django-admin and manage.py

django-admin is Django’s command-line utility for administrative tasks. This document outlines all it can do.

Changed in Django 1.7:

Prior to Django 1.7, django-admin was only installed as django-admin.py.

In addition, manage.py is automatically created in each Django project. manage.py is a thin wrapper around django-admin that takes care of several things for you before delegating to django-admin:

  • It puts your project’s package on sys.path.
  • It sets the DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE environment variable so that it points to your project’s settings.py file.
  • It calls django.setup() to initialize various internals of Django.
New in Django 1.7:

django.setup() didn’t exist in previous versions of Django.

The django-admin script should be on your system path if you installed Django via its setup.py utility. If it’s not on your path, you can find it in site-packages/django/bin within your Python installation. Consider symlinking it from some place on your path, such as /usr/local/bin.

For Windows users, who do not have symlinking functionality available, you can copy django-admin.exe to a location on your existing path or edit the PATH settings (under Settings - Control Panel - System - Advanced - Environment...) to point to its installed location.

Generally, when working on a single Django project, it’s easier to use manage.py than django-admin. If you need to switch between multiple Django settings files, use django-admin with DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE or the --settings command line option.

The command-line examples throughout this document use django-admin to be consistent, but any example can use manage.py just as well.

Usage

$ django-admin <command> [options]
$ manage.py <command> [options]

command should be one of the commands listed in this document. options, which is optional, should be zero or more of the options available for the given command.

Getting runtime help

django-admin help

Run django-admin help to display usage information and a list of the commands provided by each application.

Run django-admin help --commands to display a list of all available commands.

Run django-admin help <command> to display a description of the given command and a list of its available options.

App names

Many commands take a list of “app names.” An “app name” is the basename of the package containing your models. For example, if your INSTALLED_APPS contains the string 'mysite.blog', the app name is blog.

Determining the version

django-admin version

Run django-admin version to display the current Django version.

The output follows the schema described in PEP 386:

1.4.dev17026
1.4a1
1.4

Displaying debug output

Use --verbosity to specify the amount of notification and debug information that django-admin should print to the console. For more details, see the documentation for the --verbosity option.

Available commands

check <appname appname ...>

django-admin check
Changed in Django 1.7.

Uses the system check framework to inspect the entire Django project for common problems.

The system check framework will confirm that there aren’t any problems with your installed models or your admin registrations. It will also provide warnings of common compatibility problems introduced by upgrading Django to a new version. Custom checks may be introduced by other libraries and applications.

By default, all apps will be checked. You can check a subset of apps by providing a list of app labels as arguments:

python manage.py check auth admin myapp

If you do not specify any app, all apps will be checked.

--tag <tagname>

The system check framework performs many different types of checks. These check types are categorized with tags. You can use these tags to restrict the checks performed to just those in a particular category. For example, to perform only security and compatibility checks, you would run:

python manage.py check --tag security --tag compatibility
--list-tags

List all available tags.

--deploy
New in Django Development version.

The --deploy option activates some additional checks that are only relevant in a deployment setting.

You can use this option in your local development environment, but since your local development settings module may not have many of your production settings, you will probably want to point the check command at a different settings module, either by setting the DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE environment variable, or by passing the --settings option:

python manage.py check --deploy --settings=production_settings

Or you could run it directly on a production or staging deployment to verify that the correct settings are in use (omitting --settings). You could even make it part of your integration test suite.

compilemessages

django-admin compilemessages

Compiles .po files created by makemessages to .mo files for use with the builtin gettext support. See Internationalization and localization.

Use the --locale option (or its shorter version -l) to specify the locale(s) to process. If not provided, all locales are processed.

Use the --exclude option (or its shorter version -x) to specify the locale(s) to exclude from processing. If not provided, no locales are excluded.

You can pass --use-fuzzy option (or -f) to include fuzzy translations into compiled files.

Changed in Django Development version:

Added --exclude and --use-fuzzy options.

Example usage:

django-admin compilemessages --locale=pt_BR
django-admin compilemessages --locale=pt_BR --locale=fr -f
django-admin compilemessages -l pt_BR
django-admin compilemessages -l pt_BR -l fr --use-fuzzy
django-admin compilemessages --exclude=pt_BR
django-admin compilemessages --exclude=pt_BR --exclude=fr
django-admin compilemessages -x pt_BR
django-admin compilemessages -x pt_BR -x fr

createcachetable

django-admin createcachetable

Creates the cache tables for use with the database cache backend. See Django’s cache framework for more information.

The --database option can be used to specify the database onto which the cachetable will be installed.

Changed in Django 1.7:

It is no longer necessary to provide the cache table name or the --database option. Django takes this information from your settings file. If you have configured multiple caches or multiple databases, all cache tables are created.

dbshell

django-admin dbshell

Runs the command-line client for the database engine specified in your ENGINE setting, with the connection parameters specified in your USER, PASSWORD, etc., settings.

  • For PostgreSQL, this runs the psql command-line client.
  • For MySQL, this runs the mysql command-line client.
  • For SQLite, this runs the sqlite3 command-line client.

This command assumes the programs are on your PATH so that a simple call to the program name (psql, mysql, sqlite3) will find the program in the right place. There’s no way to specify the location of the program manually.

The --database option can be used to specify the database onto which to open a shell.

diffsettings

django-admin diffsettings

Displays differences between the current settings file and Django’s default settings.

Settings that don’t appear in the defaults are followed by "###". For example, the default settings don’t define ROOT_URLCONF, so ROOT_URLCONF is followed by "###" in the output of diffsettings.

