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Bindings for the Zulip message API

Project description


The Zulip API Python bindings require the following dependencies:

  • Python (version >= 3.8)
  • requests (version >= 0.12.1)

Note: If you'd like to use the Zulip bindings with Python 2, we recommend installing version 0.6.4.


This package uses setuptools, so you can just run:

python install

Using the API

For now, the only fully supported API operation is sending a message. The other API queries work, but are under active development, so please make sure we know you're using them so that we can notify you as we make any changes to them.

The easiest way to use these API bindings is to base your tools off of the example tools under zulip/examples/ in this distribution.

If you place your API key in the config file ~/.zuliprc the Python API bindings will automatically read it in. The format of the config file is as follows:

key=<api key from the web interface>
email=<your email address>
site=<your Zulip server's URI>
insecure=<true or false, true means do not verify the server certificate>
cert_bundle=<path to a file containing CA or server certificates to trust>

If omitted, these settings have the following defaults:

cert_bundle=<the default CA bundle trusted by Python>

Alternatively, you may explicitly use "--user", "--api-key", and --site in our examples, which is especially useful when testing. If you are running several bots which share a home directory, we recommend using --config to specify the path to the zuliprc file for a specific bot. Finally, you can control the defaults for all of these variables using the environment variables ZULIP_CONFIG, ZULIP_API_KEY, ZULIP_EMAIL, ZULIP_SITE, ZULIP_CERT, ZULIP_CERT_KEY, and ZULIP_CERT_BUNDLE. Command-line options take precedence over environment variables take precedence over the config files.

The command line equivalents for other configuration options are:


You can obtain your Zulip API key, create bots, and manage bots all from your Zulip settings page; with current Zulip there's also a button to download a zuliprc file for your account/server pair.

A typical simple bot sending API messages will look as follows:

At the top of the file:

# Make sure the Zulip API distribution's root directory is in sys.path, then:
import zulip
zulip_client = zulip.Client(email="", client="MyTestClient/0.1")

When you want to send a message:

message = {
  "type": "stream",
  "to": ["support"],
  "subject": "your subject",
  "content": "your content",

If you are parsing arguments, you may find it useful to use Zulip's option group; see any of our API examples for details on how to do this.

Additional examples:

client.send_message({'type': 'stream', 'content': 'Zulip rules!',
                     'subject': 'feedback', 'to': ['support']})
client.send_message({'type': 'private', 'content': 'Zulip rules!',
                     'to': ['', '']})

send_message() returns a dict guaranteed to contain the following keys: msg, result. For successful calls, result will be "success" and msg will be the empty string. On error, result will be "error" and msg will describe what went wrong.


The API bindings package comes with several nice example scripts that show how to use the APIs; they are installed as part of the API bindings bundle.


The Zulip API comes with a ZulipStream class which can be used with the logging module:

import zulip
import logging
stream = zulip.ZulipStream(type="stream", to=["support"], subject="your subject")
logger = logging.getLogger("your_logger")
logger.setLevel(logging.DEBUG)"This is an INFO test.")
logger.debug("This is a DEBUG test.")
logger.warn("This is a WARN test.")
logger.error("This is a ERROR test.")

Sending messages

You can use the included zulip-send script to send messages via the API directly from existing scripts.

zulip-send -m \
    "Conscience doth make cowards of us all."

Alternatively, if you don't want to use your ~/.zuliprc file:

zulip-send --user \
    --api-key a0b1c2d3e4f5a6b7c8d9e0f1a2b3c4d5 \
    --site \ -m \
    "Conscience doth make cowards of us all."

Working with an untrusted server certificate

If your server has either a self-signed certificate, or a certificate signed by a CA that you don't wish to globally trust then by default the API will fail with an SSL verification error.

You can add insecure=true to your .zuliprc file.


This disables verification of the server certificate, so connections are encrypted but unauthenticated. This is not secure, but may be good enough for a development environment.

You can explicitly trust the server certificate using cert_bundle=<filename> in your .zuliprc file.


You can also explicitly trust a different set of Certificate Authorities from the default bundle that is trusted by Python. For example to trust a company internal CA.


Save the server certificate (or the CA certificate) in its own file, converting to PEM format first if necessary. Verify that the certificate you have saved is the same as the one on the server.

The cert_bundle option trusts the server / CA certificate only for interaction with the zulip site, and is relatively secure.

Note that a certificate bundle is merely one or more certificates combined into a single file.

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