the program should display a PGN file, be fast to run, and absolutely be expected to be callable by the command line (passing the PGN file as an argument). The reason is I began to create a concept map about an opening, and I can call from this map some EXE programs. I would like to display some games as examples of the nodes.

I already searched, but till now I found nothing.

  • SCID and Arena?
    – fuxia
    Sep 14 '17 at 20:59
  • @fuxia that's the answer I'd give, would you mind posting it as an answer instead of a comment please? Sep 15 '17 at 0:54
  • @SmallChess Can't you call SCID by command line anymore? Maybe not by default, but I used to have mine set up so that I could access them by command line: I called my engine through SCID to analyze positions and return a .pgn with comments where the evaluation changed more than some number. The truth is that you're just calling SCID, opening it in the background, doing stuff and then closing it, but in practice you only use the command line. Sep 15 '17 at 3:05
  • @PabloS.Ocal Done. :) I wasn't sure whether the OP didn't find those programs or ruled them out for some reasons.
    – fuxia
    Sep 15 '17 at 6:25

There are at least two Windows programs that you can start per command line: Arena and SCID (or SCID vs PC).


To open a PGN file in Arena, call it with:

Arena.exe -loadgamefile "path/to/sample.pgn"

There are many more options listed in the help file under Miscellaneous/Command Line Parameters. analyze is particular useful.


Both come with the same very small set of command line options. Again see the help file.

Open a PGN file with:

scid.exe "path/to/sample.pgn"

Arena's command line support is far superior in my opinion.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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