The --all option may be provided to display all settings, even if they have Django’s default value. Such settings are prefixed by "###".

dumpdata <app_label app_label app_label.Model ...>

django-admin dumpdata

Outputs to standard output all data in the database associated with the named application(s).

If no application name is provided, all installed applications will be dumped.

The output of dumpdata can be used as input for loaddata.

Note that dumpdata uses the default manager on the model for selecting the records to dump. If you’re using a custom manager as the default manager and it filters some of the available records, not all of the objects will be dumped.

The --all option may be provided to specify that dumpdata should use Django’s base manager, dumping records which might otherwise be filtered or modified by a custom manager.

--format <fmt>

By default, dumpdata will format its output in JSON, but you can use the --format option to specify another format. Currently supported formats are listed in Serialization formats.

--indent <num>

By default, dumpdata will output all data on a single line. This isn’t easy for humans to read, so you can use the --indent option to pretty-print the output with a number of indentation spaces.

The --exclude option may be provided to prevent specific applications or models (specified as in the form of app_label.ModelName) from being dumped. If you specify a model name to dumpdata, the dumped output will be restricted to that model, rather than the entire application. You can also mix application names and model names.

The --database option can be used to specify the database from which data will be dumped.

--natural-foreign
New in Django 1.7.

When this option is specified, Django will use the natural_key() model method to serialize any foreign key and many-to-many relationship to objects of the type that defines the method. If you are dumping contrib.auth Permission objects or contrib.contenttypes ContentType objects, you should probably be using this flag. See the natural keys documentation for more details on this and the next option.

--natural-primary
New in Django 1.7.

When this option is specified, Django will not provide the primary key in the serialized data of this object since it can be calculated during deserialization.

--natural

Deprecated since version 1.7: Equivalent to the --natural-foreign option; use that instead.

Use natural keys to represent any foreign key and many-to-many relationship with a model that provides a natural key definition.

--pks

By default, dumpdata will output all the records of the model, but you can use the --pks option to specify a comma separated list of primary keys on which to filter. This is only available when dumping one model.

--output
New in Django Development version.

By default dumpdata will output all the serialized data to standard output. This options allows to specify the file to which the data is to be written.

flush

django-admin flush

Removes all data from the database, re-executes any post-synchronization handlers, and reinstalls any initial data fixtures.

The --noinput option may be provided to suppress all user prompts.

The --database option may be used to specify the database to flush.

--no-initial-data

Use --no-initial-data to avoid loading the initial_data fixture.

inspectdb

django-admin inspectdb

Introspects the database tables in the database pointed-to by the NAME setting and outputs a Django model module (a models.py file) to standard output.

Use this if you have a legacy database with which you’d like to use Django. The script will inspect the database and create a model for each table within it.

As you might expect, the created models will have an attribute for every field in the table. Note that inspectdb has a few special cases in its field-name output:

  • If inspectdb cannot map a column’s type to a model field type, it’ll use TextField and will insert the Python comment 'This field type is a guess.' next to the field in the generated model.
  • If the database column name is a Python reserved word (such as 'pass', 'class' or 'for'), inspectdb will append '_field' to the attribute name. For example, if a table has a column 'for', the generated model will have a field 'for_field', with the db_column attribute set to 'for'. inspectdb will insert the Python comment 'Field renamed because it was a Python reserved word.' next to the field.

This feature is meant as a shortcut, not as definitive model generation. After you run it, you’ll want to look over the generated models yourself to make customizations. In particular, you’ll need to rearrange models’ order, so that models that refer to other models are ordered properly.

Primary keys are automatically introspected for PostgreSQL, MySQL and SQLite, in which case Django puts in the primary_key=True where needed.

inspectdb works with PostgreSQL, MySQL and SQLite. Foreign-key detection only works in PostgreSQL and with certain types of MySQL tables.

Django doesn’t create database defaults when a default is specified on a model field. Similarly, database defaults aren’t translated to model field defaults or detected in any fashion by inspectdb.

By default, inspectdb creates unmanaged models. That is, managed = False in the model’s Meta class tells Django not to manage each table’s creation, modification, and deletion. If you do want to allow Django to manage the table’s lifecycle, you’ll need to change the managed option to True (or simply remove it because True is its default value).

The --database option may be used to specify the database to introspect.

loaddata <fixture fixture ...>

django-admin loaddata

Searches for and loads the contents of the named fixture into the database.

The --database option can be used to specify the database onto which the data will be loaded.

--ignorenonexistent

The --ignorenonexistent option can be used to ignore fields and models that may have been removed since the fixture was originally generated.

--app

The --app option can be used to specify a single app to look for fixtures in rather than looking through all apps.

Changed in Django 1.7:

--app was added.

Changed in Django Development version:

--ignorenonexistent also ignores non-existent models.

What’s a “fixture”?

A fixture is a collection of files that contain the serialized contents of the database. Each fixture has a unique name, and the files that comprise the fixture can be distributed over multiple directories, in multiple applications.

Django will search in three locations for fixtures:

  1. In the fixtures directory of every installed application
  2. In any directory named in the FIXTURE_DIRS setting
  3. In the literal path named by the fixture

Django will load any and all fixtures it finds in these locations that match the provided fixture names.

If the named fixture has a file extension, only fixtures of that type will be loaded. For example:

django-admin loaddata mydata.json

would only load JSON fixtures called mydata. The fixture extension must correspond to the registered name of a serializer (e.g., json or xml).

