Python 3.6, 3.7, 3.8

Django 3.0.3

Installing Yaksh

If Python 3.6 and above is not available in the system, then we recommend using miniconda

Installing Miniconda

  1. Download miniconda from according to the OS version.
  2. Follow the installation instructions as given in
  3. Restart the Terminal.


  • Ensure pip is installed

Installing Yaksh

  1. Clone the repository:

    git clone
  2. Go to the online_test directory:

    cd ./online_test
  3. Install the dependencies:

    • Install Django and dependencies:

      pip install -r ./requirements/requirements-common.txt
    • Install Code Server dependencies:

      sudo pip3 install -r requirements/requirements-codeserver.txt

Quick Start

  1. Start up the code server that executes the user code safely:
    • To run the code server in a sandboxed docker environment, run the command:

      $ invoke start


    Make sure that you have Docker installed on your system beforehand. Find docker installation guide here.

    • To run the code server without docker, locally use:

      $ invoke start --unsafe


    Note this command will run the yaksh code server locally on your machine and is susceptible to malicious code. You will have to install the code server requirements in sudo mode.

  2. On another terminal, run the application using the following command
    • To start the django server:

      $ invoke serve


    The serve command will run the django application server on the 8000 port and hence this port will be unavailable to other processes.

  3. Open your browser and open the URL - http://localhost:8000/exam

  4. Login as a teacher to edit the quiz or as a student to take the quiz

    • Credentials:
      For Student:
      • Username: student
      • Password: student
      For Teacher:
      • Username: teacher
      • Password: teacher
  5. User can also login to the Default Django admin by going to URL and entering the following admin credentials http://localhost:8000/admin
    For admin:
    • Username: admin
    • Password: admin

Production Deployment

  • Deploying Locally

    Follow these steps to deploy locally on the server.

    • Pre-Requisite

      1. Ensure pip is installed

      2. Install dependencies, Run;

        pip3 install -r requirements/requirements-py3.txt # For Python 3.x
      3. Install MySql Server

      4. Install Python MySql support

      5. Install Apache Server for deployment

      6. Create a database named yaksh by following the steps below

        $> mysql -u root -p
        $> mysql> create database yaksh
      7. Add a user named yaksh_user and give access to it on the database yaksh by following the steps below

        mysql> grant usage on yaksh to yaksh_user@localhost identified
        by 'mysecretpassword';
        mysql> grant all privileges on yaksh to yaksh_user@localhost;
      8. Add DATABASE_PASSWORD = 'mysecretpassword' and DATABASE_USER = 'yaksh_user' to online_test/

    • Installation & Usage

      To install this app follow the steps below:

      1. Clone this repository and cd to the cloned repo.

        $ git clone
      2. Rename the .sampleenv to .env

      3. In the .env file, uncomment the following and replace the values (please keep the remaining settings as is);

        DB_ENGINE=mysql # Or psycopg (postgresql), sqlite3 (SQLite)
        DB_PASSWORD=mypassword # Or the password used while creating a Database
      4. Run:

        $ python makemigrations yaksh
        $ python migrate yaksh
      5. Run the python server provided. This ensures that the code is executed in a safe environment. Do this like so:

        $ sudo python3 -m yaksh.code_server # For Python 3.x

        Put this in the background once it has started since this will not return back the prompt. It is important that the server be running before students start attempting the exam. Using sudo is necessary since the server is run as the user “nobody”. This runs the number ports configured in the file in the variable “N_CODE_SERVERS”. The “SERVER_TIMEOUT” also can be changed there. This is the maximum time allowed to execute the submitted code. Note that this will likely spawn multiple processes as “nobody” depending on the number of server ports specified.

        You can also use a Dockerized code server, see Dockerized Code Server

      6. The script should make it easy to deploy this using mod_wsgi. You will need to add a line of the form:

        WSGIScriptAlias / "/online_test/"

        to your apache.conf. For more details see the Django docs here:

      7. Create a Superuser/Administrator:

        python createsuperuser
      8. Go to http://desired_host_or_ip:desired_port/exam

        And you should be all set.

      9. Note that the directory “output” will contain directories, one for each user. Users can potentially write output into these that can be used for checking later.

      10. As a moderator you can visit http://desired_host_or_ip/exam/monitor to view results and user data interactively. You could also “grade” the papers manually if needed.

  • Using Dockerized Code Server

    1. Install Docker

    2. Go to the directory where the project is located

      cd /path/to/online_test
    3. Create a docker image. This may take a few minutes,

      docker build -t yaksh_code_server -f ./docker/Dockerfile_codeserver
    4. Check if the image has been created using the output of docker images

    5. Run the invoke script using the command invoke start The command will create and run a new docker container (that is running the within it), it will also bind the ports of the host with those of the container

    6. You can use invoke --list to get a list of all the available commands

  • Deploying Multiple Dockers

    Follow these steps to deploy and run the Django Server, MySQL instance and Code Server in seperate Docker instances.

    1. Install Docker

    2. Install Docker Compose

    3. Rename the .sampleenv to .env

    4. In the .env file, uncomment all the values and keep the default values as is.

    5. Go to the docker directory where the project is located:

      cd /path/to/online_test/docker
    6. Build the docker images

      invoke build
    7. Run the containers and scripts necessary to deploy the web application

      invoke begin
    8. Make sure that all the containers are Up and stable

      invoke status
    1. Run the containers and scripts necessary to deploy the web application, --fixtures allows you to load fixtures.

      invoke deploy --fixtures
    1. Stop the containers, you can use invoke restart to restart the containers without removing them
    invoke halt
    1. Remove the containers
    invoke remove
    1. You can use invoke --list to get a list of all the available commands
  • Additional commands available

    • create_moderator : Use this command to make a user as moderator.

      python create_moderator <username>

    For more information on the command:

    python help [command-name]