsdiet.tsv surveys.csv sunshinelist.html

Upon launching, the final dataset to load (in this case, sunshinelist.html) will be displayed on top.

To load files from within a VisiData session, press o and enter a filepath.

How to access other loaded or derived sheets:

  1. Press S to open the Sheets sheet.
  2. Move the cursor to the row containing the desired sheet.
  3. Press Enter to jump to the sheet referenced in that current cursor row.

How to convert a dataset from one supported filetype into another

vd -b countries.fixed -o countries.tsv

Note: Not all filetypes which are supported as loaders are also supported as savers. See the manpage for the supported output formats.