If you omit the extensions, Django will search all available fixture types for a matching fixture. For example:

django-admin loaddata mydata

would look for any fixture of any fixture type called mydata. If a fixture directory contained mydata.json, that fixture would be loaded as a JSON fixture.

The fixtures that are named can include directory components. These directories will be included in the search path. For example:

django-admin loaddata foo/bar/mydata.json

would search <app_label>/fixtures/foo/bar/mydata.json for each installed application, <dirname>/foo/bar/mydata.json for each directory in FIXTURE_DIRS, and the literal path foo/bar/mydata.json.

When fixture files are processed, the data is saved to the database as is. Model defined save() methods are not called, and any pre_save or post_save signals will be called with raw=True since the instance only contains attributes that are local to the model. You may, for example, want to disable handlers that access related fields that aren’t present during fixture loading and would otherwise raise an exception:

from django.db.models.signals import post_save
from .models import MyModel

def my_handler(**kwargs):
    # disable the handler during fixture loading
    if kwargs['raw']:
        return
    ...

post_save.connect(my_handler, sender=MyModel)

You could also write a simple decorator to encapsulate this logic:

from functools import wraps

def disable_for_loaddata(signal_handler):
    """
    Decorator that turns off signal handlers when loading fixture data.
    """
    @wraps(signal_handler)
    def wrapper(*args, **kwargs):
        if kwargs['raw']:
            return
        signal_handler(*args, **kwargs)
    return wrapper

@disable_for_loaddata
def my_handler(**kwargs):
    ...

Just be aware that this logic will disable the signals whenever fixtures are deserialized, not just during loaddata.

Note that the order in which fixture files are processed is undefined. However, all fixture data is installed as a single transaction, so data in one fixture can reference data in another fixture. If the database backend supports row-level constraints, these constraints will be checked at the end of the transaction.

The dumpdata command can be used to generate input for loaddata.

Compressed fixtures

Fixtures may be compressed in zip, gz, or bz2 format. For example:

django-admin loaddata mydata.json

would look for any of mydata.json, mydata.json.zip, mydata.json.gz, or mydata.json.bz2. The first file contained within a zip-compressed archive is used.

Note that if two fixtures with the same name but different fixture type are discovered (for example, if mydata.json and mydata.xml.gz were found in the same fixture directory), fixture installation will be aborted, and any data installed in the call to loaddata will be removed from the database.

MySQL with MyISAM and fixtures

The MyISAM storage engine of MySQL doesn’t support transactions or constraints, so if you use MyISAM, you won’t get validation of fixture data, or a rollback if multiple transaction files are found.

Database-specific fixtures

If you’re in a multi-database setup, you might have fixture data that you want to load onto one database, but not onto another. In this situation, you can add database identifier into the names of your fixtures.

For example, if your DATABASES setting has a ‘master’ database defined, name the fixture mydata.master.json or mydata.master.json.gz and the fixture will only be loaded when you specify you want to load data into the master database.

makemessages

django-admin makemessages

Runs over the entire source tree of the current directory and pulls out all strings marked for translation. It creates (or updates) a message file in the conf/locale (in the Django tree) or locale (for project and application) directory. After making changes to the messages files you need to compile them with compilemessages for use with the builtin gettext support. See the i18n documentation for details.

--all

Use the --all or -a option to update the message files for all available languages.

Example usage:

django-admin makemessages --all
--extension

Use the --extension or -e option to specify a list of file extensions to examine (default: ”.html”, ”.txt”).

Example usage:

django-admin makemessages --locale=de --extension xhtml

Separate multiple extensions with commas or use -e or –extension multiple times:

django-admin makemessages --locale=de --extension=html,txt --extension xml

Use the --locale option (or its shorter version -l) to specify the locale(s) to process.

New in Django Development version.

Use the --exclude option (or its shorter version -x) to specify the locale(s) to exclude from processing. If not provided, no locales are excluded.

Example usage:

django-admin makemessages --locale=pt_BR
django-admin makemessages --locale=pt_BR --locale=fr
django-admin makemessages -l pt_BR
django-admin makemessages -l pt_BR -l fr
django-admin makemessages --exclude=pt_BR
django-admin makemessages --exclude=pt_BR --exclude=fr
django-admin makemessages -x pt_BR
django-admin makemessages -x pt_BR -x fr
Changed in Django 1.7:

Added the --previous option to the msgmerge command when merging with existing po files.

--domain

Use the --domain or -d option to change the domain of the messages files. Currently supported:

  • django for all *.py, *.html and *.txt files (default)
  • djangojs for *.js files

Use the --symlinks or -s option to follow symlinks to directories when looking for new translation strings.

Example usage:

django-admin makemessages --locale=de --symlinks
--ignore

Use the --ignore or -i option to ignore files or directories matching the given glob-style pattern. Use multiple times to ignore more.

These patterns are used by default: 'CVS', '.*', '*~', '*.pyc'

Example usage:

django-admin makemessages --locale=en_US --ignore=apps/* --ignore=secret/*.html
--no-default-ignore

Use the --no-default-ignore option to disable the default values of --ignore.

--no-wrap

Use the --no-wrap option to disable breaking long message lines into several lines in language files.

--no-location

Use the --no-location option to not write ‘#: filename:line’ comment lines in language files. Note that using this option makes it harder for technically skilled translators to understand each message’s context.

--keep-pot

Use the --keep-pot option to prevent Django from deleting the temporary .pot files it generates before creating the .po file. This is useful for debugging errors which may prevent the final language files from being created.

