The mypy command line

This section documents mypy’s command line interface. You can view a quick summary of the available flags by running mypy --help.

Note

Command line flags are liable to change between releases.

Specifying what to type check

By default, you can specify what code you want mypy to type check by passing in the paths to what you want to have type checked:

$ mypy foo.py bar.py some_directory

Note that directories are checked recursively.

Mypy also lets you specify what code to type check in several other ways. A short summary of the relevant flags is included below: for full details, see Running mypy and managing imports.

-m MODULE, --module MODULE

Asks mypy to type check the provided module. This flag may be repeated multiple times.

Mypy will not recursively type check any submodules of the provided module.

-p PACKAGE, --package PACKAGE

Asks mypy to type check the provided package. This flag may be repeated multiple times.

Mypy will recursively type check any submodules of the provided package. This flag is identical to -module apart from this behavior.

-c PROGRAM_TEXT, --command PROGRAM_TEXT
Asks mypy to type check the provided string as a program.

Config file

--config-file CONFIG_FILE

This flag makes mypy read configuration settings from the given file.

By default settings are read from mypy.ini or setup.cfg in the current directory, or .mypy.ini in the user’s home directory. Settings override mypy’s built-in defaults and command line flags can override settings.

See The mypy configuration file for the syntax of configuration files.

--warn-unused-configs
This flag makes mypy warn about unused [mypy-<pattern>] config file sections.

Import discovery

The following flags customize how exactly mypy discovers and follows imports.

--ignore-missing-imports

This flag makes mypy ignore all missing imports. It is equivalent to adding # type: ignore comments to all unresolved imports within your codebase.

Note that this flag does not suppress errors about missing names in successfully resolved modules. For example, if one has the following files:

package/__init__.py
package/mod.py

Then mypy will generate the following errors with --ignore-missing-imports:

import package.unknown      # No error, ignored
x = package.unknown.func()  # OK. 'func' is assumed to be of type 'Any'

from package import unknown          # No error, ignored
from package.mod import NonExisting  # Error: Module has no attribute 'NonExisting'

For more details, see Missing imports.

--follow-imports {normal,silent,skip,error}

This flag adjusts how mypy follows imported modules that were not explicitly passed in via the command line.

The default option is normal: mypy will follow and type check all modules. For more information on what the other options do, see Following imports.

--python-executable EXECUTABLE

This flag will have mypy collect type information from PEP 561 compliant packages installed for the Python executable EXECUTABLE. If not provided, mypy will use PEP 561 compliant packages installed for the Python executable running mypy.

See Using installed packages for more on making PEP 561 compliant packages. This flag will attempt to set --python-version if not already set.

--no-site-packages

This flag will disable searching for PEP 561 compliant packages. This will also disable searching for a usable Python executable.

Use this flag if mypy cannot find a Python executable for the version of Python being checked, and you don’t need to use PEP 561 typed packages. Otherwise, use --python-executable.

--no-silence-site-packages
By default, mypy will suppress any error messages generated within PEP 561 compliant packages. Adding this flag will disable this behavior.

Platform configuration

By default, mypy will assume that you intend to run your code using the same operating system and Python version you are using to run mypy itself. The following flags let you modify this behavior.

For more information on how to use these flags, see Python version and system platform checks.

--python-version X.Y

This flag will make mypy type check your code as if it were run under Python version X.Y. Without this option, mypy will default to using whatever version of Python is running mypy. Note that the -2 and --py2 flags are aliases for --python-version 2.7.

This flag will attempt to find a Python executable of the corresponding version to search for PEP 561 compliant packages. If you’d like to disable this, use the --no-site-packages flag (see Import discovery for more details).

-2, --py2
Equivalent to running --python-version 2.7.
--platform PLATFORM

This flag will make mypy type check your code as if it were run under the given operating system. Without this option, mypy will default to using whatever operating system you are currently using.

The PLATFORM parameter may be any string supported by sys.platform.

--always-true NAME
This flag will treat all variables named NAME as compile-time constants that are always true. This flag may be repeated.
--always-false NAME
This flag will treat all variables named NAME as compile-time constants that are always false. This flag may be repeated.

Disallow dynamic typing

The Any type is used represent a value that has a dynamic type. The --disallow-any family of flags will disallow various uses of the Any type in a module – this lets us strategically disallow the use of dynamic typing in a controlled way.

The following options are available:

--disallow-any-unimported
This flag disallows usage of types that come from unfollowed imports (such types become aliases for Any). Unfollowed imports occur either when the imported module does not exist or when --follow-imports=skip is set.
--disallow-any-expr

This flag disallows all expressions in the module that have type Any. If an expression of type Any appears anywhere in the module mypy will output an error unless the expression is immediately used as an argument to cast or assigned to a variable with an explicit type annotation.

