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Python-bindings for the Collmex import/export API

Project description

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Collmex is an online ERP system for (small) companies with a focus on simple accounting. <> (Note: Collmex is Germany-based but seems to support English. You’re bound to stumble over German strings, though.)

This package aims to provide pythonic bindings to program against Collmex’ API. It includes transaction management for integration with the ZODB or other databases that can integrate with the transaction package.


To initialize a connection to the collmex server, login-credentials are required. These can be given explicitely when the gocept.collmex.collmex.Collmex object is created or via an ini file named collmex.ini. The ini file must live in the project directory or any of it’s parent directories, e.g. it is possible to place collmex.ini in your home directory to use those credentials for all of your projects. The ini file must contain the section [credentials] for production and [test-credentials] for testing purposes. Each section must have the following options: customer_id, company_id, username and password. The file collmex.ini-example can be used as a template.


customer_id = 42555
company_id = 1
username = realuser
password = realpassword

customer_id = 41222
company_id = 1
username = testuser
password = testpassword

Collmex API

Collmex provides a POST- and CSV-based API, which is encapsulated into a utility that provides methods for the various CSV record types. API documentation is available at,1,help,api.

Compatibility for Python 2 and 3

We need to define this function to make the doctests compatible.

>>> def assert_equal(expected, returned):
...     if expected != returned:
...         raise AssertionError("{!r} != {!r}".format(expected, returned))

The collmex object

The collmex object is a central place to access collmex. In the Zope 3 jargon it is a global utility:

>>> import os
>>> import gocept.collmex.collmex
>>> os.environ['collmex_credential_section'] = 'test-credentials'
>>> collmex = gocept.collmex.collmex.Collmex()

Pre flight cleanup

First we need to clean up the Collmex environment:

>>> import gocept.collmex.testing
>>> gocept.collmex.testing.cleanup_collmex()

Transaction integration

gocept.collmex has support for transaction integration. All modifying calls are buffered until the transaction is commited. XXX explain more.

>>> import transaction

Customers: create_customer and get_customers

>>> customer = gocept.collmex.model.Customer()
>>> customer[u'Kundennummer'] = 10000
>>> customer[u'Firma'] = u'Testkunden'
>>> collmex.create(customer)
>>> transaction.commit()

Customers can be listed using the get_customers method:

>>> customers = collmex.get_customers()
>>> customers
[<gocept.collmex.model.Customer object at 0x...>, <gocept.collmex.model.Customer object at 0x...>]
>>> len(customers)

The first customer is the generic one:

>>> customer = customers[0]
>>> assert_equal(u'CMXKND', customer[u'Satzart'])
>>> assert_equal(u'9999', customer[u'Kundennummer'])
>>> assert_equal(u'Allgemeiner Gesch\xe4ftspartner', customer[u'Firma'])

The second customer is one created during test setup:

>>> customer = customers[1]
>>> assert_equal(u'CMXKND', customer[u'Satzart'])
>>> assert_equal(u'10000', customer[u'Kundennummer'])
>>> assert_equal(u'Testkunden', customer[u'Firma'])

Products: create_product and get_products

Products are created using the create_product method:

>>> product = gocept.collmex.model.Product()
>>> product[u'Produktnummer'] = u'TEST'
>>> product[u'Bezeichnung'] = u'Testprodukt'
>>> product[u'Produktart'] = 1 # Dienstleistung
>>> product[u'Basismengeneinheit'] = u'HR'
>>> product[u'Verkaufs-Preis'] = 5
>>> collmex.create(product)
>>> transaction.commit()
>>> assert_equal(u'Testprodukt', collmex.get_products()[0][u'Bezeichnung'])

Invoices: create_invoice and get_invoices

Invoices are created using the create_invoice method:

>>> import datetime
>>> start_date =
>>> item = gocept.collmex.model.InvoiceItem()
>>> item[u'Kunden-Nr'] = u'10000'
>>> item[u'Rechnungsnummer'] = 100000
>>> item[u'Menge'] = 3
>>> item[u'Produktnummer'] = u'TEST'
>>> item[u'Rechnungstext'] = u'item text \u2013 with non-ascii characters'
>>> item[u'Positionstyp'] = 0
>>> collmex.create_invoice([item])

