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Discussion on: My Favorite CLI Tools

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switowski profile image
Sebastian Witowski Author

I haven't actually used pipenv. If you asked me 2 months ago, I would say: "don't use it, it's abandoned", as there was no release between 2018 and 2020.04.29. But it seems to be back on track again.
With my clients, I use requirements.txt + pip-tools to pin versions. That's an old-fashioned but pretty bulletproof solution. In my personal projects, I used poetry, and I liked it. But I would not use it in a commercial solution (unless the client insists, which never happened) - mainly because of the bus factor (it's still maintained by a small group of people).
Also, keep in mind that I write applications, not Python packages. For writing a Python package, I would go with Poetry (it takes away a lot of hassle with packaging, etc.)

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mowat27 profile image
Adrian Mowat

Ah, OK. I saw a lot of places where people said it was the "right/standard" way of doing things going forward. I guess that could have been wishful thinking. My main use case is writing AWS lambda functions and I like the way I can define dev dependencies separately so they don't get packaged up with the final build and impact startup time. I've never been able to find a way to do that in a requirements.txt file though. Is there an ideomatic way to deal with this? Maybe a separate requirements file?

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switowski profile image
Sebastian Witowski Author

Your intuition is correct - it can be achieved through separate requirements files.
I usually have 4 of them (2 maintained by hand, 2 generated automatically):

  • requirements.in - list of packages that you want to include in the final build, e.g. "django". You can be even more specific: "django<3.0"
  • requirements.txt - pinned versions - this will be generated by the pip-tools, so you never touch this file by hand, e.g. "django==2.2.2"
  • requirements-dev.in- packages used by developers (not included in the final build), e.g.: "pytest"
  • requirements-dev.txt - pinned versions of packages for developers generated by pip-tools.

You add packages to the *.in files, generate the *.txt files with, let's say a Makefile command, and use them to install packages on the destination servers.

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mowat27 profile image
Adrian Mowat

Awesome! Thanks for your help. I'll definitely try this as I feel like I'm swimming against the tide with pipenv.

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