Anže's Blog

Python, Django, and the Web

18 Aug 2023

Automate Hatch Publish with GitHub Actions

I have automated publishing my words-tui project to PyPI with GitHub Actions. This is the workflow file, saved at .github/workflows/publish.yml:

name: Publish to PyPI

    types: [published]

  contents: read


    runs-on: ubuntu-latest

    environment: release
      id-token: write # IMPORTANT: this permission is mandatory for trusted publishing

    - uses: actions/checkout@v3
    - name: Set up Python
      uses: actions/setup-python@v4
        python-version: '3.11'
        cache: 'pip'
    - name: Install dependencies
      run: |
        python -m pip install --upgrade pip 
        pip install hatch
    - name: Build package
      run: hatch build
    - name: Test package
      run: hatch run test
    - name: Publish package distributions to PyPI
      uses: pypa/gh-action-pypi-publish@release/v1

You can also see it live on GitHub.

How it works

The workflow is triggered when I publish a new release through the GitHub UI (this step is still manual, but I am already considering automating it).

It sets up Python, installs the dependencies, builds the package using hatch, runs the tests, and finally uses the pypi publish action to publish it to PyPI.


Authentication is using Trusted Publishers which is PyPI’s implementation of OpenID Connect (OIDC). Instead of using a long-lived PyPI token, trusted publishers use short-lived tokens generated on the fly.

Because of this, I didn’t have to store a PyPI token on GitHub. Instead, I had to add a new publisher to the project. The PyPI guide on how to do this is here.

When setting up Trusted Publishers make sure you add the following lines to your yaml file. Otherwise, the PyPI action will not work:

      id-token: write # IMPORTANT: this permission is mandatory for trusted publishing

The PyPI Action publishes all the build artifacts in the dist/ folder. This folder is populated by the previous step’s hatch build command. Running both build and publish in the same job is not recommended because a malicious script inside the build step could elevate privileges, but for this toy project, I think the seperation isn’t necessary.

Token-Based Authentication


This approach is no longer recommended, but the original version of this blog post used token-based authentication. Thank you Hynek, for showing me the light. I am leaving this section here for posterity.

Initially, I used the hatch publish command instead of the PyPI GitHub Action. For authentication, I generated a PyPI token on the manage account page and then stored it as a repository secret on the GitHub project subpage (/settings/secrets/actions) as HATCH_INDEX_AUTH.

I also added a secret for the PyPI username as HATCH_INDEX_USER, although the value isn’t all that secret (it’s __token__ when using a PyPI token).

The two secrets are then passed to the environment of the runner so that hatch can access them.


This approach might still be helpful if you publish to a private PyPI server, but for the public one, use the trusted publisher approach instead. It’s more secure, and it’s also easier to set up.


The best thing about this automation is that I don’t have to have access to PyPI on the machine I am using. It makes it less likely that I’ll accidentally publish my PyPI token, which may or may not have happened in the past 🙈.

Enjoyed the read or have a different perspective?

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