Command Line Reference

This page describes all the options available to run Plover from the command line. The command is available under slightly different names on each platform, relative to your installation directory:

  • Windows: C:\Program Files (x86)\Open Steno Project\Plover 4.0.0\plover_console.exe

  • macOS: /Applications/

  • Linux: plover.AppImage

All of the above commands will be referred to as plover below.


Display the help text and then exit.


Display the running Plover version and then exit.

-g <gui>

Specify the GUI system to use. The options are as follows:


Run the built-in Qt-based GUI. This is the default value.


Run Plover headless, i.e. without a GUI. You’ll only be able to control Plover from the command line or with steno commands.

-l <level>, --log-level <level>

Change the minimum level of logs being shown on standard output. Options are debug, info, warning, and error. By default, no logs are displayed.

-s <script>, --script <script>

Use another console script as the main entrypoint. This passes the remainder of the command line arguments to the console script. For example, to run the plugin installer:

plover -s plover_plugins

Pass -s without an argument to show the list of console scripts.

Plugin Installer

The plugin installer can be accessed through the plover_plugins console script:

plover -s plover_plugins

This is essentially a wrapper around pip; you can run commands to install and remove packages just like on a normal Python installation. For example, to install and uninstall the plover-treal plugin:

plover -s plover_plugins install plover-treal
plover -s plover_plugins uninstall plover-treal

To list all of the plugins available on your system:

plover -s plover_plugins list

To install a plugin you are working on locally:

cd plover_myplugin
plover -s plover_plugins install -e .


Some users have had issues loading the plugin list with the Plugin Manager; this seems to have something to do with an outdated version of another package. This can be fixed with the following command:

plover -s plover_plugins install --disable-pip-version-check --upgrade Pygments

Sending Commands

The plover_send_command console script can be used to send commands to an existing Plover instance:

plover -s plover_send_command

It takes the command name and parameters as an argument, written as they would be in a dictionary definition. For example, to send the command {plover:toggle}, you can invoke this script as follows:

plover -s plover_send_command toggle