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Development environment

Gitpod ready-to-code

Click the Gitpod badge to open a new development environment in Gitpod or use the information and steps below to set up a local development environment for Baby Buddy.


  • Python 3.7+, pip, pipenv
  • NodeJS 16.x and NPM 8.x (NVM recommended)
  • Gulp
  • Possibly libpq-dev
  • This is necessary if psycopg2 can't find an appropriate prebuilt binary.


  1. Install pipenv per Installing pipenv

  2. Install required Python packages, including dev packages

    pipenv install --three --dev

    If this fails, install libpq-dev (e.g. sudo apt install libpq-dev) and try again.

  3. Installed Node 16.x (if necessary)

    nvm install 16
  4. Activate Node 16.x

    nvm use
  5. Install Gulp CLI

    npm install -g gulp-cli
  6. Install required Node packages

    npm install
  7. Set, at least, the DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE environment variable

    export DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE=babybuddy.settings.development

    This process will differ based on the host OS. The above example is for Linux-based systems. See Configuration for other settings and methods for defining them.

  8. Migrate the database

    gulp migrate
  9. Create cache table

    gulp createcachetable
  10. Build assets and run the server


    This command will also watch for file system changes to rebuild assets and restart the server as needed.

Open and log in with the default username and password (admin/admin).