Development setup

To contribute to byro, it’s useful to run byro locally on your device so you can test your changes. First of all, you need install some packages on your operating system:

If you want to install byro on a server for actual usage, go to the administrator documentation instead.

  • git
  • Python 3.x
  • A recent version of pip (Ubuntu package: python3-pip)
  • gettext (Debian package: gettext)
  • libjpeg or any other library supported in pillow (for qrcode)
  • libmagic
  • A PostgreSQL server

Some Python dependencies might also need a compiler during installation, the Debian package build-essential or something similar should suffice.

Get a copy of the source code

You can clone our git repository:

git clone
cd byro/

Database setup

Having the database server installed, we still need a database and a database user:

sudo -u postgres -i
postgres $ createuser <yourusername>
postgres $ createdb byro -O <yourusername>

Substitute your system username for <yourusername>.

Your local python environment

Please execute python -V or python3 -V to make sure you have Python 3.x installed. Also make sure you have pip for Python 3 installed, you can execute pip3 -V to check. Then use Python’s internal tools (Ubuntu package: python3-venv) to create a virtual environment and activate it for your current session:

python3 -m venv env  # or virtualenv -p /usr/bin/python3 env, or ...
source env/bin/activate

You should now see a (env) prepended to your shell prompt. You have to do this in every shell you use to work with byro (or configure your shell to do so automatically). If you are working on Ubuntu or Debian, we strongly recommend upgrading your pip and setuptools installation inside the virtual environment, otherwise some of the dependencies might fail:

(env)$ pip3 install -U pip setuptools wheel

Working with the code

The first thing you need are all the main application’s dependencies:

(env)$ cd src/
(env)$ pip3 install -r requirements/production.txt -r requirements/development.txt


(Windows only) If you get the error message failed to find libmagic.  Check your installation error, do pip install python-magic-bin in the virtual environment to install the necessary magic library for Windows.

Next, if you have custom database settings or other settings you need, make a new file byro/ with contents like these:

    'default': {
        'ENGINE': 'django.db.backends.postgresql_psycopg2',
        'NAME': 'byro',
        'USER': 'byro',
        'PASSWORD': 'byro',
        'HOST': 'localhost',

(The default – and recommended – installation uses PostgreSQL “Peer Authentication”, in which the Unix user is mapped to the Postgres database user. This works only for local connections, and only on Linux, most BSDs, OS X, and Solaris, but provides the highest level of security and the least amount of configuration. In this mode the keys USER, PASSWORD, and HOST MUST NOT be set.)

Then, create the local database:

(env)$ python migrate

To be able to log in, you should also create an admin user:

(env)$ python createsuperuser

If you want to see byro in a different language than English, you have to compile our language files:

(env)$ python compilemessages

Run the development server

To run the local development server, execute:

(env)$ python runserver

Now point your browser to http://localhost:8000/ – You should be able to log in and play around! You can use the following command to generate example data:

(env)$ python make_testdata

Code checks and unit tests

Before you check in your code into git, always run the static checkers and unit tests:

(env)$ pylama
(env)$ isort -c -rc .
(env)$ python check
(env)$ py.test tests


If you have more than one CPU core and want to speed up the test suite, you can run py.test -n NUM with NUM being the number of threads you want to use.

It’s a good idea to put the style checks into your git hook .git/hooks/pre-commit, for example:

set -e
cd $GIT_DIR/../src
source ../env/bin/activate
isort -c -rc .

Working with translations

If you want to translate new strings that are not yet known to the translation system, you can use the following command to scan the source code for strings we want to translate and update the *.po files accordingly:

(env)$ python makemessages

To actually see byro in your language, you have to compile the *.po files to their optimized binary *.mo counterparts:

(env)$ python compilemessages

Next steps

To contribute to byro, please read the contributing documentation.

Head over to the documentation patching section if you want to improve the documentation.

If you want to work on plugins, please go to the plugin guides.