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Contributing to senaite.core

Third-party contributions are essential for keeping senaite.core continuously improving. We simply cannot access the huge number of platforms and myriad configurations for running senaite.core. We want to keep it as easy as possible to contribute changes that get things working in your environment. There are a few guidelines that we need contributors to follow so that we can have a chance of keeping on top of things.

The following is a set of guidelines for contributing to senaite.core, which is hosted in the SENAITE Organization on GitHub. These are just guidelines, not rules. Use your best judgment, and feel free to propose changes to this document in a pull request.

Code of Conduct

This project adheres to the Contributor Covenant code of conduct. By participating, you are expected to uphold this code. Please report unacceptable behavior.

Reporting an issue

Have you found a bug in the code which is not in the list of known bugs? Do you have a suggestion for improvement? Then by all means please submit a new issue, and do not hesitate to comment on existing open issues.

When filling a new issue, please remember to:

  • Use a clear and descriptive title for the issue to identify the problem.

  • Describe the exact steps which reproduce the problem in as many details as possible. For example, start by describing your computing platform (Operating System and version, how did you installed senaite.core and its dependencies, what file or front-end are you using as a signal source, etc.). You can also include the configuration file(s) you are using, or a dump of the terminal output you are getting. The more information you provide, the more chances to get useful answers.

  • Please be patient. This organization is run on a volunteer basis, so it can take some time to the Developer Team to reach your issue. They will do their best to fix it as soon as possible.

  • If you opened an issue that is now solved, it is a good practice to close it.

The list of open issues can be a good starting point and a source of ideas if you are looking to contribute to the source code.

Contributing to the source code


  1. If you still have not done so, create your personal account on GitHub.

  2. Fork senaite.core from GitHub. This will copy the whole senaite.core repository to your personal account.

  3. Then, go to your favourite working folder in your computer and clone your forked repository by typing (replacing YOUR_USERNAME by the actual username of your GitHub account):

    $ git clone
  4. Your forked repository will receive the default name of origin. You can also add the original senaite.core repository, which is usually called upstream:

    $ cd senaite.core
    $ git remote add upstream

To verify the new upstream repository you have specified for your fork, type git remote -v. You should see the URL for your fork as origin, and the URL for the original repository as upstream:

$ git remote -v
origin (fetch)
origin (push)
upstream (fetch)
upstream (push)

Start working on your contribution

Checkout the master branch of the git repository in order to get synchronized with the latest code:

$ git checkout master
$ git pull upstream master

Now you can do changes, add files, do commits (please take a look at how to write good commit messages!) and push them to your repository:

$ git push origin my_feature

If there have been new pushes to the master branch of the upstream repository since the last time you pulled from it, you might want to put your commits on top of them (this is mandatory for pull requests):

$ git remote update
$ git pull --rebase upstream master

Alternatively, you can merge senaite.core's master into your branch:

$ git remote update
$ git merge --no-ff upstream master

Although a merge is safer than rebase, the latter eliminates the unnecessary merge commits required by git merge and makes the project history easier to navigate. We strongly encourage the developer to know in detail the differences, pros and cons between doing a gir rebase or git merge. Good documentation on this regard can be found in the Atlassian's Merging vs. Rebasing tutorial.

Note this git rebase or git merge is required for keeping your branch aligned with the latest code from the repos. The incorporation of your work into master through a Pull Request will always be done using git merge.

How to submit a pull request

When the contribution is ready, you can submit a pull request. Head to your GitHub repository, switch to your my_feature branch, and click the Pull Request button, which will do all the work for you. Ensure the comparison is done with the master branch unless you forked from another one.

Once a pull request is sent, the Developer Team will review the set of changes, discuss potential modifications, and even push follow-up commits if necessary.

Some things that will increase the chance that your pull request is accepted:

  • Write tests.
  • Follow Plone's Python styleguide.
  • Write a descriptive and detailed summary. Please consider that reviewing pull requests is hard, so include as much information as possible to make your pull request's intent clear.
  • Do not address multiple bugfixes or features in the same Pull Request.
  • Include whitespace and formatting changes in discrete commits.
  • Add a changelog entry in CHANGES.rst

For more details about Git usage, please check out Chapters 1 and 2 from Pro Git book.

Contributing with new ideas

All suggestions and proposals are welcome. We strongly believe that the feedback of the community is an important asset to make a better project. With the aim to get the most of these contributions, but without interfering with the undergoing work regarding to issues and Pull Requests, we've created a Community discussion board. This is the right place if you are willing to discuss about new ideas, further steps or improvements.

If you want to keep in touch with the community members and up-to-date with the latest discussions, please join to the Gitter community channel.

If you want to stay informed about senaite at easy pace, don't forget to subscribe to our users list

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