🍖Rib A lightweight and extensible irb replacement


Thin and fast

rib irb pry
Lines of code 1500 4500 9000
Launch time (ms) 404.4 404.6 624.4
Data on 2018-05-22

Easily extensible

Use built-in plugins or write your own

Here's a small list of some special built-in plugins:
  • Multiline history
  • Bottom up backtrace
  • In-place editing
  • Auto-indention
  • Output pagination

Less complex

Therefore less likely to have bugs

Utilize Ruby's parser directly instead of a separate parser like irb, therefore less likely to behave differently. For example, evaluating {if: 42} in irb was once broken (issue)

gem install rib


Start the shell by:

rib Pure ruby console
rib rails Rails console
rib rack Rack console
rib auto for auto detecting application


Try rib all to enable almost all built-in plugins for above example.

rib -h

Usage: rib [ruby OPTIONS] [rib OPTIONS] [rib COMMANDS]
ruby options:
  -e, --eval LINE        Evaluate a LINE of code
  -d, --debug            Set debugging flags (set $DEBUG to true)
  -w, --warn             Turn warnings on (set $-w and $VERBOSE to true)
  -I, --include PATH     Specify $LOAD_PATH (may be used more than once)
  -r, --require LIBRARY  Require the library, before executing your script
rib options:
  -c, --config FILE      Load config from FILE
  -p, --prefix PATH      Prefix to locate the app. Default to .
  -n, --no-config        Suppress loading any config
  -h, --help             Print this message
  -v, --version          Print the version
rib commands:
  all                    Load all recommended plugins
  auto                   Run as Rails or Rack console (auto-detect)
  min                    Run the minimum essence
  rack                   Run as Rack console
  rails                  Run as Rails console


Rib started in 2011 and has been maintained since then. It aims to be lightweight and extensible so it could work for anyone. It's minimal in its core, but it still offers a lot more features such as debugging, in-place editing and more via built-in plugins. Check out README for more details.