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(c) 2012 Jason Daly (

Released under the MIT License.


speed-dial is a CLI bookmarking & shortcuts utility, allowing you to alias and index directory paths within 'entry groups', manage directory 'listings' (speed-dial will list out the children of a 'listing' and ask which you'd like to make your new current working directory), and swap your current working directory quickly by targeting entries or listings.



Node 0.6+ or greater is required to run speed-dial. speed-dial has so far only been tested on Mac OS.


  1. Install the node package by running npm install speed-dial --global
  2. Reload your terminal session to make the speed-dial binary available
  3. Run speed-dial init. Specify the path to a file of your choice that your terminal sources. ~/.bash_profile or ~/.zsh_profile are good choices for bash and zsh users respectively
  4. Reload your terminal session once more so your terminal can source speed-dial's functions file


speed-dial's init command sources a bash script from the package making a few commands to interact with speed-dial available.

  • sd: The main speed-dial interface
  • s: Shortcut to sd go [alias|id]

These sd and s commands should be your sole method for interacting with speed-dial. Technically you can interact with speed-dial without issue using the provided speed-dial binary directly, however when calling speed-dial go [...] no redirection will occur on exit of the script.

An Important Note

speed-dial should not be run directly using the node package's bin/speed-dial binary.

There is an inherent issue trying to change the terminal's current working directory from within a child process. Changing the current working directory from within speed-dial only changes the directory of the child process speed-dial is running within and only for the duration of the script's execution. Once speed-dial finishes execution, returning focus back to the main terminal's process, the current working directory will remain as it was prior to executing the speed-dial command.

speed-dial works around this limitation by writing the target directory to a file in /tmp just before it's process exits. When calling speed-dial through the available shell functions, the target directory is read from the /tmp file and the appropriate cd [target directory] command is executed directly within the terminal's process.

If anyone would like to suggest a better (and multi-user-friendly) alternative, please create an issue or send a pull request.

Available Commands

Like git, the speed-dial command delegates to subcommands based on its first argument. The most common subcommands are:

sd init

sd init

Should only be run once, immediately after installing the speed-dial node package. A line like the following one is appended to the file you specify when prompted.

# Loads speed-dial functions
. /path/to/system/node_modules/speed-dial/assets/functions

sd version

sd version

Prints the currently installed version of speed-dial.

sd list

sd list [group] [options]

Lists the SpeeDial entries for all groups and listings if no [group] is specified. --raw can be passed to [options] to print a prettyjson dump of the raw speed-dial JSON storage in it's entirety.

sd list            # lists all entries and listings by group
sd list default    # lists the entries for the default group
sd list work       # lists the entries for the 'work' group
sd list listings   # lists the 'listings' entries
sd list work --raw # lists the raw speed-dial JSON storage for the 'work' group

Whenever the list command is executed, directly by you or internally by speed-dial, the entries are ordered by the following criteria

  1. Ascending by entry weight
  2. Without alias, then with alias
  3. Ascending alphabetically

sd group

sd group [name]

Prints the name of the currently active group if [name] is not provided. If [name] is provided, speed-dial's currently active group will be changed.

sd group      # prints 'default'
sd group work # changes currently active group to 'work'
sd group      # prints 'work'

When running a command like sd go [alias|id] (or s [alias|id] for short), speed-dial will restrict it's lookup to the currently active group. By switching the active group as you shift focus throughout the day, you can avoid the need to pass the group name to s when performing a lookup.

sd add

sd add [path] [alias] [options]

sd add ~/Sites/                   # Adds /Users/deefour/Sites/ to the currently active group with no alias
sd add ~/Documents docs                     # Adds /Users/deefour/Documents to the currently active group with alias 'docs'
sd add ~/Work/Project1 --group work         # Adds /Users/deefour/Work/Project1 to the 'work' group with no alias
sd add ~/Work/Project2 p2 --group work      # Adds /Users/deefour/Work/Project2 to the 'work' group with alias 'p2'
sd add ~/Media/Audio/iTunes mp3s --weight 4 # Adds /Users/deefour/Media/Audio/iTunes to the currently active group with a weight of 4

