Using CSV Transfer

This document provides basic instructions on installing and using the CSV-Transfer Utility to import data files into BMON. Note that there is a newer utility that also can be used to transfer data from files of any format into BMON: file-to-bmon. Examine the features of the file-to-bmon utility before choosing the csv-tranfser utility.

The instructions provided are written based on having performed a local BMON installation but should work similarly if you have installed BMON on a Webfaction server based on these instructions.

The skills needed for installation are primarily:

  • Linux command line skills - it is assumed you are familiar so explanations of basic linux command line operations are not included in this documentation.

Installing Dropbox


The steps in this section are patterned after the general instructions from Digital Ocean’s How To Install Dropbox Client as a Service on Ubuntu 14.04

Determine your bit version of Linux by running
uname -a

x86_64 means 64 bit, x86 means 32 bit, this is important when installing dropbox, the wrong version won’t work

for 64 bit run
curl -Lo dropbox-linux-x86_64.tar.gz
for 32 bit run
curl -Lo dropbox-linux-x86.tar.gz
Next do the following
sudo mkdir -p /opt/dropbox
sudo tar xzfv dropbox-linux-x86_64.tar.gz --strip 1 -C /opt/dropbox
Start dropbox by entering
Link your dropbox account by copying the URL the dropbox client prints and visiting it in a web browser, it keeps printing until you link your account or kill the process

Wait for the message This computer is now linked to Dropbox. Welcome USERNAME to appear on your bmon server

Kill the process by pressing Ctrl-C

Set up a service script
sudo curl -o /etc/init.d/dropbox
sudo chmod +x /etc/init.d/dropbox
Create a Default Users File
sudo nano /etc/default/dropbox

example file


where USERNAME is your linux username (not to be confused with your Dropbox username)

Reload the Daemon and Start Dropbox
sudo systemctl daemon-reload
sudo systemctl start dropbox
sudo update-rc.d dropbox defaults

Installing Required Packages

Start in your home directory
cd $home

Install the Required Packages


If you followed the instructions from How to Install BMON on a Local Web Server you may have already installed these packages. However, they were installed in the virtual environment which is encapsulated in its own entity. You will need to install these packages again to the non-virtual environment so the csv transfer tool can access them.

sudo pip install pyyaml
sudo pip install requests
sudo pip install pytz

Installing CSV Transfer

Start in your home directory
cd $home

sudo git clone
Go to the CSV Transfer Folder
cd csv-transfer
Create a config.yaml file
sudo cp sample_config.yaml config.yaml

The README file provided with csv-transfer includes more thorough documentation on explaining all of the parameters in the config file, see it for more information before proceeding either via sudo nano README or by visiting the csv-transfer github repository online. Some basic tips are provided below to aid in properly configuring and running csv transfer successfully.

You will need to edit the config.yaml file to instruct it where and how to read your files, do this by running sudo nano config.yaml

An example from a test config.yaml file:

- file_glob: “/home/cchrc/Dropbox/Foundation/BAfoundation.csv”
file_type: generic
chunk_size: 10
header_rows: 4
name_row: 2
field_map: “lambda nm: ‘_’.join(nm.split(‘_’)[:2])”
ts_tz: America/Anchorage
exclude_fields: [RECORD]

# List of consumers of the CSV records
- type: bmon
poster_id: cc-bmon-01 # unique ID for this posting object
bmon_store_key: BiGFfNPnBCxH

Things to know
To add a second, third, fourth file etc. you would insert a new block starting with csv_files: and including all the relevant information, entering between earlier csv_files statements and # List of consumers (which you do not need to duplicate)
file_glob: indicates the path where your files are stored in your Dropbox folder, wild-cards (*.csv) are accepted if all of your files are in the same directory and will upload all files meeting that criteria
header_rows: the number of rows in the beginning of your file to be considered header or which do not contain data you wish to upload (see csv example below)
name_row: indication of which row (within the header count) contains the column names of your data, a 2 here means that of the 4 header rows, the second row contains column names (see csv example below)
field_map: is optional, in the example above field_map: “lambda nm: ‘_’.join(nm.split(‘_’)[:2])” strips the final two underscores of the column name ex. SOLAR_TundertankONEFOOT_F_Avg would become SOLAR_TundertankONEFOOT, remove this line if you do not wish to have your column names altered
ts_tz: enter the appropriate timezone for your area and/or the area the data is being generated
exclude_fields: if you have arbitrary fields, like record numbers, you can enter them here to have them omitted from the import
poster_id: enter a unique id
bmon_store_url: is the full URL to the storage function of the BMON server, this will include http://SERVER IP OR URL/readingdb/reading/store, the only information to be changed is the portion immediately following http://
bmon_store_key: each BMON server has a unique and secret storage key string; providing this string is required for storing data on the BMON server, copy this from your bmon file
Run CSV Transfer and upload your data
sudo ./ config.yaml

Incorporating Your Imported Data Into BMON

Follow the Adding Sensors instructions to add sensors to BMON if you haven’t done so already. The data structure within the SQLite database that BMON runs on is simple. The data from each sensor occupies its own table. The name of the table is the Sensor ID in our case it’s the column name from our csv file.

An example .csv file

“2015-06-18 00:00:00”,0,32.39,85.7,33.68,34.91
“2015-06-19 00:00:00”,1,32.41,86.7,33.77,34.97
“2015-06-20 00:00:00”,2,32.47,87.4,33.87,35.07
“2015-06-21 00:00:00”,3,32.52,86.8,34.01,35.17
“2015-06-22 00:00:00”,4,32.58,83.2,34.17,35.3
“2015-06-23 00:00:00”,5,32.63,71.38,34.31,35.41
“2015-06-24 00:00:00”,6,32.69,70.2,34.39,35.53
“2015-06-25 00:00:00”,7,32.75,70.33,34.48,35.65


If you run the csv transfer tool and receive InsecurePlatformWarning or InsecureRequestWarning messages, do the following:

sudo nano /csv-transfer/consumers/

comment out the following lines by adding a # character at the beginning of each line

from requests.packages.urllib3.exceptions import InsecureRequestWarning, InsecurePlatformWarning


#from requests.packages.urllib3.exceptions import InsecureRequestWarning, InsecurePlatformWarning