Current direction (as of 2024)

Ihatemoney was started in 2011, and we believe the project has reached a certain level of maturity now. The overall energy of contributors is not as high as it used to be.

In addition, there are now several self-hosted alternatives (for instance cospend, spliit).

As maintainers, we believe that the project is still relevant but should gear towards some kind of “maintenance mode”:

  • Simplicity is now the main goal of the project. It has always been a compass for the project, and the resulting software is appreciated by both users and server administrators. For us, “simplicity” is positive and encompasses both technical aspects (very few javascript code, manageable dependencies, small code size…) and user-visible aspects (straightforward interface, no need to create accounts for people you invite, same web interface on mobile…)

  • Stability is prioritized over adding major new features. We found ourselves complexifying the codebase (and the interface) while accepting some contributions. Our goal now is to have a minimal set of features that do most of the job. We believe this will help lower the maintainance burden.

  • User interface and user experience improvements are always super welcome !

It is still possible to propose new features, but they should fit into this new direction. Simplicity of the UI/UX and simplicity of the technical implementation will be the main factors when deciding to accept new features.

How to contribute

You would like to contribute? First, thanks a bunch! This project is a small project with just a few people behind it, so any help is appreciated!

There are different ways to help us, regarding if you are a designer, a developer or an user.

As a developer

If you want to contribute code, you can write it and then issue a pull request on github. To get started, please read Set up a dev environment and Contributing as a developer.

As a designer / Front-end developer

Feel free to provide mockups, or to involve yourself in the discussions happening on the GitHub issue tracker. All ideas are welcome. Of course, if you know how to implement them, feel free to fork and make a pull request.

As a translator

If you’re able to translate Ihatemoney in your own language, head over to the website we use for translations and start translating.

All the heavy lifting will be done automatically, and your strings will eventually be integrated.

Once a language is ready to be integrated, add it to the SUPPORTED_LANGUAGES list, in ihatemoney/


You are using the application and found a bug? You have some ideas about how to improve the project? Please tell us by filling a new issue.

Thanks again!

Set up a dev environment

You must develop on top of the Git master branch:

git clone

Then you need to build your dev environment. Choose your way…

The quick way

If System installation-requirements are fulfilled, you can just issue:

make serve

It will setup a Virtual environment, install dependencies, and run the test server.

The hard way

Alternatively, you can use pip to install dependencies yourself. That would be:

pip install -e .

And then run the application:

cd ihatemoney

The docker way

If you prefer to use docker, then you can build your image with:

docker build -t ihatemoney .

Accessing dev server

In any case, you can point your browser at http://localhost:5000. It’s as simple as that!


In case you want to update to newer versions (from Git), you can just run the “update” command:

make update

Useful settings

It is better to actually turn the debugging mode on when you’re developing. You can create a settings.cfg file, with the following content:

DEBUG = True

Then before running the application, declare its path with :

export IHATEMONEY_SETTINGS_FILE_PATH="$(pwd)/settings.cfg"

You can also set the TESTING flag to True so no mails are sent (and no exception is raised) while you’re on development mode.

In some cases, you may need to disable secure cookies by setting SESSION_COOKIE_SECURE to False. This is needed if you access your dev server over the network: with the default value of SESSION_COOKIE_SECURE, the browser will refuse to send the session cookie over insecure HTTP, so many features of Ihatemoney won’t work (project login, language change, etc).

Contributing as a developer

All code contributions should be submitted as pull requests on the github project.

Below are some points that you should check to help you prepare your pull request.

Running tests

Please, think about updating and running the tests before asking for a pull request as it will help us to maintain the code clean and running.

To run the tests:

make test

Tests can be edited in ihatemoney/tests/ If some test cases fail because of your changes, first check whether your code correctly handle these cases. If you are confident that your code is correct and that the test cases simply need to be updated to match your changes, update the test cases and send them as part of your pull request.

If you are introducing a new feature, you need to either add tests to existing classes, or add a new class (if your new feature is significantly different from existing code).

Formatting code

We are using black and isort formatters for all the Python files in this project. Be sure to run it locally on your files. To do so, just run:

make black isort

You can also integrate them with your dev environment (as a format-on-save hook, for instance).

Creating database migrations

In case you need to modify the database schema, first make sure that you have an up-to-date database by running the dev server at least once (the quick way or the hard way, see above). The dev server applies all existing migrations when starting up.

You can now update the models in ihatemoney/ Then run the following command to create a new database revision file:

make create-database-revision

If your changes are simple enough, the generated script will be populated with the necessary migrations steps. You can view and edit the generated script, which is useful to review that the expected model changes have been properly detected. Usually the auto-detection works well in most cases, but you can of course edit the script to fix small issues. You could also edit the script to add data migrations.

When you are done with your changes, don’t forget to add the migration script to your final git commit!

If the migration script looks completely wrong, remove the script and start again with an empty database. The simplest way is to remove or rename the dev database located at /tmp/ihatemoney.db, and run the dev server at least once.

For complex migrations, it is recommended to start from an empty revision file which can be created with the following command:

make create-empty-database-revision

You then need to write the migration steps yourself.

Repository rules

  • Please, try to keep it to one pull request per feature: if you want to do more than one thing, send multiple pull requests. It will be easier for us to review and merge.

  • Document your code: if you add a new feature, please document it in the

  • All the people working on this project do it on their spare time. So please, be patient if we don’t answer right away.

  • We try to have two maintainers review the pull requests before merging it. So please, be patient if we don’t merge it right away. After one week, only one maintainer approval is required.

How to build the documentation ?

The documentation is using sphinx and its source is located inside the docs folder.

Install doc dependencies (within the virtual environment, if any):

pip install -e .[doc]

And to produce a HTML doc in the [docs/_output]{.title-ref} folder:

cd docs/
make html

How to release?


To create a new release, make sure you fullfil all requirements:

  • Are you a maintainer of the pypi package?

  • Are you sure you have no local tags? They will all be published to the github process as part of the release process

  • Make sure you have a ~/.pypirc file with the following content, replacing YOUR_PYPI_USERNAME with your real username:

    index-servers =

Choosing a version number

The project follows semantic versioning. To sum things up:

  • if there is a breaking change since the last release: increase the major version number (11.X.Y → 12.0.0). Example of breaking changes: drop support for an old version of python, new setting without default value (requires an admin to configure the new setting), changed URL paths, any other incompatible change. Make sure to document the upgrade process.

  • if there is a significant new feature or a new setting: increase the minor version number (11.4.Y → 11.5.0). Make sure to document any new settings.

  • if it’s mostly bugfixes and small changes: increase the patch version number (11.4.8 → 11.4.9)

Making the release

In order to issue a new release, follow the following steps:

  • Merge remaining pull requests;

  • Switch to the master branch;

  • Update with the last changes;

  • Update CONTRIBUTORS (instructions inside the file);

  • If needed, recompress assets. It requires zopflipng and ImageMagick mogrify:

    make compress-assets
  • Extract the translations:

    make extract-translations
  • If you’re not completely sure of yourself at this point, you can optionally: create a new branch, push it, open a pull request, check the CI result, and then merge the branch to master.

Once this is done, make sure your local git repository is on the master branch, and let’s release!:

make release

This will publish the new version to the Python Package Index (PyPI) and publish a tag in the git repository.


The above command will prompt for version number, handle and pyproject.toml updates, package creation, pypi upload. It will prompt you before each step to get your consent.

Finally, create a release on Github and copy the relevant changelog extract into it.