A good Django view function cache decorator for http.JsonResponse

20 June 2018   0 comments   Python, Web development, Django

I use this a lot. It has served me very well. The code:

import hashlib
import functools

import markus  # optional
from django.core.cache import cache
from django import http
from django.utils.encoding import force_bytes, iri_to_uri

metrics = markus.get_metrics(__name__)  # optional

def json_response_cache_page_decorator(seconds):
    """Cache only when there's a healthy http.JsonResponse response."""

    def decorator(func):

        def inner(request, *args, **kwargs):
            cache_key = 'json_response_cache:{}:{}'.format(
            content = cache.get(cache_key)
            if content is not None:

                # metrics is optional

                return http.HttpResponse(
            response = func(request, *args, **kwargs)
            if (
                isinstance(response, http.JsonResponse) and
                response.status_code in (200, 304)
                cache.set(cache_key, response.content, seconds)
            return response

        return inner

    return decorator

To use it simply add to Django view functions that might return a http.JsonResponse. For example, something like this:

def search(request):
    q = request.GET.get('q')
    if not q:
        return http.HttpResponseBadRequest('no q')
    results = search_database(q)
    return http.JsonResponse({
        'results': results,

The reasons I use this instead of django.views.decorators.cache.cache_page() is because of a couple of reasons.

Disclaimer: This snippet of code comes from a side-project that has a very specific set of requirements. They're rather unique to that project and I have a full picture of the needs. E.g. I know what specific headers matter and don't matter. Your project might be different. For example, perhaps you don't have markus to handle your metrics. Or perhaps you need to re-write the query string for something to normalize the cache key differently. Point being, take the snippet of code as inspiration when you too find that django.views.decorators.cache.cache_page() isn't good enough for your Django view functions.


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