I have a dataset with users connection and I want to create a directed network graph.

Nodes: ~20.000 Edges: ~33.000

I used to work before on NodeXL and Gephi, but now I am on Mac and I don't have access on NodeXL.

I tried Gephi and another tool called Cytoscape. Both of them were lagging and I could barely do some statistics. Visualizing the graph was a dream.

Is there any software (or maybe Python library) that can handle such a big network Graph?


3 Answers 3


Yes There are!


I think 20k-30k node-edge would be OK on Networkx, IF YOU HAVE A GOOD MACHINE! Networkx is a great library in Python particularly for Graph Analysis so you have access to great analysis tools beside visualizing but visualizing 20k vertices needs much RAM and takes long.


Igraph is another great tool for Graph Analysis with APIs in Python, R and C. You can do a lot with Igraph library including nice plotting facilities.


SNAP was developed by Jure Leskovec and his colleagues at Stanford. A large scale graph processing library natively written in C with API in Python. This library can handle huge graphs on a single personal machine.

  • PS.1 Both of these guys have interfaces with different graph softwares like Gephi, etc.
  • PS.2 For large graphs I strongly recommend to work in C++ if you can. Speaking as a Network/Graph guy, C++ solves many problems out there!

Mathematica's Graph Drawing

Mathematica can draw both 2D (GraphPlot) and 3D (GraphPlot3D) graphs (static and interactive) and has a host of options available to fine tune the display and interactive content. There is a very detailed Graph Drawing language overview that has tutorials and examples through out.


This question has already been answered in StackOverflow. Visualizing a graph with a million vertices . I would recommend use Graphexp for visualization with JanusGraph as a back-end storage


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