Relative import from parent directory

Edit: Relative import paths are not the way to go in Go. Lack of documentation shows something about popularity of relative paths, and I don’t see a reason for using them. Go’s recommended code organization works pretty well. Every package should have a unique import path and be imported everywhere using that same import path.

See how a package like imports its neighbors. This is a common practice among Go projects and I’ve seen it a lot of times. Package (also on GitHub; written by one of the main authors of Go) imports by full path.

Even if you are having both commands and libraries in the same project this approach works. In your original questions you wisely asked for best practices. I did my best in explaining best practices on this matter.

Import paths can’t be relative in Go. I recommend reading How to Write Go Code, the essential reading on organizing Go projects. Here’s a short overview:

Make a directory like ~/go for your Go development. Then say:

$ export GOPATH=~/go
$ mkdir $GOPATH/{src,bin,pkg}

$GOPATH/src holds source code for all your Go packages, even the ones your download with go get. bin and pkg keep output of compilations. Packages with package name main are commands and yield to executable binaries which go to $GOPATH/bin. Other packages are libraries and their compiled object files are put in $GOPATH/pkg.

Now if you put your code in $GOPATH/src/matt/meme, you can import it by import "matt/meme". It’s recommended to use a prefix for your package names and leave short package names for standard libraries. That’s why I used $GOPATH/src/matt/meme instead of $GOPATH/src/meme.

Organize your code around this idea.

Leave a Comment