Last Updated: July 12, 2022
· originell

Commandline JSON Pretty Print everywhere

You can pretty print (and validate) json on nearly every *nix-like (unix, linux, osx,…) system, since most of them have Python (2.6+ required) installed.

echo '{"test1": 1, "test2": "win"}' | python -m json.tool

will be returned as:

    "test1": 1, 
    "test2": "win"

And yep, you guessed it, this can easily be integrated with your favorite editor of choice, as long as it supports passing data to a shell command.

Pretty printing a JSON file with VIM and Python:

:%!python -m json.tool

Related protips:

Basic Vim commands - For getting started

12 Responses
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If the machine has pygments installed (not as likely, but easy to install) you can pipe the json for color output as well python -mjson.tool | pygmentize -l javascript.

over 1 year ago ·

{"comment": "Pretty Helpful"}

over 1 year ago ·

Here's a NodeJS version:

echo '{"foo":"bar"}' | json

You need to install the jsontool module (npm install -g jsontool)

over 1 year ago ·

You insipred me to attempt to repeat this in NodeJS without 3rd party modules. Turned out it's shorter in Python due to json.tool moduel existence :)

Pretty print JSON from command line with NodeJS

over 1 year ago ·

Ruby version: ruby -rjson -e 'puts JSON.pretty_generate(JSON.load($<))'

over 1 year ago ·

@dpashkevich Hey! Great job :) Pretty short for not using any third party module!

@manveru ah that's a nice one too :)

over 1 year ago ·

I usually use this little wrapper: which adds pretty colors.

over 1 year ago ·

I wish I could get the pretty color version when viewing JSON files in ST2. You'd think it was possible seeing as ST2 is heavily connected to Python

over 1 year ago ·

I use this neat little tool: Does the job for me.

over 1 year ago ·

Very helpful, specifically the VIM shortcut. I've reblogged this post along with additional JSON pretty printing tools at

over 1 year ago ·

I like Stephen Dolan's jq for working with JSON on the CLI:

over 1 year ago ·

+1 for jq:

$ echo '{"test1": 1, "test2": "win"}' | jq .

The output is even colored.

over 1 year ago ·