Covering Essential Python Libraries for Systems Administration

by Noah Gift

A while back, Jeremy and I asked about topics people would like to see covered in the book we are writing about Python for Systems Administration. I would like to take this one step further as ask if there are any essential open source libraries we should cover in our book. An example of this would be the unbelievably useful IPy Module, which my co-worker Doug introduced me to a while back. Since then, I have found the module indispensable.

Also, if you have done something really cool with Python and Systems Administration, send me an email, and I will see if I can give it some coverage in the book. Even if you plan on doing something cool, then make a google code project and send me a link.


Matthew Flanagan
2007-10-22 00:19:04

The latest version of the IPy module is available at .

See my blog,, for some example code that uses IPy to sort a list of IP addresses.



Kent Johnson
2007-10-22 19:18:54
JOrendorff's path module




Noah Gift
2007-10-22 19:39:01
Matthew/You have some good stuff on your blog. Thanks for the comments. I can tell you like IPy just as much as we do. We will make sure to give it great coverage.

Kent/Thanks for the suggestions. I agree with you on easy_install and IPython, we are also giving heavy coverage to both. The more I use IPython, the more I can't believe I lived without it. It is great stuff, and especially for a sysadmin. Easy_install is also just a wonderful tool. I think this is a big win for sysadmins, and just about anyone using Python.

I have not used the path module, but from what i can tell, it does seem very interesting. Directory walking and dealing with paths are about as bread and butter as it gets for sysadmins. I will make sure I look over this module. Thanks again for the great tip!

abbas ali chezgi
2007-10-24 08:02:18
python sidebar for firefox
it can be useful for online information about python modules.
Oliver Frommel
2007-10-24 23:23:21
Paramiko is a pretty useful module for SSH/SFTP support. Might be interesting for administering distributed servers.

Maybe PyRPM although it is tied to RPM-based Linux systems.

Noah Gift
2007-10-25 05:01:06
Oliver/Thanks for the comments. Jeremy and I are writing a section on Paramiko right now. I have written quite a bit of code using ssh-keys and a common NFS mounted SRC directory, but we like the approach of Paramiko, and I know Jeremy is doing a bunch of stuff with it now.

Even though we will be covering every *nix OS, we are going to be giving RPM based systems their day in the sun. I had not heard of PyRPM, but it looks very cool. Thanks for the tip!

Noah Gift
2007-10-25 16:22:07
abbas/Kinda of off-topic,but I agree that is a killer tool. I use it!
Doug Hellmann
2007-11-04 17:24:39
Pexpect would be another good one to cover.