Neat Trick for Loading Modules with unknown Name

Roger Binns rogerb at
Mon Mar 22 19:04:17 CET 2004

> __import__ doesn't handle packages, right?  The above with exec()
> appears, unfortunately, to be the simplest approach(*) to handling
> *arbitrary* imports, even if they are nested as in xml.sax.whatever.

Depends on your definition of *arbitrary* :-)  I had the need to
load files that could have any arbitrary filename in any arbitrary
location (ie not even remotely anywhere near sys.path).

   import imp
   module=imp.load_source("__ignore", file, open(file, "rt"))

You can name your module something better than I did.  I was loading
a whole bunch of files whose names are not even valid for Python
modules, and I didn't care what they thought they were called
(the module object above was stuck in a dictionary).


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