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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Here you can find answers to most frequently asked questions about asciinema.

If you don't find an answer to your question join our Matrix room (web client) or #asciinema IRC channel on Libera.Chat (web client).

How is "asciinema" pronounced?


The word "asciinema" is a combination of English "ASCII" and Ancient Greek "κίνημα" (kínēma, "movement").

What kind of sorcery is this?

It's not a sorcery. Read about it on the How it works page.

Do I have to upload my recordings to


When you run asciinema rec without specifying the filename argument then after completing the recording you get a prompt which lets you decide what you want to do.

asciinema 2.4+ lets you decide whether to save, upload or discard the recording:

asciinema: recording finished
(s)ave locally, (u)pload to, (d)iscard
[s,u,d]? _

Versions prior 2.4 let you confirm or cancel the upload:

asciinema: recording finished
asciinema: press <enter> to upload to, <ctrl-c> to save locally

However, if you record with:

asciinema rec demo.cast

then the recording is saved to a local file in asciicast format.

You can now replay it directly in your terminal with:

asciinema play demo.cast

At this point you have several options if you want to share it.

First, if you want to host it on in the end then run:

asciinema upload demo.cast

You can view the recording there and share it via secret (default) or public URL.

If you'd rather host it yourself you have following options:

How can I delete a recording from

In order to be able to delete a recording you first need to associate it with an user account. You can do that by using asciinema auth command. Once you complete this step look for a dropdown with a gear icon on recording page (it's below the player, on the right side).

If you don't want to create an account only to delete a recording, you don't need to do anything. All recordings not associated with a user account are automatically deleted 7 days after they were uploaded.


A new install ID is generated on each system you use asciinema on, so in order to keep all recordings under a single account you need to run asciinema auth on all of those systems.

If you followed the above steps and you still can't see the gear dropdown then most likely you have used different local user accounts for recording and for auth (e.g. you recorded in a VM or Docker container but you ran asciinema auth on your host machine).

Can I edit/post-process the recording?

Yes, but not (yet) in a way you would expect :)

asciicasts are quite simple newline-delimited JSON files. You can edit them easily with any text editor which supports UTF-8. The recorded data is more or less a series of print statements, with ansi escape sequences (also known as control sequences or control codes). You can add, delete or modify text there. There's no tool for visual editing of the screen contents though (due to incremental, state-machine based nature of terminal emulators).

Does asciinema record the passwords I type during recording sessions?

By default asciinema records only terminal output - what you actually see in a terminal window. It doesn't record input, i.e. key presses.

Some applications turn off so called "echo mode" when asking for a password, hiding the password. Because the typed in password characters are not printed they're not recorded. Other applications display star characters instead of real characters and asciinema records only "***" (a bunch of stars). However, there are applications which don't have any precautions and the actual password is echoed to a terminal. In such case the password would be recorded by asciinema. Make sure you know how an application is handling password input before you record it.

asciinema CLI 2.0 introduced ability to record key presses with asciinema rec --stdin option. When this option is used then all typed in characters are captured as stdin (i) events in the resulting asciicast file. This includes all passwords typed in from a keyboard, even if "echo mode" is turned off. When replaying, these chars are not displayed as output, but they could be used with asciinema player to implement custom event handler for input events.

--stdin basically does keylogging that is scoped to a single shell instance / terminal tab. Given its sensitive nature it's disabled by default and has to be explicitly enabled (opted-in). However, even if enabled, captured key presses are saved in the local recording file only. Unless you publish your recording on the internet, e.g. on, it all stays with you.

Why am I getting command not found at the begining of the recording session?

When your record your terminal asciinema starts a new shell instance (as indicated by $SHELL environment variable) by default. It invokes exec $SHELL, which in most cases translates to exec /bin/bash or exec /bin/zsh. This means the shell runs as an "interactive shell", but not as a "login shell".

If you have functions and/or other shell configuration defined in either .bash_profile, .zprofile or .profile file they are not loaded unless the shell is started as a login shell.

Some terminal emulators do that (passing "-l" option to the shell command-line), some don't. asciinema doesn't.

Worry not, you have several options. You can:

  • move this part of configuration to .bashrc/.zshrc,
  • record with asciinema rec -c "/bin/bash -l" or,
  • add the following setting to your $HOME/.config/asciinema/config file:
command = /bin/bash -l

How can I change my profile avatar? (any asciinema server in general) uses for profile avatars. The avatars are based on account email address.

If you want to change yours then you can do it at

At the moment this is the only option.

Why my shell prompt/theme isn't working during recording?

See this answer.

Why upload failed: Invalid or revoked install ID?

If you get this error when uploading a recording then it means your local install ID has been revoked (you most likely clicked "Revoke" on your account settings page). No further uploads with this install ID will be possible.

To re-enable uploads from this machine do this:

  1. remove the install ID file ~/.config/asciinema/install-id (also check ~/.asciinema/install-id)
  2. login to your account
  3. run asciinema auth - this will generate new local install ID
  4. open the printed URL - this will re-authenticate your system with you account

Why some of my custom shell functions are not available during recording?

See this answer.