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Python LiveReload is an awesome tool for web developers

Project description

This is a brand new LiveReload in version 2.0.0.

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Python LiveReload is designed for web developers who know Python.

Install Python LiveReload with pip:

$ pip install livereload

If you don’t have pip installed, try easy_install:

$ easy_install livereload

Command Line Interface

Python LiveReload provides a command line utility, livereload, for starting a server in a directory.

By default, it will listen to port 35729, the common port for LiveReload browser extensions.

$ livereload --help
usage: livereload [-h] [-p PORT] [-w WAIT] [directory]

Start a `livereload` server

positional arguments:
  directory             Directory to watch for changes

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -p PORT, --port PORT  Port to run `livereload` server on
  -w WAIT, --wait WAIT  Time delay before reloading

Older versions of Python LiveReload used a Guardfile to describe optional additional rules for files to watch and build commands to run on changes. This conflicted with other tools that used the same file for their configuration and is no longer supported since Python LiveReload version 2.0.0. Instead of a Guardfile you can now write a Python script using very similar syntax and run it instead of the command line application.

Script example: Sphinx

Here’s a simple example script that rebuilds Sphinx documentation:

#!/usr/bin/env python
from livereload import Server, shell
server = Server()'docs/*.rst', shell('make html', cwd='docs'))

Run it, then open http://localhost:5500/ and you can see the documentation changes in real time.

Developer Guide

The new livereload server is designed for developers. It can power a wsgi application now:

from livereload import Server, shell

server = Server(wsgi_app)

# run a shell command'static/*.stylus', 'make static')

# run a function
def alert():
    print('foo')'foo.txt', alert)

# output stdout into a file'style.less', shell('lessc style.less', output='style.css'))


The Server class accepts parameters:

  • app: a wsgi application

  • watcher: a watcher instance, you don’t have to create one can watch a filepath, a directory and a glob pattern:'path/to/file.txt')'directory/path/')'glob/*.pattern')

You can also use other library (for example: formic) for more powerful file adding:

for filepath in formic.FileSet(include="**.css"):, 'make css')

You can delay a certain seconds to send the reload signal:

# delay 2 seconds for reloading'path/to/file', delay=2)


Setup a server with server.serve method. It can create a static server and a livereload server:

# use default settings

# livereload on another port

# use custom host and port
server.serve(port=8080, host='localhost')

# open the web browser on startup
server.serve(open_url=True, debug=False)


The powerful shell function will help you to execute shell commands. You can use it with

# you can redirect command output to a file'style.less', shell('lessc style.less', output='style.css'))

# commands can be a list'style.less', shell(['lessc', 'style.less'], output='style.css'))

# working with Makefile'assets/*.styl', shell('make assets', cwd='assets'))

Frameworks Integration

Livereload can work seamlessly with your favorite framework.


Here is a little hint on Django. Change your file to:

#!/usr/bin/env python
import os
import sys

if __name__ == "__main__":
    os.environ.setdefault("DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE", "hello.settings")

    from import execute_from_command_line

    if 'livereload' in sys.argv:
        from django.core.wsgi import get_wsgi_application
        from livereload import Server
        application = get_wsgi_application()
        server = Server(application)

        # Add your watch
        #'path/to/file', 'your command')

When you execute ./ livereload, it will start a livereload server.


Wrap Flask with livereload is much simpler:

# app is a Flask object
app = create_app()

server = Server(app.wsgi_app)


Wrap the Bottle app with livereload server:

app = Bottle()
server = Server(app)

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