Adds a new entry to speed-dial. The [alias] is optional, as speed-dial can lookup an entry based on it's ID within it's group by running s [entry ID] (this is explained more in sd go below).

sd addlisting

sd addlisting [path] [alias]

Adds a new listing to speed-dial. Both [path] and [alias] are required. Note: Listing aliases must be unique to other listing aliases and from all group names.

sd addlisting ~/Sites sites # adds a new listing with alias 'sites' for path '/Users/deefour/Sites`

sd remove

sd remove

Lists all entries by group and all listings, with an incrementing ID value that is not reset for each group or the listings. Prompts for the ID value corresponding to the entry or listing to be removed. After confirmation, the entry or listing will be removed from the speed-dial storage.

For a user-created entry group, if no entries remain in the group after the one specified was removed, the user-created entry group will be removed from the speed-dial storage too.

sd go & s

sd go [group|alias|ID] [alias|ID]

sd go               # Lists all entries and listings, prompting the user to select one
sd go work          # Lists all entries for the 'work' entry group, prompting the user to select one
sd go listings      # Lists all listings, prompting the user to select one
sd go listing sites # Lists the child directories of the path associated with the 'sites' alias listing, prompting the user to select one
sd go me            # (Assuming 'me' is an alias in the curently active group) Switches the current working directory to the path associated with the 'me' alias in the currently active group
sd go work 1        # Switches the current working directory to the entry associated with ID '1' in the 'work' entry group

This command obeys the following logic

  1. For calls without an alias/ID specified and those for a specific listing, speed-dial will list all entries/listings and prompt the user to select an ID for the entry/listing to switch to
  2. If a group is provided without an alias, speed-dial will list all entries for the group and prompt the user to select an ID for the entry to switch to
  3. If a listing is specified, speed-dial will list all child directories of the listing path and prompt the user to select an ID for the child directory to switch to
  4. If both a group/listing and alias/ID are provided, the user will not be prompted for anything; the current working directory will be changed immediately

The bash command function s is provided as a shortcut to sd go. Since speed-dial is about minimizing keystrokes required to change a directory, it's recommended you always use s in favor of sd go.



Given a speed-dial listing as follows

➜  ~ ✗ s
info:    Entry Group: default (active)
info:    1      one             /Users/deefour/Sites/One
info:    2      two             /Users/deefour/Sites/Two
info:    3      three           /Users/deefour/Sites/Three
info:    Entry Group: work
info:    4      proj            /Users/deefour/Work/Proj
info:    5      two             /Users/deefour/Work/Two

If the following lookup was performed

➜  ~ ✗ s proj
error:   The target proj does not match any alias in the default group

The lookup would fail. This can be annoying since the proj alias does exist, just not in the active group.

To alleviate this frustration while still allowing for the clean organization of aliases within groups, you can set the globalLookupFallback config option to true.

➜  ~ ✗ sd config set globalLookupFallback true

Now the lookup will treat all aliases as though they were in a single group.

➜  ~ ✗ s proj
info:    The /Users/deefour/Work/proj path from the work group with scms has been selected
info:    The current working directory is now /Users/deefour/Work/proj

Note: The first alias matched will be used. This means in the above example if the alias two was searched, it will only ever match the entry in the default group unless the work group is active or specified on the command line through s work two (in which case the globalLookupFallback is ignored anyway).


  • Group names and listing aliases must be globally unique
  • Group names, entry aliases, and listing aliases must all start with a letter and may only contain letters, numbers, underscores, and hyphens


Version 0.3.3 - December 18 2012

Fixes issue with speed-dial not being able to write to /tmp

  • fs.writeFile is being used instead of manually opening, writing to, and closing the file in /tmp

Version 0.3.0 - November 29 2012

globalLookupFallback now available (see for details)

Version 0.2.0 - November 15 2012

JShint now in place

  • All code is now linted
  • Initial grunt.js config added

Version 0.1.0 - November 15 2012

Initial project release

  • No tests available yet
  • A great deal of refactoring/cleaning to do