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Temporal CLI command reference


When upgrading from tctl to Temporal CLI, make sure to update your environment variables and use updated commands. For details, see CLI release notes.

The command-line tool Temporal CLI includes a distribution of a Temporal Cluster, comprising the Temporal Server, SQLite persistence, and the Temporal Web UI.

Available commands



Run the following command to install Temporal CLI using cURL:

curl -sSf | sh


Run the following command to install Temporal CLI using Homebrew:

brew install temporal


Follow these steps to manually install Temporal CLI:

  1. Download the version for your OS and architecture:
  2. Extract the downloaded archive.
  3. Add the temporal binary to your PATH (use temporal.exe for Windows).

Starting the Temporal Server

To start the Temporal Server, run the following command:

temporal server start-dev

The command launches a server on localhost:7233 and a web interface at http://localhost:8233.

By default, data isn't persisted. If you want to save Workflows, use the --db-filename option:

temporal server start-dev --db-filename temporal.db

Interacting with the Server

In another terminal, use the following commands to interact with the Server. The following command starts a Workflow:

$ temporal workflow start \
--task-queue hello-world \
--type MyWorkflow \
--workflow-id 123 \
--input 456

Running execution:
WorkflowId 123
RunId 357074e4-0dd8-4c44-8367-d92536dd0943
Type MyWorkflow
Namespace default
TaskQueue hello-world
Args [456]

Shorthand options are available:

temporal workflow start -t hello-world --type MyWorkflow -w 123 -i 456

You can also list and describe Workflows:

$ temporal workflow list

Status WorkflowId Name StartTime
Running 123 MyWorkflow 14 seconds ago

$ temporal workflow describe --workflow-id 123

"executionConfig": {
"taskQueue": {
"name": "hello-world",
"kind": "Normal"
"workflowExecutionTimeout": "0s",
"workflowRunTimeout": "0s",
"defaultWorkflowTaskTimeout": "10s"
"workflowExecutionInfo": {
"execution": {
"workflowId": "123",
"runId": "357074e4-0dd8-4c44-8367-d92536dd0943"
"type": {
"name": "MyWorkflow"
"startTime": "2023-04-15T06:42:31.191137Z",
"status": "Running",
"historyLength": "2",
"executionTime": "2023-04-15T06:42:31.191137Z",
"memo": {

"autoResetPoints": {

"stateTransitionCount": "1"
"pendingWorkflowTask": {
"state": "Scheduled",
"scheduledTime": "2023-04-15T06:42:31.191173Z",
"originalScheduledTime": "2023-04-15T06:42:31.191173Z",
"attempt": 1

For more detailed output in JSON format, use the following command:

$ temporal workflow list --fields long --output json

"execution": {
"workflow_id": "123",
"run_id": "357074e4-0dd8-4c44-8367-d92536dd0943"
"type": {
"name": "MyWorkflow"
"start_time": "2023-04-15T06:42:31.191137Z",
"status": 1,
"execution_time": "2023-04-15T06:42:31.191137Z",
"memo": {},
"task_queue": "hello-world"

Filter out Workflows based on Workflow Type with jq:

$ temporal workflow list --fields long -o json | jq '.[]'


To count the number of Workflows, use the following command:

$ temporal workflow list --fields long -o json | jq '.[]' | uniq -c

1 "OtherWorkflow"
2 "MyWorkflow"

To see the full range of Workflow-related commands, run temporal workflow or see the Temporal CLI workflow command reference.

For a full list of available commands, run temporal or see Available commands.


To communicate with a different Server, like a production Namespace on Temporal Cloud:

  1. Create an environment named prod.
  2. Pass --env prod to commands, like temporal workflow list --env prod.

To create a new environment and set its properties:

temporal env set prod.namespace production.f45a2
temporal env set prod.address
temporal env set prod.tls-cert-path /temporal/certs/prod.pem
temporal env set prod.tls-key-path /temporal/certs/prod.key

Check your settings:

$ temporal env get prod

namespace production.f45a2
tls-cert-path /temporal/certs/prod.pem
tls-key-path /temporal/certs/prod.key

Run a command to test the connection:

$ temporal workflow list --env prod

For a full list of properties, use temporal env set -h.