See also

See Customizing the makemessages command for instructions on how to customize the keywords that makemessages passes to xgettext.

makemigrations [<app_label>]

django-admin makemigrations
New in Django 1.7.

Creates new migrations based on the changes detected to your models. Migrations, their relationship with apps and more are covered in depth in the migrations documentation.

Providing one or more app names as arguments will limit the migrations created to the app(s) specified and any dependencies needed (the table at the other end of a ForeignKey, for example).

--empty

The --empty option will cause makemigrations to output an empty migration for the specified apps, for manual editing. This option is only for advanced users and should not be used unless you are familiar with the migration format, migration operations, and the dependencies between your migrations.

--dry-run

The --dry-run option shows what migrations would be made without actually writing any migrations files to disk. Using this option along with --verbosity 3 will also show the complete migrations files that would be written.

--merge

The --merge option enables fixing of migration conflicts. The --noinput option may be provided to suppress user prompts during a merge.

--name, -n
New in Django Development version.

The --name option allows you to give the migration(s) a custom name instead of a generated one.

--exit, -e
New in Django Development version.

The --exit option will cause makemigrations to exit with error code 1 when no migration are created (or would have been created, if combined with --dry-run).

migrate [<app_label> [<migrationname>]]

django-admin migrate
New in Django 1.7.

Synchronizes the database state with the current set of models and migrations. Migrations, their relationship with apps and more are covered in depth in the migrations documentation.

The behavior of this command changes depending on the arguments provided:

  • No arguments: All migrated apps have all of their migrations run, and all unmigrated apps are synchronized with the database,
  • <app_label>: The specified app has its migrations run, up to the most recent migration. This may involve running other apps’ migrations too, due to dependencies.
  • <app_label> <migrationname>: Brings the database schema to a state where the named migration is applied, but no later migrations in the same app are applied. This may involve unapplying migrations if you have previously migrated past the named migration. Use the name zero to unapply all migrations for an app.

Unlike syncdb, this command does not prompt you to create a superuser if one doesn’t exist (assuming you are using django.contrib.auth). Use createsuperuser to do that if you wish.

The --database option can be used to specify the database to migrate.

--fake

The --fake option tells Django to mark the migrations as having been applied or unapplied, but without actually running the SQL to change your database schema.

This is intended for advanced users to manipulate the current migration state directly if they’re manually applying changes; be warned that using --fake runs the risk of putting the migration state table into a state where manual recovery will be needed to make migrations run correctly.

--list, -l

The --list option will list all of the apps Django knows about, the migrations available for each app and if they are applied or not (marked by an [X] next to the migration name).

Apps without migrations are also included in the list, but will have (no migrations) printed under them.

runfcgi [options]

django-admin runfcgi

Deprecated since version 1.7: FastCGI support is deprecated and will be removed in Django 1.9.

Starts a set of FastCGI processes suitable for use with any Web server that supports the FastCGI protocol. See the FastCGI deployment documentation for details. Requires the Python FastCGI module from flup.

Internally, this wraps the WSGI application object specified by the WSGI_APPLICATION setting.

The options accepted by this command are passed to the FastCGI library and don’t use the '--' prefix as is usual for other Django management commands.

protocol

protocol=PROTOCOL

Protocol to use. PROTOCOL can be fcgi, scgi, ajp, etc. (default is fcgi)

host

host=HOSTNAME

Hostname to listen on.

port

port=PORTNUM

Port to listen on.

socket

socket=FILE

UNIX socket to listen on.

method

method=IMPL

Possible values: prefork or threaded (default prefork)

maxrequests

maxrequests=NUMBER

Number of requests a child handles before it is killed and a new child is forked (0 means no limit).

maxspare

maxspare=NUMBER

Max number of spare processes / threads.

minspare

minspare=NUMBER

Min number of spare processes / threads.

maxchildren

maxchildren=NUMBER

Hard limit number of processes / threads.

daemonize

daemonize=BOOL

Whether to detach from terminal.

pidfile

pidfile=FILE

Write the spawned process-id to file FILE.

workdir

workdir=DIRECTORY

Change to directory DIRECTORY when daemonizing.

debug

debug=BOOL

Set to true to enable flup tracebacks.

outlog

outlog=FILE

Write stdout to the FILE file.

errlog

errlog=FILE

Write stderr to the FILE file.

umask

umask=UMASK

Umask to use when daemonizing. The value is interpreted as an octal number (default value is 0o22).

Example usage:

django-admin runfcgi socket=/tmp/fcgi.sock method=prefork daemonize=true \
    pidfile=/var/run/django-fcgi.pid

Run a FastCGI server as a daemon and write the spawned PID in a file.

runserver [port or address:port]

django-admin runserver

Starts a lightweight development Web server on the local machine. By default, the server runs on port 8000 on the IP address 127.0.0.1. You can pass in an IP address and port number explicitly.

If you run this script as a user with normal privileges (recommended), you might not have access to start a port on a low port number. Low port numbers are reserved for the superuser (root).

This server uses the WSGI application object specified by the WSGI_APPLICATION setting.

DO NOT USE THIS SERVER IN A PRODUCTION SETTING. It has not gone through security audits or performance tests. (And that’s how it’s gonna stay. We’re in the business of making Web frameworks, not Web servers, so improving this server to be able to handle a production environment is outside the scope of Django.)

The development server automatically reloads Python code for each request, as needed. You don’t need to restart the server for code changes to take effect. However, some actions like adding files don’t trigger a restart, so you’ll have to restart the server in these cases.

Changed in Django 1.7:

Compiling translation files now also restarts the development server.

