python-magic is a python interface to the libmagic file type
identification library. libmagic identifies file types by checking
their headers according to a predefined list of file types. This
functionality is exposed to the command line by the Unix command
>>> import magic >>> magic.from_file("testdata/test.pdf") 'PDF document, version 1.2' >>> magic.from_buffer(open("testdata/test.pdf").read(1024)) 'PDF document, version 1.2' >>> magic.from_file("testdata/test.pdf", mime=True) 'application/pdf'
There is also a
Magic class that provides more direct control,
including overriding the magic database file and turning on character
encoding detection. This is not recommended for general use. In
particular, it's not safe for sharing across multiple threads and
will fail throw if this is attempted.
>>> f = magic.Magic(uncompress=True) >>> f.from_file('testdata/test.gz') 'ASCII text (gzip compressed data, was "test", last modified: Sat Jun 28 21:32:52 2008, from Unix)'
You can also combine the flag options:
>>> f = magic.Magic(mime=True, uncompress=True) >>> f.from_file('testdata/test.gz') 'text/plain'
There are, sadly, two libraries which use the module name
magic. Both have been around for quite a while.If you are using this module and get an error using a method like
open, your code is expecting the other one. Hopefully one day these will be reconciled.
The current stable version of python-magic is available on pypi and
can be installed by running
pip install python-magic.
On Windows, copy magic1.dll, regex2.dll, and zlib1.dll onto your PATH from the Binaries and Dependencies zipfiles provided by the File for Windows project. You will need to copy the file
magic out of
[binary-zip]\share\misc, and pass it's location to
- When using Homebrew:
brew install libmagic
- When using macports:
port install file
'MagicException: could not find any magic files!': some installations of libmagic do not correctly point to their magic database file. Try specifying the path to the file explicitly in the constructor:
'WindowsError: [Error 193] %1 is not a valid Win32 application': Attempting to run the 32-bit libmagic DLL in a 64-bit build of python will fail with this error. I'm not aware of any publically available 64-bit builds of libmagic. You'll either need to build them yourself (please share docs!), or switch to a 32-bit Python.
'WindowsError: exception: access violation writing 0x00000000 ' This may indicate you are mixing Windows Python and Cygwin Python. Make sure your libmagic and python builds are consistent.
Written by Adam Hupp in 2001 for a project that never got off the ground. It originally used SWIG for the C library bindings, but switched to ctypes once that was part of the python standard library.
Thanks to these folks on github who submitted features and bugfixes.
python-magic is distributed under the MIT license. See the included LICENSE file for details.