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We try our best to make activating dj-notebook as easy as possible. It should be easy to do, but more complicated projects will require manipulation of paths. The goal of this page is to provide all the instruction users may need or link to external docs as necessary.

Using dj-notebook with PyCharm

If using PyCharm the instructions described here are a very useful reference.


New in dj-notebook 0.6.0

Create an ipython notebook in the same directory as In VSCode, simply add a new .ipynb file. If using Jupyter Lab, use the File -> New -> Notebook menu option.

In the first cell type the following:

from dj_notebook import activate

plus = activate()

Specifying settings

If that doesn't work, find the project's file and open it. Copy whatever is being set to DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE as a string argument to activate function like so:

plus = activate('book_store.settings')

Using .env file to specify settings

New in dj-notebook 0.6.0

dj-notebook has support for .env files. Assuming our .env file is at /me/projects/djangopackages/.env and looks like this:


Then we can pass in that file in this manner:

plus = activate(dotenv_file='/me/projects/djangopackages/.env')

Advanced: Modifying the Path

This advanced technique is when you want to activate dj-notebook in a different directory from the Django project. For example, in dj-notebook the usage page is completely seperate:

└── usage.ipynb

To address that, in the docs/usage.ipynb file we modify the path to include django_test_project so dj-notebook can find with a simple activate() call:

import pathlib
import sys

here = pathlib.Path(".").parent
PROJECT_ROOT = (here / ".." / "tests" / "django_test_project").resolve()
sys.path.insert(0, str(PROJECT_ROOT))


For the sake of clarity, the above code is not visible in dj-notebook's rendered usage instructions. This is a hidden cell, so look in the unrendered usage.ipynb file.