Contributing patches to Arkindex

    All contributions are welcome to improve Arkindex, whether they are code, translations, design suggestions, small fixes, etc.

    If you want to discuss some ideas, send us an email at team (at)!

    Submitting a patch to Arkindex's source code🔗

    Find issues🔗

    We use GitLab to track issues (either bugs, or new features).

    You can browse Arkindex's existing issues:

    • either through the current milestone, containing the currently most important issues, as they are the most time-sensitive;
    • or through the full issues list

    Please ask first if you can work on an issue, by simply commenting on it. Be aware that some issues may be way more complex than others.


    Issues should have a priority label:

    • P1 are high priority, usually bugs badly affecting user experience,
    • P2 are at the normal priority level
    • P3 are low priority

    If nothing is set, assume P2 by default.

    Work on a branch🔗

    To start working on a patch, you must first create a git branch, based on the current master branch:

    # Start from master
    git checkout master
    # Update master to latest available revision
    git pull origin master
    # Create a new branch
    git checkout -b my-new-branch

    Each new commit will then be stored on that new branch named my-new-branch.

    To name your branch, use a name:

    1. in English,
    2. in lowercase,
    3. without spaces, use dashes - to link words,
    4. explicit and related to your current work.

    Here are some examples of suitable branch names:

    • remove-model-x when the goal is to remove a Django model named X
    • fix-invalid-chars-search when the patch fixes a bug related to search
    • bump-dependency-y
    • add-super-feature
    • feature-z

    Please avoid:

    • naming your branch with the issue ID, we prefer explicit naming here,
    • using a language other than English,
    • spaces, camelCase, underscores, etc.

    Publish your work🔗

    External contributors cannot push directly on Arkindex's repositories. You will need to create a fork of the repository under your own namespace, then open a Merge Request on the original repository. To learn more, check out GitLab's forking workflow documentation.

    The goal is for your code to be merged into master once the following steps are completed:

    1. unit tests are all OK, meaning that all jobs in the CI stage named test ended in success
    2. formatting has been validated by a tool, meaning that all jobs in the CI stage named checks ended in success
    3. the code itself has been approved by a human reviewer

    In order for your contribution to be approved, you need to create a Merge Request (also called MR) on GitLab.

    When pushing your code from your local branch, you will notice some output in the console with a link towards it will allow you to create a Merge Request (or view the previously created one) in 2 clicks.

    Once your work is ready, configure your Merge Request as follows:

    • Make sure you are requesting a merge to the master branch of the upstream repository, not of your own fork.
    • Assign yourself as the Assignee.
    • Assign @erouchet as the Reviewer: he will either review or re-assign to another reviewer when needed.
    • Set an explicit name, in English, properly formatted.
    • Add a reference to the issue you are working on in the description:
      • Closes #XYZ if you fully solve the mentioned issue,
      • Ref #XYZ if you only want to link your Merge Request to the issue.
    • Fill in the description with an explanation of the changes you made.
    • If the related issue has a milestone set, set the same milestone on this Merge Request.

    If you are not confident the work being published is yet ready for review, you can prefix your Merge Request name with Draft:; that will tell the reviewer to wait a bit before diving into your code. Do not forget to remove that prefix once your code is ready.

    The reviewer may leave some comments directly on the Merge Request, asking you for updates. Please resolve all of them (or discuss them if you disagree), publish some commits fixing the issues, and then ask for a new review. Rinse and repeat until the reviewer approves and merges your code!

    Update your branch🔗

    As other developers are working on Arkindex, sometimes features/bugfixes/etc that impact the same areas of code as your own merge Request will land on master before your Merge Request does. You may get conflicts here, and need to solve them using a rebase.


    It is your responsibility, as a developer, to maintain your code in a mergeable state: no conflicts and up to date with the latest master.

    To update using rebase, while working on your branch:

    # Retrieve the latest updates from master
    git fetch origin master
    # Now the remote reference to origin/master has been updated, you can rebase on top of it
    # Be aware that the local reference to master is not yet updated, it is only updated with git pull
    git rebase origin/master

    The git rebase operation will ask you to manually solve conflicts (if any). Please follow this guide or ask us for help if you are lost.

    Landing your code🔗

    If you have reached this step, congratulations and many thanks! Your code has been approved and should already be merged, as that is the responsibility of the reviewer.

    Your work will be shipped in the next Arkindex release along with latest features, bugfixes and other contributions.