Contributing to Sir Lancebot

Before contributing, please ensure you read the contributing guidelines in full.


Using Gitpod

Sir Lancebot can be edited and tested on Gitpod. Gitpod will automatically install the correct dependencies and Python version, so you can get straight to coding. To do this, you will need a Gitpod account, which you can get here, and a fork of Sir Lancebot. This guide covers forking the repository here. Afterwards, either click the button on Sir Lancebot's README or go to and run the following commands in the terminal:

git remote rename origin upstream
git add remote origin{your_username}/sir-lancebot

Make sure you replace {your_username} with your Github username. These commands will set Python Discord as the parent repository, and your branch as the fork. This means you can easily grab new changes from the parent repository. Once you set your environment variables to test your code, you are ready to begin contributing to Sir Lancebot.

Using Docker

Sir Lancebot can be started using Docker. Using Docker is generally recommended (but not strictly required) because it abstracts away some additional set up work.

The requirements for Docker are:

  • Docker CE
  • Docker Compose
    • pip install docker-compose
    • This is only a required step for linux. Docker comes bundled with docker-compose on Mac OS and Windows.

Fork the Project

You will need your own remote (online) copy of the project repository, known as a fork.

You will do all your work in the fork rather than directly in the main repository.

Development Environment

  1. Once you have your fork, you will need to clone the repository to your computer.
  2. After cloning, proceed to install the project's dependencies. (This is not required if using Docker)

Test Server and Bot Account

You will need your own test server and bot account on Discord to test your changes to the bot.

  1. Create a test server.
  2. Create a bot account and invite it to the server you just created.
  3. Create the following text channels:
    • #announcements
    • #dev-log
    • #sir-lancebot-commands
  4. Create the following roles:
    • @Admin
  5. Note down the IDs for your server, as well as any channels and roles created.

Environment variables

You will have to setup environment variables:

The following variables are needed for running Sir Lancebot:

Environment Variable Description
BOT_TOKEN Bot Token from the Discord developer portal
BOT_GUILD ID of the Discord Server
BOT_ADMIN_ROLE_ID ID of the role @Admins
ROLE_HELPERS ID of the role @Helpers
CHANNEL_ANNOUNCEMENTS ID of the #announcements channel
CHANNEL_DEVLOG ID of the #dev-log channel
CHANNEL_COMMUNITY_BOT_COMMANDS ID of the #sir-lancebot-commands channel

Full environment variable reference for this project.

While not required, we advise you set USE_FAKEREDIS to true in development to avoid the need of setting up a Redis server. It does mean you may lose persistent data on restart but this is non-critical. Otherwise, please see the below linked guide for Redis related variables.

Run the project

The sections below describe the two ways you can run this project. We recomend Docker as it requires less setup.

Run with Docker

Make sure to have Docker running, then use the Docker command docker-compose up in the project root. The first time you run this command, it may take a few minutes while Docker downloads and installs Sir Lancebot's dependencies.

$ docker-compose up

If you get any Docker related errors, reference the Possible Issues section of the Docker page.

Run on the host

After installing project dependencies use the poetry command poetry run task start in the project root.

$ poetry run task start

Working with Git

Now that you have everything setup, it is finally time to make changes to the bot! If you have not yet read the contributing guidelines, now is a good time. Contributions that do not adhere to the guidelines may be rejected.

Notably, version control of our projects is done using Git and Github. It can be intimidating at first, so feel free to ask for any help in the server.

Click here to see the basic Git workflow when contributing to one of our projects.

Have fun!