$ temporal env set -h

Client Options:

--address value The host and port (formatted as host:port) for the Temporal Frontend Service. [$TEMPORAL_CLI_ADDRESS]
--codec-auth value Sets the authorization header on requests to the Codec Server. [$TEMPORAL_CLI_CODEC_AUTH]
--codec-endpoint value Endpoint for a remote Codec Server. [$TEMPORAL_CLI_CODEC_ENDPOINT]
--context-timeout value An optional timeout for the context of an RPC call (in seconds). (default: 5) [$TEMPORAL_CONTEXT_TIMEOUT]
--env value Name of the environment to read environmental variables from. (default: "default")
--grpc-meta value [ --grpc-meta value ] Contains gRPC metadata to send with requests (format: key=value). Values must be in a valid JSON format.
--namespace value, -n value Identifies a Namespace in the Temporal Workflow. (default: "default") [$TEMPORAL_CLI_NAMESPACE]
--tls-ca-path value Path to server CA certificate. [$TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_CA]
--tls-cert-path value Path to x509 certificate. [$TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_CERT]
--tls-disable-host-verification Disables TLS host name verification if already enabled. (default: false) [$TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_DISABLE_HOST_VERIFICATION]
--tls-key-path value Path to private certificate key. [$TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_KEY]
--tls-server-name value Provides an override for the target TLS server name. [$TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_SERVER_NAME]

Display Options:

--color value when to use color: auto, always, never. (default: "auto")

Server configuration

View the full list of CLI configuration options with the --help flag:

temporal server start-dev --help

Namespace registration

Namespaces are pre-registered at startup for immediate use. Customize pre-registered Namespaces with the following command:

temporal server start-dev --namespace foo --namespace bar

Register Namespaces with namespace create:

temporal operator namespace create foo

Enable or disable Temporal UI

By default, the Temporal UI starts with Temporal CLI. Disable the UI with:

temporal server start-dev --headless

Dynamic configuration

Advanced Temporal CLI configuration requires a dynamic configuration file.

To set values on the command line, use --dynamic-config-value KEY=JSON_VALUE. For example, enable the Search Attribute cache:

temporal server start-dev --dynamic-config-value system.forceSearchAttributesCacheRefreshOnRead=false

This setting makes created Search Attributes immediately available.

Environmental variables

Configure system environment with Temporal CLI environmental variables. The following table lists and describes the environment variables you can set for Temporal CLI.

VariableDefinitionClient Option
TEMPORAL_CLI_ADDRESSHost and port (formatted as host:port) for the Temporal Frontend Service.--address
TEMPORAL_CLI_CODEC_AUTHSets the authorization header for requests to Codec Server.--codec-auth
TEMPORAL_CLI_CODEC_ENDPOINTEndpoint for remote Codec Server.--codec-endpoint
TEMPORAL_CONTEXT_TIMEOUTOptional timeout for RPC call context (in seconds). Default: 5.--context-timeout
TEMPORAL_CLI_NAMESPACENamespace in Temporal Workflow. Default: "default".--namespace
TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_CAPath to server CA certificate.--tls-ca-path
TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_CERTPath to x509 certificate.--tls-cert-path
TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_DISABLE_HOST_VERIFICATIONDisables TLS host name verification. Default: false.--tls-disable-host-verification
TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_KEYPath to private certificate key.--tls-key-path
TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_SERVER_NAMEOverride for target TLS server name.--tls-server-name


Enable auto-completion using the following commands.

zsh auto-completion

Add the following code snippet to your ~/.zshrc file:

source <(temporal completion zsh)

If you're running auto-completion from the terminal, run the following command:

echo 'source <(temporal completion zsh)' >> ~/.zshrc

After setting the variable, run the following command:

source ~/.zshrc.

Bash auto-completion

Install bash-completion and add the software to ~/.bash_profile.

To use aliases, add them to ~/.bash_profile as needed.

alias t='temporal'
alias tw='temporal workflow'
alias ts='temporal server start-dev'
alias tsdb='temporal server start-dev --db-filename ~/temporal.db'

# send process to background so you can continue using the terminal
alias tsbg='temporal server start-dev &> /dev/null & disown'