Tip: creating a Xapian database in Python

19 January 2010   5 comments   Python

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This cost me some hair-pulling today as I was trying to write a custom test runner for a Django project I'm working on that creates a test Xapian database just for running the tests. Basically, you can't do this:

os.mkdir(database_file_path)

Because if you do you end up getting these strange DatabaseOpeningError exceptions. So, here's how you do it:

import xapian
xapian.WritableDatabase(database_file_path,
                        xapian.DB_CREATE_OR_OPEN)

Hopefully by blogging about this some other poor coder will save some time.

Comments

LE
Why would you mkdir a database's directory? Makes no sense.
Peter Bengtsson
Because the test runner doesn't work like a normal Django startup. Without first doing this, the first test that tries to open the database in read-only mode will fail. Perhaps there is a more appropriate way but I couldn't immediately find one.
david
I normally use xappy for xapian stuff, it makes it a lot easier, or at least I look at the source code if there is something that is bugging me. i.e http://code.google.com/p/xappy/source/browse/trunk/xappy/indexerconnection.py"

The makers of it also make xapian core, so xappy has got best use practices in it.
Peter Bengtsson
I'm currently using django-haystack to wrap Xapian. django-haystack actually wraps xapian-haystack.

I might reconsider this because I'm not getting the most out of django-haystack because so much of my work has been to patch and subclass django-haystack in various forms because I'm not using Django's ORM.

I will take a closer look at xappy as it might actually simplify the stack in this project.
kirby
Was going nuts because django didn't create it initially. Thanks!
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