In addition, declaring a variable of type Any or casting to type Any is not allowed. Note that calling functions that take parameters of type Any is still allowed.

--disallow-any-decorated
This flag disallows functions that have Any in their signature after decorator transformation.
--disallow-any-explicit
This flag disallows explicit Any in type positions such as type annotations and generic type parameters.
--disallow-any-generics
This flag disallows usage of generic types that do not specify explicit type parameters. Moreover, built-in collections (such as list and dict) become disallowed as you should use their aliases from the typing module (such as List[int] and Dict[str, str]).
--disallow-subclassing-any

This flag reports an error whenever a class subclasses a value of type Any. This may occur when the base class is imported from a module that doesn’t exist (when using –ignore-missing-imports) or is ignored due to –follow-imports=skip or a # type: ignore comment on the import statement.

Since the module is silenced, the imported class is given a type of Any. By default mypy will assume that the subclass correctly inherited the base class even though that may not actually be the case. This flag makes mypy raise an error instead.

Untyped definitions and calls

The following flags configure how mypy handles untyped function definitions or calls.

--disallow-untyped-calls
This flag reports an error whenever a function with type annotations calls a function defined without annotations.
--disallow-untyped-defs
This flag reports an error whenever it encounters a function definition without type annotations.
--disallow-incomplete-defs
This flag reports an error whenever it encounters a partly annotated function definition.
--check-untyped-defs

This flag is less severe than the previous two options – it type checks the body of every function, regardless of whether it has type annotations. (By default the bodies of functions without annotations are not type checked.)

It will assume all arguments have type Any and always infer Any as the return type.

--disallow-untyped-decorators
This flag reports an error whenever a function with type annotations is decorated with a decorator without annotations.

None and Optional handling

The following flags adjust how mypy handles values of type None. For more details, see Disabling strict optional checking.

--no-implicit-optional

This flag causes mypy to stop treating arguments with a None default value as having an implicit Optional[...] type.

For example, by default mypy will assume that the x parameter is of type Optional[int] in the code snippet below since the default parameter is None:

def foo(x: int = None) -> None:
    print(x)

If this flag is set, the above snippet will no longer type check: we must now explicitly indicate that the type is Optional[int]:

def foo(x: Optional[int] = None) -> None:
    print(x)
--no-strict-optional
This flag disables strict checking of Optional[...] types and None values. With this option, mypy doesn’t generally check the use of None values – they are valid everywhere. See Disabling strict optional checking for more about this feature.

Note

Strict optional checking was enabled by default starting in mypy 0.600, and in previous versions it had to be explicitly enabled using --strict-optional (which is still accepted).

Configuring warnings

The follow flags enable warnings for code that is sound but is potentially problematic or redundant in some way.

--warn-redundant-casts
This flag will make mypy report an error whenever your code uses an unnecessary cast that can safely be removed.
--warn-unused-ignores

This flag will make mypy report an error whenever your code uses a # type: ignore comment on a line that is not actually generating an error message.

This flag, along with the --warn-unsued-casts flag, are both particularly useful when you are upgrading mypy. Previously, you may have needed to add casts or # type: ignore annotations to work around bugs in mypy or missing stubs for 3rd party libraries.

These two flags let you discover cases where either workarounds are no longer necessary.

--no-warn-no-return

By default, mypy will generate errors when a function is missing return statements in some execution paths. The only exceptions are when:

  • The function has a None or Any return type
  • The function has an empty body or a body that is just ellipsis (...). Empty functions are often used for abstract methods.

Passing in --no-warn-no-return will disable these error messages in all cases.

--warn-return-any
This flag causes mypy to generate a warning when returning a value with type Any from a function declared with a non- Any return type.

Miscellaneous strictness flags

This section documents any other flags that do not neatly fall under any of the above sections.

--strict

This flag mode enables all optional error checking flags. You can see the list of flags enabled by strict mode in the full mypy --help output.

Note: the exact list of flags enabled by running --strict may change over time.

Configuring error messages

The following flags let you adjust how much detail mypy displays in error messages.

--show-error-context

This flag will precede all errors with “note” messages explaining the context of the error. For example, consider the following program:

class Test:
    def foo(self, x: int) -> int:
        return x + "bar"

Mypy normally displays an error message that looks like this:

main.py:3: error: Unsupported operand types for + ("int" and "str")

If we enable this flag, the error message now looks like this:

main.py: note: In member "foo" of class "Test":
main.py:3: error: Unsupported operand types for + ("int" and "str")
--show-column-numbers

This flag will add column offsets to error messages, for example, the following indicates an error in line 12, column 9 (note that column offsets are 0-based):

main.py:12:9: error: Unsupported operand types for / ("int" and "str")

Incremental mode

By default, mypy will store type information into a cache. Mypy will use this information to avoid unnecessary recomputation when it type checks your code again. This can help speed up the type checking process, especially when most parts of your program have not changed since the previous mypy run.

