[openstack-dev] Replacing pbr's autodoc feature with sphinxcontrib-apidoc

Stephen Finucane sfinucan at redhat.com
Tue Apr 3 10:28:25 UTC 2018

On Mon, 2018-04-02 at 19:41 -0400, Zane Bitter wrote:
> On 28/03/18 10:31, Stephen Finucane wrote:
> > As noted last week [1], we're trying to move away from pbr's autodoc
> > feature as part of the new docs PTI. To that end, I've created
> > sphinxcontrib-apidoc, which should do what pbr was previously doing for
> > us by via a Sphinx extension.
> > 
> >    https://pypi.org/project/sphinxcontrib-apidoc/
> > 
> > This works by reading some configuration from your documentation's
> > 'conf.py' file and using this to call 'sphinx-apidoc'. It means we no
> > longer need pbr to do this for.
> > 
> > I have pushed version 0.1.0 to PyPi already but before I add this to
> > global requirements, I'd like to ensure things are working as expected.
> > smcginnis was kind enough to test this out on glance and it seemed to
> > work for him but I'd appreciate additional data points. The
> > configuration steps for this extension are provided in the above link.
> > To test this yourself, you simply need to do the following:
> > 
> >     1. Add 'sphinxcontrib-apidoc' to your test-requirements.txt or
> >        doc/requirements.txt file
> >     2. Configure as noted above and remove the '[pbr]' and '[build_sphinx]'
> >        configuration from 'setup.cfg'
> >     3. Replace 'python setup.py build_sphinx' with a call to 'sphinx-build'
> >     4. Run 'tox -e docs'
> >     5. Profit?
> > 
> > Be sure to let me know if anyone encounters issues. If not, I'll be
> > pushing for this to be included in global requirements so we can start
> > the migration.
> Thanks Stephen! I tried it out with no problems:
> https://review.openstack.org/558262
> However, there are a couple of differences compared to how pbr did things.
> 1) pbr can generate an 'autoindex' file with a flat list of modules 
> (this appears to be configurable with the autodoc_index_modules option), 
> but apidoc only generates a 'modules' file with a hierarchical list of 
> modules. This is easy to work around, but I guess it needs to be added 
> to the instructions to check that you're not relying on it.

Yup, smcginnis and I discussed this at some point. PBR has two
different ways of generating API documentation: 'autodoc_tree', which
is based on 'sphinx-apidoc', and 'autodoc', which is custom (and
presumably legacy). This extension replaces the former of those but, as
you note below, it seems 'sphinx-apidoc' can be wrangled into
generating something approaching the latter.

> 2) pbr generates a page per module; this plugin generates a page per 
> package. This results in waaaay too much information on a page to be 
> able to navigate it comfortably IMHO. To the point where it's easier to 
> read the code. (It also breaks existing links, if you care about that 
> kind of thing.) I sent you a PR to add an option to pass --separate:
> https://github.com/sphinx-contrib/apidoc/pull/1

Thanks for that. I've merged it and will use it as the basis of a 0.2.0
release assuming nothing else pops up in the next day or two. I'm not
sure what we can do about the broken links though - maybe use the
redirect infrastructure to just send everyone to the new place? I guess
I can add this to the guide I'm adding to the README on migrating from


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