Take the 2-minute tour ×
MathOverflow is a question and answer site for professional mathematicians. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Hi, does anyone know of a good program for drawing directed weighted graphs?


share|improve this question
What do you mean by "drawing weighted graphs"? That is, what is the significance of the weights? Edge labels? –  Igor Rivin Feb 12 '11 at 14:46
Question is imprecise: does the OP want a program that will produce an automatically generated pleasing layout of a graph on the screen? Or a program to interactively manipulate a displayed graph? Or a program to create a diagram for inclusion in a published paper when the actual layout is already known? –  Gordon Royle Dec 17 '11 at 2:23
@GordonRoyle Of course, ideally one would like to have a program that would automatically generate a pleasing layout which you can then interactively manipulate and export so you can easily include it in your paper. –  Vít Tuček Oct 8 at 9:24

14 Answers 14

Try Sage - it's open source and can draw weighted directed graphs. For example:

A = random_matrix(ZZ,6, density=0.5)
G = DiGraph(A, format='weighted_adjacency_matrix')  # graph from matrix
H = G.plot(edge_labels=True, graph_border=True)
H.show()             # display on screen
H.save('graph.pdf')  # save plot to vector pdf for inclusion in a paper
share|improve this answer
By the way, Sage uses NetworkX, which was mentioned in another answer. –  William Stein Feb 12 '11 at 18:43
You can also use NetworkX directly within Sage to have more control over your plotting options. (Sage's Graph class is a wrapper which hides a lot of functionality and is not compatible with the advanced plotting tools.) –  Derrick Stolee Feb 13 '11 at 14:44

Try Graphviz - it's open source and quite flexible as far as usage is concerned.


It's good at automatic layouts etc, where for example Maple would make a mess of things.

share|improve this answer

Check out PGF/tikZ, which is freely available, and interacts extremely well with TeX and LaTeX.

You can find examples here, examples of graphs here, and a nice manual here.

A nice feature of the examples web page is that you can click on each example to get access to the code, which you can then copy-and-paste into your own LaTeX file, and then modify for your own purposes.

share|improve this answer

Mathematica is quite good these days and exports in a bazillion formats.

share|improve this answer
Yup. It makes a great, and often successful, effort at picking an embedding showing relevant features. –  Mariano Suárez-Alvarez Feb 13 '11 at 1:36

To supplement William Stein's useful answer, here is a graph produced by running the code he displays:
          Sage Graph

share|improve this answer

I love TikZ. It is a very sophisticated LaTeX package from the same author who wrote Beamer. It takes a bit of getting used to, but once you have your collection of examples, it is extremely efficient and produces very clean-looking and portable graphics. See www.hairer.org/Archive.zip for a few examples.

share|improve this answer

Try programming in R for various types of Graphs and Data Analysis. The R Graphs Cookbook is an essential.

You'll find it here.

share|improve this answer

you can use $newgraph-1.1.3$ for drawing and analysis every graphs. It is very good free software.

share|improve this answer

Very simple, and easy to use for small graphs: GraphThing. It is in Ubuntu repositories. Here is home page: http://graph.seul.org/ It even computes some simple parameters.

share|improve this answer

I have used CaGe for some basic planar graphs.

share|improve this answer

Visual Studio has a powerful Directed Graph document (dgml) creator and viewer. It is highly configurable with styles / legend etc. but if you want to generate graphs from a data model it is quite good but there is a bit of a learning curve. I believe (don't quote me on this) that the free versions of Visual Studio do have support for it.

Disclaimer: I work on features for Visual Studio close to this;

share|improve this answer

Paul Gastin (LSV, Cachan), developed a package named GasTeX in order to simplify graphs and automata designing in TeX.

Further informations, documentation and CTAN links on http://www.lsv.ens-cachan.fr/~gastin/gastex/

Hope it will be of any use.

share|improve this answer

GrafEq is light yet usable, it specializes on drawing 'doggy' ones with the lines become really dense. And it's totally free.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.