Lightweight library for software auto-update for applications frozen with pyinstaller
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Philippe Faist
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README.md

UPDATER4PYI

Updater4pyi is a simple, lightweight, flexible python library to enable your applications packaged with pyinstaller to auto-update themselves.

Its design is extremely flexible, so it can work with various "sources", e.g. a github repository, but you can write your own source just as easily.

The update process runs for both one-file and one-dir packaged applications, on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X.

The base library is interface-independent. An interface in PyQt4 as well as one for console applications are provided, but writing an interface for another GUI system (wxWidgets ...) should be a matter of several lines of code.

Full Documentation

Read the full documentation (being constructed) at http://updater4pyi.readthedocs.org/.

Installation & Usage

Updater4pyi is available on PyPI, so the recommended installation is through there.

You will also need to install one hook for pyinstaller. If you have a custom hook directory in your project, you can place the file named hook-updater4pyi.py it there; otherwise, locate your pyinstaller hooks directory and copy the file hook-updater4pyi.py in there.

To use updater4pyi in your programs, you need to:

  • describe where to look for updates (the sources)

  • instantiate the updater, giving it the corresponding sources

  • create an interface, which will interact with the user.

For example, the bibolamazi project uses the updater4pyi framework, and the relevant lines in there are:

from updater4pyi import upd_source, upd_core
from updater4pyi.upd_iface_pyqt4 import UpdatePyQt4Interface

swu_source = upd_source.UpdateGithubReleasesSource('phfaist/bibolamazi')
swu_updater = upd_core.Updater(current_version=...,
                               update_source=swu_source)
swu_interface = UpdatePyQt4Interface(swu_updater,
                                     progname='Bibolamazi',
                                     ask_before_checking=True,
                                     parent=QApplication.instance())

Then, you need to make sure that pyinstaller can find updater4pyi, i.e. it has to be in your python path.

Sources

At the moment, there are only two source types

  • github releases. See upd_source.UpdateGithubReleasesSource. You can specify naming patterns as regexp's to match the release files with corresponding platforms

  • local directory source (used for debugging)

However, it is straightforward to write your own source. Look at upd_source.py to get an idea. If you do so, it would be great to contribute it to updater4pyi so that other people can profit!

Security

This library supports downloads through HTTPS with certificate verification, making the download and update process secure. The default root certificate is provided with this package, and can be changed to include your custom one if needed.

Interfaces

At the moment, there are the following interfaces for updates:

  • A simple console interface, running at each program start, that prompts the user to check for updates. Not very useful, more meant for debugging.

  • A full-featured abstract GUI generic interface. This interface does not depend on any GUI, and abstracts out tasks such as timing, saving settings and message boxes which need to be implemented by subclasses. This class is meant to be used as a base class to write updater interfaces for other GUI systems (wxWidgets, ...)

  • A PyQt4 interface is provided based on the generic GUI interface mentioned in the previous point.

Contributing

I won't have a ton of time to maintain this project, so if you feel like contributing (in particular writing new sources or interfaces, for example), don't hesitate to send me a pull request or to contact me.