Transferring Local Files During Workflows#

Transfer files locally before or after executing an electron.


  1. For convenience in running this example, define the read (source) and write (destination) file paths.

from pathlib import Path

# Define source and destination filepaths
source_filepath = Path('./my_source_file').resolve()
dest_filepath = Path('./my_dest_file').resolve()
  1. Create a source file to transfer.

# Create an example file
file_content = """Mares eat oats and does eat oats
And little lambs eat ivy ...
with open(source_filepath, "w") as f:


  1. Define a Covalent FileTransfer object, assigning the source and destination file paths respectively as its arguments.

import covalent as ct

xfer = ct.fs.FileTransfer(str(source_filepath), str(dest_filepath))
  1. Define a list of Covalent FileTransfer objects to assign to a task. (In this example, the list contains only the single FileTransfer named xfer.)

ft_list = [xfer]
  1. Define an electron that uses a Covalent FileTransfer task to read the source file and writes to the destination file, assigning the list containing the FileTransfer objects to the files argument of the electron decorator. (Note that the files argument takes a list of Covalent FileTransfer objects, not files or path names.)

        files = ft_list
def my_file_transfer_task(files):
    from_file, to_file = files[0]
    with open(to_file,'w') as f:
        for line in open(from_file, 'r'):
    return to_file

Here is the task definition again, with the three steps combined in the electron decorator. The FileTransfer defaults to the local Rsync strategy:

import covalent as ct

        files=[ct.fs.FileTransfer(str(source_filepath), str(dest_filepath))] # defaults to Rsync
def my_file_transfer_task(files=None):
    from_file, to_file = files[0]
    with open(to_file,'w') as f_to, open(from_file, 'r') as f_from:
        for line in f_from:
    return to_file
  1. Run the electron thus created in a lattice:

# Create and dispatch a workflow to transfer data from source to destination, and write to destination file

def my_workflow():
    return my_file_transfer_task()

dispatch_id = ct.dispatch(my_workflow)()
  1. Confirm the transfer by reading the contents of the destination file: After executing the workflow a copy of the file (source_filepath) has been written to my_dest_file. This file transfer occurred before electron execution.

result = ct.get_result(dispatch_id, wait=True)
result_filepath = result.result

# Read from the destination file
print("Reading from ", result_filepath, "\n")
with open(result_filepath,'r') as f:

# Clean up files

Lattice Result
result: /Users/mini-me/agnostiq/covalent/doc/source/how_to/coding/my_dest_file
input args: []
input kwargs: {}
error: None

start_time: 2023-01-29 22:18:07.789282
end_time: 2023-01-29 22:18:07.914328

results_dir: /Users/mini-me/agnostiq/covalent/doc/source/how_to/coding/results
dispatch_id: 024088b9-6f74-4e5f-9757-9f088bd16b29

Node Outputs
my_file_transfer_task(0): /Users/mini-me/agnostiq/covalent/doc/source/how_to/coding/my_dest_file

Reading from  /Users/mini-me/agnostiq/covalent/doc/source/how_to/coding/my_dest_file

Mares eat oats and does eat oats
And little lambs eat ivy ...

See Also#

Transferring Remote Files During Workflows

Transferring Files to and from an S3 Bucket