Hugo Markdown

Posted onby
Both HTML and Markdown are supported content formats.
  1. Format Hugo markdown and code – Techformist Format your markdown using prettier and you are off to the races. Hugo static site generator keeps everything simple. I just love the power of typing in something in markdown, and seeing the finished HTML pages and blog formatted to specs (in no time, I might add).
  2. GFM, or “GitHub Flavored Markdown” also supports syntax highlighting. To activate it, simply add the file extension of the language you want to use directly after the first code “fence”, ```js, and syntax highlighting will automatically be applied in the rendered HTML.

Hugo has excellent Markdown support out of the box. By default, Hugo uses the Goldmark Markdown processor which is fully CommonMark-compliant. See the configuration instructions to learn more about the extensions you can configure. You can change Hugo’s Goldmark settings in.

You can put any file type into your /content directories, but Hugo uses the markup front matter value if set or the file extension (see Markup identifiers in the table below) to determine if the markup needs to be processed, e.g.:

  • Markdown converted to HTML
  • Shortcodes processed
  • Layout applied

List of content formats

The current list of content formats in Hugo:

NameMarkup identifiersComment
Goldmarkmd, markdown, goldmarkNote that you can set the default handler of md and markdown to something else, see Configure Markup.
BlackfridayblackfridayBlackfriday will eventually be deprecated.
MMarkmmarkMmark is deprecated and will be removed in a future release.
Emacs Org-ModeorgSee go-org.
AsciiDocasciidocext, adoc, adNeeds Asciidoctor installed.
RSTrstNeeds RST installed.
Pandocpandoc, pdcNeeds Pandoc installed.
HTMLhtml, htmTo be treated as a content file, with layout, shortcodes etc., it must have front matter. If not, it will be copied as-is.

The markup identifier is fetched from either the markup variable in front matter or from the file extension. For markup-related configuration, see Configure Markup.

External Helpers

Some of the formats in the table above need external helpers installed on your PC. For example, for AsciiDoc files,Hugo will try to call the asciidoctor command. This means that you will have to install the associatedtool on your machine to be able to use these formats.

Hugo passes reasonable default arguments to these external helpers by default:

  • asciidoctor: --no-header-footer -
  • rst2html: --leave-comments --initial-header-level=2
  • pandoc: --mathjax

Because additional formats are external commands, generation performance will rely heavily on the performance of the external tool you are using. As this feature is still in its infancy, feedback is welcome.

External Helper AsciiDoc

AsciiDoc implementation EOLs in Jan 2020 and is no longer supported.AsciiDoc development is being continued under Asciidoctor. The format AsciiDocremains of course. Please continue with the implementation Asciidoctor.

External Helper Asciidoctor

The Asciidoctor community offers a wide set of tools for the AsciiDoc format that can be installed additionally to Hugo.See the Asciidoctor docs for installation instructions. Make sure that also alloptional extensions like asciidoctor-diagram or asciidoctor-html5s are installed if required.

External asciidoctor command requires Hugo rendering to disk to a specific destination directory. It is required to run Hugo with the command option --destination.

Some Asciidoctor parameters can be customized in Hugo:

backendDon’t change this unless you know what you are doing.
doctypeCurrently, the only document type supported in Hugo is article.
extensionsPossible extensions are asciidoctor-html5s, asciidoctor-bibtex, asciidoctor-diagram, asciidoctor-interdoc-reftext, asciidoctor-katex, asciidoctor-latex, asciidoctor-mathematical, asciidoctor-question, asciidoctor-rouge.
attributesVariables to be referenced in your AsciiDoc file. This is a list of variable name/value maps. See Asciidoctor’s attributes.
noHeaderOrFooterOutput an embeddable document, which excludes the header, the footer, and everything outside the body of the document. Don’t change this unless you know what you are doing.
safeModeSafe mode level unsafe, safe, server or secure. Don’t change this unless you know what you are doing.
sectionNumbersAuto-number section titles.
verboseVerbosely print processing information and configuration file checks to stderr.
traceInclude backtrace information on errors.
failureLevelThe minimum logging level that triggers a non-zero exit code (failure).

Hugo provides additional settings that don’t map directly to Asciidoctor’s CLI options:

Sets the working directory to be the same as that of the AsciiDoc file being processed, so that include will work with relative paths. This setting uses the asciidoctor cli parameter --base-dir and attribute outdir=. For rendering diagrams with asciidoctor-diagram, workingFolderCurrent must be set to true.
By default, Hugo removes the table of contents generated by Asciidoctor and provides it through the built-in variable .TableOfContents to enable further customization and better integration with the various Hugo themes. This option can be set to true to preserve Asciidoctor’s TOC in the generated page.

Below are all the AsciiDoc related settings in Hugo with their default values:

Notice that for security concerns only extensions that do not have path separators (either , / or .) are allowed. That means that extensions can only be invoked if they are in one’s ruby’s $LOAD_PATH (ie. most likely, the extension has been installed by the user). Any extension declared relative to the website’s path will not be accepted.

Example of how to set extensions and attributes:

In a complex Asciidoctor environment it is sometimes helpful to debug the exact call to your external helper with allparameters. Run Hugo with -v. You will get an output like

Learn Markdown

Markdown syntax is simple enough to learn in a single sitting. The following are excellent resources to get you up and running:

See Also