If you are using Linux and install pyinotify, kernel signals will be used to autoreload the server (rather than polling file modification timestamps each second). This offers better scaling to large projects, reduction in response time to code modification, more robust change detection, and battery usage reduction.

New in Django 1.7:

pyinotify support was added.

When you start the server, and each time you change Python code while the server is running, the server will check your entire Django project for errors (see the check command). If any errors are found, they will be printed to standard output, but it won’t stop the server.

You can run as many servers as you want, as long as they’re on separate ports. Just execute django-admin runserver more than once.

Note that the default IP address, 127.0.0.1, is not accessible from other machines on your network. To make your development server viewable to other machines on the network, use its own IP address (e.g. 192.168.2.1) or 0.0.0.0 or :: (with IPv6 enabled).

You can provide an IPv6 address surrounded by brackets (e.g. [200a::1]:8000). This will automatically enable IPv6 support.

A hostname containing ASCII-only characters can also be used.

If the staticfiles contrib app is enabled (default in new projects) the runserver command will be overridden with its own runserver command.

If migrate was not previously executed, the table that stores the history of migrations is created at first run of runserver.

--noreload

Use the --noreload option to disable the use of the auto-reloader. This means any Python code changes you make while the server is running will not take effect if the particular Python modules have already been loaded into memory.

Example usage:

django-admin runserver --noreload
--nothreading

The development server is multithreaded by default. Use the --nothreading option to disable the use of threading in the development server.

--ipv6, -6

Use the --ipv6 (or shorter -6) option to tell Django to use IPv6 for the development server. This changes the default IP address from 127.0.0.1 to ::1.

Example usage:

django-admin runserver --ipv6

Examples of using different ports and addresses

Port 8000 on IP address 127.0.0.1:

django-admin runserver

Port 8000 on IP address 1.2.3.4:

django-admin runserver 1.2.3.4:8000

Port 7000 on IP address 127.0.0.1:

django-admin runserver 7000

Port 7000 on IP address 1.2.3.4:

django-admin runserver 1.2.3.4:7000

Port 8000 on IPv6 address ::1:

django-admin runserver -6

Port 7000 on IPv6 address ::1:

django-admin runserver -6 7000

Port 7000 on IPv6 address 2001:0db8:1234:5678::9:

django-admin runserver [2001:0db8:1234:5678::9]:7000

Port 8000 on IPv4 address of host localhost:

django-admin runserver localhost:8000

Port 8000 on IPv6 address of host localhost:

django-admin runserver -6 localhost:8000

Serving static files with the development server

By default, the development server doesn’t serve any static files for your site (such as CSS files, images, things under MEDIA_URL and so forth). If you want to configure Django to serve static media, read Managing static files (CSS, images).

shell

django-admin shell

Starts the Python interactive interpreter.

Django will use IPython or bpython if either is installed. If you have a rich shell installed but want to force use of the “plain” Python interpreter, use the --plain option, like so:

django-admin shell --plain

If you would like to specify either IPython or bpython as your interpreter if you have both installed you can specify an alternative interpreter interface with the -i or --interface options like so:

IPython:

django-admin shell -i ipython
django-admin shell --interface ipython

bpython:

django-admin shell -i bpython
django-admin shell --interface bpython

When the “plain” Python interactive interpreter starts (be it because --plain was specified or because no other interactive interface is available) it reads the script pointed to by the PYTHONSTARTUP environment variable and the ~/.pythonrc.py script. If you don’t wish this behavior you can use the --no-startup option. e.g.:

django-admin shell --plain --no-startup

sql <app_label app_label ...>

django-admin sql

Prints the CREATE TABLE SQL statements for the given app name(s).

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

sqlall <app_label app_label ...>

django-admin sqlall

Prints the CREATE TABLE and initial-data SQL statements for the given app name(s).

Refer to the description of sqlcustom for an explanation of how to specify initial data.

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

Changed in Django 1.7:

The sql* management commands now respect the allow_migrate() method of DATABASE_ROUTERS. If you have models synced to non-default databases, use the --database flag to get SQL for those models (previously they would always be included in the output).

sqlclear <app_label app_label ...>

django-admin sqlclear

Prints the DROP TABLE SQL statements for the given app name(s).

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

sqlcustom <app_label app_label ...>

django-admin sqlcustom

Prints the custom SQL statements for the given app name(s).

For each model in each specified app, this command looks for the file <app_label>/sql/<modelname>.sql, where <app_label> is the given app name and <modelname> is the model’s name in lowercase. For example, if you have an app news that includes a Story model, sqlcustom will attempt to read a file news/sql/story.sql and append it to the output of this command.

Each of the SQL files, if given, is expected to contain valid SQL. The SQL files are piped directly into the database after all of the models’ table-creation statements have been executed. Use this SQL hook to make any table modifications, or insert any SQL functions into the database.

Note that the order in which the SQL files are processed is undefined.

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

sqldropindexes <app_label app_label ...>

django-admin sqldropindexes

Prints the DROP INDEX SQL statements for the given app name(s).

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

sqlflush

django-admin sqlflush

Prints the SQL statements that would be executed for the flush command.

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

sqlindexes <app_label app_label ...>

django-admin sqlindexes

Prints the CREATE INDEX SQL statements for the given app name(s).

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

sqlmigrate <app_label> <migrationname>

django-admin sqlmigrate

Prints the SQL for the named migration. This requires an active database connection, which it will use to resolve constraint names; this means you must generate the SQL against a copy of the database you wish to later apply it on.

Note that sqlmigrate doesn’t colorize its output.

