CGI is a large class, providing several categories of methods, many of which are mixed in from other modules. Some of the documentation is in this class, some in the modules CGI::QueryExtension and CGI::HtmlExtension. See CGI::Cookie for specific information on handling cookies, and cgi/session.rb (CGI::Session) for information on sessions.

For queries, CGI provides methods to get at environmental variables, parameters, cookies, and multipart request data. For responses, CGI provides methods for writing output and generating HTML.

Read on for more details. Examples are provided at the bottom.


Add this line to your application's Gemfile:

gem 'cgi'

And then execute:

$ bundle

Or install it yourself as:

$ gem install cgi


Get form values

require "cgi"
cgi =
value = cgi['field_name']   # <== value string for 'field_name'
  # if not 'field_name' included, then return "".
fields = cgi.keys            # <== array of field names

# returns true if form has 'field_name'

CAUTION! cgi['field_name'] returned an Array with the old cgi.rb(included in Ruby 1.6)

Get form values as hash

require "cgi"
cgi =
params = cgi.params

cgi.params is a hash.

cgi.params['new_field_name'] = ["value"]  # add new param
cgi.params['field_name'] = ["new_value"]  # change value
cgi.params.delete('field_name')           # delete param
cgi.params.clear                          # delete all params

Save form values to file

require "pstore"
db ="query.db")
db.transaction do
  db["params"] = cgi.params

Restore form values from file

require "pstore"
db ="query.db")
db.transaction do
  cgi.params = db["params"]


After checking out the repo, run bin/setup to install dependencies. Then, run rake test to run the tests. You can also run bin/console for an interactive prompt that will allow you to experiment.

To install this gem onto your local machine, run bundle exec rake install. To release a new version, update the version number in version.rb, and then run bundle exec rake release, which will create a git tag for the version, push git commits and tags, and push the .gem file to


Bug reports and pull requests are welcome on GitHub at