For a number of years I have been concerned about the duplication of work having to maintain continuous integration environments both on Travis-CI to run the unit tests and on Readthedocs to build and host the documentation.

The solution I am proposing is to use Github actions to replace both systems. I chose Github actions instead of Travis-CI because they are easier to configure, have better log-viewing interface and surprisingly enough they are better integrated with Github!

The biggest hurdle was to find a way to reproduce the capability of readthedocs to host multiple versions of the documentation together, fortunately the sphinx-multiversion gives a very similar functionality.

Next I’ll be sharing an example configuration for Github actions that integrates:

  • Installs requirements both via the package manager and pip
  • Build and run unit tests for Python 3.6 and 3.7
  • Just with Python 3.6, installs sphinx-multiversion, builds the docs for all tagged releases, pushes that to the documentation repository


  • Create a docs/requirements.txt file which includes sphinx-multiversion, I directly use
  • Follow the sphinx-multiversion documentation to configure docs/, for example my configuration is:

      ``` # Sphinx multiversion configuration extensions += ["sphinx_multiversion"]

templates_path = [ “_templates”, ] #html_sidebars = {‘**’: [



Whitelist pattern for tags (set to None to ignore all tags) smv_tag_whitelist = r’^.*

Whitelist pattern for branches (set to None to ignore all branches) smv_branch_whitelist = r’^master$’

Whitelist pattern for remotes (set to None to use local branches only) smv_remote_whitelist = None

Pattern for released versions smv_released_pattern = r’^.tags.$’

Format for versioned output directories inside the build directory smv_outputdir_format = ‘{}’

Determines whether remote or local git branches/tags are preferred if their output dirs conflict smv_prefer_remote_refs = False

  • If necessary, customize the templates, for example I added localtoc.html and page.html to mine, see this gist
  • Decide where you want to host the docs, I created a dedicated repository (same name of the python package replacing _ by -), created a Github deploy key on it, and added it as DEPLOY_KEY within the secrets of the Github repository so that it is available in the Github action (GITHUB_TOKEN instead is automatically created).