A terminal UI as drop-in replacement for hledger add https://github.com/hpdeifel/hledger-iadd#readme

Version on this page:1.2
LTS Haskell 10.3:1.2.6
Stackage Nightly 2018-01-21:1.3.1
Latest on Hackage:1.3.1

See all snapshots hledger-iadd appears in


An interactive terminal UI as drop-in replacement for hledger add.



This project improves in the following ways on hledger's add command:

  • Interactive as-you-type completion for account names and descriptions with optional fuzzy matching (see below).

  • Integrated calculator: Amounts can be written as simple sums with real-time feedback on the result.

  • All actions while entering a transaction can be undone

  • Configurable format for date input. Instead of y/m/d it is also possible to use other formats like the german d.m.y.

Also see the user guide under Usage.


Latest release


The easiest method would be stack: Install the stack program and type:

stack install --resolver=nightly hledger-iadd

This downloads and builds hledger-iadd and all it's Haskell dependencies. After that, it copys the resulting binary to ~/.local/bin. See stack --help for more options. You may get asked to install the GHC Haskell compiler locally. To do that, type stack setup.


First, install the GHC Haskell compiler and the cabal install, alex and happy build tools, possibly from your distribution or the haskell platform. Type

cabal install --bindir ~/bin hledger-iadd

to install the binary in ~/bin.

Development version

To install the development version, clone the git repository first:

git clone https://github.com/hpdeifel/hledger-iadd.git
cd hledger-iadd


The easiest method would be stack: Install the stack program and type:

stack install

To build and install all Haskell dependencies locally and install hledger-iadd to ~/.local/bin. See stack --help for more options. You may get asked to install the GHC Haskell compiler locally. To do that, type stack setup.


First, install the GHC Haskell compiler and the cabal install, alex and happy build tools, possibly from your distribution or the haskell platform.

Since cabal builds regularly break in non-isolated environments, the recommended next step is to create a cabal sandbox where all dependencies will be installed in:

cd hledger-iadd
cabal sandbox init

You can now download and install all dependencies locally with

cabal install --only-dependencies

And finally you're ready to build and install hledger-iadd:

cabal configure --bindir ~/bin
cabal build
cabal copy


You can start the program either with

hledger iadd

or simply hledger-iadd.

The following command line options are available:

  • -f/--file/: Path to the journal file. (Default: ~/.hledger.journal)
  • --date-format: Format for parsing dates. (Default: [[%y/]%m/]%d, the usual ledger date format). Brackets can be used to specify optional parts. E.g the german date format would be %d[.[%m[.[%y]]]]. (Dates are written as y/m/d to the journal regardless of this option).
  • --completion-engine: Algorithm for account name completion. Can be substrings or fuzzy.
  • --dump-default-config: Print the example config file to stdout and exit

The UI is partitioned in 4 regions:

Current Transaction (view of your work in progress)
Question: [ text area                             ]
Context information (e.g. list of accounts)

Message area

For each transaction, you will get asked the following questions in order:

  1. Date?
  2. Description?
  3. Account name?
  4. Amount?
  5. The last two questions are repeated until you enter the empty account
  6. Do you want to add this transaction to the journal?

To accept the default answer, immediately press Return at a promt.

While you type, the context area shows possible completions. Pressing

Return answers the question with the currently selected completion. You can select differnt completions with C-n and C-p.

The following keyboard shortcuts are available:

| Key | Function | | ------------------------------- | ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- | | C-c, C-d | Quit the program without saving the current transaction | | Esc | Abort the current transaction or exit when at toplevel | | Ret | Accept the currently selected answer | | Alt-Ret | Accept the current answer verbatim from the text area, ignoring the selection | | C-z | Undo the last action | | Tab | Insert the currently selected answer into the text area | | C-n, | Select the next context item | | C-p, | Select the previous context item | | ; | Edit comment for current prompt | | Alt-; | Edit transaction comment | | F1,Alt-? | Show help dialog |

Default Currency

To make entry easier it is recommended that you set a default commodity in your ledger file if you haven't already done so. That way when entering amounts, hledger-iadd will add the symbols for you. You can do this by adding a line like below to the top of your ledger file:

; sets the default commodity symbol and placement, thousands separator, and decimal symbol
D $1,000.00

Configuration File

hledger-iadd is optionally configurable through a configuration file in ${XDG_CONFIG_HOME}/hledger-iadd/config.conf. This file consists of simple

key = value

assignments on individual lines with whitespace or comments starting with # between them. The default config can be obtained by passing --dump-default-config to hledger-iadd.

The following options are currently available:

  • file: Path to the journal file.
  • date-format: The date format. See the documentation for --date-format for details.
  • completion-engine: Algorithm used to find completions for account names. Possible values are: - substrings: Every word in the search string has to occur somewhere in the account name - fuzzy: All letters from the search string have to appear in the name in the same order


The code of hledger-iadd is released under the BSD3 license, but since hledger-lib -- the library that hledger-iadd uses -- is licensed under the GPLv3, the terms of the GPL apply to the compiled and linked binary.



  • Support brick <= 0.32
  • Support megaparsec <= 6.4


  • Detect duplicate transactions and warn about them
  • Add empty line before transactions when writing to journal
  • Don't elide the last amount in transactions
  • Support account directive for account completion
  • Bugfixes and dependency bumps


  • Fix build with hledger-lib >= 1.3.1
  • Support for megaparsec-6.1
  • Support for brick <= 0.24
  • Fix test suite with ghc 8.2


  • Fix broken release tarball


  • Support for megaparsec-6.0


  • Support for brick-0.20
  • Restore compatibility with brick-0.17
  • Support for hledger-lib-1.3


  • Support for megaparsec-5.3.0
  • Bump brick dependency to 0.19


  • Support for hledger-lib-1.2
  • Minor documentation fixes


  • Add support for comments (bound to ;)
  • Restore previous text input on undo
  • Bump text-zipper dependency to 0.10


  • Sort account names by frequency for completion
  • Bind Home/End im entry field
  • Bump brick and vty dependencies


  • Add more emacs/readline like keybindings in entry field (C-f/C-b, M-f/M-b, M-Del/C-w, M-d)
  • Fix account suggestion order to be more like hledger add


  • Respect ${LEDGER_FILE} environment variable
  • Add --version command
  • Bump brick dependency to 0.15.2
  • Bump hledger-lib dependency to 1.1
  • Bind C-u to 'delete to beginning of line'


  • bugfix: Show cursor in empty entry widget
  • bugfix: Correctly execute --help and --dump-default-config in the presence of syntax errors in the config file


  • Add a configuration file for persistent settings
  • Disallow unbalanced transactions
  • Order postings naturally and omit balancing amounts in transaction preview (thanks Tristan Hume)
  • Suggest account based on last transaction if no similar transaction is found (thanks Tristan Hume)
  • Make completed dates as recent as possible (thanks Thorsten Wißmann)
  • Optional fuzzy matching via config option "completion-engine" (thanks Tristan Hume)
  • Add Ctrl-d as new keybinding for 'quit'
  • Make ESC quit at the toplevel
  • Various bug fixes


  • Initial release

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