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Clanvas on PyPI Build Status


Command-line shell client for the Canvas Learning Management System

Clanvas Screenshot

Available Commands

In the Clanvas shell, all commands already on your system PATH are available. You can ls and grep as you please.

In addition, the shell provides the following commands:

Command Meaning
lc list classes
cc change current class
la list assignments
lg list grades
lann list announcements
catann print announcements
pullf pull course files
ua upload submission to assignment
wopen open in web interface
whoami show login info
quit quit the shell

Type help to see all commands, and use the -h flag to show usage details for any particular command.


Clanvas is hosted on PyPi and can be installed with pip.

Clanvas requires Python 3.6+

pip install clanvas

The clanvas command should now be on your path!

Usage will also require generating a Canvas API token which will be used to log in.

Note: in order to have 100% proper line editing and tab completion support, further configuration may be required.

Clanvas relies on the capabilities provided by GNU readline or an equivalent library. The situation varies by system.

Linux GNU readline is most likely already installed, no further configuration required.
macOS Apple ships it's operating system with the BSD-licensed editline since GNU readline is released under a GPL (copyleft) license. By default, Clanvas will try to use editline if this is what is available. However, certain features like navigating previous commands and tab completion may not work correctly in all cases. The best/recommended solution is to ensure you are using Python with GNU readline. See GNU readline on macOS for more details.
Windows Currently Windows is untested, but the we recommend installing the pyreadline Python module.


Start the Clanvas shell by providing a config entry or URL.

For example, with the following config file at ~/.clanvas/config...

Host school
	Token bOYc5cOIldA3eB9NTr7X0Um9Z8TPMACb0HtdgHTMtp10T5UKH0b4HOqTmOCvWZlYRpJ9dN

...login can be done with the hostname school

$ clanvas school $

Otherwise, if a URL can is provided then you are prompted for an access token:

$ clanvas
Enter access token: 

See Generating an API Token for more info on the access token.

Example Usage

Run commands $ lc -l
EECS 325  7832  Spring 2018  Computer Networks (100/5013)
EECS 338  6939  Spring 2018  Operating Systems (100/4593)
EECS 391  7136  Spring 2018  Artificial Intelligence (100/4163)
EECS 345  6937  Spring 2018  Programming Language Concepts (100/4699) $ cc 325 325:~ $ lg -g
Computer Networks (100/5013)
├── Quizzes
│   ├── Quiz 1 100/100 100%
│   ├── Quiz 2 85/100 85%
│   └── Quiz 3 95/100 95%
├── Exams
│   └── Exam 1 86/100 86%
└── Homework
    ├── HW 1 20/20 100%
    ├── HW 2 18/20 90%
    └── HW 3 17/20 85% 325:~ $ pullf 325:~ $ tree ~/canvas/courses/EECS325-7832/files
├── HW1_2018S.pdf
├── HW2_2018S.pdf
├── HW3-2018S.pdf
├── HW Solutions
│   └── HW1_2018S_Solutions
├── Lecture Notes
│   ├── Lecture1.ppt
│   ├── Lecture2.ppt
│   ├── Lecture3_Layering_AppLayerOverview.ppt
│   ├── Lecture4_5_Web.ppt
│   ├── Lecture6_DNS_CDN.ppt
│   ├── Lecture7_SMTP_P2P_SPAM.ppt
│   ├── Lecture8-Sockets_TransportIntro.ppt
│   └── Lecture9-UDP_RelXmit.ppt
├── Project1Instructions.pdf
└── Syllabus.pdf

Generating an API Token

  1. Navigate to /profile/settings
  2. Under the "Approved Integrations" section, click the button to generate a new access token.
  3. Once the token is generated, you cannot view it again, so you'll have to generate a new token if it is lost.

GNU readline on macOS

To check which line editor library your current python is using, check the output of

echo "import readline\nprint(readline.__doc__)" | python

You should see one of the following messages.

Importing this module enables command line editing using GNU readline.
Importing this module enables command line editing using libedit readline.

If you see the first message, you are good to go!

If you see the latter, the easiest fix is to install and configure Anaconda, a package manager that provides a Python distribution that comes with GNU readline set up as the command line editor.

Install Anaconda

$ brew cask install anaconda

Add Anaconda binaries to your path by amending your ~/.bash_profile or ~/.zshrc file

# At some point after your PATH is defined...
export PATH=/usr/local/anaconda3/bin:"$PATH"

Save and then source your edited rc file with source ~/.zshrc or equivalent (or restart your terminal).

Now Anaconda's commands are available to use!

Create a new virtual environment

$ conda create --name py36 python=3.6

Now, somewhere after the export PATH=/usr/local/anaconda3/bin:"$PATH" line in your rc file, add the following line:

source activate py36

Save your rc file, and once again source ~/.zshrc or equivalent.

Check your Python version, you should see Anaconda, Inc. in the name.

$ python --version
Python 3.6.4 :: Anaconda, Inc.

Now check if GNU readline is being used

$ echo "import readline\nprint(readline.__doc__)" | python
Importing this module enables command line editing using GNU readline.

Congratulations, you have installed and set up a Python distribution with GNU readline!

Run pip install clanvas to celebrate.


Pull requests are welcome! Check out the contributing page for details on how to help.

Built With

These projects are used very directly, and both welcome pull requests. If you want to add an uncovered canvas endpoint, or change the behavior of the shell itself, check out these projects:


This project is licensed under the MIT License. See the LICENSE file for details.