I'm looking for a DOT graph file format viewer. Graphviz works really well for small graphs, but it is rather clunky once they become large. In particular, I'm looking for a solution that solves the following two issues:

  1. The links will often cross over in a way that makes it very difficult to see what node is linked to what
  2. There is no way to search a graph to find a particular node

I'd prefer solutions for Mac, but I'm open to hearing about solutions for all platforms.


Zgrviewer is extremely powerful and, in particular, supports both my desired features. Unfortunately, it has one of the clunkiest user interfaces that I have ever seen:

  • It implements the reverse scrolling direction (don't know the proper term) that I've seen used in flight simulation games. I couldn't find any option to disable this
  • Zooming is far too sensitive - I never end up at the zoom level I desire
  • It creates huge distances between nodes and uses small font sizes (again not option to change) so that if I want to be able to read the labels then I can barely have any elements on screen at the same time
  • There is a tool for following paths, by instead of just taking you to the end, it requires you do some weird dragging thing that doesn't work very well with my Magic Trackpad

I am aware of this other question, but this questions is different because I'm looking for a viewer, not a tool for generating these graphs

  • ZGRviewer v0.10.0 allows one to configure zooming sensitivity and font type/size. I'm adding this comment to bump this question to see if there are other solutions available in 2020. Mar 5, 2020 at 12:29

1 Answer 1


Years back i used AI See for visualizing search trees (to try to get a better sense of how my search algorithms were exploring the search space). I used this by generating the graph file from a routine in my code...then opened it with AI See. I remember the format was fairly straight-forward. Assuming AI See suffices for your needs...could you transform the file from the format you have it in to the one AI see uses (I think it was .GDL or something like that).

  • i just googled "DOT to GDL" and there seem to be quite a few converters out there (some of these are open-source also)
    – Amit
    Sep 5, 2014 at 4:15
  • discontinued as stand-alone product: absint.com/aisee/index.htm
    – lowtech
    Jul 13, 2017 at 20:25

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