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Command-line JSON processor
C Yacc M4 Shell JSONiq C++ Other
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.github/ISSUE_TEMPLATE Create issue template Aug 17, 2018
build Rake task to build website including source dist and binaries. May 11, 2013
config Bugfix: Math function checking Oct 12, 2018
docs Minor fixes to website generation Mar 2, 2020
m4 BSD sed lacks -r; fix #551 Aug 14, 2014
modules Update oniguruma to fix #1370 Apr 2, 2017
scripts Remove ruby dependency from website build Feb 26, 2019
sig Release jq-1.6 Nov 2, 2018
src Reduce allocation on string multiplication May 26, 2020
tests Rework pipenv requirement to be more relaxed Mar 2, 2020
.gitattributes Remove .gitignore from tarballs. Oct 23, 2012
.gitignore Save literal value of the parsed number to preserve it for the output Oct 22, 2019
.gitmodules Add local oniguruma submodule Feb 19, 2017
.travis.yml Ensure travis has a python version we expect Oct 24, 2019
AUTHORS Update AUTHORS Dec 11, 2017
COPYING Add decNumber library Oct 22, 2019
ChangeLog Update ChangeLog Jul 10, 2015
Dockerfile Dockerfile: Uninstall oniguruma before distclean Mar 29, 2019
KEYS Remove David from maintainers Feb 24, 2016 Makefile: prepend srcdir to jq.1.prebuilt to fix out of source compil… Mar 3, 2020
NEWS Adds the release info for 1.6 to NEWS Dec 15, 2018
README Check in a pile of Autotools junk, including the configure script. May 8, 2013 Improve formatting of flags and link to specific wiki article for cro… Jan 2, 2020
appveyor.yml Configure appveyor build to use python Feb 26, 2019 realpath is not a default command. Dec 30, 2019 Rework pipenv requirement to be more relaxed Mar 2, 2020
jq.1.prebuilt fix typos Jan 14, 2020
jq.spec Use https where possible Aug 15, 2015 Add pkg-config file for libjq Mar 29, 2019


jq is a lightweight and flexible command-line JSON processor.

Coverage Status, Unix: Build Status, Windows: Windows build status

If you want to learn to use jq, read the documentation at This documentation is generated from the docs/ folder of this repository. You can also try it online at

If you want to hack on jq, feel free, but be warned that its internals are not well-documented at the moment. Bring a hard hat and a shovel. Also, read the wiki:, where you will find cookbooks, discussion of advanced topics, internals, release engineering, and more.

Source tarball and built executable releases can be found on the homepage and on the github release page,

If you're building directly from the latest git, you'll need flex, bison (3.0 or newer), libtool, make, automake, and autoconf installed. To get regexp support you'll also need to install Oniguruma or clone it as a git submodule as per the instructions below. (note that jq's tests require regexp support to pass). To build, run:

git submodule update --init # if building from git to get oniguruma
autoreconf -fi              # if building from git
./configure --with-oniguruma=builtin
make -j8
make check

To build without bison or flex, add --disable-maintainer-mode to the ./configure invocation:

./configure --with-oniguruma=builtin --disable-maintainer-mode

(Developers must not use --disable-maintainer-mode, not when making changes to the jq parser and/or lexer.)

To build a statically linked version of jq, run:

make LDFLAGS=-all-static

After make finishes, you'll be able to use ./jq. You can also install it using:

sudo make install

If you're not using the latest git version but instead building a released tarball (available on the website), then you won't need to run autoreconf (and shouldn't), and you won't need flex or bison.

To cross-compile for OS X and Windows, see docs/Rakefile's build task and scripts/crosscompile. You'll need a cross-compilation environment, such as Mingw for cross-compiling for Windows.

Cross-compilation requires a clean workspace, then:

# git clean ...
autoreconf -i
make distclean
scripts/crosscompile <name-of-build> <configure-options>

Use the --host= and --target= ./configure options to select a cross-compilation environment. See also "Cross compilation" on the wiki.

Send questions to or to the #jq channel ( on Freenode (

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