Invoices can be looked up again, using the get_invoices method. However, as discussed above the invoice was only registered for addition. Querying right now does not return the invoice:

>>> collmex.get_invoices(customer_id=u'10000', start_date=start_date)

After committing, the invoice is found:

>>> transaction.commit()
>>> assert_equal(u'item text \u2013 with non-ascii characters',
...       collmex.get_invoices(customer_id=u'10000',
...                            start_date=start_date)[0][u'Rechnungstext'])


This section describes the API for activities (Taetigkeiten erfassen)

Create an activity

A project with one set and an employee are required to submit activities:

>>> import datetime
>>> import gocept.collmex.testing
>>> gocept.collmex.testing.create_project(u'Testprojekt')
>>> gocept.collmex.testing.create_employee()
>>> act = gocept.collmex.model.Activity()
>>> act[u'Projekt Nr'] = u'1' # Testprojekt
>>> act[u'Mitarbeiter Nr'] = u'1' # Sebastian Wehrmann
>>> act[u'Satz Nr'] = u'1' # TEST
>>> act[u'Beschreibung'] = u'allgemeine T\xe4tigkeit'
>>> act[u'Datum'] =, 1, 23)
>>> act[u'Von'] = datetime.time(8, 7)
>>> act[u'Bis'] = datetime.time(14, 28)
>>> act[u'Pausen'] = datetime.timedelta(hours=1, minutes=12)
>>> collmex.create(act)
>>> transaction.commit()

Export using get_activities

get_activities returns Activity objects.

>>> activities = collmex.get_activities()
>>> assert_equal(u'allgemeine T\xe4tigkeit', activities[0][u'Beschreibung'])

Projects: get_projects

Projects can be exported with the get_projects API. It returns an entry for every project set (Projektsatz) of each project (Projekt):

>>> proj = collmex.get_projects()
>>> len(proj)
>>> proj[0][u'Projektnummer'] == proj[1][u'Projektnummer']
>>> assert_equal(u'5,00', proj[0][u'Satz'])
>>> assert_equal(u'9,65', proj[1][u'Satz'])
>>> assert_equal(u'0', proj[0][u'Inaktiv'])


Results queried from Collmex are cached for the duration of the transaction.

To demonstrate this, we instrument the _post() method that performs the actual HTTP communication to show when it is called:

>>> original_post = collmex._post
>>> def tracing_post(self, *args, **kw):
...     print(u'cache miss')
...     return original_post(*args, **kw)
>>> collmex._post = tracing_post.__get__(collmex, type(collmex))

The first time in an transaction is retrieved from Collmex, of course:

>>> transaction.abort()
>>> assert_equal(u'Testprodukt', collmex.get_products()[0][u'Bezeichnung'])
cache miss

But after that, values are cached:

>>> assert_equal(u'Testprodukt', collmex.get_products()[0][u'Bezeichnung'])

When the transaction ends, the cache is invalidated:

>>> transaction.commit()
>>> assert_equal(u'Testprodukt', collmex.get_products()[0][u'Bezeichnung'])
cache miss
>>> assert_equal(u'Testprodukt', collmex.get_products()[0][u'Bezeichnung'])

Remove tracing instrumentation:

>>> collmex._post = original_post


1.9 (2019-09-02)

  • Drop support for Python 3.3 and 3.4.

  • Add support for Python 3.6, 3.7 and 3.8b4.

  • Migrate code to Github.

  • Update tests to new Collmex URLs.

1.8.3 (2018-03-16)

  • Implemented CMXABO, only applicable for “collmex Verein”.

1.8.2 (2017-01-23)

  • Implemented MITGLIED_GET as get_members() and CMXMGD as models.Member, both only applicable for “collmex Verein”.

1.8.1 (2016-06-09)

  • Extend Project to retrieve budget and summed up work via API.

