NIH Blueprint: The Human Connectome Project

Using Connectome Workbench

Connectome Workbench is an open source, freely available visualization and discovery tool used to map neuroimaging data, especially data generated by the Human Connectome Project. The distribution includes wb_view, a GUI-based visualiation platform, and wb_command, a command-line program for performing a variety of algorithmic tasks using volume, surface, and grayordinate data. wb_command is necessary for running HCP data processing pipelines.

Workbench version 1.2.3 is available for download for 64-bit Mac OSX, Windows, and Linux: Get Connectome Workbench now.

Changes in Workbench v1.2.3

New Features:

  • ZIP scene file wb_command function is now available from within the wb_view GUI
  • wb_shortcuts script implemented to more easily do common tasks for interactive shells
  • New Preferences option for hiding dynamic connectivity *.dynconn layers by default

Changes To Existing Behavior:

  • Warnings are produced when creating files with an extension not matching what wb_view expects
  • Interpolation of volume with a length-1 spatial dimension always uses enclosing voxel
  • -wb_command accepts (but warns) about unicode non-ascii dashes, but also replaces them in filenames
  • Nifti headers default pixdim[] to all 1s even when unused (cifti)


  • -cifti-label-import -drop-unused-labels option fixed
  • Files loaded by scene properly restore the "in spec" status
  • Chart timecourse status properly restored from scenes

Workbench allows you to explore data and activity on the surface, as well as in the volume of the brain. Connectome Workbench works seamlessly with ConnectomeDB to import averaged data from a group of subjects and view that data on a group averaged brain atlas in Workbench. In future versions of the software, users will be able to use Workbench to display and analyze functional task and connectivity, diffusion, and behavioral data from single subjects or groups of subjects defined by a user-initiated search of ConnectomeDB.

Screenshots (click to expand)

Software Plaftorm

The Workbench visualization platform and wb_command utilities are open-source and written in C++ by software developers in the Van Essen Laboratory at Washington University. (License)

Release Dates

Connectome Workbench v1.2.3 update has been released as of August 25, 2016 and is available for MacOSX, Linux, Windows platforms. Also available to use with Workbench are:

  • WB tutorial & user guide and HCP sample data available from ConnectomeDB
  • WB-compatible Group average functional connectivity dataset and dense connectome files available from ConnectomeDB

Source Code

Download the source code for Connectome Workbench from our GitHub repository: