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A Sphinx extension for running 'sphinx-apidoc' on each build

Project description

https://travis-ci.org/sphinx-contrib/apidoc.svg?branch=master

A Sphinx extension for running sphinx-apidoc on each build.

Overview

sphinx-apidoc is a tool for automatic generation of Sphinx sources that, using the autodoc extension, documents a whole package in the style of other automatic API documentation tools. sphinx-apidoc does not actually build documentation - rather it simply generates it. As a result, it must be run before sphinx-build. This generally results in tox.ini files like the following:

[testenv:docs]
commands =
  sphinx-apidoc -o doc/api my_code my_code/tests
  sphinx-build -W -b html doc doc/_build/html

This extension eliminates the need to keep that configuration outside Sphinx. Instead, this functionality can be enabled and configured from your documentation’s conf.py file, like so:

extensions = [
    'sphinxcontrib.apidoc',
    # ...
]
apidoc_module_dir = '../my_code'
apidoc_output_dir = 'reference'
apidoc_excluded_paths = ['tests']
apidoc_separate_modules = True

Configuration

The apidoc extension uses the following configuration values:

apidoc_module_dir

The path to the module to document. This must be a path to a Python package. This path can be a path relative to the documentation source directory or an absolute path.

Required

apidoc_output_dir

The output directory. If it does not exist, it is created. This path is relative to the documentation source directory.

Optional, defaults to api.

apidoc_excluded_paths

An optional list of modules to exclude. These should be paths relative to apidoc_module_dir. fnmatch-style wildcarding is supported.

Optional, defaults to [].

apidoc_separate_modules

Put documentation for each module on its own page. Otherwise there will be one page per (sub)package.

Optional, defaults to False.

apidoc_toc_file

Filename for a table of contents file. Defaults to modules. If set to False, apidoc will not create a table of contents file.

Optional, defaults to modules.

apidoc_module_first

When set to True, put module documentation before submodule documentation.

Optional, defaults to False.

apidoc_extra_args

Extra arguments which will be passed to sphinx-apidoc. These are placed after flags and before the module name.

Optional, defaults to [].

Migration from pbr

pbr has historically included a custom variant of the build_sphinx distutils command. This provides, among other things, the ability to generate API documentation as part of build process. Clearly this is not necessary with this extension.

There are two implementations of the API documentation feature in pbr: autodoc_tree and autodoc. To describe the difference, let’s explore how one would migrate real-world projects using both features. Your project might use one or both: autodoc_tree is enabled using the autodoc_tree_index_modules setting while autodoc is enabled using the autodoc_index_modules setting, both found in the [pbr] section of setup.cfg.

autodoc_tree

As autodoc_tree is based on sphinx-apidoc, migration is easy. Lets take python-openstackclient as an example, looking at minimal versions of setup.cfg and doc/source/conf.py:

[build_sphinx]
all_files = 1
build-dir = doc/build
source-dir = doc/source

[pbr]
autodoc_tree_index_modules = True
autodoc_tree_excludes =
  setup.py
  openstackclient/volume/v3
  openstackclient/tests/
  openstackclient/tests/*
api_doc_dir = contributor/api
extensions = ['']

Once migrated, this would look like so:

[build_sphinx]
all_files = 1
build-dir = doc/build
source-dir = doc/source
extensions = ['sphinxcontrib.apidoc']

apidoc_module_dir = '../../openstack'
apidoc_excluded_paths = [
  'volume',
  'tests'
]
apidoc_output_dir = 'contributor/api'

There are a couple of changes here:

  1. Configure apidoc_module_dir in conf.py

    With the autodoc_tree feature, API documentation is always generated for the directory in which setup.cfg exists, which is typically the top-level directory. With this extension, you must explicitly state which directory you wish to build documentation for using the apidoc_module_dir setting. You should configure this to point to your actual package rather than the top level directory as this means you don’t need to worry about skipping unrelated files like setup.py.

  2. Configure apidoc_excluded_paths in conf.py

    The apidoc_excluded_paths setting in conf.py works exactly like the [pbr] autodoc_tree_excludes setting in setup.cfg; namely, it’s a list of fnmatch-style paths describing files and directories to exclude relative to the source directory. This means you can use the values from the [pbr] autodoc_tree_excludes setting, though you may need to update these if you configured apidoc_module_dir to point to something other than the top-level directory.

  3. Configure apidoc_output_dir in conf.py

    The apidoc_output_dir setting in conf.py works exactly like the [pbr] api_doc_dir setting in setup.cfg; namely, it’s a path relative to the documentation source directory to which all API documentation should be written. You can just copy the value from the [pbr] api_doc_dir setting.

  4. Remove settings from setup.cfg

    Remove the following settings from the [pbr] section of the setup.cfg file:

    • autodoc_tree_index_modules
    • autodoc_tree_excludes
    • api_doc_dir

    You may also wish to remove the entirety of the [build_sphinx] section, should you wish to build docs using sphinx-build instead.

Once done, your output should work exactly as before.

autodoc

autodoc is not based on sphinx-apidoc. Fortunately it is possible to generate something very similar (although not identical!). Let’s take oslo.privsep as an example, once again looking at minimal versions of setup.cfg and doc/source/conf.py:

[build_sphinx]
all_files = 1
build-dir = doc/build
source-dir = doc/source

[pbr]
autodoc_index_modules = True
api_doc_dir = reference/api
autodoc_exclude_modules =
  oslo_privsep.tests.*
  oslo_privsep._*
extensions = ['']

Once migrated, this would look like so:

[build_sphinx]
all_files = 1
build-dir = doc/build
source-dir = doc/source
extensions = ['sphinxcontrib.apidoc']

apidoc_module_dir = '../../oslo_privsep'
apidoc_excluded_paths = ['tests', '_*']
apidoc_output_dir = 'reference/api'
apidoc_separate_modules = True

Most of the changes necessary are the same as autodoc_tree, with some exceptions.

  1. Configure apidoc_module_dir in conf.py

    With the autodoc feature, API documentation is always generated for the directory in which setup.cfg exists, which is typically the top-level directory. With this extension, you must explicitly state which directory you wish to build documentation for using the apidoc_module_dir setting. You should configure this to point to your actual package rather than the top level directory as this means you don’t need to worry about skipping unrelated files like setup.py.

  2. Configure apidoc_excluded_paths in conf.py

    The apidoc_excluded_paths setting in conf.py differs from the [pbr] autodoc_exclude_modules setting in setup.cfg in that the former is a list of fnmatch-style file paths, while the latter is a list of fnmatch-style module paths. As a result, you can reuse most of the values from the [pbr] autodoc_exclude_modules setting but you must switch from x.y format to x/y. You may also need to update these paths if you configured apidoc_module_dir to point to something other than the top-level directory.

  3. Configure apidoc_output_dir in conf.py

    The apidoc_output_dir setting in conf.py works exactly like the [pbr] api_doc_dir setting in setup.cfg; namely, it’s a path relative to the documentation source directory to which all API documentation should be written. You can just copy the value from the [pbr] api_doc_dir setting.

  4. Configure apidoc_separate_modules=True in conf.py

    By default, sphinx-apidoc generates a document per package while autodoc generates a document per (sub)module. By setting this attribute to True, we ensure the latter behavior is used.

  5. Replace references to autoindex.rst with modules.rst

    The autodoc feature generates a list of modules in a file called autoindex.rst located in the output directory. By comparison, sphinx-apidoc and this extension call this file modules.rst. You must update all references to autoindex.rst with modules.rst instead. You may also wish to configure the depth option of any toctrees that include this document as modules.rst is nested.

  6. Remove settings from setup.cfg

    Remove the following settings from the [pbr] section of the setup.cfg file:

    • autodoc_index_modules
    • autodoc_exclude_modules
    • api_doc_dir

    You may also wish to remove the entirety of the [build_sphinx] section, should you wish to build docs using sphinx-build instead.

Once done, your output should look similar to previously. The main change will be in the aforementioned modules.rst, which uses a nested layout compared to the flat layout of the autoindex.rst file.

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