Distributing plugins

Now that you wrote a plugin, you may want to share it with other people. There are many way to do this, and we are going to present some of them below.

Via a VCS repository

If you already use a VCS (such as Git, Mercurial, or Subversion), giving access to your repository is the easiest way for you to share your plugins. This method can also easily be adapted to distribute tarballs.

It will however require a little more work for your users.

There are two ways to do it:

With a single plugin per repository

By initializing a repository in each folder created by supybot-plugin-wizard (eg. with git init). This allows you to keep each plugin’s history independent.

First, users should install a client for your VCS, and dependencies of your plugin, if any.

Users can then download and install your plugin in a single command:

cd runbot/plugins/
git clone https://example.org/~jdoe/YourPlugin.git

(or the equivalent for your VCS)

and then immediately run @load YourPlugin.

With all your plugins in the same repository

By running git init in a new folder, then call supybot-plugin-wizard in this folder to create each plugin in a subdirectory. This is the easiest for your if you maintain many plugins, as you don’t have to manage many repositories.

First, users should install a client for your VCS, and dependencies of your plugin(s) they want to use, if any.

Users can download all your plugins at once:

cd ~/
git clone https://example.org/~jdoe/LimnoriaPlugins.git JdoePlugins

and configure their bot to look for plugins in this directory:

@config supybot.directories.plugins [config supybot.directories.plugins], /home/me/JdoePlugins

Alternatively, to make it easier for your users, you can add your repository to Limnoria’s list of known repository, by sending a pull request to: https://github.com/ProgVal/Limnoria/blob/master/plugins/PluginDownloader/plugin.py

Note

PluginDownloader currently only works on GitHub, but pull requests to add support for other forges are welcome.

Once it is accepted, users can then download your plugin in a single step instead of the commands above:

@plugindownloader install Jdoe

Either way, they can now run @load YourPlugin

Via pip / PyPI

This requires a little more work for you, but uses mainstream Python package management (pip/PyPI) so it is a lot easier for users (as they don’t have to use a VCS, put your plugin in the right directory, or install dependencies manually)

Warning

This distribution method is currently experimental, but will likely be the recommended one some time in the future. Please try it out and give us feedback on #limnoria at freenode!

Setting up your plugin

To make your plugin installable via pip, you first need to create a setup.py file in the same directory as the other files of your plugin. You have probably seen one already if you are a Python developer. Limnoria provides a small wrapper over setuptools.setup, so you don’t have to type in most of the fields. The minimal setup.py for a plugin named YourPlugin is:

from supybot.setup import plugin_setup

plugin_setup(
    'YourPlugin',
)

This will automatically populate:

  • the package name (name = "limnoria-yourplugin")
  • author information (author and author_email if they are set in __init__.py)
  • maintainer information (idem)
  • version and URL (based on __version__ and __url__ in __init__.py)
  • package = "limnoria_yourplugin"
  • package_dirs = {"limnoria_yourplugin": "."}
  • add Limnoria as dependency
  • etc.

You can add any setuptools fields you like. For example, to add requests as a dependency:

from supybot.setup import plugin_setup

plugin_setup(
    'YourPlugin',
    install_requires=[
        'requests',
    ],
)

If you don’t like the name limnoria-yourplugin, you can also override it. For example:

from supybot.setup import plugin_setup

plugin_setup(
    'YourPlugin',
    name='limnoria-this-is-my-plugin',
)

Publishing your plugin

It’s now time to publish your plugin to PyPI.

First, you must create an account on https://pypi.org/ and install twine:

python3 -m pip install --user --upgrade twine

Then, you can generate and publish your plugin:

python3 -m twine sdist
python3 -m twine upload dist/*

And every time you want to publish an upgrade, update the version in __init__.py and run this last command again.

For more details, see the official Python documentation on:

Installing plugins

Finally, once you installed your plugin, users can install it simply with:

sudo pip3 install limnoria-yourplugin

and this will automatically install your plugin’s dependencies as well. Then, they just need to run @load YourPlugin as usual.

Alternatively, if you don’t want to publish on PyPI, they can still use pip to install directly from your repository, for example:

sudo pip3 install git+https://example.org/~jdoe/YourPlugin.git