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to generate the SQL.

--backwards

By default, the SQL created is for running the migration in the forwards direction. Pass --backwards to generate the SQL for unapplying the migration instead.

sqlsequencereset <app_label app_label ...>

django-admin sqlsequencereset

Prints the SQL statements for resetting sequences for the given app name(s).

Sequences are indexes used by some database engines to track the next available number for automatically incremented fields.

Use this command to generate SQL which will fix cases where a sequence is out of sync with its automatically incremented field data.

The --database option can be used to specify the database for which to print the SQL.

squashmigrations <app_label> <migration_name>

django-admin squashmigrations

Squashes the migrations for app_label up to and including migration_name down into fewer migrations, if possible. The resulting squashed migrations can live alongside the unsquashed ones safely. For more information, please read Squashing migrations.

--no-optimize

By default, Django will try to optimize the operations in your migrations to reduce the size of the resulting file. Pass --no-optimize if this process is failing for you or creating incorrect migrations, though please also file a Django bug report about the behavior, as optimization is meant to be safe.

startapp <app_label> [destination]

django-admin startapp

Creates a Django app directory structure for the given app name in the current directory or the given destination.

By default the directory created contains a models.py file and other app template files. (See the source for more details.) If only the app name is given, the app directory will be created in the current working directory.

If the optional destination is provided, Django will use that existing directory rather than creating a new one. You can use ‘.’ to denote the current working directory.

For example:

django-admin startapp myapp /Users/jezdez/Code/myapp
--template

With the --template option, you can use a custom app template by providing either the path to a directory with the app template file, or a path to a compressed file (.tar.gz, .tar.bz2, .tgz, .tbz, .zip) containing the app template files.

For example, this would look for an app template in the given directory when creating the myapp app:

django-admin startapp --template=/Users/jezdez/Code/my_app_template myapp

Django will also accept URLs (http, https, ftp) to compressed archives with the app template files, downloading and extracting them on the fly.

For example, taking advantage of Github’s feature to expose repositories as zip files, you can use a URL like:

django-admin startapp --template=https://github.com/githubuser/django-app-template/archive/master.zip myapp

When Django copies the app template files, it also renders certain files through the template engine: the files whose extensions match the --extension option (py by default) and the files whose names are passed with the --name option. The template context used is:

  • Any option passed to the startapp command (among the command’s supported options)
  • app_name – the app name as passed to the command
  • app_directory – the full path of the newly created app
  • docs_version – the version of the documentation: 'dev' or '1.x'

Warning

When the app template files are rendered with the Django template engine (by default all *.py files), Django will also replace all stray template variables contained. For example, if one of the Python files contains a docstring explaining a particular feature related to template rendering, it might result in an incorrect example.

To work around this problem, you can use the templatetag templatetag to “escape” the various parts of the template syntax.

startproject <projectname> [destination]

django-admin startproject

Creates a Django project directory structure for the given project name in the current directory or the given destination.

By default, the new directory contains manage.py and a project package (containing a settings.py and other files). See the template source for details.

If only the project name is given, both the project directory and project package will be named <projectname> and the project directory will be created in the current working directory.

If the optional destination is provided, Django will use that existing directory as the project directory, and create manage.py and the project package within it. Use ‘.’ to denote the current working directory.

For example:

django-admin startproject myproject /Users/jezdez/Code/myproject_repo

As with the startapp command, the --template option lets you specify a directory, file path or URL of a custom project template. See the startapp documentation for details of supported project template formats.

For example, this would look for a project template in the given directory when creating the myproject project:

django-admin startproject --template=/Users/jezdez/Code/my_project_template myproject

Django will also accept URLs (http, https, ftp) to compressed archives with the project template files, downloading and extracting them on the fly.

For example, taking advantage of Github’s feature to expose repositories as zip files, you can use a URL like:

django-admin startproject --template=https://github.com/githubuser/django-project-template/archive/master.zip myproject

When Django copies the project template files, it also renders certain files through the template engine: the files whose extensions match the --extension option (py by default) and the files whose names are passed with the --name option. The template context used is:

  • Any option passed to the startproject command (among the command’s supported options)
  • project_name – the project name as passed to the command
  • project_directory – the full path of the newly created project
  • secret_key – a random key for the SECRET_KEY setting
  • docs_version – the version of the documentation: 'dev' or '1.x'

Please also see the rendering warning as mentioned for startapp.

syncdb

django-admin syncdb

Deprecated since version 1.7: This command has been deprecated in favor of the migrate command, which performs both the old behavior as well as executing migrations. It is now just an alias to that command.

Alias for migrate.

test <app or test identifier>

django-admin test

Runs tests for all installed models. See Testing in Django for more information.

--failfast

The --failfast option can be used to stop running tests and report the failure immediately after a test fails.

--testrunner

The --testrunner option can be used to control the test runner class that is used to execute tests. If this value is provided, it overrides the value provided by the TEST_RUNNER setting.

--liveserver

The --liveserver option can be used to override the default address where the live server (used with LiveServerTestCase) is expected to run from. The default value is localhost:8081.

--keepdb
New in Django Development version.

The --keepdb option can be used to preserve the test database between test runs. This has the advantage of skipping both the create and destroy actions which greatly decreases the time to run tests, especially those in a large test suite. If the test database does not exist, it will be created on the first run and then preserved for each subsequent run. Any unapplied migrations will also be applied to the test database before running the test suite.

--reverse
New in Django Development version.

