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The Auditree data gathering and reporting tool

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The Auditree data gathering and reporting tool.


Auditree harvest is a command line tool that assists with the gathering and formatting of data into human readable reports. Auditree harvest allows a user to easily retrieve historical raw data, in bulk, from a Git repository and optionally format that raw data to meet reporting needs. Auditree harvest is meant to retrieve and report on historical evidence from an evidence locker. It is, however, not limited to just processing evidence. Any file found in a Git repository hosting service can be processed by Auditree harvest.


  • Supported for execution on OSX and LINUX.
  • Supported for execution with Python 3.6 and above.

Python 3 must be installed, it can be downloaded from the Python site or installed using your package manager.

Python version can be checked with:

python --version


python3 --version

The harvest tool is available for download from PyPI.


It is best practice, but not mandatory, to run harvest from a dedicated Python virtual environment. Assuming that you have the Python virtualenv package already installed, you can create a virtual environment named venv by executing virtualenv venv which will create a venv folder at the location of where you executed the command. Alternatively you can use the python venv module to do the same.

python3 -m venv venv

Assuming that you have a virtual environment and that virtual environment is in the current directory then to install a new instance of harvest, activate your virtual environment and use pip to install harvest like so:

. ./venv/bin/activate
pip install auditree-harvest

As we add functionality to harvest users will want to upgrade their harvest package regularly. To upgrade harvest to the most recent version do:

. ./venv/bin/activate
pip install auditree-harvest --upgrade

See pip documentation for additional options for using pip.


Since Auditree harvest interacts with Git repositories, it requires Git remote hosting service credentials in order to do its thing. Auditree harvest will by default look for a username and token in a ~/.credentials file. You can override the credentials file location by using the --creds option on a harvest CLI execution. Valid section headings include github, github_enterprise, bitbucket, and gitlab. Below is an example of the expected credentials entry.



Collate data

To collate historical versions of a file from a Git repository hosting service like Github, provide the repository URL (repo positional argument), the relative path to the file within the remote repository including the file name (filepath positional argument) and an optional date range (--start and --end arguments). You can also, optionally, provide the local Git repository path (--repo-path argument), if the repository already exists locally and you wish to override the remote repository download behavior.

harvest collate /raw/baz/baz.json --start 20191201 --end 20191212 --repo-path ./bar-repo
  • File versions are written to the current local directory where harvest was executed from.
  • File versions are prefixed by the commit date in YYYYMMDD format.
  • File versions are gathered with daily granularity.
    • Only the latest version of a file for a given day is retrieved.
    • If a file did not change on a date then no file version is written for that date. Instead the latest version prior to that date serves as the version of that file for that date.
  • If you don't provide a --start and an --end then the latest version of a file is retrieved.
  • If you only provide a --start date file versions from the start date to the current date are retrieved.
  • If you only provide an --end date the latest version of a file for the end date is retrieved.

Generate report(s)

To run a report using content contained in a Git repository hosting service like Github, provide the repository URL (repo positional argument), the report package (package), the report name (name positional argument) and include any configuration that the report requires (--config) as a JSON string. You can also, optionally, provide the local Git repository path (--repo-path argument), if the repository already exists locally and you wish to override the remote repository download behavior.

harvest report auditree_arboretum check_results_summary --config '{"start":"20191212","end":"20191221"}'

Getting report details

To see a full summary of available reports within any package (like auditree-arboretum) do:

harvest reports auditree_arboretum --list

To see details on a specific report that include usage example do something like:

harvest reports auditree_arboretum --detail check_results_summary

Report development

Reports should be hosted with the fetchers/checks that collect the evidence for the reports process. Within auditree-arboretum this means the code lives in the appropriate provider directory. Contributing common harvest reports are as follows:

  1. Adhere to the auditree-arboretum contribution guidelines - TODO add link.
  2. Reports go in the "reports" folder by provider.
  3. Create a python module with a class that extends the BaseReporter class.
    • The harvest CLI will use the report module name as the name of the report (sans the .py extention).
    • Only one report class per report module is permitted.
  4. In the new report class the expectations are as follows:
    • Provide a module level docstring that contains:
      • A single line summary
      • A detailed description of the report that includes evidence/files being processed and expected configuration
      • At least one usage example
      • Use the check results summary report docstring as an example/template.
      • harvest uses this docstring to display available reports and their details to the user.
    • Provide/Override the report_filename property to return the name of the report (including extension). harvest uses this property to apply a report template (if desired) and to determine which writer function to use when writing the report to a file. Use the check results summary report report_filename property and the Python packages summary report report_filename property as examples.
    • Provide/Override the generate_report method. This is where you put your evidence processing and report formatting logic. Use the check results summary report generate_report method as an example.
      • harvest takes the optional --config command line argument as a JSON string when executing a report, converts it to a dictionary and attaches it as the config attribute to your report object. Use the report object's config attribute in the generate_report method if you plan to have report specific configuration options.
      • Your report object also has a method that retrieves an evidence file for a given date. Use the report object's get_file_content method when retrieving evidence from an evidence locker.
      • Generating CSV reports:
        • harvest uses the Python CSV writer to write out the report file. So be sure that your generate_report method returns a list of dictionaries that adheres to the expectations of the Python CSV writer.
      • Generating reports from a Jinja2 template:
        • Add a report template named the same as your report_filename property with a .tmpl extension. harvest will start to look for the template in the same directory as the report module. So as long as it exists within that directory structure, harvest will find it. Use as an example.
        • harvest will look for this template file as part of your report processing and, if found, will pass your generate_report returned content through the template logic.
        • Your generate_report returned content should be a dictionary with everything necessary for your report template to render the desired report appropriately.
        • The report template can access the "raw" content generated by generate_report through a dictionary named data and also has access to the report's attributes through the report object. Use as an example.
      • Generating reports without templates:
        • You just want to generate report content directly from generate_report? No problem. Just generate a string as the report content or a list of strings as the rows of the report content and harvest will do the rest.

Custom report development

If you find that you have a specific reporting need that does not fit in as a common harvest report, no problem. Just develop the report in a separate repo/project following the same guidelines as above. As long as the package is importable by python and you tell harvest what package to look for your report(s) in via the CLI, it will handle the rest.

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