Robot Framework remote server implemented with Python
Python RobotFramework


Python Remote Server for Robot Framework

Robot Framework remote servers allow hosting test libraries on different processes or machines than Robot Framework itself is running on. See the general remote library interface documentation for more information about the remote interface as well as for a list of remote server implementations in other programming languages.

This project is hosted in GitHub and downloads are available in PyPI.

Supported Python versions

This remote server is implemented with Python and supports also Jython (JVM), IronPython (.NET) and PyPy. Remote server 1.1 and newer support Python 2.6, 2.7, 3.3, and newer. Remote server 1.0 series supports Python versions 2.2-2.7.

Supported library APIs

Starting from Remote server 1.1, Robot Framework's normal static, hybrid and dynamic library APIs are all supported. This includes setting custom name and tags for keywords using the robot.api.deco.keyword decorator. Earlier versions support only the static and hybrid APIs and do not support the keyword decorator.

For most parts these APIs work exactly like when using with Robot Framework normally. There main limitation is that logging using robot.api.logger or Python's logging module is not supported.


The easiest installation approach is using pip:

pip install robotremoteserver

Alternatively you can download the source distribution from PyPI, extract it and install the server using:

python install

Starting remote server

The remote server can be started by simply creating an instance of the server and passing a test library instance or module to it:

from robotremoteserver import RobotRemoteServer
from mylibrary import MyLibrary


By default the server listens to address and port 8270. See the next section for information about configuring the server.

Remote server configuration

The remote server accepts following configuration parameters:

Argument Default Explanation
library   Test library instance or module to host. Mandatory argument.
host '' Address to listen. Use '' to listen to all available interfaces.
port 8270 Port to listen. Use 0 to select a free port automatically. Can be given as an integer or as a string.
port_file None File to write port that is used. None means no such file is written.
allow_stop 'DEPRECATED' DEPRECATED. User allow_remote_stop instead.
serve True If True, start the server automatically and wait for it to be stopped. If False, server can be started using serve or start methods. New in version 1.1.
allow_remote_stop True Allow/disallow stopping the server using Stop Remote Server keyword and stop_remote_server XML-RPC method. New in version 1.1.

Address and port that are used are printed to the console where the server is started. Writing port to a file by using port_file argument is especially useful when the server selects a free port automatically. Other tools can then easily read the active port from the file. If the file is removed prior to starting the server, tools can also wait until the file exists to know that the server is up and running. Starting from version 1.1, the server removes the port file automatically.


from robotremoteserver import RobotRemoteServer
from mylibrary import MyLibrary

RobotRemoteServer(MyLibrary(), host='', port=0,

Starting from versoin 1.1, the server can also first be initialized and started afterwards:

server = RobotRemoteServer(MyLibrary(), host='', port=0,
                           port_file='/tmp/remote-port.txt', serve=False)

The above is totally equivalent to the earlier example and both of them result with the server starting and running until it is explicitly stopped. Alternatively it is possible to start the server on background.

Stopping remote server

The remote server can be gracefully stopped using several different methods:

  • Hitting Ctrl-C on the console where the server is running. Does not work reliably with version 1.0 or earlier or if using Python 2.5 or older.
  • Sending the process SIGINT, SIGTERM, or SIGHUP signal. Does not work on Windows. Notice that with Jython you need to send the signal to the started Java process, not to the shell typically started by jython command.
  • Using Stop Remote Server keyword.
  • Using stop_remote_server function in the XML-RPC interface.
  • Running python -m robotremoteserver stop [uri] or using stop_remote_server function similarly as when testing is server running.
  • Calling stop method of the running server object.

Using Stop Remote Server keyword, stop_remote_server XML-RPC function or stopping functionality provided by robotremoteserver itself can all be disabled by using allow_remote_stop=False when initializing the server.

Starting server on background

Sometimes it is useful to start the server on background and keep doing something else, like starting more servers, on the main thread. Starting from RobotRemoteServer 1.1 this can be accomplished easily:

from robotremoteserver import RobotRemoteServer
from mylibrary import MyLibrary

server = RobotRemoteServer(MyLibrary(), port=0, serve=False)
print('Remote server started on port %d.' % server.server_port)
# Do something ...

As the above example illustrates, the start method starts the server on background. When the server is started on background, none of the earlier methods to stop the server work. Instead the server can be stopped, as shown in the example, by using the stop method.

Testing is server running

Starting from version 1.0.1 , robotremoteserver module supports testing is a remote server running. This can be accomplished by running the module as a script with test argument and an optional URI:

$ python -m robotremoteserver test
Remote server running at
$ python -m robotremoteserver test
No remote server running at

Starting from version 1.1, robotremoteserver module contains function stop_remote_server that can be used programmatically:

from robotremoteserver import test_remote_server

if test_remote_server('http://localhost:8270'):
    print('Remote server running!')

robotremoteserver can be also used to stop a remote server by using stop argument on the command line or by using stop_remote_server function programmatically. Testing and stopping should work also with other Robot Framework remote server implementations.


The remote server project contains an example that can be studied and also executed once the library is installed. You can get the example by cloning the project on GitHub, and it is also included in the source distribution available on PyPI.