About QIIME 2 View

QIIME 2 View (or q2view for short) is an entirely client-side interface for viewing QIIME 2 artifacts and visualizations (.qza/.qzv files respectively). This means that you do not need to have a working QIIME 2 installation to inspect QIIME 2 results. It also means that the files you provide are not sent beyond your browser. In other words, this entire site functions without a server (which makes it very inexpensive to operate).

Additionally, q2view supports viewing externally hosted files, which means you can provide a link to your file (for example on Dropbox) and q2view will automatically download and display it. Better yet, the resulting pages are themselves shareable, so if a collaborator does not have QIIME 2, you can simply upload your results and share your q2view links with your collaborator. q2view will automatically fetch your results and display them to your collaborator.

This is all made possible through the new HTML5 Service Worker API. Because QIIME 2 results are actually zip files containing a /data/ directory, q2view can hoist that content by giving its service worker a reference to the file. It can then serve individual HTML pages (as well as data, Javascript, and CSS) from that zipped directory as if they were a part of the website itself. This means our visualizations can become powerfully interactive and rich without compromising the portability of them.

q2view also understands the /provenance/ directory of every QIIME 2 result which means in addition to rehosting interactive rich content, it can display the specific actions, parameters, and even versions of the software used to generate the content. This means you never need to worry about losing track of what your visualizations represent.


This section is for common errors you may encounter when using q2view.

This can happen for a variety of reasons, but the most common are either the URL does not exist, you've lost your internet connection, or the server does not support CORS and must set the required headers.

What you have provided is not a QIIME 2 .qza or .qzv file. It is possible that q2view is seeing an HTML page which may contain a .qza/.qzv file. If that is the case, try to find the link that is a direct download and provide that instead.

The file you have provided is a .zip file, not a .qza or .qzv file (or there is something terribly wrong with your .qza/.qzv file). This interface only works on QIIME 2 files.

Required Headers

The following headers must be returned by the server in order for view.qiime2.org to be able to read the response. If they are not set, then the browser will deny access under the Same-Origin Policy.

Header NameHeader ValueNotes
Access-Control-Allow-Originview.qiime2.org(using * as the value is also acceptable)
Access-Control-Allow-MethodsGET, HEAD(more methods may be provided, but these must at least be present)

Additionally, the server must provide its content using HTTPS otherwise the Same-Origin Policy prevents access to the data.