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I’ve been working on automating some of the parts of the release process for NAudio, as I always seem to forget something or make a mistake. One of the tasks was to create a “demo” zip file containing the demo applications together with their supporting files.

I initially attempted to do this with MSBuild and the Zip task from MSBuild Community Extensions, but I ended up double-adding a number of files, as well as struggling to get exactly the right folder structure.

This is exactly the sort of task that Python excels at, and Python comes with the zipfile module built in, meaning that the script I wrote is not IronPython specific. Here’s what I came up with:

import zipfile
import os

folders = ['AudioFileInspector','NAudioDemo','NAudioWpfDemo']
files = {}

def exclude(filename):
    return filename.endswith('.pdb') or ('nunit' in filename)

for folder in folders:
    fullpath = folder + "\\bin\\debug\\"
    for filename in os.listdir(fullpath):
        if not exclude(filename):
            files[filename] = fullpath + filename

zip = zipfile.ZipFile("BuildArtefacts\\", "w")

for filename, fullpath in files.iteritems():
    if os.path.isdir(fullpath):
        for subfile in os.listdir(fullpath):
            zip.write(fullpath + "\\" + subfile, filename + "\\" + subfile)
        zip.write(fullpath, filename)


There's not a lot to it really. I first build up a dictionary containing the files I want in my zip, using the filename to exclude duplicates. Then I use the write method on zipfile to specify the file I want to add, and the folder it belongs in.

My Python skills are a bit rusty, so the code above would probably benefit from being refactored a little, but as you can see, it is very easy, and much simpler than fighting MSBuild to make it do what I want.