Run certain code every n seconds


Question

Is there a way to, for example, print Hello World! every n seconds? For example, the program would go through whatever code I had, then once it had been 5 seconds (with time.sleep()) it would execute that code. I would be using this to update a file though, not print Hello World.

For example:

startrepeat("print('Hello World')", .01) # Repeats print('Hello World') ever .01 seconds

for i in range(5):
    print(i)

>> Hello World!
>> 0
>> 1
>> 2
>> Hello World!
>> 3
>> Hello World!
>> 4
1
124
11/3/2014 12:08:20 PM

Accepted Answer

import threading

def printit():
  threading.Timer(5.0, printit).start()
  print "Hello, World!"

printit()

# continue with the rest of your code

https://docs.python.org/3/library/threading.html#timer-objects

267
5/12/2019 9:55:10 AM

My humble take on the subject, a generalization of Alex Martelli's answer, with start() and stop() control:

from threading import Timer

class RepeatedTimer(object):
    def __init__(self, interval, function, *args, **kwargs):
        self._timer     = None
        self.interval   = interval
        self.function   = function
        self.args       = args
        self.kwargs     = kwargs
        self.is_running = False
        self.start()

    def _run(self):
        self.is_running = False
        self.start()
        self.function(*self.args, **self.kwargs)

    def start(self):
        if not self.is_running:
            self._timer = Timer(self.interval, self._run)
            self._timer.start()
            self.is_running = True

    def stop(self):
        self._timer.cancel()
        self.is_running = False

Usage:

from time import sleep

def hello(name):
    print "Hello %s!" % name

print "starting..."
rt = RepeatedTimer(1, hello, "World") # it auto-starts, no need of rt.start()
try:
    sleep(5) # your long-running job goes here...
finally:
    rt.stop() # better in a try/finally block to make sure the program ends!

Features:

  • Standard library only, no external dependencies
  • start() and stop() are safe to call multiple times even if the timer has already started/stopped
  • function to be called can have positional and named arguments
  • You can change interval anytime, it will be effective after next run. Same for args, kwargs and even function!

Licensed under: CC-BY-SA with attribution
Not affiliated with: Stack Overflow
Icon