Show Sidebar Hide Sidebar

Version 4 Migration Guide in Python

Migration guide for upgrading from version 3 to version 4

Upgrading to Version 4

Upgrading to version 4 of plotly is a matter of following the instructions in the Getting Started guide and reinstalling the packages, subject to the notices below.

Getting Help

If you encounter issues in upgrading from version 3 to version 4, please reach out in our Community Forum or if you've found an issue or regression in version 4, please report a Github Issue

Online features (plotly.plotly) moved to chart-studio package

Prior versions of plotly.py contained functionality for creating figures in both "online" and "offline" modes. In "online" mode figures were uploaded to the Chart Studio cloud (or on-premise) service, whereas in "offline" mode figures were rendered locally. Version 4 of plotly is "offline"-only: all "online" functionality has been removed from the main plotly distribution package and moved to the new chart-studio distribution package.

To migrate version 3 "online" functionality, first install the chart-studio package using pip...

$ pip install chart-studio

of conda.

$ conda install -c plotly chart-studio

Then, update your Python import statements to import "online" functionality from the top-level chart_studio package, rather than the top-level plotly package. For example. replace

from plotly.plotly import plot, iplot

with

from chart_studio.plotly import plot, iplot

Similarly,

  • Replace plotly.api with chart_studio.api
  • Replace plotly.dashboard_objs with chart_studio.dashboard_objs
  • Replace plotly.grid_objs with chart_studio.grid_objs
  • Replace plotly.presentation_objs with chart_studio.presentation_objs
  • Replace plotly.widgets with chart_studio.widgets

Offline features (plotly.offline) replaced by Renderers framework & HTML export

Version 4 introduces a new renderers framework that is a generalization of version 3's plotly.offline.init_notebook_mode and plotly.offline.iplot functions for displaying figures. This is a non-breaking change: the plotly.offline.iplot function is still available and has been reimplemented on top of the renderers framework, so no changes are required when porting to version 4. Going forward, we recommend using the renderers framework directly. See Displaying plotly figures for more information.

In version 3, the plotly.offline.plot function was used to export figures to HTML files. In version 4, this function has been reimplemented on top of the new to_html and write_html functions from the plotly.io module. These functions have a slightly more consistent API (see docstrings for details), and going forward we recommend using them directly when performing HTML export. When working with a graph object figure, these functions are also available as the .to_html and .write_html figure methods.

New default theme

An updated "plotly" theme has been enabled by default in version 4.

In [1]:
import plotly.graph_objects as go
from plotly.subplots import make_subplots
import pandas as pd

# Make figure with subplots
fig = make_subplots(rows=1, cols=2, specs=[[{"type": "bar"},
                                            {"type": "surface"}]])

# Add bar traces to subplot (1, 1)
fig.add_trace(go.Bar(y=[2, 1, 3]), row=1, col=1)
fig.add_trace(go.Bar(y=[3, 2, 1]), row=1, col=1)
fig.add_trace(go.Bar(y=[2.5, 2.5, 3.5]), row=1, col=1)

# Add surface trace to subplot (1, 2)
# Read data from a csv
z_data = pd.read_csv("https://raw.githubusercontent.com/plotly/datasets/master/api_docs/mt_bruno_elevation.csv")
fig.add_surface(z=z_data)

# Hide legend
fig.update_layout(
    showlegend=False,
    title_text="Default Theme",
    height=500,
    width=800,
)

fig.show()

You can revert to the version 3 figure appearance by disabling the default theme as follows:

In [2]:
import plotly.io as pio
pio.templates.default = "none"

import plotly.graph_objects as go
from plotly.subplots import make_subplots
import pandas as pd

# Make figure with subplots
fig = make_subplots(rows=1, cols=2, specs=[[{"type": "bar"},
                                            {"type": "surface"}]])

# Add bar traces to subplot (1, 1)
fig.add_trace(go.Bar(y=[2, 1, 3]), row=1, col=1)
fig.add_trace(go.Bar(y=[3, 2, 1]), row=1, col=1)
fig.add_trace(go.Bar(y=[2.5, 2.5, 3.5]), row=1, col=1)

# Add surface trace to subplot (1, 2)
# Read data from a csv
z_data = pd.read_csv("https://raw.githubusercontent.com/plotly/datasets/master/api_docs/mt_bruno_elevation.csv")
fig.add_surface(z=z_data)

# Hide legend
fig.update_layout(
    showlegend=False,
    title_text="Default Theme Disabled",
    height=500,
    width=800,
)

fig.show()
In [3]:
# Restore default theme
pio.templates.default = "plotly"

See Theming and templates for more information on theming in plotly.py version 4.

Add trace return value

In version 3, the add_trace graph object figure method returned a reference to the newly created trace. This was also the case for the add_{trace_type} methods (e.g. add_scatter, add_bar, etc.). In version 4, these methods return a reference to the calling figure. This change was made to support method chaining of figure operations. For example

In [4]:
from plotly.subplots import make_subplots
(make_subplots(rows=1, cols=2)
 .add_scatter(y=[2, 1, 3], row=1, col=1)
 .add_bar(y=[3, 2, 1], row=1, col=2)
 .update_layout(
     title_text="Figure title",
     showlegend=False,
     width=800,
     height=500,
 )
 .show())

Code that relied on the add_* methods to return a reference to the newly created trace will need to be updated to access the trace from the returned figure. This can be done by appending .data[-1] to the add trace expression.

