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* Add 2023 Django Developers Survey banner

* [] auto fixes from hooks

Co-authored-by: pre-commit-ci[bot] <66853113+pre-commit-ci[bot]>

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April 11, 2023 02:52
January 22, 2015 12:09
June 12, 2015 10:32
July 15, 2023 19:36
December 17, 2015 09:46 source code

To run locally, you can either:

  • Install and run from a virtual environment
  • Run with docker compose (see below)

Install and run locally from a virtual environment

  1. Create a Python 3.8+ virtualenv and activate it

  2. Install dependencies:

    python3 -m pip install -r requirements/dev.txt
    npm install

    Alternatively, use the make task:

    make install
  3. Make a directory to store the project's data (MEDIA_ROOT, DOC_BUILDS_ROOT, etc.). We'll use ~/.djangoproject for example purposes. Create a sub-directory named conf inside that directory:

    mkdir -p ~/.djangoproject/conf

    Create a secrets.json file in the conf directory, containing something like:

      "secret_key": "xyz",
      "superfeedr_creds": ["", "some_string"],
      "db_host": "localhost",
      "db_password": "secret",
      "trac_db_host": "localhost",
      "trac_db_password": "secret"
  4. Add export DJANGOPROJECT_DATA_DIR=~/.djangoproject (without the backticks) to your ~/.bashrc (or ~/.zshrc if you're using zsh, ~/.bash_profile if you're on macOS and using bash) file and then run source ~/.bashrc (or source ~/.zshrc, or source ~/.bash_profile) to load the changes.

  5. Create databases:

    createuser -d djangoproject --superuser
    createdb -O djangoproject djangoproject
    createuser -d code.djangoproject --superuser
    createdb -O code.djangoproject code.djangoproject
  6. Setting up database access

    If you are using the default postgres configuration, chances are you will have to give a password for the newly created users to be able to use them for Django:

    ALTER USER djangoproject WITH PASSWORD 'secret';
    ALTER USER "code.djangoproject" WITH PASSWORD 'secret';

    (Use the same passwords as the ones you've used in your secrets.json file)

  7. Create tables:

    psql -d code.djangoproject < tracdb/trac.sql
    python -m manage migrate
  8. Create a superuser:

    python -m manage createsuperuser
  9. Populate the www and docs hostnames in the django.contrib.sites app:

    python -m manage loaddata dev_sites
  10. For docs (next step requires gettext):

    python -m manage loaddata doc_releases
    python -m manage update_docs_and_index
  11. For dashboard:

    To load the latest dashboard categories and metrics:

    python -m manage loaddata dashboard_production_metrics

    Alternatively, to load a full set of sample data (takes a few minutes):

    python -m manage loaddata dashboard_example_data

    Finally, make sure the loaded metrics have at least one data point (this makes API calls to the URLs from the metrics objects loaded above and may take some time depending on the metrics chosen):

    python -m manage update_metrics
  12. Compile the CSS (only the source SCSS files are stored in the repository):

    make compile-scss
  13. Finally, run the server:

    make run

    This runs both the main site ("www") as well as the docs and dashboard site in the same process. Open http://www.djangoproject.localhost:8000/, http://docs.djangoproject.localhost:8000/, or http://dashboard.djangoproject.localhost:8000/.

Running the tests

We use GitHub actions for continuous testing and GitHub pull request integration. If you're familiar with those systems you should not have any problems writing tests.

Our test results can be found here:

For local development don't hesitate to install tox to run the website's test suite.

Then in the root directory (next to the file) run:


Behind the scenes, this will run the usual python -m manage test management command with a preset list of apps that we want to test as well as flake8 for code quality checks. We collect test coverage data as part of that tox run, to show the result simply run:

python -m coverage report

or for a HTML-based report:

python -m coverage html

(Optional) In case you're using an own virtualenv you can also run the tests manually using the test task of the Makefile. Don't forget to install the test requirements with the following command first though:

python -m pip install -r requirements/tests.txt

Then run:

make test

or simply the usual test management command:

python -m manage test [list of app labels]

Supported browsers

The goal of the site is to target various levels of browsers, depending on their ability to use the technologies in use on the site, such as HTML5, CSS3, SVG, webfonts.

We're following Mozilla's example when it comes to categorizing browser support.

  • Desktop browsers, except as noted below, are A grade, meaning that everything needs to work.
  • IE < 11 is not supported (based on Microsoft's support).
  • Mobile browsers should be considered B grade as well. Mobile Safari, Firefox on Android and the Android Browser should support the responsive styles as much as possible but some degradation can't be prevented due to the limited screen size and other platform restrictions.

