Grist: An Open-source Spreadsheet Solution and Airtable Alternative

Grist: An Open-source Spreadsheet Solution and Airtable Alternative

Grist is a free open-source web-based app that allows you to create, edit, manage and manipulate spreadsheet files with your team and group.

In contrast, Grist is a relational spreadsheet that takes data management to the next level. Import your data, link records across tables, and arrange your data in your ideal layout. Congrats! Your spreadsheet is now also your custom data application.

Grist poses several useful features that eases the work for data engineers, DB managers, content creators, and anyone who is interested to manage complex spreadsheets.

You can install Grist at server or your local machine using Docker or build it from source. It can be installed on Windows, Linux, and macOS.

Feature Highlights

  • Supports multiple views
  • Comes with a rich chart library
  • Allows users to share, and collaborate on the same files
  • Supports code view
  • Easy to follow-up updates using: document history option.
  • Export your sheets/ data in many formats.
  • Python formulas.
  • Full Python syntax is supported, and the standard library.
  • Many Excel functions also available.
  • A portable, self-contained format.
  • Based on SQLite, the most widely deployed database engine.
  • Any tool that can read SQLite can read numeric and text data from a Grist file.
  • Great format for backups that you can be confident you can restore in full.
  • Great format for moving between different hosts.
  • Convenient editing and formatting features.
  • Choices and choice lists, for adding colorful tags to records without fuss.
  • References and reference lists, for cross-referencing records in other tables.
  • Attachments, to include media or document files in records.
  • Dates and times, toggles, and special numerics such as currency all have specialized editors and formatting options.
  • Conditional Formatting, letting you control the style of cells with formulas, to draw attention to important information.
  • Great for dashboards, visualizations, and data entry.
  • Charts for visualization.
  • Summary tables for summing and counting across groups.
  • Widget linking streamlines filtering and editing data. Grist has a unique approach to visualization, where you can lay out and link distinct widgets to show together, without cramming mixed material into a table.
  • The Filter bar is great for quick slicing and dicing.
  • Incremental imports.
  • So you can import a CSV of the last three months activity from your bank...
  • ... and import new activity a month later without fuss or duplicates.
  • Integrations.
  • A REST API, Zapier actions/triggers, and support from similar integrators.
  • Import/export to Google drive, Excel format, CSV.
  • Can link data with custom widgets hosted externally.
  • Many templates to get you started, from investment research to organizing treasure hunts.
  • Access control options.
  • (You'll need SSO logins set up to make use of these options)
  • Share individual documents, or workspaces, or team sites.
  • Control access to individual rows, columns, and tables.
  • Control access based on cell values and user attributes.
  • Can be self-maintained.
  • Useful for intranet operation and specific compliance requirements.
  • Sandboxing options for untrusted documents.
  • On Linux or with docker, you can enable gVisor sandboxing at the individual document level.
  • On OSX, you can use native sandboxing.


Grist-core, is released under the Apache License, Version 2.0, which is an OSI-approved free software license. See LICENSE.txt and NOTICE.txt for more information. If you have received a version of Grist with an ext directory, the material within it is separately licensed.


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