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A thin and simple library to develop microservices over the TCP socket
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"gaw" means "glue" in Thai

Gaw is a small library that helps you developing microservices over simple TCP socket with ease.

Gaw now comes with 2 flavors (version 0.7).

  1. Simple (without code suggestion)
  2. Improved (with code suggestion)

Simple Gaw

This is how it works!

On the server side (say,

from gaw import entrypoint

class MathService(object):
    name = 'math_service'
    def __init__(self, hello_msg):
    	self.msg = hello_msg

    @entrypoint # expose this method to the rest of the world
    def plus(self, a, b):
		return '{}: {}'.format(self.msg, a + b)

    def multiply(self, a, b):
		return '{}: {}'.format(self.msg, a * b)

You can start the server using GawServer like:

from services import MathService
from gaw import GawServer

GawServer('', 5555).add(MathService, 'hello!').run() # runs forever

Alternatively, using a command-line interface

$ gaw services --kwargs="hello_msg='hello!'" # runs all services in the module 'services'
# or
$ gaw services --service=math_service --kwargs="hello_msg='hello!'"

Anyways, usually, we don't really need the use of parameters like the above.

On the client side

from gaw import GawClient

client = GawClient('', 5555)
rpc = client.math_service
print(, 20)) # hello!: 30
print(rpc.multiply(10, 20)) # half-dayello!: 200

In some scenarios, you might need this

from gaw import GawServer, entrypoint
from somewhere import MathEngine

class MathService(object):
    name = 'math_service'
    math_engine = MathEngine() # only one instance

    def __init__(self, hello_message):
        self.hello = hello_message

    @entrypoint # expose this method to the rest of the world
    def plus(self, a, b):
        return '{}: {}'.format(self.hello,, b))

    def multiply(self, a, b):
        return '{}: {}'.format(self.hello, self.math_engine.multiply(a, b)))

service = GawServer('', 5555)
service.add(MathService, hello_message='Hello!') # runs forever

Note that you can put an after_start_cb to the such that the callback will be called when the start has jast been started like:

def started():
	print('server is up') # will be trigged after the server is up and running

In the example above, you can guarantee that there should be only one MathEngine initiated.

Improved Gaw

(version 0.7) For better code suggestion (and IDE support), you can define an @interface_class, @service_class and @client_class as follows:

On the server side


from gaw import GawServer, interface_class, service_class

class Interface(object):
    name = 'Service'

    def plus(self, a, b): pass

class Service(Interface):

    def plus(self, a, b):
        return a + b
GawServer(ip='', port=5555).add(Service).run()

On the client side

from server import Interface
from gaw import client_class

@client_class(ip='localhost', port=5555)
class Service(Interface): pass

service = Service()

print(, 20)) # outputs: 30

Now, IDE's code suggestion will work normally on the remote service (of course, because we define the "template", aka @interface_class, first).

Gaw is heavily influenced by Nameko, another python microservice framework.

Note: it supports python 3.4, and tested with python 2.7.9


from gaw import GawClient

GawClient(ip, port, secret=None, is_encrypt=False, connection_lifetime=30, verbose=False, retries=-1)

retries is the number of retries (if anything fails), -1 indefinitely, 0 no retry such that if anything should fail, an exception would be raised, N (int) the number of retries


pip install gaw

Due to my limited skills (to support both Python 2 and 3) and hurries, some bugs can really get through my poor testing. However, since I'm also using this library for production, bug fixes should be fast, and pip install --upgrade --no-cache-dir gaw should do it.

Request Life Cycle

  1. Gaw Client makes a connection and sends a request packet to a Gaw Server.
  2. Gaw Server, knowing all the entrypoints, Gaw Server inititates an instance of a designated class.
  3. Gaw Server invokes the requested method.
  4. Gaw Server sends back the results to the calling Gaw Client.


In the package, there are other two libraries that Gaw makes use of:

  1. Postoffice - serves as a low-level TCP socket communicator.
  2. Json Web Server - this's kinda like a http server for the mere socket world.

Data Authenticity and Data Confidentiality

Since version 0.5, Gaw has been suppporting pre-shared key AES CBC encryption and HMAC SHA256 digital signature to provide data authenticity and data cofidentiality.

GawServer(ip=..., port=..., secret=..., is_encrypt=..)
GawClient(ip=..., port=..., secret=..., is_encrypt=..)
$ gaw <module_name> --secret=... [--is_encrypt]

Note [1] : secret parameters are all base64 encoded strings with the size of 128, 192 or 256 bits.

Note [2] : Keep in mind that adding security and signature verification layers also adds up the overall latency of the server (including loads). However, if a very low latency is not your case, enabling these should not mind you much (latency from 0.3 ms increased to 0.6 ms for small request).

Note [3] : You can enable only the digital signature but not the encryption is_encrypt=False. This will not cost your valuable latency that much (from 0.3 ms to ~0.45 ms), yet gives you data authenticity.

Serializable Library

Since version 0.6, Gaw has been being shipped with Serializable Library with which you can return (0.6.4; you can supply methods with serializables) any kind of data types from your service method as long as it is a inheritance of the class gaw.Serializable

For example:


from gaw import Serializable

class MathResult(Serializable):

    def __init__(self, header, result):
        self.header = header
        self.result = result

    def get_result(self):
        return self.result

    def get_header(self):
        return self.header


from gaw import GawServer, entrypoint
from datatypes import *

class MathService(object):
    name = 'math_service'

    def __init__(self, hello_message):
        self.hello = hello_message

    def plus(self, a, b):
        return MathResult(self.hello, a + b)

    def multiply(self, a, b):
        return MathResult(self.hello, a * b)

service = GawServer('', 5555, verbose=True, secret='Qx9XFxN17+zkUdcBIGZ0A1sQTkUSP4SZ', is_encrypt=True)
service.add(MathService, hello_message='Hello!')


from __future__ import absolute_import
from gaw import GawClient
from datatypes import * # must import!! even you don't need it explicitly

client = GawClient('', 5555, secret='Qx9XFxN17+zkUdcBIGZ0A1sQTkUSP4SZ', is_encrypt=True, verbose=True)
rpc = client.math_service

print(, b=20).__dict__)
print(rpc.multiply(10, 20).__dict__)
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