Extending NAV locally

NAV provides some simple ways to hook into its behavior, without modifying NAV code, by manipulating which Python modules are loaded, or manipulating Django settings and templates.


Some of the paths provided here will refer to ${configdir}. This is the NAV configuration directory, as output by the nav config where command.

Python search path modifications

NAV adds ${configdir}/python to Python’s search path. This means that the Python interpreter that executes NAV processes will also be able to load any Python module from $configdir/python/.

Django local site settings

NAV’s Django site settings file sits in the NAV package hierarchy, nav.django.settings. However, this module will use Rob Golding’s method in an attempt to load local site settings from a local_settings module.

By exploiting the abovementioned search path modification, you could add your amazing homegrown my.amazing.app to the NAV web interface by adding a local_settings module thus:

from nav.django.settings import *


Just remember that NAV does not use Django’s migrations framework to define its SQL schemas, so you’ll have to do the legwork here yourself.

Overriding Django templates

NAV adds ${configdir}/templates to its Django template search path. You can override NAV’s existing Django templates by placing your own in this directory - although we wouldn’t recommend it, as it can easily break your existing NAV site on upgrades.

See How to customize parts of NAV’s web interface for information on more integrated ways to hook into NAV.