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Designed and built for Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team collaborative emergency/disaster mapping, the OSM Tasking Manager 2.0 divides an area into individual squares that can be rapidly mapped by thousands of volunteers.



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OpenStreetMap Tasking Manager v2

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OpenStreetMap Tasking Manager enables collaborative work on specific areas in OpenStreetMap by defining clear workflows to be achieved and by breaking tasks down into pieces.

This is version 2.0 of the Tasking Manager. Most development work is now taking place on version 3.0

V2 Tasking Manager still powers many Tasking Manager installations. It is written in Python using the Pyramid framework.


First clone the git repository:

git clone --recursive git://

Installing OSMTM in a Virtual Python environment is recommended.

To create a virtual Python environment:

cd osm-tasking-manager2
sudo easy_install virtualenv
virtualenv --no-site-packages env
./env/bin/pip install -r requirements.txt

Tip: if you encounter problems installing psycopg2 especially on Mac, it is recommended to follow advice proposed here.


OSMTM requires a PostgreSQL/PostGIS database. Version 2.3 or higher of PostGIS is required.

First create a database user/role named www-data:

sudo -u postgres createuser -SDRP www-data

Then create a database named osmtm:

sudo -u postgres createdb -T template0 osmtm -E UTF8 -O www-data
sudo -u postgres psql -d osmtm -c "CREATE EXTENSION postgis;"

Local settings

You certainly will need some local specific settings, like the db user or password. For this, you can create a local.ini file in the project root, where you can then override every needed setting. For example:

sqlalchemy.url = postgresql://www-data:PASSWORD@localhost/osmtm
default_comment_prefix = #yourinstancename-project
check_expiration_interval = 60

Note: you can also put your local settings file anywhere else on your file system, and then create a LOCAL_SETTINGS_PATH environment variable to make the project aware of this.

Currently, these are the settings you can over-ride:

  • sqlalchemy.url: Postgres URL to use for database connection
  • default_comment_prefix: Default prefix to use for changeset comments, defaults to #hotosm-project
  • check_expiration_interval: The interval at which the database should be checked for expired tasks, in seconds. Defaults to 5 seconds.

Populate the database

You're now ready to do the initial population of the database. An initialize_osmtm_db script is available in the virtual env for that:


Launch the application

./env/bin/pserve --reload development.ini

You will see messages, hopefully including a line like serving on Visit that address in your web browser - you should see your local Tasking Manager!

Running the application behind proxy server

You need to make the following changes to the osmtm/views/ file.

# Add the below lines in the starting
import httplib2
httplib2.debuglevel = 4
PROXY = httplib2.ProxyInfo(httplib2.socks.PROXY_TYPE_HTTP_NO_TUNNEL, 'PROXY-SERVER', PROXY-PORT)

NOTE: Replace the PROXY-SERVER with your proxy server address and PROXY-PORT with the port number on which your proxy is established.

# then add "proxy_info=PROXY" for every line in oauth.Client.
client = oauth.Client(consumer, proxy_info=PROXY)

client = oauth.Client(consumer, token, proxy_info=PROXY)

Replace the host address in the development.ini file with your IP address of the system.



The CSS stylesheet are compiled using less. Launch the following command as soon as you change the css:

lessc -ru osmtm/static/css/main.less > osmtm/static/css/main.css

Launch the application

env/bin/pserve --reload development.ini


The tests use a separate database. Create that database first:

sudo -u postgres createdb -O www-data osmtm_tests
sudo -u postgres psql -d osmtm_tests -c "CREATE EXTENSION postgis;"

Create a local.test.inifile in the project root, where you will add the settings for the database connection. For example:

sqlalchemy.url = postgresql://www-data:www-data@localhost/osmtm_tests

To run the tests, use the following command:


Application deployment

  1. pull latest updates from the repository: git pull origin
  2. update the submodules: git submodule update --init
  3. update/install python modules: ./env/bin/pip install -r requirements.txt
  4. create database dump: pg_dump -Fc -f osmtm2_latest.dmp database_name
  5. run database migrations: ./env/bin/alembic upgrade head
  6. compile messages: ./env/bin/python compile_catalog
  7. restart application server

Installation as a mod_wsgi Application

an example Apache configuration file

WSGIDaemonProcess OSMTM_process user=ubuntu group=ubuntu processes=1 \
        threads=4 \
WSGIRestrictStdin Off

