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PyBites Karmabot - A Python based Slack Chatbot for Community interaction

Project description

PyBites Karmabot - A Python based Slack Chatbot

Tests Black pre-commit

A Python based Slack Chatbot for Community interaction


Karmabot's main features is the management of Karma within the slack community server. You can give karma, reduce karma, check your current karma points and manage your karma related username.

karma example

Demo Youtube Video

Additional commands / features are:

  • Jokes powered by PyJokes
  • Overview on top channels of the slack server
  • Random Python tip, quote or nugget from
  • Browse and search python documentation, "pydoc help"


pip install karmabot

Basic Usage

After installing you can start karmabot by using the command


However, you need to some setup and supply some settings prior to this.


For app creation and tokens please follow the slack-bolt guide and enable socket mode.


By default we will look for a .karmabot file in the directory you used the karmabot command. The file should supply the following information.

# Slack bot app

# Workspace

# Backend

# Testing

KARMABOT_SLACK_BOT_TOKEN : The SLACK_BOT_TOKEN for your bot. You will find it under OAuth & Permission 🠊 Bot User OAuth Access Token in your app. The token starts with xoxb-.

KARMABOT_SLACK_APP_TOKEN : The SLACK_APP_TOKEN used for running the bot in Socket Mode. You will find it under Basic Information 🠊 App-Level Tokens in your app. The token starts with xapp-.

KARMABOT_SLACK_USER : The bot's user id. Initially, you can fill in a placeholder. Once you've run your own Karmabot for the first time, you can ask it as admin in private chat via @Karmabot your_id. This will return a value starting with U, e.g., U0123XYZ. Replace your placeholder with this value.

KARMABOT_GENERAL_CHANNEL : The channel id of your main channel in slack. Initially, you can fill in a placeholder. Once you've run your own Karmabot for the first time, you can ask it as admin in private chat via @Karmabot general_channel_id. This will return a value starting with C, e.g., C0123XYZ. Replace your placeholder with this value.

KARMABOT_ADMINS : The slack user ids of the users that should have admin command access separated by commas.

KARMABOT_DATABASE_URL : The database url which should be compatible with SqlAlchemy. For the provided docker file use postgresql://user42:pw42@localhost:5432/karmabot. :heavy_exclamation_mark: To start the provided Docker-based Postgres server, be sure you have Docker Compose installed and run docker-compose up -d from the karmabot directory.

KARMABOT_TEST_MODE= : Determines if the code is run in test mode. User KARMABOT_TEST_MODE=true to enable testing mode. Everything else will default to false. This setting has to be provided as true, if you want run tests without a valid KARMABOT_SLACK_BOT_TOKEN. Otherwise, you will receive an exceptions with slack_bolt.error.BoltError: token is invalid ....

If you do not want to use a file you have to provide environment variables with the above names. If no file is present we default to environment variables.


Go to your slack app and click on Add features and functionality. Then go into the following categories and set permissions.

  • Event Subscriptions
    • Enable Events 🠊 Toggle the slider to on
    • Subscribe to bot events 🠊 Add via the Add Bot User Event button
      • team_join
      • channel_create
      • message.channels
      • message.groups
  • Permissions
    • Scopes 🠊 Add the following permissions via the Add an OAuth Scope button
      • app_mentions:read
      • channels:history
      • channels:join
      • channels:read
      • chat:write
      • groups:history
      • groups:read
      • groups:write
      • im:history
      • im:read
      • im:write
      • users.profile:read
      • users:read

Development pattern for contributors

We use poetry and pyproject.toml for managing packages, dependencies and some settings.

Setup virtual environment for development

You should follow the instructions to get poetry up and running for your system. We recommend to use a UNIX-based development system (Linux, Mac, WSL). After setting up poetry you can use poetry install within the project folder to install all dependencies.

The poetry virtual environment should be available in the the project folder as .venv folder as specified in poetry.toml. This helps with .venv detection in IDEs.

Conda users

If you use the Anaconda Python distribution (strongly recommended for Windows users) and conda create for your virtual environments, then you will not be able to use the .venv environment created by poetry because it is not a conda environment. If you want to use poetry disable poetry's behavior of creating a new virtual environment with the following command: poetry config virtualenvs.create false. You can add --local if you don't want to change this setting globally but only for the current project. See the poetry configuration docs for more details.

Now, when you run poetry install, poetry will install all dependencies to your conda environment. You can verify this by running pip freeze after poetry install.

Testing and linting

For testing you need to install nox separately from the project venv created by poetry. For testing just use the nox command within the project folder. You can run all the nox sessions separately if need, e.g.,

  • only linting nox -rs lint
  • only testing nox -rs tests

If nox cannot be found, use python -m nox instead.

For different sessions see the file. You can run nox --list to see a list of all available sessions.

If you want to run tests locally via pytest you have to provide a valid .karmabot settings file or the respective enviroment variables.

Please make sure all tests and checks pass before opening pull requests!

Using nox under Windows and Linux (WSL)

Make sure to delete the .nox folder when you switch from Windows to WSL and vice versa, because the environments are not compatible.


To ensure consistency you can use pre-commit. pip install pre-commit and after cloning the karmabot repo run pre-commit install within the project folder.

This will enable pre-commit hooks for checking before every commit.

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