The --reverse option can be used to sort test cases in the opposite order. This may help in debugging tests that aren’t properly isolated and have side effects. Grouping by test class is preserved when using this option.

testserver <fixture fixture ...>

django-admin testserver

Runs a Django development server (as in runserver) using data from the given fixture(s).

For example, this command:

django-admin testserver mydata.json

...would perform the following steps:

  1. Create a test database, as described in The test database.
  2. Populate the test database with fixture data from the given fixtures. (For more on fixtures, see the documentation for loaddata above.)
  3. Runs the Django development server (as in runserver), pointed at this newly created test database instead of your production database.

This is useful in a number of ways:

  • When you’re writing unit tests of how your views act with certain fixture data, you can use testserver to interact with the views in a Web browser, manually.
  • Let’s say you’re developing your Django application and have a “pristine” copy of a database that you’d like to interact with. You can dump your database to a fixture (using the dumpdata command, explained above), then use testserver to run your Web application with that data. With this arrangement, you have the flexibility of messing up your data in any way, knowing that whatever data changes you’re making are only being made to a test database.

Note that this server does not automatically detect changes to your Python source code (as runserver does). It does, however, detect changes to templates.

--addrport [port number or ipaddr:port]

Use --addrport to specify a different port, or IP address and port, from the default of 127.0.0.1:8000. This value follows exactly the same format and serves exactly the same function as the argument to the runserver command.

Examples:

To run the test server on port 7000 with fixture1 and fixture2:

django-admin testserver --addrport 7000 fixture1 fixture2
django-admin testserver fixture1 fixture2 --addrport 7000

(The above statements are equivalent. We include both of them to demonstrate that it doesn’t matter whether the options come before or after the fixture arguments.)

To run on 1.2.3.4:7000 with a test fixture:

django-admin testserver --addrport 1.2.3.4:7000 test

The --noinput option may be provided to suppress all user prompts.

validate

django-admin validate

Deprecated since version 1.7: Replaced by the check command.

Validates all installed models (according to the INSTALLED_APPS setting) and prints validation errors to standard output.

Commands provided by applications

Some commands are only available when the django.contrib application that implements them has been enabled. This section describes them grouped by their application.

django.contrib.auth

changepassword

django-admin changepassword

This command is only available if Django’s authentication system (django.contrib.auth) is installed.

Allows changing a user’s password. It prompts you to enter twice the password of the user given as parameter. If they both match, the new password will be changed immediately. If you do not supply a user, the command will attempt to change the password whose username matches the current user.

Use the --database option to specify the database to query for the user. If it’s not supplied, Django will use the default database.

Example usage:

django-admin changepassword ringo

createsuperuser

django-admin createsuperuser

This command is only available if Django’s authentication system (django.contrib.auth) is installed.

Creates a superuser account (a user who has all permissions). This is useful if you need to create an initial superuser account or if you need to programmatically generate superuser accounts for your site(s).

When run interactively, this command will prompt for a password for the new superuser account. When run non-interactively, no password will be set, and the superuser account will not be able to log in until a password has been manually set for it.

--username
--email

The username and email address for the new account can be supplied by using the --username and --email arguments on the command line. If either of those is not supplied, createsuperuser will prompt for it when running interactively.

Use the --database option to specify the database into which the superuser object will be saved.

New in Django Development version.

You can subclass the management command and override get_input_data() if you want to customize data input and validation. Consult the source code for details on the existing implementation and the method’s parameters. For example, it could be useful if you have a ForeignKey in REQUIRED_FIELDS and want to allow creating an instance instead of entering the primary key of an existing instance.

django.contrib.gis

ogrinspect

This command is only available if GeoDjango (django.contrib.gis) is installed.

Please refer to its description in the GeoDjango documentation.

django.contrib.sessions

clearsessions

django-admin clearsessions

Can be run as a cron job or directly to clean out expired sessions.

django.contrib.sitemaps

ping_google

This command is only available if the Sitemaps framework (django.contrib.sitemaps) is installed.

Please refer to its description in the Sitemaps documentation.

django.contrib.staticfiles

collectstatic

This command is only available if the static files application (django.contrib.staticfiles) is installed.

Please refer to its description in the staticfiles documentation.

findstatic

This command is only available if the static files application (django.contrib.staticfiles) is installed.

Please refer to its description in the staticfiles documentation.

Default options

Although some commands may allow their own custom options, every command allows for the following options:

--pythonpath

Example usage:

django-admin migrate --pythonpath='/home/djangoprojects/myproject'

Adds the given filesystem path to the Python import search path. If this isn’t provided, django-admin will use the PYTHONPATH environment variable.

Note that this option is unnecessary in manage.py, because it takes care of setting the Python path for you.

--settings

Example usage:

django-admin migrate --settings=mysite.settings

Explicitly specifies the settings module to use. The settings module should be in Python package syntax, e.g. mysite.settings. If this isn’t provided, django-admin will use the DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE environment variable.

Note that this option is unnecessary in manage.py, because it uses settings.py from the current project by default.

--traceback

Example usage:

django-admin migrate --traceback

By default, django-admin will show a simple error message whenever an CommandError occurs, but a full stack trace for any other exception. If you specify --traceback, django-admin will also output a full stack trace when a CommandError is raised.

--verbosity

Example usage:

django-admin migrate --verbosity 2

Use --verbosity to specify the amount of notification and debug information that django-admin should print to the console.

  • 0 means no output.
  • 1 means normal output (default).
  • 2 means verbose output.
  • 3 means very verbose output.
--no-color
New in Django 1.7.