Here is an example of a version 3 code snippet that adds a scatter trace to a figure, assigns the result to a variable named scatter, and then modifies the marker size of the scatter trace.

import plotly.graph_objs as go
fig = go.Figure()
scatter = fig.add_trace(go.Scatter(y=[2, 3, 1]))
scatter.marker.size = 20

In version 4, this would be replaced with the following:

import plotly.graph_objects as go
fig = go.Figure()
scatter = fig.add_trace(go.Scatter(y=[2, 3, 1])).data[-1]
scatter.marker.size = 20

make_subplots updates

The make_subplots function has been overhauled to support all trace types and to support the integration of Plotly Express. Here are a few changes to be aware of when porting code that uses make_subplots to version 4.

New preferred import location

The preferred import location of the make_subplots function is now plotly.subplots.make_subplots. For compatibility, this function is still available as plotly.tools.make_subplots.

Grid no longer printed by default

When the print_grid argument to make_subplots is set to True, a text representation of the subplot grid is printed by the make_subplots function. In version 3, the default value of print_grid was True. In version 4, the default value of print_grid is False.

New row_heights argument to replace row_width

The legacy argument for specifying the relative height of subplot rows was called row_width. A new row_heights argument has been introduced for this purpose.

Note: Although it is not mentioned in the docstring for plotly.subplots.make_subplots, the legacy row_width argument, with the legacy behavior, is still available in version 4.

In addition to having a more consistent name, values specified to the new row_heights argument properly honor the start_cell argument. With the legacy row_width argument, the list of heights was always interpreted from the bottom row to the top row, even if start_cell=="top-left". With the new row_heights argument, the list of heights is interpreted from top to bottom if start_cell=="top-left" and from bottom to top if start_cell=="bottom-left".

When porting code from row_width to row_heights, the order of the heights list must be reversed if start_cell=="top-left" or start_cell was unspecified.

Here is a version 3 compatible example that uses the row_width argument to create a figure with subplots where the top row is twice as tall as the bottom row.

In [5]:
from plotly.subplots import make_subplots

fig = make_subplots(
    rows=2, cols=1,
    row_width=[0.33, 0.67],
    start_cell="top-left")

fig.add_scatter(y=[2, 1, 3], row=1, col=1)
fig.add_bar(y=[2, 3, 1], row=2, col=1)
fig.show()

And here is the equivalent, version 4 example. Note how the order to the height list is reversed compared to the example above.

In [6]:
from plotly.subplots import make_subplots

fig = make_subplots(
    rows=2, cols=1,
    row_heights=[0.67, 0.33],
    start_cell="top-left")

fig.add_scatter(y=[2, 1, 3], row=1, col=1)
fig.add_bar(y=[2, 3, 1], row=2, col=1)
fig.show()

Implementation of shared axes with make_subplots

The implementation of shared axis support in the make_subplots function has been simplified. Prior to version 4, shared y-axes were implemented by associating a single yaxis object with multiple xaxis objects, and vica versa.

In version 4, every 2D Cartesian subplot has a dedicated x-axis and and a dedicated y-axis. Axes are now "shared" by being linked together using the matches axis property.

For legacy code that makes use of the make_subplots and add trace APIs, this change does not require any action on the user's part. However, legacy code that uses make_subplots to create a figure with shared axes, and then manipulates the axes directly, may require updates. The output of the .print_grid method on a figure created using make_subplots can be used to identify which axis objects are associated with each subplot.

In [7]:
from plotly.subplots import make_subplots
fig = make_subplots(rows=1, cols=2, shared_yaxes=True)
fig.print_grid()
print(fig)
This is the format of your plot grid:
[ (1,1) x,y   ]  [ (1,2) x2,y2 ]

Figure({
    'data': [],
    'layout': {'template': '...',
               'xaxis': {'anchor': 'y', 'domain': [0.0, 0.45]},
               'xaxis2': {'anchor': 'y2', 'domain': [0.55, 1.0]},
               'yaxis': {'anchor': 'x', 'domain': [0.0, 1.0]},
               'yaxis2': {'anchor': 'x2', 'domain': [0.0, 1.0], 'matches': 'y', 'showticklabels': False}}
})

Trace UIDs

In version 3, all trace graph objects were copied and assigned a new uid property when being added to a Figure. In version 4, these uid properties are only generated automatically when a trace is added to a FigureWidget. When a trace is added to a standard Figure graph object the input uid, if provided, is accepted as is.

Timezones

Prior to version 4, when plotly.py was passed a datetime that included a timezone, the datetime was automatically converted to UTC. In version 4, this conversion is no longer performed, and datetime objects are accepted and displayed in local time.

Headless image export on Linux with Xvfb.

In version 4, the static image export logic attempts to automatically detect whether to call the orca image export utility using Xvfb. Xvfb is needed for orca to work in a Linux environment if an X11 display server is not available. By default, Xvfb us used if plotly.py is running on Linux if no X11 display server is detected and Xvfb is available on the system PATH.

This new behavior can be disabled by setting the use_xvfb orca configuration option to False as follows:

import plotly.io as pio
pio.orca.config.use_xvfb = False

Removals

fileopt argument removal

The fileopt argument to chart_studio.plotly.plot has been removed, so in-place modifications to previously published figures are no longer supported.

Legacy online GraphWidget

The legacy online-only GraphWidget class has been removed. Please use the plotly.graph_objects.FigureWidget class instead. See the Figure Widget Overview for more information.

Import from graph_objects instead of graph_objs

The legacy plotly.graph_objs package has been aliased as plotly.graph_objects because the latter is much easier to communicate verbally. The plotly.graph_objs package is still available for backward compatibility.