Calamares modules are plugins that provide features like installer pages, batch jobs, etc. An installer page (visible to the user) is called a "view", while other modules are "jobs".
Each Calamares module lives in its own directory.
All modules are installed in
There are two types of Calamares module:
- viewmodule, for user-visible modules. These may be in C++, or PythonQt.
- jobmodule, for not-user-visible modules. These may be done in C++, Python, or as external processes.
There are three (four) interfaces for Calamares modules:
- python (jobmodules only),
- pythonqt (optional),
- process (jobmodules only).
Each Calamares module lives in its own directory. The contents of the directory depend on the interface and type of the module.
A Calamares module must have a module descriptor file, named
module.desc. For C++ (qtplugin) modules using CMake as a build-
system and using the calamares_add_plugin() function -- this is the
recommended way to create such modules -- the module descriptor
file is optional, since it can be generated by the build system.
For other module interfaces, the module descriptor file is required.
The module descriptor file must be placed in the module's directory.
The module descriptor file is a YAML 1.2 document which defines the
module's name, type, interface and possibly other properties. The name
of the module as defined in
module.desc must be the same as the name
of the module's directory.
Module descriptors must have the following keys:
- name (an identifier; must be the same as the directory name)
- type ("job" or "view")
- interface (see below for the different interfaces; generally we refer to the kinds of modules by their interface)
Module descriptors may have the following keys:
- required unimplemented (a list of modules which are required for this module to operate properly)
- emergency (a boolean value, set to true to mark the module as an emergency module)
A Calamares module may read a module configuration file,
<modulename>.conf. If such a file is present in the
module's directory, it is shipped as a default configuration file.
The module configuration file, if it exists, is a YAML 1.2 document
which contains a YAML map of anything.
All default module configuration files are installed in
$DESTDIR/share/calamares/modules but can be overridden by
files with the same name placed manually (or by the packager)
Currently the recommended way to write a module which exposes one or more
installer pages (viewmodule) is through a C++ and Qt plugin. Viewmodules must
Calamares::ViewStep. They can also implement
to provide jobs.
To add a Qt plugin module, put it in a subdirectory and make sure it has
CMakeLists.txt with a
calamares_add_plugin call. It will be picked
up automatically by our CMake magic. The
module.desc file is optional.
Modules may use one of the python interfaces, which may be present
in a Calamares installation (but also may not be). These modules must have
module.desc file. The Python script must implement one or more of the
Python interfaces for Calamares -- either the python jobmodule interface,
or the experimental pythonqt job- and viewmodule interfaces.
To add a Python or process jobmodule, put it in a subdirectory and make sure
it has a
module.desc. It will be picked up automatically by our CMake magic.
For all kinds of Python jobs, the key script must be set to the name of
the main python file for the job. This is almost universally "main.py".
CMakeLists.txt is not used for Python and process jobmodules.
Calamares offers a Python API for module developers, the core Calamares
functionality is exposed as
libcalamares.job for job data,
libcalamares.globalstorage for shared data and
generic utility functions. Documentation is inline.
All code in Python job modules must obey PEP8, the only exception are
libcalamares.globalstorage keys, which should always be
camelCaseWithLowerCaseInitial to match the C++ identifier convention.
For testing and debugging we provide the
testmodule.py script which
fakes a limited Calamares Python environment for running a single jobmodule.
A Python jobmodule is a Python program which imports libcalamares and has a
run() as entry point. The function
run() must return
everything went well, or a tuple
(str,str) with an error message and
description if something went wrong.
A PythonQt jobmodule implements the experimental Job interface by defining a subclass of something.
A PythonQt viewmodule implements the experimental View interface by defining a subclass of something.
A process jobmodule runs a (single) command. The interface is "process", while the module type must be "job" or "jobmodule".
The key command should have a string as value, which is passed to the shell -- remember to quote it properly.
Only C++ modules and job modules may be emergency modules. If, during an exec step in the sequence, a module fails, installation as a whole fails and the install is aborted. If there are emergency modules in the same exec block, those will be executed before the installation is aborted. Non-emergency modules are not executed.
If an emergency-module fails while processing emergency-modules for another failed module, that failure is ignored and emergency-module processing continues.
Use the EMERGENCY keyword in the CMake description of a C++ module
to generate a suitable
A module that is marked as an emergency module in its module.desc must also set the emergency key to true in its configuration file. If it does not, the module is not considered to be an emergency module after all (this is so that you can have modules that have several instances, only some of which are actually needed for emergencies.