vog vog - 4 months ago 28
HTTP Question

How to stream POST data into Python requests?

I'm using the Python

library to send a POST request. The part of the program that produces the POST data can write into an arbitrary file-like object (output stream).

How can I make these two parts fit?

I would have expected that
provides a streaming interface for this use case, but it seems it doesn't. It only accepts as
argument a file-like object from which it reads. It doesn't provide a file-like object into which I can write.

Is this a fundamental issue with the Python HTTP libraries?

Ideas so far:

It seems that the simplest solution is to
and to let the requests library communicate with the POST data producer throgh a pipe.

Is there a better way?

Alternatively, I could try to complicate the POST data producer. However, that one is parsing one XML stream (from stdin) and producing a new XML stream to used as POST data. Then I have the same problem in reverse: The XML serializer libraries want to write into a file-like object, I'm not aware of any possibility that an XML serializer provides a file-like object from which other can read.

I'm also aware that the cleanest, classic solution to this is coroutines, which are somewhat available in Python through generators (
). The POST data could be streamed through (
) instead of a file-like object and use a pull-parser.

However, is possible to make
accept an iterator for POST data? And is there an XML serializer that can readily be used in combination with

Or, are there any wrapper objects that turn writing into a file-like object into a generator, and/or provide a file-like object that wraps an iterator?


request does take an iterator or generator as data argument, the details are described in Chunk-Encoded Requests. The transfer encoding needs to be chunked in this case because the data size is not known beforehand.

Here is a very simle example that uses a queue.Queue and can be used as a file-like object for writing:

import requests
import queue
import threading

class WriteableQueue(queue.Queue):

    def write(self, data):
        # An empty string would be interpreted as EOF by the receiving server
        if data:

    def __iter__(self):
        return iter(self.get, None)

    def close(self):

# quesize can be limited in case producing is faster then streaming
q = WriteableQueue(100)

def post_request(iterable):
    r = requests.post("http://httpbin.org/post", data=iterable)

threading.Thread(target=post_request, args=(q,)).start()

# pass the queue to the serializer that writes to it ...    

# closing ends the request