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A Python framework for Ethereum smart contract deployment, testing and interaction.

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Brownie is a Python-based development and testing framework for smart contracts targeting the Ethereum Virtual Machine.

Brownie is no longer actively maintained. Future releases may come sporadically - or never at all. Check out Ape Framework for all your python Ethereum development needs.


  • Full support for Solidity (>=0.4.22) and Vyper (>=0.1.0-beta.16)
  • Contract testing via pytest, including trace-based coverage evaluation
  • Property-based and stateful testing via hypothesis
  • Powerful debugging tools, including python-style tracebacks and custom error strings
  • Built-in console for quick project interaction


Tested with ganache version 7.9.2, however it is generally recommended to use hardhat because ganache has been sunsetted.


via pipx

The recommended way to install Brownie is via pipx. pipx installs Brownie into a virtual environment and makes it available directly from the commandline. Once installed, you will never have to activate a virtual environment prior to using Brownie.

To install pipx:

python3 -m pip install --user pipx
python3 -m pipx ensurepath

To install Brownie using pipx:

pipx install eth-brownie

To upgrade to the latest version:

pipx upgrade eth-brownie

To use lastest master or another branch as version:

pipx install git+

via pip

You can install the latest release via pip:

pip install eth-brownie

via setuptools

You can clone the repository and use setuptools for the most up-to-date version:

git clone
cd brownie
python3 install

as a library

If you want to install brownie inside your own project (rather than as a standalone cli tool):

export BROWNIE_LIB=1
pip install eth-brownie

This loosens the pins on all dependencies. You'll want to make sure you have your own requirements.txt to make sure upgrades upstream don't surprise anyone.

for development

There are extra tools that are helpful when developing:

git clone
cd brownie
python3 -m venv venv
./venv/bin/pip install wheel
./venv/bin/pip install -e . -r requirements-dev.txt

Upgrading the pinned versions of dependencies is easy:

./venv/bin/pip-compile --upgrade
./venv/bin/pip-compile --upgrade
./venv/bin/pip-compile --upgrade

Even small upgrades of patch versions have broken things in the past, so be sure to run all tests after upgrading things!

Quick Usage

To initialize a new Brownie project, start by creating a new folder. From within that folder, type:

brownie init

Next, type brownie --help for basic usage information.

Documentation and Support

Brownie documentation is hosted at Read the Docs.

If you have any questions about how to use Brownie, feel free to ask on Ethereum StackExchange or join us on Gitter.


To run the tests, first install the developer dependencies:

pip install -e . -r requirements-dev.txt

Then use tox to run the complete suite against the full set of build targets, or pytest to run tests against a specific version of Python. If you are using pytest you must include the -p no:pytest-brownie flag to prevent it from loading the Brownie plugin.

Using Docker

You can use a sandbox container provided in the docker-compose.yml file for testing inside a Docker environment.

This container provides everything you need to test using a Python 3.6 interpreter.

Start the test environment:

docker-compose up -d

To open a session to the container:

docker-compose exec sandbox bash

To run arbitrary commands, use the bash -c prefix.

docker-compose exec sandbox bash -c ''

For example, to run the tests in brownie/tests/

docker-compose exec sandbox bash -c 'python -m pytest tests/convert/'

Attaching to dockerized RPC clients

You can also attach to a RPC client already running inside a docker container.

For example for running ganache-cli you could just startup the official ganache-cli docker image:

docker run -p 8545:8545 trufflesuite/ganache-cli

Then in another terminal on your host you could connect to it:

brownie console

If you have your RPC client bound to a specific hostname e.g. ganache you could create a separate brownie network for it:

brownie networks add Development dev cmd=ganache-cli host=http://ganache:8545

Then connect to it with:

brownie console --network dev


Help is always appreciated! Feel free to open an issue if you find a problem, or a pull request if you've solved an issue.

Please check out our Contribution Guide prior to opening a pull request, and join the Brownie Gitter channel if you have any questions.


This project is licensed under the MIT license.

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