Configuration settings are applied in three ways: user, project, and the --config CLI argument. The user (global) configuration is read first. Next the project configuration is loaded, and overrides any settings found in both the user (global) and project configurations. Finally, if the --config argument is used on the command line, the specified file is loaded and overrides any settings that overlap with the user (global) and project configurations.

User (Global)

The user settings are read from the ~/.config/flake8 file (or the ~/.flake8 file on Windows). Example:

ignore = E226,E302,E41
max-line-length = 160
exclude = tests/*
max-complexity = 10


At the project level, the tox.ini, setup.cfg, .pep8 or .flake8 files are read if present. Only the first file is considered. If this file does not have a [flake8] section, no project specific configuration is loaded.

Per Code Line

To ignore one line of code add # NOQA as a line comment.


If the ignore option is not in the configuration and not in the arguments, only the error codes E123/E133, E226 and E241/E242 are ignored (see the warning and error codes).


This is a (likely incomplete) list of settings that can be used in your config file. In general, any settings that pycodestyle supports we also support and we add the ability to set max-complexity as well.

  • exclude: comma-separated filename and glob patterns default: .svn,CVS,.bzr,.hg,.git,__pycache__
  • filename: comma-separated filename and glob patterns default: *.py
  • select: select errors and warnings to enable which are off by default
  • ignore: skip errors or warnings
  • max-line-length: set maximum allowed line length default: 79
  • format: set the error format
  • max-complexity: McCabe complexity threshold