Example usage:

django-admin sqlall --no-color

By default, django-admin will format the output to be colorized. For example, errors will be printed to the console in red and SQL statements will be syntax highlighted. To prevent this and have a plain text output, pass the --no-color option when running your command.

Common options

The following options are not available on every command, but they are common to a number of commands.

--database

Used to specify the database on which a command will operate. If not specified, this option will default to an alias of default.

For example, to dump data from the database with the alias master:

django-admin dumpdata --database=master
--exclude

Exclude a specific application from the applications whose contents is output. For example, to specifically exclude the auth application from the output of dumpdata, you would call:

django-admin dumpdata --exclude=auth

If you want to exclude multiple applications, use multiple --exclude directives:

django-admin dumpdata --exclude=auth --exclude=contenttypes
--locale

Use the --locale or -l option to specify the locale to process. If not provided all locales are processed.

--noinput

Use the --noinput option to suppress all user prompting, such as “Are you sure?” confirmation messages. This is useful if django-admin is being executed as an unattended, automated script.

Extra niceties

Syntax coloring

The django-admin / manage.py commands will use pretty color-coded output if your terminal supports ANSI-colored output. It won’t use the color codes if you’re piping the command’s output to another program.

Under Windows, the native console doesn’t support ANSI escape sequences so by default there is no color output. But you can install the ANSICON third-party tool, the Django commands will detect its presence and will make use of its services to color output just like on Unix-based platforms.

The colors used for syntax highlighting can be customized. Django ships with three color palettes:

  • dark, suited to terminals that show white text on a black background. This is the default palette.
  • light, suited to terminals that show black text on a white background.
  • nocolor, which disables syntax highlighting.

You select a palette by setting a DJANGO_COLORS environment variable to specify the palette you want to use. For example, to specify the light palette under a Unix or OS/X BASH shell, you would run the following at a command prompt:

export DJANGO_COLORS="light"

You can also customize the colors that are used. Django specifies a number of roles in which color is used:

  • error - A major error.
  • notice - A minor error.
  • sql_field - The name of a model field in SQL.
  • sql_coltype - The type of a model field in SQL.
  • sql_keyword - An SQL keyword.
  • sql_table - The name of a model in SQL.
  • http_info - A 1XX HTTP Informational server response.
  • http_success - A 2XX HTTP Success server response.
  • http_not_modified - A 304 HTTP Not Modified server response.
  • http_redirect - A 3XX HTTP Redirect server response other than 304.
  • http_not_found - A 404 HTTP Not Found server response.
  • http_bad_request - A 4XX HTTP Bad Request server response other than 404.
  • http_server_error - A 5XX HTTP Server Error response.

Each of these roles can be assigned a specific foreground and background color, from the following list:

  • black
  • red
  • green
  • yellow
  • blue
  • magenta
  • cyan
  • white

Each of these colors can then be modified by using the following display options:

  • bold
  • underscore
  • blink
  • reverse
  • conceal

A color specification follows one of the following patterns:

  • role=fg
  • role=fg/bg
  • role=fg,option,option
  • role=fg/bg,option,option

where role is the name of a valid color role, fg is the foreground color, bg is the background color and each option is one of the color modifying options. Multiple color specifications are then separated by semicolon. For example:

export DJANGO_COLORS="error=yellow/blue,blink;notice=magenta"

would specify that errors be displayed using blinking yellow on blue, and notices displayed using magenta. All other color roles would be left uncolored.

Colors can also be specified by extending a base palette. If you put a palette name in a color specification, all the colors implied by that palette will be loaded. So:

export DJANGO_COLORS="light;error=yellow/blue,blink;notice=magenta"

would specify the use of all the colors in the light color palette, except for the colors for errors and notices which would be overridden as specified.

New in Django 1.7.

Support for color-coded output from django-admin / manage.py utilities on Windows by relying on the ANSICON application was added in Django 1.7.

Bash completion

If you use the Bash shell, consider installing the Django bash completion script, which lives in extras/django_bash_completion in the Django distribution. It enables tab-completion of django-admin and manage.py commands, so you can, for instance...

  • Type django-admin.
  • Press [TAB] to see all available options.
  • Type sql, then [TAB], to see all available options whose names start with sql.

See Writing custom django-admin commands for how to add customized actions.

Running management commands from your code

django.core.management.call_command(name, *args, **options)

To call a management command from code use call_command.

name
the name of the command to call.
*args
a list of arguments accepted by the command.
**options
named options accepted on the command-line.

Examples:

from django.core import management
management.call_command('flush', verbosity=0, interactive=False)
management.call_command('loaddata', 'test_data', verbosity=0)

Note that command options that take no arguments are passed as keywords with True or False, as you can see with the interactive option above.

Named arguments can be passed by using either one of the following syntaxes:

# Similar to the command line
management.call_command('dumpdata', '--natural')

# Named argument similar to the command line minus the initial dashes and
# with internal dashes replaced by underscores
management.call_command('dumpdata', natural=True)

# `use_natural_keys` is the option destination variable
management.call_command('dumpdata', use_natural_keys=True)
Changed in Django Development version:

The first syntax is now supported thanks to management commands using the argparse module. For the second syntax, Django previously passed the option name as-is to the command, now it is always using the dest variable name (which may or may not be the same as the option name).

Command options which take multiple options are passed a list:

management.call_command('dumpdata', exclude=['contenttypes', 'auth'])

Output redirection

Note that you can redirect standard output and error streams as all commands support the stdout and stderr options. For example, you could write:

with open('/tmp/command_output') as f:
    management.call_command('dumpdata', stdout=f)