VSCode extension for HDF5


Like many of you, I’m looking forward to the upcoming HDF5 Users Group event at ITER at the end of the month. After two days of exciting presentations, we are planning CodeCamp and Hands-on style sessions. Perhaps we can combine an idea that’s been in the air for some time with such a concentration of brilliant community minds and devote one session to exploring the idea of a Visual Studio Code extension for HDF5. If that idea has occurred or appeals to you, or even if you think this is a terrible idea, we would like to hear from you on this thread! Show us your (anti-)use cases, related efforts, and attempts! Share your concerns and reservations! Anything that helps us to get a headstart on this on June 2 will be welcome. And join us on the day, if you can! The registration for virtual attendance is still open.

Best, G.


Interesting idea! Do you have in mind a debugger extension that would let you show e.g. file/dataset properties on hover of file/dataset variable? BTW is it possible to tell the underlying type form just a hid_t?


H5Iget_type() will tell you the type (H5I_type_t) of an HDF5 hid_t ID.


A Visual Studio Code extension for HDF5 exists:



Excellent! Thank you for the reference. This is a great starting point for our discussion. I’ll try to contact the author. G.


Regarding visualizing HDF5 variables from the debugger, which does not sound to be the purpose of the proposed extension, it looks like VSCode support the Natvis Framework, shared with Visual Studio.

So one would have to create a custom views of C++ objects in the debugger using the Natvis framework.

Does anyone know if such effort already exists?