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django-csvimport 1.0

Import CSV files to django models

Django CSV Import

Ed Crewe - June 2013


django-csvimport is a generic importer tool to allow the upload of CSV files for populating data. The egg installs an admin cvsimport model that has a file upload field. Add a new csvimport and upload a comma separated values file or MS Excel file.

The upload triggers the import mechanism which matches the header line of the files field names to the fields in the selected model. Importing any rows that include all required fields. Optionally required fields can be specified as part of the upload. By default duplicate value rows are not inserted.

The import can also be run as a custom command, ie csvimport filename for possible use via cronjob etc.

The core import code was based on by Jonathan Holst. It adds character encoding handling, model field and column autodetection, admin interface, custom command etc.

NB: There is another similar application django-batchimport but it not packaged, requires Excel files and doesnt provide a custom command for batch usage.

Installation instructions

Add the following to the INSTALLED_APPS in the of your project:

>>>  pip install django-csvimport
...  ...
...  'csvimport',
...  )
...  python syncdb

Custom command

Use csvimport --mappings='' --model='app_label.model_name' importfile.csv

For mappings enter a list of fields in order only if you dont have a header row with matching field names - or you want to override it, eg.

--mappings = 'column1=shared_code,column2=org(Organisation|name)'

where (model|foreign key field) is used to specify relations if again, you want to override what would be looked up from your models.

Admin interface import

Just add a csvimport item, fill in the form and submit. Failed import rows are added to the log field.

Demonstration installation instructions

To see how it works, you can install a demo easily enough eg. via virtual environment, then use the tests settings to have some sample models for importing data, and the fixtures are sample csv files.

  • Run the following in your shell:
>>> virtualenv mysite
... cd mysite
... pip install django
... pip install django-csvimport
... cat > bin/ << EOF
... #!/usr/bin/env python
... from django.core import management
... import os
... os.environ["DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE"] = "csvimport.tests.settings"
... if __name__ == "__main__":
...     management.execute_from_command_line()
... EOF
... syncdb
... runserver
  • Go to in your browser - pay attention to the trailing / !
  • Click on add CSVImport
  • Pick the django-csvimport/csvimport/tests/fixtures/countries.csv [1] and upload it
  • Check to see if the Country model is now populated.

[1] also available from

Alternatively you can use the command line to upload csvimport --model='tests.Country' django-csvimport/csvimport/tests/fixtures/countries.csv --settings=csvimport.tests.settings


This egg was created as part of a django dash at the House of Omni, Bristol UK, organised by Dan Fairs and my local django users group, #DBBUG. It was a core component for an application for aid agency supply chain sharing, prompted by Fraser Stephens of the HELIOS foundation and developed by Ed Crewe and Tom Dunham.


  1. Add more tests
  2. Add option to create model from CSV file
  3. Add use of xlrd for Excel file upload
  4. Improve related model creation - use of related csv file?


Contributors listed as [ username] where they are on github

1.0 - Added signals and code cleanup - 29th January 2013

  1. Fixed number overflow test and tested with django 1.5.1 [edcrewe]
  2. Added signals to the app, to allow the model to custom format a row.
  3. added appconf to allow the app to be more customizable - eg. select models for import.
  4. Removed except all and return database errors.


0.9 - Missed import of re for change to display of error log - 9th Dec 2012

  1. Import re in csvimport/ [blorenz]

0.8 - Tidy up logging and Boolean handling - 9th Dec 2012

  1. Fix display of error log so there are newlines for each entry [smeyfroi]
  2. Log processed rows to the logger [smeyfroi]
  3. Fix for boolean data [smeyfroi]
  4. Add setting for using standard logging machinery for Admin UI log lines [edcrewe]
  5. Add test to check creation and content of csvimport log file [edcrewe]

0.7 - Fixes and merge in changes for running up the test app - 24th Nov 2012

  1. Merge in changes for 1.4 templates in settings [elena]
  2. Merge in doc changes [elena, valhallasw]
  3. Fix bug with columns that are floats [imposeren]
  4. Fix imports via the admin not having charset encoding argument [edcrewe]

0.6 - Handle text not number or special float to integer - 7th March 2012

  1. Handle numeric columns with text in - zero if not nan or inf


0.5 - Add command line encoding option and error return - 6th March 2012

  1. Make sure command line usage returns errors and warnings
  2. Add the option to force --charset=utf-8 for example rather than chardet
  3. Add numeric type handling for empty fields or other issues plus tests

[Tessa Alexander, edcrewe]

0.4 - Add settings to allow demo site install from tests - 4th October 2011

  1. Add demo countries.csv file
  2. Add MEDIA_ROOT for file uploads


0.3 - Fix issue with adding in admin - 25th Sept 2011

  1. Fix empty mapping submitted
  2. Remove non-generic filename country processing code
  3. Use get_models to populate drop down for admin import form
  4. Add upload message about whether mapping is from CSV header row
  5. Ensure header row only used if mapping is not supplied.


0.2 - Initial beta release version - 29th July 2011

  1. Build it as a django-csvimport egg
  2. Create csvimport management command
  3. Improve character set detection and unicode handling
  4. Add admin csvimport model to upload CSV files with logging of import
  5. Use file upload save to trigger csvimport command
  6. Autodetect column mappings by matching model fields and CSV header text
  7. Add a deduplicate feature
  8. Start to add test suite with data / app for HELIOS cross agency supply chain data sharing


0.1 - Unreleased

  1. Use django snippet as starting point

[Jonathan Holst]

File Type Py Version Uploaded on Size
django-csvimport-1.0.tar.gz (md5) Source 2013-06-24 23KB
django_csvimport-1.0-py2.7.egg (md5) Python Egg 2.7 2013-06-24 46KB
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