Easyconfig format two

Kenneth Hoste edited this page Nov 14, 2013 · 5 revisions
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Note: this documentation is for a feature in development, and is thus preliminary and subject to change.

This page describes the v2.0 format for easyconfig files in detail. This format is supported since EasyBuild v1.x (FIXME), and will become the only supported format starting with EasyBuild v2.0.

Format outline

The easyconfig format consists of three parts, which are described below: a header consisting solely of comments, a Python header that is


  • first line: format version specification
  • comments


# this is another version test

Python header

  • docstring (triple-quoted string): specifies author, maintainer, ...
  • common parameters in (PEP8) Python syntax (exec'ed, with limited capabilities, i.e. only certain builtins are allowed)


name = 'doesnotexist'

homepage = "http://www.example.com/"
description = "doesnotexist is bug free software"
docurl = "http://www.example.com/docs"

license = VeryRestrictive

# source tarball filename
sources = ['%(name)s-%(version)s.tar.gz']

# download location for source files
source_urls = ['http://ftpmirror.gnu.org/gzip']

# make sure the gzip and gunzip binaries are available after installation
sanity_check_paths = {'files': ["bin/gunzip", "bin/gzip"], 'dirs': []}


  • a set of version- or toolchain-specific sections
  • customizations that depend on particular version/toolchain
  • sections are indicated by section markers, e.g. [section1]
  • each section contains key-value statements, e.g. == 1.2.3 (note: no quotes!)
  • typicaly, a default section marked by [DEFAULT] is included
versions=1.0.0,>= 0.5.0
toolchains=dummy > 5,GCC == 3.0.0,ictce < 1.0
[goolf > 1]
toolchains=dummy > 6,GCC > 4

Comparison with easyconfig format v1.0

  • specification of format version
  • structured documentation in docstring
  • exec'ed part in Python syntax is significantly limited w.r.t. use of builtins (e.g., no 'import')
  • sections are properly parsed, as opposed to v1.0 where the whole easyconfig file is 'parsed' by exec'ing it as Python code