Configuring pylint

It is possible to incorporate pylint results in the TICS output for files. pylint is a static analyzer for Python.


For a successful pylint integration, the following prerequisites must be met:

Basic configuration

By default, TICS attempts to find pylint on the PATH. Alternatively, a specific Python interpreter and/or a specific pylint instance can be used.

The configuration for pylint can be added to either the SERVER.txt to apply them for all projects, or in PROJECTS.txt to enable project-specific settings. If the properties are declared in the SERVER file and also in the PROJECT file, the project-specific properties will override the global properties.


The following properties can (optionally) be declared, either on SERVER or PROJECT level:

'TOOLS' => {
  'pylint' => {
    'EXECUTABLE' => '/path/to/pylint',
    'INTERPRETER' => '/path/to/python',
    'INSTALLDIR' => '/path/to/directory'
    'PYTHONPATH' => ['/some/path/to/include', '/another/path'],

Specifying a pylint executable

The EXECUTABLE property can be used to specify the location of the pylint executable. This property is optional. In general, it is only necessary to specify an executable if it cannot be found on the PATH. Alternatively, the INSTALLDIR property can be used to specify a directory containing pylint.

When specifying a location for pylint, such as /usr/bin/pylint, it will be executed with the default Python interpreter. In some cases, this may not be desirable. For instance, when the default interpreter is Python 2.x, while the code that is being analyzed is aimed at Python 3.x. In this case, the interpreter can be configured through the INTERPRETER property.

Specifying a Python interpreter

The INTERPRETER property can be used to specify the path to a Python interpreter, such as /usr/bin/python. If this property is not set, the default Python interpreter will be used.

Note that the Python interpreter has an effect on the violations that are produced by pylint. It is recommended to use the interpreter in which the project is supposed to run.

Specifying an installation dir

As an alternative to specifying a pylint executable and/or Python interpreter, an installation directory can be set through the INSTALLDIR property. This installation directory can either be a full Python installation containing pylint, or a virtual environment with access to pylint.

The installation directory can be specified either as an absolute path (e.g., /usr/local/python), or as a relative path from the chk directory (e.g., pylint).

Specifying additions to the PYTHONPATH

The PYTHONPATH property can be used to extend the python path with directories containing libraries. This property should be a list of paths. All of these will be prepended to the PYTHONPATH environment variable before running pylint.

These paths can be absolute (e.g., /usr/lib/python2.7/dist-packages), but they can be specified relative to the directory in which the project is located. To achieve this, start a path with BRANCH_DIR, e.g., BRANCH_DIR/env/lib.

More information about the PYTHONPATH environment variable can be found in the Python documentation.