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by thijsdezoete ST2/ST3

A python import sort plugin(See https://github.com/timothycrosley/isort)


  • 2015.
  • github.​com
  • github.​com
  • 4 years ago
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Sublime text isort plugin

Small plugin that adds a command to sublime which replaces the contents with the output of the isort library. See below for more information about the library


Package Control

Available in [@wbond][wbond]'s package control. Just bring up the package control menu in sublime (default ctrl-shift-p), and enter Package Control: Install Package, search for isort.


Clone this repository from your Sublime packages directory:

Linux (untested)

$ cd ~/.config/sublime-text-2/Packages
$ git clone https://github.com/thijsdezoete/sublime-text-isort-plugin


$ cd "~/Library/Application Support/Sublime Text 2/Packages"
$ git clone https://github.com/thijsdezoete/sublime-text-isort-plugin


$ cd "%APPDATA%\Sublime Text 2"
$ git clone https://github.com/thijsdezoete/sublime-text-isort-plugin


Build Status

isort your python imports for you so you don't have to.

isort is a Python utility / library to sort imports alphabetically, and automatically separated into sections. It provides a command line utility, Python library, Vim plugin, Sublime plugin, and Kate plugin to quickly sort all your imports.

Before isort:

from my_lib import Object


import os

from my_lib import Object3

from my_lib import Object2

import sys

from third_party import lib15, lib1, lib2, lib3, lib4, lib5, lib6, lib7, lib8, lib9, lib10, lib11, lib12, lib13, lib14

import sys

from __future__ import absolute_import

from third_party import lib3


After isort:

from __future__ import absolute_import

import os
import sys

from third_party import (lib1, lib2, lib3, lib4, lib5, lib6, lib7, lib8,
                         lib9, lib10, lib11, lib12, lib13, lib14, lib15)

from my_lib import Object, Object2, Object3


Installing isort

Installing isort is as simple as:

pip install isort

or if you prefer

easy_install isort

Using isort

from the command line:

isort mypythonfile.py mypythonfile2.py

from within Python:

from isort import SortImports



from isort import SortImports

new_contents = SortImports(file_contents=old_contents).output

from within Kate:



menu > Python > Sort Imports

Installing isort's Vim plugin

The Vim plugin for isort is maintained by @fisadev with installation directions located on the dedicated vim-isort repository here: https://github.com/fisadev/vim-isort#installation

Installing isort's Sublime plugin

The sublime plugin for isort is maintained by @thijsdezoete with installation directions located on the dedicated sublime-text-isort-plugin repository here: https://github.com/thijsdezoete/sublime-text-isort-plugin#install

Installing isort's Kate plugin

To install the kate plugin you must either have pate installed or the very latest version of Kate:

wget https://raw.github.com/timothycrosley/isort/master/isort_kate_plugin.py --output-document ~/.kde/share/apps/kate/pate/isort_plugin.py

You will then need to restart kate and enable Python Plugins as well as the isort plugin itself.

Plugins for other text editors

I use Kate, and Kate provides a very nice Python plugin API so I wrote a Kate plugin. That said I will enthusiastically accept pull requests that include plugins for other text editors and add documentation for them as I am notified.

How does isort work?

isort parses specified files for global level import lines (imports outside of try / excepts blocks, functions, etc..) and puts them all at the top of the file grouped together by the type of import:

  • Future
  • Python Standard Library
  • Third Party
  • Current Python Project

Inside of each section the imports are sorted alphabetically. isort automatically removes duplicate python imports, and wraps long from imports to the specified line length (defaults to 80).

When will isort not work?

If you ever have the situation where you need to have a try / except block in the middle of top-level imports or if your import order is directly linked to precedence.

For example: a common practice in Django settings files is importing * from various settings files to form a new settings file. In this case if any of the imports change order you are changing the settings definition itself.

However, you can configure isort to skip over just these files - or even to force certain imports to the top.

Configuring isort

If you find the default isort settings do not work well for your project, isort provides several ways to adjust the behavior.

To configure isort for a single user create a ~/.isort.cfg file:

indent='    '

You can then override any of these settings by using command line arguments, or by passing in override values to the SortImports class.

Multi line output modes

You will notice above the “multi_line_output” setting. This setting defines how from imports wrap when they extend past the line_length limit and has 4 possible settings:

0 - Grid

from third_party import (lib1, lib2, lib3
                         lib4, lib5, ...)

1 - Vertical

from third_party import (lib1,

2 - Hanging Indent

from third_party import \
    lib1, lib2, lib3, \
    lib4, lib5, lib6

3 - Vertical Hanging Indent

from third_party import (

4 - Hanging Grid

from third_party import (
    lib1, lib2, lib3, lib4
    lib5, ...)

5 - Hanging Grid Grouped

from third_party import (
    lib1, lib2, lib3, lib4
    lib5, ...

Ordering by import length

isort also makes it easy to sort your imports by length, simply by setting the length_sort option to True. This will result in the following output style:

from evn.util import (

Skip processing of a single import

To make isort ignore a single import simply add a comment at the end of the import line containing the text 'isort:skip'

import module  # isort:skip


from xyz import (abc,  # isort:skip

Adding an import to multiple files

isort makes it easy to add an import statement across multiple files, while being assured it's correctly placed.

from the command line:

isort -a "from __future__ import print_function" *.py

from within Kate:



menu > Python > Add Import

Removing an import from multiple files

isort makes it easy to remove an import from multiple files, without having to be concerned with how it was originally formatted

from the command line:

isort -r "os.system" *.py

from within Kate:



menu > Python > Remove Import

Why isort?

isort simply stands for import sort. It was originally called “sortImports” however I got tired of typing the extra characters and came to the realization camelCase is not pythonic.

I wrote isort because in an organization I used to work in the manager came in one day and decided all code must have alphabetically sorted imports. The code base was huge - and he meant for us to do it by hand. However, being a programmer - I'm too lazy to spend 8 hours mindlessly performing a function, but not too lazy to spend 16 hours automating it. I was given permission to open source sortImports and here we are :)