A highly opinionated and very convention-driven framework for creating Python “services”

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Getting Started

This Service Factory is hosted on PyPi, so using it is super easy (I’ve stripped the output to focus on your actions):

$ mkdir my-service-project
$ cd my-service-project/
$ virtualenv venv
$ . venv/bin/activate
(venv) $ pip install servicefactory

Now read on for some background information and a complete example that you can paste into e.g. and run it as shown below.

What is a Service?

To me, in the context of Python, a service is a script that runs forever, performing a (few) typical task(s) at regular intervals.

So what’s wrong with the following Python code then?

import time

while True:
  # do wonderful things

Nothing :-)

If not that I want my services to be able to talk to each other and maybe do other things, that in the end I don’t want to end up having to write every time over and over again.

Let’s look at an example and see what actually happens:

My kind of Service

The following example is a verbatim copy of the that comes with the package

Minimalistic example showing basic Service creation.
import time

from servicefactory import Service

class Test(Service.base):

  def loop(self):

  def finalize(self):

  def handle_action(self, data):
    print("handling action...")
    return data

if __name__ == "__main__":

Preliminary step: setup your minimal environment (when running directory from the repository):

$ virtualenv venv
Using base prefix '/usr/local/Cellar/python3/3.6.1/Frameworks/Python.framework/Versions/3.6'
New python executable in /Users/xtof/Workspace/2know/novid/py-servicefactory/venv/bin/python3.6
Also creating executable in /Users/xtof/Workspace/2know/novid/py-servicefactory/venv/bin/python
Installing setuptools, pip, wheel...done.

$ . venv/bin/activate

(venv) $ pip install -r requirements.txt 
Collecting Werkzeug==0.14.1 (from -r requirements.txt (line 1))
  Using cached Werkzeug-0.14.1-py2.py3-none-any.whl
Installing collected packages: Werkzeug
Successfully installed Werkzeug-0.14.1

Run it …

(venv) $ PYTHONPATH=. python servicefactory/
Test : looping...
Test : looping...

Now in a different terminal execute the following curl command:

$ curl http://localhost:1234/action -X POST -d '"hello world"' -H "Content-Type: application/json"

And observe the output of the script:

Test : looping...
handling action...
b'hello world'

Now open a python REPL promp:

(venv) $ PYTHONPATH=. python
Python 2.7.13 (default, May 24 2017, 12:12:01) 
[GCC 4.2.1 Compatible Apple LLVM 8.1.0 (clang-802.0.42)] on darwin
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>> from servicefactory import TestService
>>> TestService.Test.perform("action", "hello world")

And again observe the output of the script:

Test : looping...
handling action...
b'hello world'

Finally (for now) go back to the running script and interrupt the script using Ctrl+c:

Test : looping...
^CTest : shutdown requested
Test : finalizing...

(venv) $ deactivate


Property 1: Simply implement your loop

Let’s not waste time writing an event loop, catching KeyboardInterrupt and other boilerplate things. Just implement the Service.base class and provide your own loop method.

If you know Arduino you might recognise this function from that paradigm. I’ve not included a setup() counterpart, since you can do this in your class’ __init__(self) constructor ;-)

Property 2: Exposed HTTP/JSON API

The service exposes a basic HTTP and JSON based API, which allows interaction with it from outside the process it runs in.

Exposing functions is as simple as adding a decorator: @Service.API.handle("some-action") to a method in the Service class.

Property 3: Class Method to call the exposed API

Any Python process with access to the Service class, can call into a running instance of the class using a classmethod. For now this is a single perform(self, action, data) method.

Property 4: Default exposed functionality

Besides allowing to expose methods through the HTTP/JSON API, the base Service class also implements some standard functionality. Currently the shutdown action is provided, which can be called through the HTTP/JSON API of the perform class method. And If you interrupt the service you also see it being performed.

More to come … ;-)