Contributing to PyVISA

You can contribute in different ways:

Report issues

You can report any issues with the package, the documentation to the PyVISA issue tracker. Also feel free to submit feature requests, comments or questions. In some cases, platform specific information is required. If you think this is the case, run the following command and paste the output into the issue:

python -m visa info

It is useful that you also provide the log output. To obtain it, add the following lines to your code:

import visa

Contribute code

To contribute fixes, code or documentation to PyVISA, send us a patch, or fork PyVISA in github and submit the changes using a pull request.

You can also get the code from PyPI or GitHub. You can either clone the public repository:

$ git clone git://

Download the tarball:

$ curl -OL

Or, download the zipball:

$ curl -OL

Once you have a copy of the source, you can embed it in your Python package, or install it into your site-packages easily:

$ python install


If you have an old system installation of Python and you don’t want to mess with it, you can try Anaconda CE. It is a free Python distribution by Continuum Analytics that includes many scientific packages.

Contributing to an existing backend

Backends are the central piece of PyVISA as they provide the low level communication over the different interfaces. There a couple of backends in the wild which can use your help. Look them up in PyPI (try pyvisa in the search box) and see where you can help.

Contributing a new backend

If you think there is a new way that low level communication can be achieved, go for it. You can use any of the existing backends as a template or start a thread in the issue tracker and we will be happy to help you.