The pkgme program is a framework for generating Debian packaging artifacts from information gleaned from inspecting the code. The framework takes care of the common tasks, and knows about packaging in general. It is extensible so that programming language-specific conventions and rules can be supported.

Project information

pkgme development is hosted on Launchpad. Please see the project page for downloads, bug reports, and accessing the latest code (available in the Bazaar version control system). You can also subscribe to the pkgme mailing list for discussions on using and extending pkgme. The archives are also available on-line.


In addition to the various Python modules documented in, pkgme depends on devscripts and debhelper.


Right now, the best way to hack on pkgme is in a virtualenv. This allows you to hack on pkgme in a clean environment, without touching or changing your system Python. You will need access to the internet in order to install pkgme into your virtualenv. On Debian/Ubuntu, make sure you have the python-virtualenv package installed, then do the following:

% virtualenv /arbitrary/path
% source /arbitrary/path/bin/activate
% python develop

If you want to override the default location of the backends, set the environment variable $PKGME_BACKEND_PATHS. This is a colon-separated list of directories, for example:

% export PKGME_BACKEND_PATHS=/pkgme/foo-backends:/pkgme/bar-backends % cd my-about-to-be-packaged-code % pkgme

When you’re done, just run the deactivate command and blow away /arbitrary/path.


While in your virtualenv, you can run the full test suite like so:

% python test

Building the documentation

If you have the Sphinx toolchain installed (on Debian/Ubuntu, the python-sphinx package), you can build the documentation like so:

% make html

You’ll need to be in your virtualenv, and you should have installed pkgme in that virtualenv before trying to build the documentation.

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