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I used the old instructions but after installation when I turn on the avatar option site completely breaks. I was wondering if I can use following instructions to setup the avatar instead of the instructions given in the askbot site.

SocialQA's avatar
asked 2014-05-03 16:27:18 -0500
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1 Answer


Lately I've also noticed an issue with that, caused by the changes in pip and how installation of the Python Imaging Library PIL works. With additional parameters to pipthe imaging library can be installed

pip install PIL --allow-external PIL --allow-unverified PIL

These parameters may have some security issues you might look into.

Evgeny's avatar
answered 2014-05-03 16:31:36 -0500
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so I should re-install PIL as you have mentioned and try it? you still didn't mention if I can follow the instructions of the site that I linked :)

SocialQA's avatar SocialQA (2014-05-03 16:37:15 -0500) edit

Yes, run that in your environment, then try to install askbot dependencies again. I have not tested the latest `django-avatar`, some work may need to be done in the Askbot code base to support it.

Evgeny's avatar Evgeny (2014-05-03 16:40:12 -0500) edit

@Evgeny I tried what you had put but ended up with following: error: no such option: --allow-external I am also running django 1.4

SocialQA's avatar SocialQA (2014-05-06 13:35:19 -0500) edit

@SocialQA that command works in my virtualenv on pip 1.5.6.

zheli's avatar zheli (2014-08-03 11:07:56 -0500) edit

FWIW - I am also having problems with getting the avatar module to work. I used the github link from the install docs on and also followed the above recommendation for PIL (which installed just fine). I continue to get import errors when accessing my site. @Evgeny, do you happen to know of anything else on your hosted sites (at that would be allowing this to function? It obviously works there so that tells me that we are obviously missing a library or setting on our internal sites. Just curious.

dharrah's avatar dharrah (2015-08-17 16:33:13 -0500) edit
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