GraphViz is a powerful tool for visualising network and tree structures that connect objects.

This WordPress plugin provides a shortcode mechanism to create GraphViz graphics within blogs, using the shortcode mechanism.

It’s working is based on the viz.js code as provided by Mike Daines:


Special thanks goes to chrisy as author of TFO Graphviz, e.g. for providing the inspiration for this readme:


How to use WP GraphViz

The shortcode syntax is:

[wp_graphviz <options>]
 <DOT code>

Where <options> is anything from this list. All are entirely optional:

  • id="<id>"

    Provides the identifier used to link the generated image to an image map. If you use the simple option then it also provides the name of the generated DOT graph container (since GraphViz uses this to generate the image map). If not given then an identifier is generated with the form wp_graphviz_N where N is an integer that starts at one when the plugin is loaded and is incremented with use.

  • output="<png|gif|jpg|svg>"

    Indicates the desired image format. Defaults to png.

  • simple="yes|no"

    The simple option provides a very basic DOT wrapper around your code such that the following is possible:

    [wp_graphviz simple="yes"] a -> b -> c; [/wp_graphviz]

    The generated code would look like:

    digraph wp_graphviz_1 {
        a -> b -> c;

    See the id option for a description of where the name of the digraph comes from. simple defaults to no.

  • title="<title>"

    Indicates the title of the image. This is used in the alt and title attributes of the image reference. This defaults to an empty string. Note that image maps may indicate a title string which will appear in tool-tips.


  • This screen shot description corresponds to screenshot-1.(png|jpg|jpeg|gif). Note that the screenshot is taken from the /assets directory or the directory that contains the stable readme.txt (tags or trunk). Screenshots in the /assets directory take precedence. For example, /assets/screenshot-1.png would win over /tags/4.3/screenshot-1.png (or jpg, jpeg, gif).


What is GraphViz?

GraphViz is a way of generating visualisations of structural relationships between objects.
Almost any kind of diagram where something connects to something else can be drawn and automatically laid out using the DOT language.

How do I use this plugin?

Use the [wp_graphviz] shortcode. Various uses are explained in the “How to use” section.

How do I write DOT?

The online documentation for GraphViz is terse and not especially helpful, in particular the DOT language page is only helpful if you happen to be able to read an approximation of BNF.

There are however several other introductions to Graphviz and DOT, including an excerpt on the O’Reilly LinuxDevCenter.com site.
Another approach would be to look at the examples in the Graphviz gallery.

If in doubt, find an example and experiment with it.



  • Formal version, tested for WP 4.6.1.
  • Added shortcode parameters.


  • Formal version, tested for WP 4.0.
  • Added icon-128×128.png to support plugin icons.


  • First formal version, improved reference data.
  • Updated the viz.js library to latest version.


  • First version starting the plugin.

Contributors & Developers

This is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.


Browse the code