Create BPMN graph in headless mode


I would like to create BPMN graph but without the GUI. I like headless mode because nodes are always well aligned and if you want to add some nodes, all others move automatically.

File format of BPMN graph is XML which is very verbose and impossible to create/edit in headless mode. Is there a way to create BPMN graph like graphviz style (only write constraint and let the render place node where it want) ?

It looks like there is only bpmn-io-cli project. From what I read from the forum, it’s not possible to run it from nodejs and I really need to use a browser in headless mode. Is that still true ?

I would like to write in a user-friendly style. With bpmn CLI, I need to write the graph in JavaScript code. Is that the only option ? It’s not possible to create a graph in a non programming style ?

Thanks for your explanation,

Hi @bansan,

I don’t know the capabilities of bpmn-js here, but it is possible to create BPMN diagrams from code without layout information with the fluent Java BPMN Model API: Fluent Builder API |

Hope this helps, Ingo

Thanks for the link. I don’t know every BPMN software. In my case, I wanted to use because it’s supported by asciidoc. The idea is to write simple BPMN diagrams in text mode. If I can’t, the API of looks simple to install and to use. But I will keep in mind Camunda, community edition, it also looks interesting.

Hi @bansan,

the BPMN Model API of Camunda Platform can simply be used independent of the Camunda Engine.

It just requires a JDK and Maven installed. Converting text to BPMN in a headless mode is possible.

You can visualize the generated diagram with bpmn-js.

Hope this helps, Ingo

@Ingo_Richtsmeier Interesting. It’s difficult to have a JDK at work but I will try :slight_smile:

When you say “Converting text to BPMN in a headless mode is possible” do you mean in Java like bpmn-model in Github ? Or is there other way ?