Wrapper around the .net (C#) ThermoFisher ThermoRawFileReader library for running on Linux with mono (works on Windows too). It takes a thermo RAW file as input and outputs a metadata file and the spectra in 3 possible formats

  • MGF: MS2 and MS3 spectra
  • mzML and indexed mzML: both MS1, MS2 and MS3 spectra
  • Apache Parquet: under development

RawFileReader reading tool. Copyright © 2016 by Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc. All rights reserved

(Linux) Requirements

Mono (install mono-complete if you encounter “assembly not found” errors).


mono ThermoRawFileParser.exe -i=/home/user/data_input/raw_file.raw -o=/home/user/data_input/output/ -f=0 -g -m=0

For running on Windows, omit mono. The optional parameters only work in the -option=value format. The tool can output some RAW file metadata -m=0|1 (0 for JSON, 1 for TXT) and the spectra file -f=0|1|2|3 (0 for MGF, 1 for mzML, 2 for indexed mzML, 3 for Parquet) or both. Use the -p flag to disable the thermo native peak picking.

ThermoRawFileParser.exe --help
 usage is (use -option=value for the optional arguments):
  -h, --help                 Prints out the options.
      --version              Prints out the library version.
  -i, --input=VALUE          The raw file input.
  -o, --output=VALUE         The output directory. Specify this or an output
  -b, --output_file=VALUE    The output file. Specify this or an output
  -f, --format=VALUE         The output format for the spectra (0 for MGF, 1
                               for mzMl, 2 for indexed mzML, 3 for Parquet).
  -m, --metadata=VALUE       The metadata output format (0 for JSON, 1 for TXT).
  -g, --gzip                 GZip the output file if this flag is specified (
                               without value).
  -p, --noPeakPicking        Don't use the peak picking provided by the native
                               thermo library (by default peak picking is
  -z, --noZlibCompression    Don't use zlib compression for the m/z ratios and
                               intensities (by default zlib compression is
  -v, --verbose              Enable verbose logging.
  -e, --ignoreInstrumentErrors
                             Ignore missing properties by the instrument.
  -u, --s3_url[=VALUE]       Optional property to write directly the data into
                               S3 Storage.
  -k, --s3_accesskeyid[=VALUE]
                             Optional key for the S3 bucket to write the file
  -t, --s3_secretaccesskey[=VALUE]
                             Optional key for the S3 bucket to write the file
  -n, --s3_bucketName[=VALUE]
                             S3 bucket name

A (java) graphical user interface is also available here that enables the selection of an input RAW directory or one ore more RAW files.


Click here to go to the release page (with release notes starting from v1.1.7).

You can find the ThermoRawFileParserGUI here.

Galaxy integration

ThermoRawFileParser is available in the Galaxy ToolShed and is deployed at the European Galaxy Server.


By default the parser only logs to console. To enable logging to file, uncomment the file appender in the log4net.config file.

        <level value="INFO" />
        <appender-ref ref="console" />
        <!--<appender-ref ref="file" />-->
    <appender name="console" type="log4net.Appender.ConsoleAppender">
        <layout type="log4net.Layout.PatternLayout">
            <conversionPattern value="%date %level %logger - %message%newline" />
    <!--<appender name="file" type="log4net.Appender.RollingFileAppender">
        <file value="ThermoRawFileParser.log" />
        <appendToFile value="true" />
        <rollingStyle value="Size" />
        <maxSizeRollBackups value="5" />
        <maximumFileSize value="10MB" />
        <staticLogFileName value="true" />
        <layout type="log4net.Layout.PatternLayout">
            <conversionPattern value="%date [%thread] %level %logger - %message%newline" />


Run ThermoRawFileParser simply with the pre-build biocontainer:

docker run -i -t -v /home/user/raw:/data_input --help

Basic docker

Use the Dockerfile_basic docker file to build an image. It fetches to source code from github and builds it.

docker build --no-cache -t thermorawparser -f Dockerfile_basic .

Run example:

docker run -v /home/user/raw:/data_input -i -t thermorawparser mono /src/bin/x64/Debug/ThermoRawFileParser.exe -i=/data_input/raw_file.raw -o=/data_input/output/ -f=0 -g -m=0

Create example for reusing the container:

docker create -v /home/user/raw:/data_input --name=rawparser -it thermorawparser
docker start rawparser
docker exec rawparser mono /src/bin/x64/Debug/ThermoRawFileParser.exe -i=/data_input/raw_file.raw -o=/data_input/output/ -f=0 -g -m=0
docker exec rawparser mono /src/bin/x64/Debug/ThermoRawFileParser.exe -i=/data_input/another_raw_file.raw -o=/data_input/output/ -f=0 -g -m=0
docker stop rawparser

Biocontainers docker

Use the Dockerfile docker file to build an image. It fetches to source code from github and builds it.

docker build --no-cache -t thermorawparser .

Run example:

docker run -v /home/user/raw:/data_input -i -t --user biodocker thermorawparser mono /home/biodocker/bin/bin/x64/Debug/ThermoRawFileParser.exe -i=/data_input/raw_file.raw -o=/data_input/output/ -f=0 -g -m=0

or with the bash script (

docker run -v /home/user/raw:/data_input -i -t --user biodocker thermorawparser /bin/bash /home/biodocker/bin/ -i=/data_input/raw_file.raw -o=/data_input/output/ -f=0 -g -m=0