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A small wrapper around Redis that provides access to a FIFO queue.

Project description


A small wrapper around Redis (using the “standard” Python redis client lib) that provides access to a FIFO queue and allows upstream code to mark pop’ed items as processed successfully (ACK’ing) or unsucessfully (FAIL’ing).

Failed items are automatically requeued. Addionally a backup is kept for items that were neither ack’ed nor fail’ed, i.e. in case the consumer crashes. The backup items will be requeued as soon as one of the consumer(s) comes up again.

All actions are atomic and it is safe to have multiple producers and consumers accessing the same queue concurrently.

Version compatibility with


2.4.10 - 2.6.x


2.7.0 - 2.7.5

no compatible version

2.7.6 - 2.10.x


Usage as a library

>>> queue = SafeRedisQueue(name='test')
>>> queue.put("Hello World")
>>> queue.put("Foo bar")
>>> queue.get()
('595d43b2-2e49-4e96-a1d2-0848d1c7f0d3', 'Hello World')
>>> queue.get()
('1df060eb-b578-499d-bede-20db9da8184e', 'Foo bar')

Note: to be compatible with previous versions, 2 aliases push/pop exist. Start using the new put/get terminology as soon as possible since push/pop will be deleted in a future version.

ACK’ing and FAIL’ing

>>> queue.put("Good stuff")
>>> queue.put("Bad stuff")
>>> uid_good, payload_good = queue.get()
>>> uid_bad, payload_bad = queue.get()
# process the payloads...
>>> queue.ack(uid_good)  # done with that one
>>>  # something didn't work out with that one, let's requeue
>>> uid, payload = queue.get()  # get again; we get the requeued payload again
>>> uid == uid_bad
# try again
>>> queue.ack(uid)  # now it worked; ACK the stuff now

get timeout

SafeRedisQueue.get accepts a timeout parameter:

  • 0 (the default) blocks forever, waiting for items

  • a positive number blocks that amount of seconds

  • a negative timeout disables blocking

Constructor parameters

SafeRedisQueue accepts *args, **kwargs and passes them to redis.StrictRedis, so use whatever you need.

Three exceptions, use these in the keyword arguments to configure SafeRedisQueue itself:


Shortcut to use instead of a host/port/db/password combinations. Accepts “redis URLs” just as the redis library does, for example:

  • redis://[:password]@localhost:6379/0

  • unix://[:password]@/path/to/socket.sock?db=0

When using this keyword parameter, all positional arguments (usually one the host) are ignored. Those two are equivalent:

  • SafeRedisQueue('localhost', port=6379, db=7)

  • SafeRedisQueue(url='redis://localhost:6379/7')


A prefix used for the keys in Redis. Default: “0”, which creates the following keys in your Redis DB:

  • srq:0:items

  • srq:0:queue

  • srq:0:ackbuf

  • srq:0:backup

  • srq:0:backuplock


An interval in seconds (default: 60) at which unacknowledged items are requeued automatically. (They are moved from the internal ackbuf and backup data structures to the queue again.)

Pass None to disable autocleaning. It’s enabled by default!


An optional serializer to use on the items. Default: None

Feel free to write your own serializer. It only requires a dumps and loads methods. Modules like pickle, json, simplejson can be used out of the box.

Note however, that when using Python 3 the json module has to be wrapped as it by default does not handle the bytes properly that is emitted by the underlying networking code. This should work:

class MyJSONSerializer(object):
    def loads(bytes):
        return json.loads(bytes.decode('utf-8'))

    def dumps(data):
        return json.dumps(data)

queue = SafeRedisQueue(name='foobar',serializer=MyJSONSerializer)

Added in version 3.0.0

Command line usage

For quick’n’dirty testing, you can use the script from the command line to put stuff into the queue:

$ echo "Hello World" | python producer

…and get it out again:

$ python consumer
cbdabbc8-1c0f-4eb0-8733-fdb62a9c0fa6 Hello World


3.0.0 - 2014-11-13

  • BREAKING CHANGE (very unlikely, though): push/put now returns the uid of the just added item. Before it always returned None.

  • push has been renamed to put; push stays as an alias, but is deprecated and will be removed in version 4.

  • pop has been renamed to get; pop stays as an alias, but is deprecated and will be removed in version 4.

  • Increased version compatibility with to “<2.11”.

  • Python 3.4 support

  • More tests. Introduced tox for testing.

  • Added serializer parameter to support custom serializers, e.g. for automatic JSON conversion. See README for details, especially when using Python 3.

2.0.0 - 2014-06-26

  • SafeRedisQueue is now officially compatible with recent versions (roughly speaking 2.7-2.10) of

    For versions 2.4 and 2.6 please continue using the 1.x development line.

    See README.rst for details on compatibility.

1.2.0 - 2014-06-26

  • Raise compatible version up to 2.6.x. Updated README with compatibility details.

1.1.0 - 2014-06-20

  • The constructor now accepts a “url” keyword parameter that supports typical redis URL a la “redis://[:password]@localhost:6379/0”. See README for details.

1.0.1 - 2013-06-26

  • Changed dependency on redis to require at least version 2.4.10 as redis.StrictRedis, which we use, was only introduced in that version. This should not affect anyone negatively as you wouldn’t have to be able to use saferedisqueue at all if your project or package used an older version so far. (Thanks Telofy!)

1.0.0 - 2013-06-05

  • Released as open-source under 3-clause BSD license. Code identical to 0.3.0.

0.3.0 - 2012-05-22

  • The constructor now accepts an “autoclean_interval” value to set the interval at which the ackbuf -> backup rotation and backup requeuing happens. Setting the value to None disables autoclean completely. Default: 60 (seconds).

0.2.2 - 2012-03-29

  • Negative timeout makes .pop() non-blocking.

0.2.1 - 2012-03-09

  • Added and publish it on our internal package directory.

0.2.0 - 2012-03-08

  • Renamed methods (“push_item” -> “push” etc.)

  • New autoclean method that is called on every .pop()

  • Internal: New names for keys in the redis db.

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