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Temporal CLI command reference

The Temporal CLI is a command-line tool that includes a distribution of a Temporal Cluster (Temporal ServerLink preview iconWhat is the Temporal Server?

The Temporal Server is a grouping of four horizontally scalable services.

Learn more, persistence (SQLite), and the Temporal Web UILink preview iconWhat is the Temporal Web UI?

The Temporal Web UI

Learn more). The tool runs as a single process with zero runtime dependencies and supports persistence to disk and in-memory mode through SQLite.

Available commands


Temporal CLI can be installed through several different methods. While most of them can be used across all operating systems, please note that Homebrew is macOS-exclusive.

For more information, see our guide to running a Development ClusterLink preview iconHow to install Temporal CLI and run a development server


Learn more.

Starting the Temporal Server

Run the following command to start the Temporal Server. This command also starts the Web UI.

temporal server start-dev

At this point you should have a server running on localhost:7233 and a web interface at http://localhost:8233. A default Namespace has also been created.

Run individual commands to interact with the local Temporal Server.

temporal operator namespace list
temporal workflow list


Use the help flag to see a full list of CLI options:

temporal server start-dev --help

Namespace registration

Namespaces are pre-registered at startup so they're available to use immediately. To customize the pre-registered namespaces, start the server with the following:

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

You can also register Namespaces with the following command:

temporal operator namespace create foo

Persistence modes

By default, temporal server start-dev runs in an in-memory mode.

To persist the state to a file on disk, use --db-filename:

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

Enable or disable Temporal UI

By default, the Temporal UI is started with Temporal CLI. The UI can be disabled via a runtime flag:

temporal server start-dev --headless

Dynamic configuration

Advanced configuration of the Temporal CLI requires the use of a dynamic configuration file. This file is created outside the Temporal CLI; it is usually located with the service's config files.

Dynamic configuration values can also be set via --dynamic-config-value KEY=JSON_VALUE. For example, to enable the Search Attribute cache (disabled by default), run the following:

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

This setting makes created Search Attributes immediately available for use.

Environmental variables

The Temporal CLI hosts a set of Client Options that can be used to configure the system environment. Use the following table as a reference for the Temporal CLI environmental variables.

VariableDefinitionClient Option
TEMPORAL_CLI_ADDRESSThe host and port (formatted as host:port) for the Temporal Frontend Service.--address
TEMPORAL_CLI_CODEC_AUTHSets the authorization header on requests to the Codec Server.--codec-auth
TEMPORAL_CLI_CODEC_ENDPOINTEndpoint for a remote Codec Server.--codec-endpoint
TEMPORAL_CONTEXT_TIMEOUTAn optional timeout for the context of an RPC call (in seconds). Default value: 5--context-timeout
TEMPORAL_CLI_NAMESPACEIdentifies a Namespace in the Temporal Workflow. Default value: "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 if already enabled. Default value: false.--tls-disable-host-verification
TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_KEYPath to private certificate key.--tls-key-path
TEMPORAL_CLI_TLS_SERVER_NAMEProvides an override for the target TLS server name.--tls-server-name


The Temporal CLI has the capability to auto-complete commands.

Running temporal completion SHELL outputs the related completion SHELL code.

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

Bash auto-completion relies on bash-completion.

Install the software with the steps provided in the bash-completion README, or use your preferred package manager on your operating system.

For more information, see the Bash Completion page on Repology.