Created: 2012-03-25 22:43
Updated: 2018-08-10 14:39
License: mit


Barrister lets you write well documented services that can be consumed from a variety of languages.
The basic steps are:

This project contains the core barrister command line tool as well as the Python bindings.



Hosted Translator

If you are working in a language other than Python and don't wish to install the barrister Python package, you can use the hosted translator to convert your IDL to its JSON representation. For example:

curl --data-urlencode idl@foo.idl > foo.json

This would upload foo.idl and save the output as foo.json. Currently the hosted error output is fairly minimal, but if you get valid JSON back on the response then you should be set.


I suggest installing pip. All Python distributions that I'm aware of ship with easy_install, so if you don't have pip yet, you can try:

easy_install pip

Then you simply run:

pip install --pre barrister

You may need to be root to install packages globally, in which case you should su to root or use sudo:

sudo pip install --pre barrister

Note - the --pre tag is currently required to get install the Plex dependency.


If you're using Python 2.6 or later, you're good to go. Python 2.5 users will need to:

pip install simplejson

Python 2.3 and 2.4 users will need to:

pip install uuid simplejson

Graphviz diagrams

As of 0.1.3 barrister can optionally generate UML-ish diagrams using Graphviz. To generate a diagram, use the -p and optionally -z flags to barrister.

The Graphviz dot program must be installed and in your PATH. See the Graphviz site for installation details. Most Linux distros can install Graphviz via a package manager (apt, yum, pacman, etc). Mac users can install Graphviz with homebrew.

If you'd like the diagram embedded in the generated HTML doc, place the token: [[diagram]] in your IDL file where you'd like the diagram to appear. This string will be replaced with a HTML <img> tag pointing to the diagram.



Distributed under the MIT license. See LICENSE file for details.

Release / Tag notes

Note to self on how to tag release

# Edit `` and ``, bump version, then run:

git add -u
git commit -m "bump v0.1.0"
git tag -a v0.1.0 -m "version 0.1.0"
git push --tags
git push
python sdist upload
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