Contribution guide

Information on how to make contributions to the hdl_registers project.

Setting up development environment

For development we have a lot more python dependencies than when simply using the package. Install further dependencies with:

python3 -m pip install --upgrade --requirement hdl_registers/requirements_develop.txt

Maintaining changelog

We maintain a changelog according to the keep a changelog format. The unreleased changelog in doc/release_notes/unreleased.rst shall be updated continuously, not just at release. Release note files are in the rst format, inspect older release note files to see the formatting details.

How to build documentation

Documentation is built using the tools/ script. The documentation pages have information about python unit test code coverage. So before building documentation you must run pytest with coverage reports enabled like in CI:

python3 -m pytest -v --cov hdl_registers \
  --cov-report xml:generated/python_coverage.xml \
  --cov-report html:generated/python_coverage_html hdl_registers

If want to skip handling of coverage for the documentation there is a flag available in the script, see --help.

How to make a new release

Releases are made to the Python Packaging Index (PyPI) and can be installed with the python pip tool. To make a new release follow these steps.

Test CI pipeline

Before doing anything, launch a CI run from main branch to see that everything works as expected. The CI environment is stable but due to things like, e.g., new pylint version it can unexpectedly break. When the pipeline has finished and is green you can move on to the next step.

Determine new version number

We use the Semantic Versioning scheme. Read the Summary at the top of that page and decide the new version number accordingly.

Review the release notes

Check the release notes file unreleased.rst. Fill in anything that is missing according to Maintaining changelog.

Run release script

Run the script

python3 tools/ X.Y.Z

where X.Y.Z is your new version number. The script will bump the hdl_registers version number and copy release notes to a new file. The changes will be committed and then tagged.

Push commit and tag

git push origin HEAD:refs/heads/release_branch
git push origin vX.Y.Z

WARNING: Avoid the “git push –tags” command, which is dangerous since it pushes all your local tags.

Pushing a tag will create a special CI run in gitlab:


The pipeline for the tag will run an additional job deploy_pypi:


From the release branch that was just pushed you must create a merge request to main. Wait until the tag pipeline (which pushes to PyPI) is finished before proceeding to merge the commits. The pipeline for the merge request might finish before the pipeline for the tag. So we wait for the tag pipeline to finish before merging, to be sure that the release upload worked before adding commits to main.

Note that the tag is pushed and available in the repo even if you do not merge the merge request.

The Python package is uploaded to You can check there to make sure your new release is available.


If everything went well then you can merge your release commit to main via the gitlab merge request GUI.