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Question and Answer forum, like StackOverflow, written in python and Django

Project description

Askbot will work alone or with other django apps (with some limitations, please see below), Django 1.1.1 - 1.2.3(*), MySQL(**) and PostgresQL(recommended) (>=8.3).

Questions? Suggestions? Found a bug? -> please post at


  • standard Q&A functionalities including votes, reputation system, etc.

  • user levels: admin, moderator, regular, suspended, blocked

  • per-user inbox for responses & flagged items (for moderators)

  • email alerts - instant and delayed, optionally tag filtered

  • search by full text and a set of tags simultaneously

  • can import data from stackexchange database file


The general steps are:

  • install the code

  • if there is no database yet - create one

  • create a new or configure existing django site for askbot

  • create/update the database tables

Methods to install code

  • pip install askbot

  • easy_install askbot

  • download .tar.gz file from the bottom of this page, then run python install

  • clone code from the github git clone git://, and then python develop

Create/configure django site

Either run command askbot-setup or merge contents of directory askbot/setup_templates in the source code into your project directory.

Create/update database tables

Back up your database if it is not blank, then two commands:

  • python syncdb

  • python migrate

There are two apps to migrate - askbot and django_authopenid (a forked version of the original, included within askbot), so you can as well migrate them separately


There are some limitations that will be removed in the future. If any of these cause issues - please do not hesitate to contact

Askbot patches auth_user table. The migration script will automatically add missing columns, however it will not overwrite any existing columns. Please do back up your database before adding askbot to an existing site.

Included into askbot there are two forked apps: django_authopenid and livesettings. If you have these apps on your site, you may have trouble installing askbot.

User registration and login system is bundled with Askbot. It is quite good though, it allows logging in with password and many authentication service providers, including popular social services and recover account by email.

If there are any other collisions, askbot will simply fail to install, it will not damage your data.

Background Information

Askbot is based on CNPROG project by Mike Chen and Sailing Cai, project which was originally inspired by StackOverflow and Yahoo Answers.


(*) - If you want to install with django 1.2.x a dependency “Coffin-0.3” needs to be replaced with “Coffin-0.3.3” - this will be automated in the future versions of the setup script.

(**) - With MySQL you have to use MyISAM data backend, because it’s the only one that supports Full Text Search.

Project details

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