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makepy: Handsfree Python Module Programming

Project description

    **<span style="color:red">
    This is the backport version 0.0.26 of 'makepy' for Python 2.
    Please upgrade to Python 3+ and use the current 'makepy' version 0.0.26.

pypi version stage python versions build status

makepy: Handsfree Python Module Programming

This project provides:

makepy: A command line tool to simplify Python project setup, installation, and testing.
makepy.mainlog: A module for making logging and structlog setup less cumbersome and less error-prone.
makepy.argparse: A module providing a drop-in ArgumentParser for writing better readable argparse code.

Install via pip3 install --user makepy.

mainlog module

As the name suggest, use makepy.mainlog only in your main module. Do not setup logging outside of main modules! The module's main function is mainlog.setup_logging:

import logging
from makepy import mainlog

log = logging.getLogger('app')

def main(argv=None):
    level = logging.INFO
    mainlog.setup_logging(level=level, mode='json')'Hello %s!', 'makepy', extra={'v':1})

# {"message": "Hello makepy!", "v": 1}

The currently supported logging modes are json and console (default). Using mode='console' or no mode will produce regular stdlib logs like:

INFO:app:Hello makepy!

Use mainlog.setup_logging(level=level, use_structlog=True) to setup structlog logging. If struclog is not installed, stdlib logging is used as fallback. The predefined structlog settings will format stdlib logs as follows.

[info     ] info msg 1                     [stdlib]
[debug    ] debug msg 2                    [stdlib]
[error    ] error msg 3                    [stdlib]

If you use structlog loggers in your modules you also get extra key-value pairs.

[info     ] info msg                       [structlog] a=[1, 2, 3] v=1
[debug    ] debug msg                      [structlog] b=('a', 'b', 'c') v=2
[error    ] error msg                      [structlog] c={'x': 1} v=3

If colorama is installed, the logs will be nicely colored (structlog feature).

argparse module

For writing better command line apps, makepy.argparse provides a compatible ArgumentParser that uses the 4-letter opti and flag methods, replacing the original add_argument method.

from makepy import argparse
desc = 'My CLI Tool'
p = argparse.ArgumentParser(description=desc)
p.flag('--json',          help='use json output format')
p.flag('--dry_run',       help='perform dry run')
p.opti('--num',     '-n', help='number of iterations', metavar='N', type=int, default=1)
p.opti('--file',    '-f', help='input file',           required=True)
p.opti('command',         help='command to run',       choices=['upper','lower'])

Using shorter names and nice alignment allows argparse code to be much more readable. Yes I know, to allow for such multi-column-based coding, you need to disable some linter rules. But it's worth it, not just for argparse code, but for better readable Python code in general. makepy's ArgumentParser also provides a few shortcuts to setup other commonly used modules directly via the following flags:

  • with_debug: adds --debug flag
  • with_logging: automatically sets up logging using makepy.mainlog after parsing args
  • with_input: adds --input option, defaulting to - (aka. stdin)
  • with_protected_spaces: modifies the argparse formatter, to protect white space as defined in your help statements. Otherwise argparse will strip any newline and repeated spaces, etc., to create condense help paragraphs. Using this option you can now safely align help text directly in your code. See makep/ as an example.

Here is an example to setup common debug and logging features:

p = argparse.ArgumentParser(description=desc).with_logging(use_structlog=True).with_debug()

If you do not like one-liners, you can also break lines.

p = argparse.ArgumentParser(description=desc)

Using the with_logging and optionally using with_debug allows you to quickly setup logging or structlog loggers with human-readable console output. Therefore, with_logging supports the same mode and use_structlog key-value args as used by mainlog.setup_logging described above.

makepy command

This project also provides a makepy command, used to automate project creation, incremental building, testing via tox, and uploading to PyPi.

makepy cast

Here are some commands supported by makepy:

makepy init --trg ~/workspace/newproject # setup new project/package named "newproject"
cd ~/workspace/newproject                # enter new project

makepy backport     # backport project to python2
tox -e py3          # use `tox` to install and test the package in a Python 3 environment
tox                 # install and test in all testenvs defined in `tox.ini`
makepy              # install and test in the default testenv
makepy clean        # cleanup test environments and build files

makepy dist         # build python wheel for current project
makepy dist -P 2    # build python wheel for python2
makepy dists        # build both wheels for python2 and python3
makepy version      # read version string from main
makepy bumpversion  # increase patch level in main
makepy install      # pip install the wheel in the system (may require sudo)
makepy dev-install  # pip install the current editable source code in the system
makepy uninstall    # uninstall current project/package from all pips

You can also chain commands: makepy clean bumpversion dists, and makepy will reorder them and add all required depending commands, e.g., makepy install -P 2 is equivalent to makepy backport dist install -P 2.

The makepy command depends on and can initialize values in the Python config files tox.ini and setup.cfg. It can also create a generic py2-py3+ compatible, as found in this project.

Run makepy init --trg PATH_TO_NEW_PROJECT to setup all required files. Use -f to allow overwriting existing files. See makepy --help for more options.

makepy + make

Some makepy functionality is still only available via make, using the make/, [make/][make_vars], etc. include files. You can use these in your project. Just copy them to a make dir in your project and include them in your Makefile, as done by this project. See each mk-file for details and help.


In general the project aims to provide a few flexible tools and modules that should help with daily Python programming tasks for developing Python modules, libaries, and command line tools. It aims to capture best practices and make them reusable, allowing you to write less and more readable code, without breaking flexibility or compatibility of the enhanced modules and tools.


Most Python programmers know argparse, logging or structlog, tox and pip, and many also use twine, setuptools, and others. However, when using these tools you will write the same or very similar boilerplate code again and again.

Not wanting to repeat myself, I wanted to extract the most common practices from my projects and make them available for my next projects and for others to use.


The utility modules to setup logging and argparse, were scattered in several private projects (and reimplemented in corporate projects). Most of the makepy commands lived in a huge Makefile that had to be copied and augmented from project to project, before I finally started porting features to makepy. A few make features still remain and can be found in this project's mk files, such as the make tag and make publish.

I will keep makepy updated, with future learnings and I am happy to welcome pull requests.

Have fun!

Open Issues/Tasks

  • Add Python 2 support for namespaces.
  • Port doc strings + create readthedocs docs.
  • Port version management to use external bumpversion command.
  • Port integration tests from make.
  • Port docker tests from make.
  • Port wheel publishing from make.
  • Port remainder from make + remove make related code.

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