Polyman is an EDF/EDF+ viewer and manual sleep scoring program.

EDF and EDF+ files are commonly used in EEG and Sleep investigations, but can be used for almost any (also non-medical) sequential time series and event lists. The specifications of the EDF/EDF+ file format are on www.edfplus.info and also in the following articles:

- Kemp B, Värri A, Rosa AC, Nielsen KD, Gade J. A simple format for exchange of digitized polygraphic recordings. Electroenceph. Clin. Neurophysiol. 82, 1992:391-393.

- Kemp B, Olivan J. European data format 'plus' (EDF+), an EDF alike standard format for the exchange of physiological data. Clinical Neurophysiology 114, 2003: 1755-1761.

Free version of Polyman for MS-Windows 10 and older has utilities for signal analysis and visualization, checks EDF(+) file compatibility, supports video synchronization, and has several export and reporting possibilities, including recording de-identification. It allows manual scoring and it also is equipped with some automatic analysis routines. Default installation does also include an installation of Unicode characters and some demo EDF(+) files and video. If you want to try it, just start with the Tours that are in the User manual (see menu Help).


Last version of Polyman is available at the www.edfplus.info downloads section.


The free version of Polyman may NOT be used for medical diagnosis or therapy. Use it at your own risk, for research or educational purposes only. Polyman and Polyman Report are complicated software that inevitably contain mis-interpretations, mistakes, and bugs. We cannot and do not accept any liability for damages related to the use of this software. We sincerely urge you to regularly check all results obtained with Polyman. We cannot guarantee the safety and integrity of your data.

Polyman was tested on Win98/2000/XP/NT/Vista/7-10.

This information addresses the situation as of April 2021.

User License

Polyman is freely distributed, however it is not open source.

A major reason to develop and freely distribute Polyman, is that we want to promote the use of EDF+. Because EDF+ exists, Sleep and EEG labs can contribute to multi-center research projects, archive and retrieve their recordings and scorings indefinitely, and be free from vendor-lock.

EDF+ is the only data format for Sleep and EEG investigations that is accepted by most companies and researchers. But because of commercial reasons some companies prefer their own, proprietary, format. And for scientific or personal reasons, some researchers want to promote their own personal data format. Those companies and researchers would modify Polyman in such a way that it also reads their data format. In this way, Polyman would no longer promote the use of EDF+ and the Sleep and EEG community would risk a standards war.

Therefore, Polyman is not yet open-source. We try to keep it so attractive (and affordable) that more researchers and labs will want to use it and thus strive for EDF+ compatibility. Polyman then helps them to check EDF+ compatiblity of their recordings and scorings.