How to become more productive using Makefile

django Jun 27, 2020


You want to become more productive, automate your workflow, there are many tools to help you achieve your goal.

make gives you the flexibility to run and compile a program from source.
In this guide, we will use it to automate our development workflow.
Note: I will use Django as an example, but the technics are applicable to other technologies.
In this guide, I will use Makefile to automate many things in Django like database migration, superuser, deployment, and more.
At the end of the guide, you'll be more productive in your development.
Before you continue, ensure that make is installed in your system.


In Order to use make we need two(2) things one(1) we need to install it in our system and finally we need to create a file called Makefile.

To install make in your system you can follow these links :

Basic examples

To explore make let's begin with this simple program, go to any directory, and create a Makefile.
Note: Don't give it an extension.

$ mkdir test_make && cd test_make
$ touch Makefile

Open the file with your text editor and put this

        echo "Hello world"

run the file by typing make inside the directory test_make

$ make

What is the output?
Here is what I get.

echo "Hello world"
Hello world

Django integration

If you're a Django developer, you know how tedious is to repeat again and again these commands :

python runserver
python makemigrations
python migrate

Let's automate them with make

Clone the example project here and follow the README guide.

git clone && cd consume-restfull-api-with-django

Run the application to ensure that everything is working fine.

python migrate
python runserver

Open your browser and go to http://localhost:8000.

Inside the project, folder created a file called Makefile and add these lines.

touch Makefile

The final file will look like this

SHELL := /bin/bash

	@$(MAKE) -pRrq -f $(lastword $(MAKEFILE_LIST)) : 2>/dev/null | awk -v RS= -F: '/^# File/,/^# Finished Make data base/ {if ($$1 !~ "^[#.]") {print $$1}}' | sort | egrep -v -e '^[^[:alnum:]]' -e '^$@$$'

	pipenv install

	pipenv shell

	python runserver

	python makemigrations

	python migrate

	python createsuperuser

	git push heroku master

	docker-compose build
	docker-compose up -d

	docker-compose down

you'll be more productive with these tips.


Become more productive and make things done is very important, in this guide you've learned how to automate your workflow by using make.

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Ousseynou Diop

Full stack Developer & Python Lover

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