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1.2.1. Create your own sphinx project

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Remember that you must have your package accessible in your Python environment to generate the sphinx documentation.

1.5.1. Update setuptools configuration file

Sphinx includes support to setuptools, therefore you can use the following command to build the HTML documentation:

python build_sphinx

However, you must tell where is the documentation, in particular the configuration file. This is done within the file setup.cfg where you will add those lines, if they are not present:

source-dir = doc/
build-dir = doc/_build
all_files = 1

These options will tell Sphinx to look into the doc directory to search for a file called and to build the HTML outputs into the ./doc/_build/html directory.

1.5.2. Obtain a valid sphinx configuration file

From openalea/starter/doc directory get the file called and copy it into the ./doc directory.

It should look like:

import os,sys
from openalea.misc.sphinx_configuration import *
from openalea.misc.sphinx_tools import sphinx_check_version
from openalea.deploy.metainfo import read_metainfo

sphinx_check_version()                      # check that sphinx version is recent
metadata = read_metainfo('../metainfo.ini') # read metainfo from common file with
for key in ['version','project','release','authors', 'name', 'package']:
    exec("%s = '%s'" % (key, metadata[key]))

latex_documents = [('contents', 'main.tex', project + ' documentation', authors, 'manual')]

project = project + '.' + package


The file looks for another file that is common to all OpenAlea package that can be found in ./misc/src/openalea/misc/ You should not edit those files in principle.

1.5.3. Update the package metainfo file

The file search for a metainfo file called metainfo.ini that should be at the same level as ` and setup.cfg files. The metainfo must contains version, project, name, package and authors tags but may contain other metainfo to be used by the file

version = 0.8.0
release = 0.8
project = openalea        ; must be in [openalea, vplants, alinea]; used to scp files and titles
name = OpenAlea.Starter
namespace = openalea
package = starter         ; package is going to be used by Sphinx to create the title and scp the files
description= whatever description you want
long_description= whatever desription you want
authors= your name
authors_email = your emai
url =
license = Cecill-C

1.5.4. Setup the source (ReST) files

To finalise you sphinx setup, you should look into an already setup package and from the doc directory, copy the Makefile, make.bat, contents.rst, user/index.rst, user/overview.txt and user/autosum.rst to get an architecture as follows:

|-- openalea
|   |-- yourpackage
|   |   |-- AUTHORS.txt
|   |   |-- ChangeLog.txt
|   |   |-- LICENSE.txt
|   |   |-- doc
|   |   |   |-- Makefile
|   |   |   |-- _static
|   |   |   |-- _build
|   |   |   |--
|   |   |   |-- contents.rst
|   |   |   |-- make.bat
|   |   |   `-- user
|   |   |       |-- autosum.rst
|   |   |       |-- index.rst
|   |   |       `-- overview.txt

1.5.5. Checking the configuration

the command should work without errors:

make html

and your HTML files should be available in:


1.5.6. What are _static and _build directories

The _static directory is used by sphinx to store documents, images. The _build directory is used by sphinx to store html and other built documents.

They must be present bu can be empty.

1.5.7. Where to start ?

contents.rst is the main entry point. You should not change it too much so, so as to keep a page very similar to the other packages.