Table Of Contents

Cheetah templating

Cheetah is an python open source template engine and code generation tool. You can use Cheetah templates as part of your TurboGears project with this step by step guide:

Step 0: Install TurboCheetah

The TurboCheetah module allows you to use Cheetah templates with Turbogears. Since it ships with Turbogears, you don’t need to install it manually.

Step 1: Quickstart

Use the tg-admin command to create a new project (‘turbocht‘ in this example):

$ tg-admin quickstart turbocht

Step 2: Edit the controller

Enter your turbocht project directory, edit ‘’/turbocht/‘’, and add the following method to the “Root” class:

@expose(template = "cheetah:turbocht.templates.cheetahpage")
def page(self):
    return dict(name="TurboGears")

In the expose decorator we use the cheetah: template scheme, with “cheetahpage” as the Cheetah template filename (under the templates directory).

Step 3: Edit the template

Edit /turbocht/templates/cheetahpage.tmpl:

<h1>Hello, ${name}</h1>

Cheetah templates have a .tmpl file name extension.

The Cheetah syntax documentation can be found here:

Note that there are two config options (to be put in app.cfg) for TurboCheetah which determine how the compilation of Cheetah templates is handled:

  • cheetah.precompiled: You can set this to True to indicate that TurboCheetah shall not try to compile Cheetah templates, but only use the corresponding Python modules which you must have already precompiled manually, using the cheetah-compile command. (Default: False).
  • cheetah.importhooks: If this is set to True, then Cheetah will “automagically” compile Cheetah templates to Python modules when you import the corresponding modules. (Default: False).

For this simple example, the default settings are ok. You won’t have to compile anything manually.

Step 4: Test

In turbodj directory, start the development server by running ‘’start-turbocht’’ script:

$ ./start-turbocht

Open the browser and enter the URL http://localhost:8080/page. You’ll see:

Hello, TurboGears

See also

See also: Advanced Cheetah Templates