If you want to speed up how long it takes to recheck your code beyond what incremental mode can offer, try running mypy in daemon mode.

--no-incremental

This flag disables incremental mode: mypy will no longer reference the cache when re-run.

Note that mypy will still write out to the cache even when incremental mode is disabled: see the --cache-dir flag below for more details.

--cache-dir DIR

By default, mypy stores all cache data inside of a folder named .mypy_cache in the current directory. This flag lets you change this folder. This flag can also be useful for controlling cache use when using remote caching.

Mypy will also always write to the cache even when incremental mode is disabled so it can “warm up” the cache. To disable writing to the cache, use --cache-dir=/dev/null (UNIX) or --cache-dir=nul (Windows).

--skip-version-check
By default, mypy will ignore cache data generated by a different version of mypy. This flag disables that behavior.
--quick-and-dirty

This flag enables an experimental, unsafe variant of incremental mode. Quick mode is faster than regular incremental mode because it only re-checks modules that were modified since their cache file was last written: regular incremental mode also re-checks all modules that depend on one or more modules that were re-checked.

Quick mode is unsafe because it may miss problems caused by a change in a dependency. Quick mode updates the cache, but regular incremental mode ignores cache files written by quick mode.

We recommend that you try using the Mypy daemon (mypy server) before attempting to use this feature.

Advanced flags

The following flags are useful mostly for people who are interested in developing or debugging mypy internals.

--pdb
This flag will invoke the Python debugger when mypy encounters a fatal error.
--show-traceback, --tb
If set, this flag will display a full traceback when mypy encounters a fatal error.
--custom-typing MODULE
This flag lets you use a custom module as a substitute for the typing module.
--custom-typeshed-dir DIR
This flag specifies the directory where mypy looks for typeshed stubs, instead of the typeshed that ships with mypy. This is primarily intended to make it easier to test typeshed changes before submitting them upstream, but also allows you to use a forked version of typeshed.
--warn-incomplete-stub

This flag modifies both the --disallow-untyped-defs and --disallow-incomplete-defs flags so they also report errors if stubs in typeshed are missing type annotations or has incomplete annotations. If both flags are missing, --warn-incomplete-stub also does nothing.

This flag is mainly intended to be used by people who want contribute to typeshed and would like a convenient way to find gaps and omissions.

If you want mypy to report an error when your codebase uses an untyped function, whether that function is defined in typeshed or not, use the --disallow-untyped-call flag. See Untyped definitions and calls for more details.

--shadow-file SOURCE_FILE SHADOW_FILE

When mypy is asked to type check SOURCE_FILE, this flag makes mypy read from and type check the contents of SHADOW_FILE instead. However, diagnostics will continue to refer to SOURCE_FILE.

Specifying this argument multiple times (--shadow-file X1 Y1 --shadow-file X2 Y2) will allow mypy to perform multiple substitutions.

This allows tooling to create temporary files with helpful modifications without having to change the source file in place. For example, suppose we have a pipeline that adds reveal_type for certain variables. This pipeline is run on original.py to produce temp.py. Running mypy --shadow-file original.py temp.py original.py will then cause mypy to type check the contents of temp.py instead of original.py, but error messages will still reference original.py.

Report generation

If these flags are set, mypy will generate a report in the specified format into the specified directory.

--any-exprs-report DIR
Causes mypy to generate a text file report documenting how many expressions of type Any are present within your codebase.
--linecount-report DIR
Causes mypy to generate a text file report documenting the functions and lines that are typed and untyped within your codebase.
--linecoverage-report DIR
Causes mypy to generate a JSON file that maps each source file’s absolute filename to a list of line numbers that belong to typed functions in that file.
--cobertura-xml-report DIR

Causes mypy to generate a Cobertura XML type checking coverage report.

You must install the lxml library to generate this report.

--html-report DIR, --xslt-html-report DIR

Causes mypy to generate an HTML type checking coverage report.

You must install the lxml library to generate this report.

--txt-report DIR, --xslt-txt-report DIR

Causes mypy to generate a text file type checking coverage report.

You must install the lxml library to generate this report.

--junit-xml JUNIT_XML
Causes mypy to generate a JUnit XML test result document with type checking results. This can make it easier to integrate mypy with continuous integration (CI) tools.

Miscellaneous

--find-occurrences CLASS.MEMBER
This flag will make mypy print out all usages of a class member based on static type information. This feature is experimental.
--scripts-are-modules

This flag will give command line arguments that appear to be scripts (i.e. files whose name does not end in .py) a module name derived from the script name rather than the fixed name __main__.

This lets you check more than one script in a single mypy invocation. (The default __main__ is technically more correct, but if you have many scripts that import a large package, the behavior enabled by this flag is often more convenient.)