Developing with DSMR-reader


In this document there are many references to:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate

You will only have to execute it once per terminal session, to make sure you are working in the designated virtual env for DSMR-reader.

Setting up a development environment in Ubuntu 18.04

System packages:

sudo apt-get install -y postgresql postgresql-server-dev-all git python3 python3-pip python3-virtualenv virtualenvwrapper libmysqlclient-dev mariadb-server poedit

Clone DSMR-reader repository from Github:

git clone ... (your fork)
cd dsmr-reader/

Create virtualenv and install all packages:

mkdir ~/.virtualenvs
virtualenv ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader --no-site-packages --python python3
source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate
pip3 install -r dsmrreader/provisioning/requirements/base.txt -r dsmrreader/provisioning/requirements/dev.txt

Copy development config:

cp dsmrreader/provisioning/django/ dsmrreader/

Open dsmrreader/ and replace:

from dsmrreader.config.production import *


from dsmrreader.config.development import *

Copy env vars template and generate a unique secret key:

cp .env.template .env

Try a check, output should be something like System check identified no issues (0 silenced).:

./ check

Run quick tests (with in-memory database):


Set up PostgreSQL test database:

sudo -u postgres createuser -DSR dsmrreader
sudo -u postgres psql -c "alter user dsmrreader with password 'dsmrreader';"
sudo -u postgres psql -c "alter user dsmrreader CREATEDB;"

Set up MySQL (or MariaDB) test database:

mysql_tzinfo_to_sql /usr/share/zoneinfo | sudo mysql --defaults-file=/etc/mysql/debian.cnf mysql
sudo mysql --defaults-file=/etc/mysql/debian.cnf

# Execute these queries:
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON *.* TO 'dsmrreader'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'dsmrreader';

Now check whether tests run well with all three database backends (this may take a while):


Initial data to develop with

To be honest, the best initial/fixture data is simply a backup of your own system in production.

Just import it as you should on your RaspberryPi. Copy a database backup to /var/lib/postgresql/ on your PC and import it:

# Create empty database if it does not exist yet.
sudo -u postgres createdb -O dsmrreader dsmrreader

# For .SQL
sudo -u postgres psql dsmrreader -f <PATH-TO-POSTGRESQL-BACKUP.sql>

# For .SQL.GZ
zcat <PATH-TO-POSTGRESQL-BACKUP.sql.gz> | sudo -u postgres psql dsmrreader


Please note that you should not run any (backend) processes in your DSMR-reader development environment, until you’ve unlinked all external services.

After importing the backup of your production system, simply run:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate
./ development_reset

This will remove all API keys and other links to externals systems, as well as reset the admin user credentials to admin / admin (user / password).

Fake datalogger

There is a builtin command that can somewhat fake a datalogger:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate
./ dsmr_fake_datasource --with-gas --with-electricity-returned

It will generate random data every second in a certain pattern and should be fine for basic testing.

Please note that it only inserts unprocessed readings, so you’ll still have to run the ./ dsmr_backend --run-once command to have the readings processed.

Running DSMR-reader locally

You can run the Django development server with:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate
./ runserver

The application will be accessible on: http://localhost:8000/. Any code changes you make will let the application reload automatically.

Tests and coverage

DSMR-reader’s test coverage should remain as high as possible. Running tests will also analyze the test coverage in detail.

The easiest way to run tests is to use the in-memory tests:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate

To test a single app within DSMR-reader, just append it:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate
./tools/ dsmr_frontend

To test all database backends, run:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate

The test coverage should be visible in the terminal after running tests. There are detailed HTML pages available as well, after each test run, in coverage_report/html/index.html. Just open it with your browser to view the test coverage of each file and line.


A side effect of running tests is that it may also regenerate .PO files from the docs/ folder. If you did not make any changes there, your should just ignore those changed files and revert them.


You can find the translations (.PO files) for the main application in dsmrreader/locales/. To regenerate them, just execute the ./tools/ script, as one of the tests checks translations.

Editing documentation

The documentation is part of the repository and can be generated (automatically) with Sphinx:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate
cd docs/
sphinx-autobuild . _build/html -p 10000

You can now view the documentation in your browser by accessing: Any changes you make will be reflected instantly in the browser, as Sphinx continuously checks for changed files.

Translating documentation

Translations are done using gettext and .PO files. Regenerate the .PO files with:

source ~/.virtualenvs/dsmrreader/bin/activate
cd docs/
make gettext && sphinx-intl update -p _build/locale -l nl

The .PO files in docs/locale should be regenerated now. You can use poedit to view and translate the files.

After editing the .PO files, you can check the result by building the Dutch translations locally:

make -e SPHINXOPTS="-D language='nl'" html

Now view the generated HTML in your browser by opening: docs/_build/html/index.html

Pull requests

Please make sure to always point any pull requests to the development branch of DSMR-reader, as the master branch will only be affected by release merges.