1.8.0 (2016-01-27)

  • Declared compatibility with Python 3.4.

  • Stopped promising compatibility with Python 3.2 since a) tests don’t succeed with Python 3.2 and current test software b) nobody uses it anymore anyway.

  • Made sure tests don’t use invalid credentials on test account too many times in a row.

  • Raise ValueError if the Collmex website returned an error during Collmex.browser_login. Until now the error was hidden, but the following action failed. In particular this should help to spot invalid credentials.

1.7.0 (2014-09-04)

  • Use collmex.ini file given by the path in environment variable COLLMEX_INI if present, only otherwise look upward from the current directory.

  • Don’t log the password in our debug output.

1.6.0 (2014-08-18)

  • Un-deprecate method Collmex.create_invoice, it now takes care of automatically allocating invoice ids.

  • Add gocept.collmex.testing.ConsoleDump utility that fakes a collmex connection, but only logs method calls.

1.5.1 (2013-12-09)

  • Fix brown bag release 1.5.0

1.5.0 (2013-12-09)

  • Added methods to Activity to parse/calculate the dates, times, breaks, duration.

1.4.4 (2013-09-25)

  • Improve check for invalid credentials when gocept.collmex.collmex.Collmex is created.

  • Yield more detailed information when parsing of the ini file failed.

1.4.3 (2013-09-24)

  • Fix the check for invalid credentials when gocept.collmex.collmex.Collmex is created.

1.4.2 (2013-09-23)

  • Credentials to log into Collmex can be given via an collmex.ini file.

1.4.1 (2013-09-16)

  • Creation of test activities is now fully customizable

1.4 (2013-09-13)

  • gocept.collmex is now compatible with Python 3.2 and Python 3.3!

1.3 (2013-02-22)

  • Implement activities API (#11954).

1.2.1 (2012-03-09)

  • Fix gocept.collmex.collmex.Collmex.browser_login() after collmex website changed wich included a rename of form elements.

1.2 (2012-02-21)

Note: This version was accidentally released without the changes in 1.1.1, however, the release itself contained the changes of 1.1 and thus isn’t broken.

  • Add Inaktiv attribute on CMXPRJ (projects)

1.1.1 (2012-02-17)

  • Rectify previous brown-bag release.

1.1 (2012-02-17)

  • Do not honour Collmex’ robots.txt as of 2012-02-09. :(

1.0 (2012-01-23)

  • Forced usage of Python 2.7.

  • Added testing helper get_collmex to create a collmex object from environment variables.

  • Made testing helper collmex_login() a method: gocept.collmex.collmex.Collmex.browser_login()

  • Modified signature of testing helper create_activity, so it no longer needs a parameter.

0.9 (2012-01-20)

  • Added testing helper create_activity.

0.8 (2012-01-20)

  • Added API for retrieving activities (get_activities).

  • Updated tests and test infrastructure to recent changes in Collmex.

0.7 (2009-11-05)

  • Added API for retrieving projects and creation of activities.

0.6 (2009-02-16)

  • Make models robust against API changes so they don’t immediately break when the record becomes longer.

  • Updated customer model to current API.

0.5.1 (2009-01-08)

  • Fixed multi-threading bug: thread-local data needs to be intialized for each thread.

0.5 (2008-12-19)

  • Values returned from Collmex are converted to unicode.

  • Cache results for the duration of the transaction.

0.4 (2008-12-11)

  • Added get_products and create_product.

  • Added create_customer.

  • gocept.collmex.testing.cleanup_collmex() now only deletes any existing data, it does not add any sample customers or products, use the API for that.

0.3.1 (2008-12-02)

  • Python 2.5 compatibility.

0.3 (2008-12-01)

  • Using Windows-1252 as encoding when uploading data (used to be ISO-8859-1).

  • Fixed transaction integration when upload fails.

0.2 (2008-11-28)

  • Modifications for changed Collmex API.

  • Added get_customers to query customers (API CUSTOMER_GET).

0.1 (2008-10-14)

  • first release. Supports getting and storing invoices.

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