Thank you for your interest in contributing to SatNOGS! There are always bugs to file; bugs to fix in code; improvements to be made to the documentation; and more.

The below instructions are for software developers who want to work on satnogs-db code.

Git workflow

When you want to start contributing, you should follow the installation instructions, then…

  1. (Optional) Set your cloned fork to track upstream changes (changes to the main repository), then fetch and merge changes from the upstream branch:

    $ git remote add --track master upstream git://
    $ git fetch upstream
    $ git merge upstream/master
  2. Set up a branch for a particular set of changes and switch to it:

    $ git branch my_branch
    $ git checkout my_branch
  3. Commit changes to the code!

  4. Code!

  5. Lint the code and fix any errors:

    $ flake8 db
  6. Commit changes to the code!

  7. When you’re done, figure out how many commits you’ve made:

    $ git log
  8. Squash all those commits into a single commit that has a good git commit message. (Example assumes you made 4 commits):

    $ git rebase -i HEAD~4
  9. Use the interactive editor that pops up to pick/squash your commits:

    pick 01d1239 [fix bug 893291] Make it go to 11
    squash 32as32p added the library and made some minor changes
    squash 30ame3z build the template
    squash 91pcla8 ugh fix a semicolon bug in that last commit
  10. Push your changes to your fork:

    $ git push origin my_branch
  11. Issue a pull request on Gitlab

  12. Wait to hear from one of the core developers

If you’re asked to change your commit message, you can amend the message and force commit:

$ git commit --amend
$ git push -f origin my_branch

If you’re asked to make changes on your code you can stage them and amend the commit:

$ git add my_changed_files
$ git commit --amend
$ git push -f origin my_branch

If you need more Git expertise, a good resource is the Git book.


satnogs-db uses Django’s template engine templates.

Coding Style

  1. Four space indentation (no tabs), two whitespace on html documents.
  2. Use single quotes for strings. Double quotes used only for html attributes.
  3. Keep lines shorter than 100 characters when possible (especially at python code)

Follow the PEP8 and PEP257 Style Guides.

Most important things:

  1. Separate top-level function and class definitions with two blank lines.
  2. Method definitions inside a class are separated by a single blank line.
  3. Use whitespace between comma seperated values.
  4. Use white space between assignments and expressions (except parameter values).
  5. Don’t use whitespace before or after parentheses, brackets or braces.
  6. Classes should use CamelCase naming.
  7. Functions should use lowercase naming.

What to work on

You can check opened issues. We regurarly open issues for tracking new features. You pick one and start coding.