A library for visualizing data trees with multiple parents (such as family trees) built on top of D3
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A library for visualizing data trees with multiple parents built on top of D3.

npm Bower


There exists a playground/open repository for dTree graphs called Treehouse. There anyone can host a dTree graph without having to create a website or interact directly with the library. It uses Github gists to store the data and displays it in a nice format. Checkout the demo graph for dTree: https://treehouse.gartner.io/ErikGartner/58e58be650453b6d49d7

The demo is also available on JSFiddle.


There are several ways to use dTree. One way is to simply include the compiled file dTree.js that then exposes a dTree variable. dTree is available on both NPM and Bower as d3-dtree.

Lastly dTree is also available through the RawGit CDN:



To use the library the follow dependencies must be loaded:


To create a graph from data use the following command:

dTree.init(data, options);

The data object should have the following structure:

  name: "Father",                         // The name of the node
  class: "node",                          // The CSS class of the node
  textClass: "nodeText",                  // The CSS class of the text in the node
  depthOffset: 1,                         // Generational height offset
  marriages: [{                           // Marriages is a list of nodes
    spouse: {                             // Each marriage has one spouse
      name: "Mother",
    children: [{                          // List of children nodes
      name: "Child",
  extra: {}                               // Custom data passed to renderers

The following CSS sets some good defaults:

.linage {
    fill: none;
    stroke: black;
.marriage {
    fill: none;
    stroke: black;
.node {
    background-color: lightblue;
    border-style: solid;
    border-width: 1px;
    font: 10px sans-serif;

The options object has the following default values:

  target: '#graph',
  debug: false,
  width: 600,
  height: 600,
  callbacks: {
      Callbacks should only be overwritten on a need to basis.
      See the section about callbacks below.
  margin: {
    top: 0,
    right: 0,
    bottom: 0,
    left: 0
  nodeWidth: 100,
  styles: {
    node: 'node',
    linage: 'linage',
    marriage: 'marriage',
    text: 'nodeText'


Below follows a short descriptions of the available callback functions that may be passed to dTree. See dtree.js for the default implementations.


function(name, x, y, height, width, extra, id, nodeClass, textClass, textRenderer)

The nodeClick function is called by dTree when the node or text is clicked by the user. It shouldn't return any value.


function(name, x, y, height, width, extra, id, nodeClass, textClass, textRenderer)

The nodeRenderer is called once for each node and is expected to return a string containing the node. By default the node is rendered using a div containing the text returned from the default textRendeder. See the JSFiddle above for an example on how to set the callback.


function(nodes, width, textRenderer)

This nodeSize function takes all nodes and a preferred width set by the user. It is then expected to return an array containing the width and height for all nodes (they all share the same width and height during layout though nodes may be rendered as smaller by the nodeRenderer).


function(aName, aExtra, bName, bExtra)

The nodeSorterer takes two nodes names and extra data, it then expected to return -1, 0 or 1 depending if A is less, equal or greater than B. This is used for sorting the nodes in the tree during layout.


function(name, extra, textClass)

The textRenderer function returns the formatted text to the nodeRenderer. This way the user may chose to overwrite only what text is shown but may opt to keep the default nodeRenderer.


To setup and build the library from scratch follow these steps:

  1. npm install
  2. npm run-script build

A demo is available by running:

gulp demo

It hosts a demo on localhost:3000 by serving test/demo and using the latest compiled local version of the library.


Contributions are very welcomed! Checkout the CONTRIBUTING document for style information. A good place to start is to make a pull request to solve an open issue. Feel free to ask questions regarding the issue since most have a sparse description.


The MIT License (MIT)

Copyright (c) 2015-2018 Erik Gärtner