File locations

Static files such as CSS, JavaScript or image files can be found in the djangoproject/static subdirectory.

Templates can be found in the djangoproject/templates subdirectory.


CSS is written in Scss and compiled via Libsass.

Run the following to compile the Scss files to CSS:

make compile-scss-debug

Alternatively, you can also run the following command in a separate shell to continuously watch for changes to the Scss files and automatically compile to CSS:

make watch-scss

Running all at once

Optionally you can use a tool like Foreman to run all process at once:

This is great during development. Assuming you're using Foreman simply run:

foreman start

If you just want to run one of the processes defined above use the run subcommand like so:

foreman run web

That'll just run the www server.

Check out the Procfile file for all the process names.

JavaScript libraries

This project uses Bower to manage JavaScript libraries.

At any time, you can run it to install a new library (e.g., jquery-ui):

npm run bower install jquery-ui --save

or check if there are newer versions of the libraries that we use:

npm run bower ls

If you need to update an existing library, the easiest way is to change the version requirement in bower.json and then to run npm run bower install again.

We commit the libraries to the repository, so if you add, update, or remove a library from bower.json, you will need to commit the changes in djangoproject/static too.

When running python -m manage update_docs_and_index to build all documents it will also automatically index every document it builds in the search engine as well. In case you've already built the documents and would like to reindex the search index, run the command:

python -m manage update_index

This is also the right command to run when you work on the search feature itself. You can pass the -d option to try to drop the search index first before indexing all the documents.

Updating metrics from production

The business logic for dashboard metrics is edited via the admin interface and contained in the models in the dashboard app (other than Dataum, which contains the data itself). From time to time, those metrics should be extracted from a copy of the production database and saved to the dashboard/fixtures/dashboard_production_metrics.json file.

To update this file, run:

python -m manage dumpdata dashboard --exclude dashboard.Datum --indent=4 > dashboard_production_metrics.json


We're using Transifex to help manage the translation process. The Transifex client app is required. To install it, run:

curl -o- | bash

Before using the command-line Transifex client, create ~/.transifexrc according to the instructions at You'll need to be a member of the Django team in the Django organization at Transifex. For information on how to join, please see the Translations section of the documentation on contributing to and localizing Django.

Since this repo hosts three separate sites, our .po files are organized by website domain. At the moment, we have:

Important: To keep this working properly, note that any templates for the dashboard and docs apps must be placed in the <app name>/templates/<app name>/ directory of the respective app, not in the djangoproject/templates/ directory.

Updating messages on Transifex

When there are changes to the messages in the code or templates, a member of the translations team will need to update Transifex as follows:

  1. Regenerate the English (only) .po file:

    python -m manage makemessages -l en

    (Never update alternate language .po files using makemessages. We'll update the English file, upload it to Transifex, then later pull the .po files with translations down from Transifex.)

  2. Push the updated source file to Transifex:

    tx push -s
  3. Commit and push the changes to GitHub:

    git commit -m "Updated messages" locale/en/LC_MESSAGES/*
    git push

Updating translations from Transifex

Anytime translations on Transifex have been updated, someone should update our translation files as follows:

  1. Review the translations in Transifex and add to the space-delimited LANGUAGES list in, any new languages that have reached 100% translation.

  2. Pull the updated translation files:

  3. Use git diff to see if any translations have actually changed. If not, you can just revert the .po file changes and stop here.

  4. Compile the messages:

    python -m manage compilemessages
  5. Run the test suite one more time:

    python -m manage test
  6. Commit and push the changes to GitHub:

    git commit -m "Updated translations" locale/*/LC_MESSAGES/*
    git push

Running Locally with Docker

  1. Build the images:

    docker-compose build
  2. Spin up the containers:

    docker-compose up
  3. View the site at http://localhost:8000/

  4. Run the tests:

    docker-compose exec web tox
    docker-compose exec web python -m manage test

Pre-commit checks

pre-commit is a framework for managing pre-commit hooks. These hooks help to identify simple issues before committing code for review. By checking for these issues before code review it allows the reviewer to focus on the change itself, and it can also help to reduce the number of CI runs.

To use the tool, first install pre-commit and then the git hooks

$ python3 -m pip install pre-commit
$ python3 -m pre_commit install

On the first commit pre-commit will install the hooks, these are installed in their own environments and will take a short while to install on the first run. Subsequent checks will be significantly faster. If the an error is found an appropriate error message will be displayed. If the error was with isort then the tool will go ahead and fix them for you. Review the changes and re-stage for commit if you are happy with them.