Getting Set Up#

The hvPlot library is a complex project which provides a wide range of data interfaces and an extensible set of plotting backends, which means the development and testing process involves a wide set of libraries.



The hvPlot source code is stored in a Git source control repository. The first step to working on hvPlot is to install Git on to your system. There are different ways to do this depending on whether, you are using Windows, OSX, or Linux.

To install Git on any platform, refer to the Installing Git section of the Pro Git Book.


Developing hvPlot requires a wide range of packages that are not easily and quickly available using pip. To make this more manageable, core developers rely heavily on the conda package manager for the free Anaconda Python distribution. However, conda can also install non-Python package dependencies, which helps streamline hvPlot development greatly. It is strongly recommended that anyone developing hvPlot also use conda, and the remainder of the instructions will assume that conda is available.

To install Conda on any platform, see the Download conda section of the conda documentation.

Cloning the Repository#

The source code for the hvPlot project is hosted on GitHub. To clone the source repository, issue the following command:

git clone

This will create a hvplot directory at your file system location. This hvplot directory is referred to as the source checkout for the remainder of this document.

Installing Dependencies#

hvPlot requires many additional packages for development and testing.

Conda Environments#

Create an empty conda environment with the name that you prefer, here we’ve chosen hvplot_dev. Activate and configure its channels to only use pyviz/label/dev and conda-forge. The former is used to install the development versions of the other HoloViz packages, such as HoloViews or Panel.

conda create -n hvplot_dev
conda activate hvplot_dev
conda config --env --append channels pyviz/label/dev --append channels conda-forge
conda config --env --remove channels defaults

Since hvPlot interfaces with a large range of different libraries the full test suite requires a wide range of dependencies. To make it easier to install and run different parts of the test suite across different platforms hvPlot uses a library called pyctdev to make things more consistent and general. Specify also the desired Python version you want to base your environment on.

You will need to pick a Python version. The best practice is to choose the minimum version currently supported by hvPlot on the main development branch. If you cannot get the minimum version installed, then try with a more recent version of Python.

conda install python=3.x pyctdev

Finally to install the dependencies required to run the full unit test suite and all the examples:

doit develop_install -o examples_tests -o tests -o examples_conda

Add -o doc if you want to install the dependencies required to build the website.

Setting up pre-commit#

hvPlot uses pre-commit to automatically apply linting to hvPlot code. If you intend to contribute to hvPlot we recommend you enable it with:

pre-commit install

This will ensure that every time you make a commit linting will automatically be applied.


You can list the available doit commands with doit list.

Next Steps#

If you have any problems with the steps here, please contact the developers.