Development Setup

Important Note

This article is focused on setting up a development environment that you should use to create and contribute supported new content. If you are not planning to contribute or your contribution will be only community supported, this is not a requirement. For more details, refer to the Getting Started Guide.

This article summarize the steps from the end-to-end Setup Tutorial: for more details please refer to it.

Before you read this make sure you read the Getting Started Guide and the Contribution Requirements doc.

Setting Up a Development Repository#

Fork the Cortex XSOAR Content repository and create a branch for your contribution (do not work on the master or main branch).

Install Python virtualenv#

We recommend using virtualenv to create an isolated virtual python development environment. To install virtual env run:

pip install virtualenv

Note: Python 3 includes the venv module for creating virtual envs, but it does not permit creating virtual envs with other versions of Python (such as Python 2). If you need to work on older content built with Python 2, you should use the virtualenv package.


Once virtualenv is installed you can run the bootstrap script. The script will setup a pre-commit hook which will validate your modified files before committing and setup a python virtual env for development with the package requirements for python3. Run the script from the root directory of the source tree:


After completing, you can activate the newly created virtual env by running:

. ./venv/bin/activate

To ease setup, by default for forked repositories we don't setup Python 2 as part of the virtual env setup. If you require Python 2 for your automations/integrations (i.e. only if you need to modify existing content written in python2), run the .hooks/bootstrap script with the environment variable set: SETUP_PY2=yes. When run with SETUP_PY2=yes set, the virtualenv built contains both Python 2 and 3. python and python2 will point to Python 2, while python3 to Python 3.


This is our help tool that will make your lives easier during the contribution process, it will help you generate a Pack. And will help you maintain your files and validate them before committing to the branch. It is installed via our Boostrap process. If you prefer to install the demisto-sdk manually see instructions here.

To check the you have the latest version of the sdk run:

demisto-sdk --version

Congratulations! You now have a fully configured virtual env, where you can run our different validation and utility scripts.

If you want more details, please refer to the end-to-end Tutorial.


Cortex XSOAR offers two IDEs for developing:

You can also use your IDE of choice along with demisto-sdk, for example Visual Studio Code.

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