AttributeError module 'datetime' has no attribute 'utcnow'

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Borislav Hadzhiev

Wed Apr 20 20222 min read

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AttributeError module 'datetime' has no attribute 'utcnow' #

The error "AttributeError module 'datetime' has no attribute 'utcnow'" occurs when we try to call the utcnow method directly on the datetime module. To solve the error, use the following import import datetime and call the utcnow method as datetime.datetime.utcnow().

attributeerror module datetime has no attribute utcnow

Here is an example of how the error occurs.

main.py
import datetime # ⛔️ AttributeError: module 'datetime' has no attribute 'utcnow' print(datetime.utcnow())

The issue in the code sample is that we are trying to call the utcnow method directly on the datetime module.

To solve the error, call the utcnow method on the datetime class instead.

main.py
import datetime # 👇️ 2022-05-14 11:13:13.149843 print(datetime.datetime.utcnow())
Make sure you haven't named your local module datetime.py as that would shadow the official datetime module.

Alternatively, you can change your import statement to import the datetime class from the datetime module to not have to type datetime.datetime which looks quite confusing.

main.py
from datetime import datetime # 👇️ 2022-05-14 11:13:13.149843 print(datetime.utcnow())

We imported the datetime class from the datetime module and called the utcnow method on the class.

It is quite confusing that there is a class named datetime in the datetime module.

You can make your code a bit easier to read by using an alias in your import statement.

main.py
from datetime import datetime as dt # 👇️ 2022-05-14 11:13:13.149843 print(dt.utcnow())

We aliased the datetime class to dt, so you would call the utcnow method as dt.utcnow() instead of datetime.utcnow().

The best way to start debugging the "AttributeError module 'datetime' has no attribute 'utcnow'" is to call the dir() function passing it the imported module.

main.py
import datetime """ [ 'MAXYEAR', 'MINYEAR', '__all__', '__builtins__', '__cached__', '__doc__', '__file__', '__loader__', '__name__', '__package__', '__spec__', 'date', 'datetime', 'datetime_CAPI', 'sys', 'time', 'timedelta', 'timezone', 'tzinfo' ] """ print(dir(datetime))

If you pass a module object to the dir() function, it returns a list of names of the module's attributes.

If you try to access any attribute that is not in this list, you would get the "AttributeError: module has no attribute".

We can see that the datetime module has no attribute named utcnow, so it must be an attribute in one of the module's classes.

We can also see that the datetime module has an attribute datetime, which is what we used to successfully call the utcnow() method.

If you import the datetime class from the datetime module and pass it to the dir() function, you will see the utcnow method in the list of attributes.

main.py
from datetime import datetime # 👇️ [... 'utcnow', ...] print(dir(datetime))

If you got the error "AttributeError: partially initialized module 'datetime' has no attribute 'utcnow' (most likely due to a circular import)", there is a file called datetime.py in your local codebase.

To solve the error, make sure to not use names of built-in or remote modules, e.g. datetime.py, for your local files.

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