<VirtualHost *:80>
        # Use only 1 Python sub-interpreter.  Multiple sub-interpreters
        # play badly with C extensions.
        WSGIPassAuthorization On
        WSGIScriptAlias /osmtm /home/ubuntu/osm-tasking-manager2/env/OSMTM.wsgi

        <Location />
            WSGIProcessGroup OSMTM_process
            WSGIApplicationGroup %{GLOBAL}

        <Directory /home/ubuntu/osm-tasking-manager2/env>
            <Files OSMTM.wsgi>
                Require all granted
            Order allow,deny
            Allow from all

        LogLevel warn

        CustomLog /var/log/apache2/osmtm-access.log combined
        ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/osmtm-error.log


In case you install your own instance you may want to customize its look and feel. You can do so by modifying the following files: osmtm/templates/custom.mako, osmtm/static/css/custom.less & osmtm/static/img/favicon.ico


OSMTM is localized on Transifex service.

It's possible to create translations for two resources: current and master. Current resource represents currently deployed instance of the OSMTM Master resource represents actively developed code that will become current once it gets deployed.

Initializing translation files

In general managing translation files involves:

  • generate pot file: ./env/bin/python extract_messages
  • initialize a message catalogue file (english): ./env/bin/python init_catalog -l en
    • if the catalogue is already created use: ./env/bin/python update_catalog
  • eventually compile messages: ./env/bin/python compile_catalog
  • append new language to the available_languages configuration variable in production.ini file, for example available_languages = en fr

Using Transifex service

  • in the project top level directory, initialize transifex service (after installing transifex-client): tx init
    • the init process will ask for service URL and username/password, which will be saved to ~/.transifexrc file
  • if the project has already been initialized, but you are missing ~/.transifexrc, create the file and modify it's access privileges chmod 600 ~/.transifexrc

Example .transifexrc file:

hostname =
password = my_super_password
token =
username = my_transifex_username
  • after creating the project on the Transifex service: osm-tasking-manager2, generate the pot file, and add it as a master resource on the project, full resource name, in this case, is osm-tasking-manager2.master

Setting up resources

  • add initial source file, in this case English:
    • tx set --source -r osm-tasking-manager2.master -l en osmtm/locale/en/LC_MESSAGES/osmtm.po
  • add existing source files, in this case French:
    • tx set -r osm-tasking-manager2.master -l fr osmtm/locale/fr/LC_MESSAGES/osmtm.po
  • push resources on the transifex service (this will overwrite any existing resources on the service)
    • tx push -s -t
    • -s - pushes source files (English)
    • -t - pushes translation files (French)

Pulling changes

  • to pull latest changes from Transifex service execute: tx pull
    • this will pull every available language from the Transifex service, even the languages that are not yet mapped
    • if the language is not mapped, translated language file will be saved to the local .tx directory, which is not what we want so we need to define the mapping
    • for example, if we want to correctly map Croaian language you need to execute: tx set -r osm-tasking-manager2.master -l hr osmtm/locale/hr/LC_MESSAGES/osmtm.po
      • there is no need to create the actual po file or the directory structure, Transifex client will manage that for us
  • there is also a possibility to pull specific languages: tx pull -l hr
  • or pull only languages that have a certain completeness percentage: tx pull --minimum-perc=90

Transifex workflow

Updating source files, locally and on the service

  • update pot and source po file

    • ./env/bin/python extract_messages
    • ./env/bin/python init_catalog -l en
  • push the source file to Transifex service

    • tx push -s

Pull latest changes from the service

  • when adding a new language:
    • we need to configure local mapping: tx set -r osm-tasking-manager2.master -l hr osmtm/locale/hr/LC_MESSAGES/osmtm.po
    • append the new language to the available_languages configuration variable in production.ini file: available_languages = en fr hr
  • after there are some translation updates, pull latest changes for mapped resources
    • tx pull -l fr,hr
  • compile language files
    • ./env/bin/python compile_catalog


The tasking manager exposes some of its functionality via a RESTful API. It is documented on the following page:


Designed and built for Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team collaborative emergency/disaster mapping, the OSM Tasking Manager 2.0 divides an area into individual squares that can be rapidly mapped by thousands of volunteers.







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