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Neo4j Desktop User Interface Guide
This article demonstrates how to use Neo4j Desktop for managing instances of Neo4j locally for development.
It helps if you have read the section on graph databases.
If you haven’t already, download Neo4j. Using the provided instructions (shown when downloading), follow Step 1 to install and start the Neo4j Desktop application. Step 2 on the download page instructions shows you how to set up your first project and database and how to open the Neo4j in the browser, but we want to cover this step in more detail.
If you are opening Neo4j Desktop for the first time, it should ask you for a login. You can use a social account (Google, Github, or other) to acquire a long-term activation key that will auto-renew each year.
If you have a computer that is restricted where accessing a social profile is not possible (such as devices locked down on network and security), you can request an activation key. This process usually takes a couple of days to complete and grants access for one year.
From the Projects icon on the left-side menu, choose (or create) a project. A panel will display on the right to show the databases in your project and the plugins available or installed.
To create a database, click in the dotted square that says
Then click the Create a Local Graph button.
Next, you will type in a name for your database and set a password and choose a version (default is latest version).
A small icon will show which versions have been downloaded already.
Once the info is filled in, then click Create.
It may take a few minutes to download the version and actually create the database.
You have now created your own graph database! Now we will walk through some tools to interact with the database and data.
At the bottom of your newly created database are two buttons. One is to manage the database and the other is to start the database (when the database is running, the button is to stop the database).
When you click the Manage button, the resulting pane opens up several functionalities.
In the top section is your database name with buttons underneath it for Start, Stop, and Restart of the database. The buttons next to those allow you to open the folder location of the database and to open the Neo4j Browser to interact with data in the database. The Open Folder button can be used to modify data files and configuration, and the drop down next to the button can access the import folder to place csv files for loading.
In the bottom section are several tabs for information and settings.
Details tab shows the version and the status of your database.
When the database is running, it will also show port numbers and addresses needed to interact with the database (screenshot below).
Logs tab will show all of the streaming log output from the database.
Terminal tab allows you to interact with the database at the command line and potentially retrieve/send data via any end points set up.
You can also run cypher-shell and look at other logs from here.
Settings tab displays the configuration values for the database.
These can be changed, if needed. Once changes are made, you can apply them, and Desktop will offer to restart the database (necessary for changes to take effect).
Plugins tab, you can see what plugins are available (or you have installed) to use with Neo4j.
Currently, Neo4j Desktop has plugins for APOC, GraphQL, and Graph Algorithms.
Short descriptions of each are shown in the Neo4j Desktop pane.
To add these functionalities, simply click Install and Restart for the plugin.
Upgrade tab shows the list of all Neo4j versions, as well as the version this instance is currently running.
To change the version, choose one from the list and click Upgrade to this version in the right pane.
The last tab is
This tab just allows you to set a new password for your database.
If you have feedback or questions on how to use Neo4j Desktop, feel free to reach out to us.
You can submit messages to us through Intercom and tag as related to
Now that we covered the basics of Neo4j Desktop, you can start working with data using our query language, Cypher. You can also get a feel for interacting with Neo4j through Neo4j Browser. The Neo4j Sandbox walks you through demos of popular use cases in Neo4j and helps you get more familiar with the interfaces and Cypher. If you’re ready to dive in, feel free to check out how to import your data to Neo4j. Our Language Guides section shows you how to create an application in your preferred programming language to interact with data in Neo4j.