Entry points are a way for Python packages to advertise objects with some
common interface. The most common examples are
console_scripts entry points,
which define shell commands by identifying a Python function to run.
Groups of entry points, such as
console_scripts, point to objects with
similar interfaces. An application might use a group to find its plugins, or
multiple groups if it has different kinds of plugins.
The entrypoints module contains functions to find and load entry points.
You can install it from PyPI with
pip install entrypoints.
To advertise entry points when distributing a package, see entry_points in the Python Packaging User Guide.
pkg_resources module distributed with
setuptools provides a way to
discover entrypoints as well, but it contains other functionality unrelated to
entrypoint discovery, and it does a lot of work at import time. Merely
pkg_resources causes it to scan the files of all installed
packages. Thus, in environments where a large number of packages are installed,
pkg_resources can be very slow (several seconds).
entrypoints is focused solely on entrypoint discovery and it
is faster. Importing
entrypoints does not scan anything, and getting a
given entrypoint group performs a more focused scan.