Pages and API endpoints#

The Datasette web application offers a number of different pages that can be accessed to explore the data in question, each of which is accompanied by an equivalent JSON API.

Top-level index#

The root page of any Datasette installation is an index page that lists all of the currently attached databases. Some examples:

Add /.json to the end of the URL for the JSON version of the underlying data:


Each database has a page listing the tables, views and canned queries available for that database. If the execute-sql permission is enabled (it's on by default) there will also be an interface for executing arbitrary SQL select queries against the data.


The JSON version of this page provides programmatic access to the underlying data:

Hidden tables#

Some tables listed on the database page are treated as hidden. Hidden tables are not completely invisible - they can be accessed through the "hidden tables" link at the bottom of the page. They are hidden because they represent low-level implementation details which are generally not useful to end-users of Datasette.

The following tables are hidden by default:

  • Any table with a name that starts with an underscore - this is a Datasette convention to help plugins easily hide their own internal tables.

  • Tables that have been configured as "hidden": true using Hiding tables.

  • *_fts tables that implement SQLite full-text search indexes.

  • Tables relating to the inner workings of the SpatiaLite SQLite extension.

  • sqlite_stat tables used to store statistics used by the query optimizer.


The table page is the heart of Datasette: it allows users to interactively explore the contents of a database table, including sorting, filtering, Full-text search and applying Facets.

The HTML interface is worth spending some time exploring. As with other pages, you can return the JSON data by appending .json to the URL path, before any ? query string arguments.

The query string arguments are described in more detail here: Table arguments

You can also use the table page to interactively construct a SQL query - by applying different filters and a sort order for example - and then click the "View and edit SQL" link to see the SQL query that was used for the page and edit and re-submit it.

Some examples:


Every row in every Datasette table has its own URL. This means individual records can be linked to directly.

Table cells with extremely long text contents are truncated on the table view according to the truncate_cells_html setting. If a cell has been truncated the full length version of that cell will be available on the row page.

Rows which are the targets of foreign key references from other tables will show a link to a filtered search for all records that reference that row. Here's an example from the Registers of Members Interests database:


Note that this URL includes the encoded primary key of the record.

Here's that same page as JSON: