Keywords: Software

Author: Ulrich Görtz
License: [ext] MIT-license
Price: none
Category: database
Operating system: Linux, MacOSX, Windows
Reads format(s): sgf
Writes format(s): sgf
Stable Version: 0.8.4 (nov.'16)
Development status:
Programming language: C++, Python
Homepage: [ext] u-go.net
Size of installer: 10mby(Win, incl.Python ...
... interpreter)
Eats mbys while running: [ext] depends on data feed,
... possible are some 100mby
System needs: ->Kombilo-docs [ext] 0.8.x
Infos last checked:

Kombilo is a Go database? program by Ulrich Goertz.

Table of contents Table of diagrams
Eye-stealing tesuji
Symmetrical position

"Named after the Esperanto word for comb, Kombilo is designed to comb through game records for positions or players of interest." (AGA E-Journal 2006-03-03)


  • Its main purpose is to search for games in which a given pattern or position occurs.
  • You can also search for other criteria (like time period, players, events).
  • Features include, beside pattern search, variations, and "guess next move"
  • Kombilo is a very fast search engine for SGF files.
  • Operating Systems: Linux, Win, Mac (open source)
  • It is written in Python and C++ and released under the MIT license (old versions (0.5 and earlier) were released under the [ext] GPL).


  • Kombilo does not come with game records, but you can import games in SGF format.

Search results are:

  • a listing of the 'hits' if any, and
  • in the case of a full-board search, a listing of the next moves and the number of occurrences for each alternative.

You can click on any game in the list and view the basic game info or double click and a viewer will pop up to quickly review the game.

If you use Kombilo with the GoGoD CD, the listing is an instant history of the variation you are studying. This is because the game names in the CD collection are composed of the dates on which the games were played. You can see at a glance when the variation was popular and whether it is still used.

Development History

  • 2016-11-26: Kombilo 0.8.4 released
  • 2012-08-05: Kombilo 0.7.4 released
  • 2012-03-24: Kombilo 0.7 released
  • 2004-02-09: Kombilo 0.5i released (Stable version)
  • 2010, nov.: Kombilo 0.5n released (stable version)

Users' Comments and Reviews


BillSpight: Can you use Kombilo to search for shapes, regardless of board coordinates? Except for corners and edges, of course. Does it search over all 16 symmetries? (That's four directions, left hand vs. right hand, and Black vs. White.) E.g., can you look for

Eye-stealing tesuji  

anywhere in the center of the board,

and also find, say,

Symmetrical position  

UliGo, the other program by Ulrich Goertz, teaches problems (mainly life and death), also rotating and inverting them.

Ulrich Goertz: The program does take symmetries, color swap and translations into account. You can optionally disable color swap and translations.

Problems / Solutions, Bugs

  • Has anyone used kombilo with Mac OS 10.2.6? I have used it successfully with Xdarwin in earlier versions of OS X, but I can't seem to get it to work correctly with MacPython 2.3 and/or the latest X11 from apple. (This should not be a problem with the current version.)
  • Ectospheno: I tried recently on 10.4.6 with the darwinports versions of python, py-tkinter, py-pil, and py-pmw and it didn't work. I wasn't motivated enough at the time to investigate why.
  • TeatimeG?: It only works with old python, fortunately the fix is simple. Replace all instances of whrandom with plain random and it will work with the Python that ships on Mac.

Feature Requests and Discussion.

  • Show the probability (assuming B won more) that B wins this number of games or more, using p(B wins) from the proportion of B wins in the previous (parent) search.
  • Some sort of way of searching from within a python program. eg calling kombilo_query (sgf, searchbox, games-to-search) would return a list of games as seen in the kombilo search results list.
  • Be able to look into the past of a pattern, by showing how many times a stone was the most recent move played.


Kombilo last edited by bugcat on July 17, 2021 - 11:21
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