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55.2. The tkFileDialog module

The tkFileDialog module provides two different pop-up windows you can use to give the user the ability to find existing files or create new files.

.askopenfilename(option=value, ...)

Intended for cases where the user wants to select an existing file. If the user selects a nonexistent file, a popup will appear informing them that the selected file does not exist.

.asksaveasfilename(option=value, ...)

Intended for cases where the user wants to create a new file or replace an existing file. If the user selects an existing file, a pop-up will appear informing that the file already exists, and asking if they really want to replace it.

The arguments to both functions are the same:

defaultextension=s

The default file extension, a string starting with a period ('.'). If the user's reply contains a period, this argument has no effect. It is appended to the user's reply in case there are no periods.

For example, if you supply a defaultextension='.jpg' argument and the user enters 'gojiro', the returned file name will be 'gojiro.jpg'.

filetypes=[(label1, pattern1), (label2, pattern2), ...]

A list of two-element tuples containing file type names and patterns that will select what appears in the file listing. In the screen picture below, note the pull-down menu labeled “Files of type:”. The filetypes argument you supply will populate this pull-down list. Each pattern is a file type name (“PNG” in the example) and a pattern that selects files of a given type (“(*.png)” in the example).

initialdir=D

The path name of the directory to be displayed initially. The default directory is the current working directory.

initialfile=F

The file name to be displayed initially in the “File name:” field, if any.

parent=W

To make the pop-up appear over some window W, supply this argument. The default behavior is that the pop-up will appear over your application's root window.

title=T

If specified, T is a string to be displayed as the pop-up window's title.

If the user selects a file, the returned value is the complete path name of the selected file. If the user uses the Cancel button, the function returns an empty string.

Here is an example: